Barcode scanners have revolutionized the retail and industrial sectors by enhancing productivity and accuracy in data capture. With the market offering numerous options, choosing the suitable barcode scanner for your business can be daunting. This article will compare two popular handheld barcode scanners – the Datalogic Powerscan 9600 and the Zebra DS3600-DP. We will look closer at their features, performance, and capabilities and help you decide which scanner is best suited for your business needs.

Datalogic Powerscan 9600 vs Zebra DS3600-DP Featured Image

Physical Properties

Datalogic Powerscan 9600 Physical Properties image

Powerscan 9600

  • Standard operating temperature: -20°C to 50°C
  • Storage temperature: -40°C to 70°C
  • Can survive 6.5 ft drops across the operating range
  • Can survive 8.2 ft drops at room temperature
  • IP ratings of IP65 and IP67
Zebra DS3600-DP Physical Properties image


  • Standard working temperature for corded models: -30°C to 50°C
  • Standard working temperature for cordless models: -20°C to 50°C
  • Storage temperature: -40°C to 70°C
  • Can survive 8 ft drops across the operating range
  • Can survive 10 ft drops at room temperature
  • IP ratings of IP65 and IP68

Working/Storage Temperatures

These devices are quite similar when it comes to working and storage temperature – they can both handle temperatures from -40°C to 70°C, which is pretty impressive. However, there is one key difference between them: the operating temperature. All models of the Powerscan 9600 can be used in temperatures from -20°C to 50°C, which is the same as the cordless version of the DS3600-DP. However, the corded versions of the DS3600-DP can be used in even colder temperatures, down to -30°C. That’s 10°C colder than the Powerscan 9600.

Accordion Content

Operating temperature of a handheld barcode scanner is a crucial factor to consider as it significantly impacts the device’s performance and durability. Using a scanner outside of its specified operating temperature range can lead to malfunctions, reduced accuracy, and even permanent damage to the device.

For instance, exposing a scanner to extreme temperatures can cause condensation to form inside the device, leading to corrosion and other issues that affect its performance. Similarly, using a scanner in a high-temperature environment, such as a warehouse in the summer, can cause the internal components to heat up and cause irreparable damage.

In summary, the operating temperature of a handheld barcode scanner is vital as it directly affects the device’s performance and lifespan. By selecting a scanner designed to operate within the temperature range of your work environment, you can ensure optimal performance and an extended lifespan for the device.

Drop Resistance

There is a significant difference in the ability of the two models to resist damage from drops. At room temperature, the DS3600-DP can withstand drops from a height of 10 feet, which is 1 foot and 10 inches higher than the Powerscan 9600. This difference also holds true across their operating range, with the DS3600-DP able to handle drops from a height of 8 feet, while the Powerscan 9600 can only handle drops from a height of 6.5 feet.

IP ratings

These scanners both have a standard IP Rating of IP65, which means they are completely protected against dust. In addition to this rating, the Powerscan 9600 has an IP67 rating, which means it can be fully submerged underwater for up to 30 minutes at low pressure. On the other hand, the DS3600-DP has an IP68 rating, allowing it to be submerged underwater for extended periods of time at high pressure.

Accordion Content

To classify the level of protection against solid objects, dust, and moisture intrusion, the International Protection or Ingress Protection (IP) rating is utilized. These ratings are frequently employed to specify the level of protection for electronic devices, such as handheld barcode scanners.

Consisting of two components, the IP rating is a two-digit number. The first digit denotes the level of protection against solid objects, like dust, while the second digit signifies the degree of protection against liquids, such as water.

Here’s what the digits in an IP rating mean:

First digit:

  • 0: No protection
  • 1: Protection against solid objects larger than 50mm, such as hands and fingers
  • 2: Protection against solid objects larger than 12mm, such as tools and wires
  • 3: Protection against solid objects larger than 2.5mm, such as small tools and wires
  • 4: Protection against solid objects larger than 1mm, such as fine wires and dust
  • 5: Dust protected
  • 6: Dust tight

Second digit:

  • 0: No protection
  • 1: Protection against dripping water
  • 2: Protection against dripping water when tilted at 15°
  • 3: Protection against spraying water
  • 4: Protection against splashing water
  • 5: Protection against water jets
  • 6: Protection against powerful water jets and heavy seas
  • 7: Protection against temporary immersion in water
  • 8: Protection against continuous immersion in water

For example, an IP rating of IP67 means that the device is dust tight and can withstand temporary immersion in water. On the other hand, an IP rating of IP54 means that the device is protected against dust and splashing water.

