Best Desktop Reviews 2018

Desktops have come a long way in terms of cost, performance and design. Gone are the days of machines that today are akin to dinosaurs. Desktop PCs now come in all shapes and sizes with impressive specs that continue to improve. The best part about it? They’re more affordable now than ever! Whether it’s gaming, surfing the web, design, work or basic entertainment, modern-day desktops can handle all these tasks effortlessly. But, with all this variety and functionality, how’s a customer supposed to know which one they want? That’s where we can help. Check out our picks of five great desktops from five of the best desktop computer brands in the tech industry.
Overview
PROS
CONS
SPECS
Processor
Processing
RAM
Graphics
Storage
Our Top Choice
Acer Revo One RL85 Desktop Computer
As a highly respected brand in computing and technology, Acer impressed us with the well designed and unexpectedly powerful Acer Revo One RL85 PC.
Space friendly. Stylish, sleek and compact modern design. Impressive storage. Good processing power. HD display and audio. I/O expansion unlike other compact models.
Remote control app could be improved.
Intel Core i3
2.10 GHz
4 GB
Intel HD Graphics 5500
1 TB
Best Value
Asus 6th Generation PC with Keyboard and Mouse
Asus is a company with great values and even better products. Their computers are functional, affordable and easy to use. Take the ASUS VivoPC M32CD for example.
Configurable. Impressive graphics. Great sound quality. Great price for the specs. Sleek. Powerful performance. Good number of ports.
Lacks a dedicated graphics card but not much of a problem with NVIDIA or AMD graphics.
Intel Core i3
3.7 GHz
8GB
Integrated
1TB
Apple 21.5-inch iMac with Retina 4K display
Apple is known for their innovation and signature style which is pretty clear with the 21.5-inch iMac and its stunning 4K Retina display.
Impressive processing speed. Turbo Boost. Gorgeous 4K display. HD camera built-in. Sleek design. Configurable.
Pricey but a great investment.
Intel Core i5
3.1 GHz
8GB
Intel Iris Pro Graphics 6200
1TB
Dell XPS 8900 PC
Dell is a long standing name in information technology. They continue to innovate and produce top notch tech with desktops like the XPS 8900.
Upgradeable. Great sound quality. Good graphics. Ample storage. Load tray. Works well for gaming. Powerful processor and great processing speed.
SSD doesn’t come standard but can be chosen with your order.
Intel Core i5
2.7 GHz
8 GB
NVIDIA GT 730 2GB DDR3
1TB
Azulle Quantum Access Mini Computer
Azulle may be a small company, but they produce great technology at a low price. Their Quantum Access PC Stick is a prime example.
Great pocket design. Simple HDMI connection. Carries Windows 10. Has an ethernet port. Micro SD card slot. Good performance for size.
Only one USB port, but there is a micro SD slot. Windows takes up a lot of space, but you can use cloud storage.
Intel Atom Z3735F
1.3 GHZ
2GB
Intel HD Graphics (Gen 7)
32GB

(Updated )
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How Do I Choose the Best Desktop?

The personal computer, more commonly known as the PC, has come a long way since it was first introduced to the market back in 1981. They are far more powerful, stylish, and customizable now than ever before. Desktops are no longer those strange box machines more commonly found in offices than homes. No, desktop computers are as much a part of everyday life as a refrigerator or a stove.

Some people may have you believe that laptops are replacing desktops, but that is far from the truth. Sure, laptops are portable and great to have, especially if you’re in college or a digital nomad, but desktop computers are what handle the bulk of the work for many people across the globe.

If you’re a gamer, then you know that, while a gaming laptop is great, gaming desktops are capable of so much more. You may even consider PC the king that rules over console peasants. While that may be the case, not everyone needs a gaming rig. Some people simply need a regular desktop to work or to teach their grandparents how to keep up with the latest stuff online.

If you’re not sure what to look for when shopping for a desktop, don’t worry. We’ve got you covered with a simple yet detailed buying guide to help you choose the best desktop for your needs.
Price
Computers used to be ridiculously expensive; today, they are a lot more affordable. Sure, there are still many desktop computers with hefty price tags, but those are typically specialized machines built for heavy tasks such as gaming, 3D design, video editing and more.

Today, you can get a desktop for as little as $150 or as much as $1000. Anything over that would be overkill unless you are someone who will be using a lot of space, RAM, and the like.

You’re probably wondering, how could a desktop cost as little as $150? The thing is, now there are portable desktop computers that are known as PC sticks, which you can plug into a TV or monitor and turn that display into a computer. Sure, they don’t have a ridiculous amount of memory, but they get the job done.

