Our purpose is to compare two architectures when implemented with ferroelectric liquid-crystal technology: the conventional VanderLugt and joint transform correlators. The architectures are compared in the single-correlation and multichannel cases. The analysis covers both theoretical aspects and practical considerations regarding implementation. Specifications for a multichannel correlator design, including considerations of both spatial light modulators and architecture configurations, are discussed. Experimental results are presented for both architectures. Finally, the benefit resulting from extension to multichannel operation is discussed in terms of both multiplexing and algorithmic capabilities.