DSL Industrial Computing

Not All PCs are Built the Same.

A look at Industrial and Panel PCs


Not all PC models are built the same. And as such, not all PC models are suitable for all working environments. Take a computer used in an office and a computer used in an industrial environment. Sure they may have similar processing, memory, and networking capabilities. But the actual designs – and the robustness – of these machines are wildly different. Industrial and Panel PCs are no exception to this rule. These machines are specifically designed to work in industrial conditions, as well as support industrial operations. Sometimes they need to work 24/7 too.

Industrial PC vs. Panel PC

PCs for food manufacturing

Both of these models can be used in industrial settings, but they’re not entirely the same. For instance, an industrial PC (IPC) is a computer system specifically designed to withstand extreme temperatures, dust, humidity, vibration, and electrical noise – all environmental features frequently found in industrial spaces. You’ll typically find IPCs in manufacturing plants, automation systems, transportation, and control systems.

As industrial PCs are designed to be used in harsh industrial environments, they’re built with robust components, rugged enclosures, and specialised cooling systems to keep them functioning as they should. These computers may also contain additional features designed for industrial use. These include:

  • Additional connections and expansion slots, such as serial ports, fieldbus interfaces, or industrial ethernet
  • Compatibility for legacy systems
  • Powerful and reliable computing, storage, and networking capabilities

However, not all industrial PCs have these features. Models and their functionalities vary manufacturer-to-manufacturer, as well as specific use cases they’re designed for.

A Panel PC is a modern take on the IPC but for more specific settings. A panel PC is also designed to work in industrial settings. However, these models combine a touchscreen display and computing power into a single device – think of them as an all-in-one computing solution. Panels are small and streamlined, and can therefore be easily installed into systems that have limited space. You’ll often find Panel PCs in automation systems and control rooms in industrial spaces. Like their IPC counterparts, Panel PCs are made of industrial-grade components, such as aluminium and stainless steel. These can withstand extremes in temperature, humidity, shock, and vibration too.

Do You Need an IPC or a Panel PC?

As we discussed above, industrial and panel PCs are different in their design, and as such are suited to different use cases. They also cover a range of budgets too. For instance, an IPC is well suited to a larger space like a factory shop floor, an oil refinery, or a treatment plant.

If you’ve only got limited space in your industrial space, a Panel PC may be the option to go for. Their design makes them convenient, and intuitive too, which can simplify operations and workstreams. They can also be mounted, either inside a panel or VESA. So unlike a similar personal device like a tablet, it’s less likely to go missing. All whilst offering the same ease of use and industrial capabilities.

Why Choose DSL’s Industrial and Panel PCs?

As we’ve covered, industrial and panel PCs need to be robust, dependable, and work reliably with other industrial equipment and machinery in harsh conditions. As they fulfil all sorts of functions – including enabling automation, data collection, process control, and monitoring – you need a model that’ll meet and exceed these requirements. We’re proud to offer a wide range of models that meet a variety of requirements across different budgets. So let’s explore what’s on offer.

Our Industrial PCs are high quality, hardwearing, and reliable in dusty industrial environments subject to extreme temperatures. They come in a full range of models, from ultraslim to heavy duty. Our interfaces are all highly customisable and we can add or remove any I/O depending on your requirements.

Then there’s our range of Panel PCs. These have industrial touchscreens, meaning there’s no need to use a mouse and keyboard. They have 7H hardened anti-vandal glass, allowing them to be used in harsh industrial spaces. Similar to our Industrial PCs, our Panel PCs vary in sizes, with displays ranging from 7” to 24”, as well as varying IP ratings. And you can be secure in the knowledge that all our Panel PCs have a five year warranty.

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