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Integrated circuits (ICs) and microchips are both small, semiconductor devices that are used to perform a specific electronic function. But these two electronic components have key differences that make them each useful for different applications.
In this article, we’ll explore the key differences between ICs and microchips and see examples of how each is used in real-world applications.
What is an Integrated Circuit (IC)?
Integrated circuits are semiconductor devices made up of multiple electronic components that are built and bonded together as a single unit.
The individual components can be transistors, capacitors, resistors, diodes, inductors and more. The components are etched onto a silicon wafer using photolithography, a process similar to how computer chips are made.
After the components are etched onto the silicon wafer, the wafer is cut into small chips that are then bonded into packages with pins or wires that connect the circuit to the outside world.
The individual components on the silicon wafers are connected by wires and etched grooves that run both vertically and horizontally. The wires and grooves are so small they are almost invisible to the naked eye.
Integrated circuits are usually encased in a plastic or ceramic housing that protects the delicate silicon circuit inside.
What is a Microchip?
A microchip is a silicon chip that contains an integrated circuit. We can also define it as a minute wafer of a semiconducting material that serves as an IC carrier. This means that the microchip is the silicon chip that contains the integrated circuit.
Microchips can be used in a variety of applications. They can be used in electronic devices such as computer systems, cameras and phones to control various functions of the device.
They can also be used in automobiles to assist in steering, acceleration and braking.
Integrated Circuit vs Microchip: What’s the Difference?
The first major difference between ICs and microchips is their design. As we discussed above, ICs are built as a single unit where all the components exist on the same silicon wafer. Microchips, on the other hand, are etched with the individual components on a silicon wafer and then assembled into an individual chip.
ICs are generally encased in a ceramic or plastic housing, while microchips are encased in a ceramic housing.
Another difference between ICs and microchips is their connections. ICs are connected via pins or wires that run from the inside of the chip to its exterior. Conversely, the connections on a microchip are etched into the surface of the chip.
ICs are generally more robust and have higher performance than microchips.
But there is very little difference between the two in terms of performance. It all depends on the components that is embedded on the chip.
What is the work of a PCB in IC and microchips?
PCB stands for Printed Circuit Board. It is basically a circuit board that contains the components of an IC or microchip. In a microchip, it is the substrate on which the individual components are etched.
For example: The CPU in a computer is integrated onto a single chip and then encased in a printed circuit board. This printed circuit board serves as the substrate for all the components of the CPU to be etched on it.
How are the ICs and microchips embedded into devices?
From the discussion, it is clear that integrated circuits and microchips have almost similar structural designs. So, how are they embedded into their target devices?
Integrated circuits are embedded on a substrate which is then encased in a thin layer of plastic.
Microchips are embedded on a substrate which is then encased in a thin layer of plastic.
What is the difference between a microprocessor and an integrated circuit?
A microprocessor is usually regarded as a unique type of IC. It is different from other types of integrated circuits.
The uniqueness of a microprocessor is due to the fact that it can execute more complex tasks than most ICs. Perhaps this is the main reason why they call it the ‘computing brain’ of a device.
What is the cost of integrated circuits and microchip?
As discussed in the introduction, ICs and microchips are the most complex of all electronic components. They are also the most expensive components. What is their cost range?
The cost range of an integrated circuit and a microchip per unit, depends on its complexity and use in applications.
Integrated circuits and microchips have different costs depending on their complexity and use in applications.
The cost also depends on where you are buying. Some manufacturers and distributors sell at affordable prices while others are quite expensive.
Choosing the right IC and microchip for my application
Image source easytechjunkie
When selecting an IC or microchip for your application, it’s important to consider the device’s performance and functionality. You should also decide whether you want one device that has multiple functions (an IC) or separate devices that each perform a specific function (a microchip for each function).
There are a few factors to keep in mind when selecting an IC or microchip for your application, including the device’s voltage and current, operating temperature, size, and packaging type.
Choose a reputable IC and microchip distributor in China
Whether you are planning to buy an integrated circuit or a microchip, the source will always matter. Ensure that you buy from a reputable IC and microchip distributor in China. This is because you will be able to get the best prices and get a warranty on your products.
And this is where ICRFQ comes in. We are a reputable, trusted, and reliable IC distributor in China. We provide the best prices on all our products.
We take great pride in our excellent customer service and support which is why we offer an extensive warranty on all of our electronic components.
I hope that this guide has given you insights on the difference between ICs and microchips. In case you want to buy either of these components, you will be in a position to make a smart choice.
This includes choosing the right supplier and distributor of the ICs in China.
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