SOHC VS DOHC: The best in the performance

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Both the abbreviations are for the shaft rod placement and the numbers of the shafts in the engine cylinder. SOHCs, or the single overhead camshaft is the first engine module. Where the DOHCs, Dual overhead Camshafts are the latest and most powerful addition to the culture.

For me, it was really difficult in the first place to find out the differences and the best-performing engine option. The information that is necessary to understand SOHC and DOHC is given in this article.

Today, we will find out the mechanism of both the engine combustion chamber, and you will get a clearer idea of cost-efficacy and everything per engine module. 


Differences between SOCH and DOHC

Both the engine shaft setups are very common in modern days vehicles. Yet they both have some differences in between. Mostly, the performance and the ability to generate more power will push you toward the DOHC.

But does that mean SOHC is incompatible these days? No, both the engines have their pros and cons.

Let's take a look at the table below includes the differences between SOHC and DOHC engine models.



Single overhead camshaft

Dual overhead camshafts

2 to 3 valves mostly

Start with a 4 valve camshaft

Efficient but less powerful

Powerful and efficient

Low maintenance cost

High maintenance cost

Not too many parts

Way more parts than SOHC

Here we can see that the differences between SOHC and DOHC are in two major aspects. They are economy and power.

The Dual Camshaft is considering producing more energy with less input. Comparatively, the SOHC is more convenient with the parts economy and longevity. With a dual exhaust system, the combustion can produce more energy from a greater mixture of air and fuel.

Single overhead camshaft setup

SOHC engine has a single shaft that produces both the intake and exhaust combustion. It has a single shaft rod that can pressure down at least two to three valves and a combustion head.

In this SOHC module of the engine, a single-cylinder is equipped with the only shaft rod to lower the power consumption and the friction rate. Being lower with the parts quantity it is easy to change or replace with comparatively cheaper cost than any DOHC parts.

Dual overhead camshaft setup

On the other hand, the Dual overhead camshaft has two shaft rods that work separately from the valves. Each of the shafts does its job individually. One is used for air intake and the other is used to exhaust the power.

The dual overhead camshaft is more powerful and efficient with fuel economy. Since the individual pressure does the movement of the cylinder and the valves are working separately for both the intake and exhaust, the engine is likely to create economical combustion.

In the DOHS setup, the additional change is the smoothness of the setup. Due to separate shafts, the combustion is done with a minor sound and vibration compared to the SOHC engines.

Asking about pros and cons?

Both the shaft control systems have some advantages and disadvantages at the same time. An in-depth key feature differentiation can make it easier to understand them both.  



SOHC is the engine shaft model from the beginning to support bikes and other lightweight vehicles. That is the only option for them to select whether you want a SOHC or DOHC.

  • Minimum parts required to build up the
  • Suitable for all kinds of bikes and lightweight goods are
  • Good at torque in medium to heavy
  • Less weight
  • Less power consuming


  • Not powerful enough to combust in the most efficient way
  • Less powerful
  • Not suitable with higher rpm vehicles but notes


DOHC is the most beneficial of all three engines. It is likely to be more efficient with fuel economy and other aspects like less power and utility usage.


  • Increased volumetric power efficiency
  • Higher rpm to rev more
  • Increased horsepower
  • Energy efficiency is increased with more parts included
  • Allows to use of more technologies in the engine


  • Driving requires more components
  • More weight
  • Increased product cost/rate 

Which is better, SOCH or DOHC?

To find the best for you, you need to configure both the modules at some points. I think it will be easier for someone to find out the perfect choice once he can point out the key features of his selection. In this case, I believe these given items can help you out.

  • Performance:  Since the modern era is all about performance and speed, the DOHC cars and vehicles are preferable with the engine module. DOHC engines are capable of producing more power with extra valves.

Yet, the SOHC engines are good to this day. Because past cars and vehicles did not need higher speed and performance they were not meant to build that way.

  • Fuel efficiency: With more valves, DOHC engines are more fuel-efficient and they are unbeatable with a higher rate of combustion requiring less fuel.  

Whereas the SOHC engines take more fuel to produce similar wattage of power.

  • Maintenance and repair cost: Being with lesser parts with the engine module the SOHC hits the power here. As they have lesser parts, they are easy to maintain, and the maintenance cost is also a lot lower than a DOHC engine.   
  • Reliability: Again looking for a long-lasting option for your vehicle’s engine, the older SOHC models are more praiseworthy with less number of parts. 

On the other hand, the DOHC engines tend to get fractioned earlier.  

Finally, the decision-making moment has arrived. So, which one will be good for you?

See, if you are a person to relies on your vehicle for most of your lifetime, the SOHC is going to offer you a consistent performance till the end. Again, this type of setup takes less part to replace/change during any calamity.

But looking for higher performance and a revving engine option, DOHC is undoubtedly the only option for you. Modern days cars and vehicles are mostly built in DOHC modules.

DOHC engines are also efficient, and they save a lot of money on your fuel. Considering these points, you can find out the best option for your own.

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