Defining a Rugged Computer

What is Rugged Computer

Pioneering the differences

We've been developing and refining ruggedised portable products since 1994, with much of that experience gained in the development of Military grade 'Super Rugged' computers.

Consider just a few of the refinements that today set the benchmark with respect to the features most buyers expect to find in a rugged portable computer - then consider that we've had more experience than most creating products that are today some of the most durable, most reliable, most 'rugged' portable computers you can buy:

  • Heavy-duty, Magnesium Alloy chassis 
    (that look strong because they ARE - the photos of the 2.4 tonne 4WD parked on a 13" Opentec RPC are not faked!)
  • External device ports that are isolated from the motherboard 
    (to keep the outside OUTSIDE - ask the Australian Army how reliable Opentecs are in the Outback, where many other products simply fail due to dust-induces electronics failures)
  • Fully sealed, water and dust proof keyboards 
    (to deal with more than the occassional splash - and the photo to the left with the PDA in the water is, again, not faked)
  • Fan-less (passive) cooling systems on top end 'military rugged' ranges  
    (because fans, waterproof or not, are just another thing to fail - check out THE CHALLENGE section to read more on this)
  • Heavy-duty screen hinging mechanisms 
    (because when hinges break, screens - the most expensive component of the computer - generally fail as well)
  • Integrated motherboards and daughterboards designed to prevent components coming adrift during excesses of vibration, or after repeated shocks
    (because even one leg of a CPU connector coming adrift will render your computer useless)
  • High-brightness, high contrast, daylight readable LED-backlit LCDs 
    (because you simply can't see standard TFT screens properly in full sunlight)
  • Sealed, shock-mounted hard drives and long-life battery packs that don't need any special tools to remove 
    (because Murphy's Law says you'll never have a screwdriver with you when you really need one)

Consider these things, and you start to appreciate why the products we supply are fundamentally different.