AC Converters: Differences Between Converter and Inverter

Any device that converts one form of electrical current to another is known as a converter. You can convert alternating current into direct current or direct current into alternating current. You can also convert from analog to digital. You can also reduce or increase the voltage of current using these AC converters.

Usually inverters and converters are one and the same. However, for practical purposes there are some differences. We shall see some differences in the following paragraphs.

Converters are electrical devices that are capable of converting alternating current to direct current. Inverters have the ability to convert direct current to alternating current.

Various types of devices.

There are usually three types of AC converters:

1. Analog to digital type converter.

2. Digital to Analog type converter.

3. Digital to Digital type converter.

There are three types of inverters too:

1. Square wave inverter

2. Pure sine wave inverter.

3. Modified sine wave inverter.

Applications / Uses:

AC converters can convert AC to DC.

They can also detect AM radio signals.

They are also useful for supplying polarized voltage for welding.

Inverters have the capacity to convert direct current from the solar energy to alternating current.

They can also convert direct current from dry cell batteries to alternating current.

The UPS is an appliance that uses the inverter to supply power to computers and other installations in case of a power breakdown.


Certain electrical appliances can run in digital mode. The output may be in analog mode. You require a converter for conversion of the mode into a compatible one.

You may face the need to step up the voltage capacity from the mains. You may require a step up transformer for the same. In case you wish to reduce the voltage you should use a step down transformer.

During power breakdowns you can use the inverter to power your local appliances with the energy stored in the batteries.

You can connect the inverter to a UPS to ensure uninterrupted supply of power during electrical breakdown.


Converters have a poor overload capacity.

These converters are expensive in comparison with the mechanical regulators.

You cannot use the inverter for inductive AC as well as heavy loads such as motors.

They can damage sensitive equipment.


You have seen the functioning of the AC converters as well as the inverters. You have also seen the differences between the two. In these days of power outages you may require to install inverters and AC converters to ensure continuous power. There are also instances of low voltage or maybe a sudden spike in the voltage. Using the step up / step down transformer is best at such times.


AC converters have great use in the industry today. So does the DC to AC inverter. Your electrical appliances are precious. So you must use these converters and inverters to safeguard their performance enabling them to have a long life.