In conclusion, the IP rating provides essential information about the level of protection that a handheld barcode scanner offers against solid objects, dust, and moisture. Understanding this rating can help you choose a scanner best suited to your needs and work environment.

Scanning and connectivity

Datalogic Powerscan 9600 Scanning Properties image

Powerscan 9600

  • 1D and 2D scanning capabilities
  • Uses imager scanner
  • Not Bluetooth enabled 
  • Interface connections: USB, RS232, and Ethernet
Zebra DS3600-DP Scanning Properties Image


  • 1D and 2D Scanning Capabilities 
  • Uses laser scanner
  • Bluetooth enabled
  • Interface Connections: USB, Keyboard Wedge (KBW), RS232, and Ethernet


Scanning both 1D and 2D barcodes is possible with the Powerscan 9600 and the DS3600-DP. Nonetheless, an imager scanner is used by the Powerscan 9600, which excels at reading 2D barcodes. In contrast, the DS3600-DP employs a laser scanner that is more accurate at reading 1D barcodes.


Both the Powerscan 9600 and the DS3600-DP offer various interface connections, including USB, RS232, and Ethernet. However, the DS3600-DP stands out because it offers a Keyboard Wedge (KBW) connection and also has Bluetooth capabilities, which the Powerscan 9600 lacks.

Accordion Content

Distinguishing 1D and 2D barcodes is primarily the quantity and type of information they can encode.

1D barcode, or a linear or UPC/EAN barcode, is a series of vertical bars of varying widths and spaces between them that represent numeric or alphanumeric data. The information stored in a 1D barcode is limited to a few dozen characters and is read using a laser scanner that reads the bars and spaces as a one-dimensional line.

A 2D barcode, also known as a matrix code, is a more complex barcode that contains two-dimensional patterns of squares, dots, hexagons, or other geometric shapes. 2D barcodes can encode much more information than 1D barcodes, including alphanumeric data, symbols, and images. They can also be read in any orientation, making them more versatile than 1D barcodes. 2D barcodes are read using image-based scanners that use a camera to capture the code and interpret the information stored within it.

Another important difference between 1D and 2D barcodes is their error correction level. 2D barcodes typically have more advanced error correction capabilities, which allows them to be partially damaged or obscured and still be read correctly. In contrast, 1D barcodes are more susceptible to damage or wear and tear, which can result in unreadable or inaccurate data.

In summary, 1D barcodes are simple, one-dimensional lines of bars and spaces that encode limited information. In contrast, 2D barcodes are more complex, two-dimensional patterns of geometric shapes that can store much more information, including images. 2D barcodes are more versatile and have more advanced error correction capabilities than 1D barcodes.

Pricing and Accessories

Datalogic Powerscan 9600 Pricing and Accesories image

Powerscan 9600

  • $568.10 to $986.70
Zebra DS3600-DP Pricing and Accesories image


  • $1,948.70 to $2,583.10


In terms of pricing, there is a significant difference between the two models. The base model price of the DS3600-DP is much higher, approximately $1,400 more expensive than the Powerscan 9600. Similarly, there is a similar price difference between the top-of-the-line models, with the DS3600-DP being approximately $1,500 more expensive than the Powerscan 9600.


Numerous accessories are available for the Powerscan 9600 and DS3600-DP, including mounts, cradles, cables, chargers, and carrying devices. It is easy to locate the necessary accessories to meet your specific requirements.


When comparing the Powerscan 9600 and DS3600-DP Barcode scanners, there are several factors to consider before making a decision. The DS3600-DP Barcode scanner is known for its superior operating temperature range, drop resistance, IP rating, and multiple connectivity ports, which might make it the preferred choice for some users. On the other hand, the Powerscan 9600 utilizes an imager scanner and is more cost-effective, which could be advantageous for those looking for these features. Ultimately, the choice depends on individual preferences and requirements.

Datalogic Powerscan 9600 Models

Zebra DS3600-DP Models