If we compare these two, the desktop PC and the workstation, we come up with this comparison: a desktop PC is a computer for general use while a workstation is a computer with a high performance, professional and specific use. Yes, both works as computers, but they come in many different ways, they differ in cost, in sizes and obviously, in use and purpose.
It is unavoidable though; some would say that a CAD workstation or also known as mobile workstation is of no difference with that of a standard personal computer or PC. This can be true at a first glance. But it would be a misleading piece of information if I would not tell the difference, for they are completely different, especially if you are to compare a clone unit with a genuine CAD workstation and a PC. Unless you are familiar with the software requirements on CAD workstation, you won’t be able to easily recognize a genuine unit from a cloned one which can lead you to buying a costly and erroneous system.
But let us focus on differentiating a desktop PC from a CAD Workstation. To illustrate the difference more clearly, let us compare them like we compare a sports car with the common family saloon. Both have 2 liter engine, both have suspension and both have 4 wheels, 4 tires and brakes. In short, they both look the same. Right? But we do understand that it is just not like that! Although a standard family saloon is built to its finest performance, yet, a sports car is tuned better and configured more for performance, has better and more strong and tough components, better cooling and airflow and more powerful engine.
And this is also how CAD Workstation is built, having much more detail, configured for a specific performance, have better cooling and more power to do specific programmed works better than a standard desktop PC.
Specifically, below are CAD workstation’s features that makes the difference:
Workstation Basics –
A workstation PC is popularly used for film editing, making special effects and mixing audio effects professionally. This unit basically, contains most of the expensive hardware and unfamiliar and interesting data ports.
Workstation Data –
Usually, workstation deals with uncompressed video and audio which apparently needs to be worked around a network which uses a Fiber Channel. This is often seen instead of Ethernet or Wi-Fi.
Other companies refer to a workstation as a computer which is used on a network with no mainframe server, thus, in some instances, workstation and computer may mean the same which can be used interchangeably.
Mobile Workstations –
As the term mobile implies, workstation may also come as a laptop that usually have more storage capacities than most common laptops have. And mobile workstations support various internal storage devices.
Rackmount Workstation –
This workstation is shaped like that of a pizza box which is designed to be mounted on other computers through a rack, thus the name “rackmount” workstation.