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A workstation and a desktop PC are two popular types of computers that are a bit similar in appearance but distinct in features and performance. The names of these two computers are often used in place of the other and sometimes, people think that they are built with similar features to perform in similar conditions.
Although the name of these two computers is used interchangeably, it is important to point out the differences between both computers that makes them suitable for different tasks.
Workstations are high-end computers that are meant for more power-intensive and commercial applications. It mostly integrates enterprise-level processor such as Xeon processors that supports lots of cores, diverse memory slots that supports multiple high-quality graphics cards to accelerate the rendering time of the computer’s frame rate, and large RAM ( most workstations are compatible with ECC RAMs) which makes it suitable for applications that require complex data manipulation and logistical operations.
Unlike desktop PCs, workstations are mostly used by big organizations for activities such as media ( audio and video) development, CAD drawing, commercial applications, scientific research, extensive mathematics, analyst, designers, animations, high-end technological issues, and other applications that require a high level of processing power.
The structural specification of a workstation requires no tools to access its easily upgradeable components, plus they can be sustained by a secondary source of power supply which makes them highly suitable for activities that require continuous workflow.
Of course with such high-end features and specifications comes a befitting price that cannot be easily afforded by all.
Unlike a workstation, a desktop PC is suitable for general use with applications that do not require high processing power. It is suitable for executing daily tasks such as games, web browsing, designing undemanding graphics, businesses, and window-based applications.
It is usually powered by simple processors such as Intel and AMD and in most instances, they function on a Windows operating system which happens to be the most popular and user-friendly operating system.
A desktop PC does not require a mainstream ISV certification or very large memory capacity. They also do not support SCSI, HDD, or Raid which makes them well suited for games, small businesses, and home use. It is more affordable when compared to a workstation, and this makes it more popular among gamers, businesses, and office users.