Speaking of memory, that’s one thing that will dictate the price you spend on a PC. A computer with 4GB of RAM will cost less than one with 8GB. That, along with other factors such as accessories – some PCs come standalone, others come with a monitor, mouse, and keyboard. There are those with the monitor and the PC all in one. Screen resolution also plays a role, as do processing power and more. However, those are the main features that will affect the price you pay for your desktop.
Features
A desktop’s features are what will determine whether it is a good fit for your needs and worth your money. Here are the most notable features to look out for when shopping for a desktop computer:
  • RAM – Random access memory, aka RAM, is your computer’s working memory and what impacts its speed. 4-8GB of RAM is okay for everyday use and even for light gaming.
  • Processor – This gives your computer the power it needs to get the job done, and it works in tandem with your computer’s RAM.
  • Storage – There’s two types of storage, the more common HDD and the more costly and faster SSD (solid state drive). The storage size and type are important when deciding on your next desktop PC.
  • Graphics – Consider the screen resolution, as well as the graphics card, when purchasing your PC. Most everyday PCs don’t need a dedicated graphics card, but if you feel that it will benefit you, you can still opt for one.
  • Operating System (OS) – There are two major players in the OS game, MacOS and Windows, but there are also others such as Chrome OS, Linux, and more.
  • Design – There are different types of desktops, such as tower, all-in-one, and more.
Construction and Design
The build of a desktop comes down to its type. The four types of desktop computers are mini, tower, all-in-one, and PC stick. Each has its own advantage and disadvantage. The most common is the tower PC, which is the one you think of when you think of a desktop computer. You can purchase these alone or with a monitor. The specifications depend on your needs, and they are the most widely used type of desktop.

The second most common is the all-in-one computer, which has a large monitor with everything in it. These are not as common as the tower PCs but are recommended for home; they are also found in many business places. They save on space when it comes to the PC, but the monitors are usually quite large.

The final two types are PC sticks and mini desktops. These are, without a doubt, the more affordable options and are also highly portable, however, the drawbacks of these types of desktops are that they lack the power of the tower and all-in-one PCs, and they also rarely come with peripherals, which may be a positive or negative, depending on how you look at it.
Performance and Ease of Use
Computers are now easier to set up and use than ever. Automatic updates make it easy to keep everything running smoothly, from hardware to software, and while viruses are indeed a valid concern for many, there are loads of great antivirus software programs on the market to give you that added protection.

However, if virus protection is a primary concern that you have, then we recommend you check out a Mac. While they aren’t impervious to viruses, most virus designers target Windows more than they do Apple. Apple is known for being more expensive than Windows, so the choice is up to you.

Overall, purchasing an everyday computer is now easier than ever. Sure, it gets more technical as your needs become more specific, but for everyday use such as typing, watching movies, surfing the web, and more, choosing an everyday PC is a simple process and much cheaper today than it used to be.

What is the Best Desktop?

We’ve covered everything you need to know about choosing a desktop computer, from RAM to design and the display. Now, let’s take a look at the five products we reviewed to see how they compare.
Our Top Choice
The Revo One RL85 compact desktop is stylish with its space-saving design and also performs well thanks to its Intel core i3 processor. However, if you want something more conventional, such as a tower PC, check out the Acer Aspire TC. It has an Intel Core i3 processor as well as 8GB of RAM which you can increase to fit your needs.
Acer Revo One RL85 Compact PC – Intel Core i3 Processor & 8GB RAM

Acer Desktop RL85-UR51 – Core i3


Features
Acer is a multinational company that specializes in producing advanced and high-quality technology for a range of uses from televisions, display screens and virtual reality devices to laptops, tablets and desktops. Acer designs and manufactures award-winning tech that can be found in homes, labs, offices and schools around the globe. One of their more recent releases is the Revo One RL85, a compact desktop that is small but boasts impressive processing power, and can handle HD displays and audio that other PCs could only dream of (if PCs could dream). The RL85 is currently going for $499.99, which is a good price given its specs.

Check out the Revo One’s features:
  • 64-bit system
  • Comes with Windows 10
  • Stylish and compact design
  • Boasts an HDMI port for easy connection to your monitor or TV
  • Has a Mini PCI Express Slot for I/O expansion
  • You can use your smartphone as a remote when you play music through it
  • HD Audio is supported for crisp, impressive sound
  • Uses wireless mouse and keyboards
  • Two USB 3.0 ports and two USB 2.0 ports
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth built in
  • Pre-loaded Acer BYOC apps for cloud storage and use across devices
  • Uses Gigabit Ethernet for LAN connection
The Acer Revo One RL85 compact desktop is a part of Acer’s Revo One line of compact desktops, each with a variety of specs to fit your budgets and needs.
Best Value
The VivoPC M32CD gives you great value with features like a 3.7 GHz processing speed and a 4K display support. But if you aren’t looking for a traditional PC and want something smaller and more affordable then check out the ASUS Chromebit CS10, a pocket-sized stick PC with the Chrome OS. Use it to turn any HDMI display into your own PC.
Asus VivoPC M32CD Tower Desktop – 3.7 GHz Speed & 1TB Storage

ASUS Desktop M32CD-AS31 – 6th Generation Intel Core i3


Features
Taking its name from the winged horse in Greek mythology, Asus is a tech company that honors adventure, purity and strength through manufacturing technology that you can use to explore, play, learn, create and more. From gaming PCs and laptops, tablets, motherboards and other impressive technology, Asus is a company known around the world for delivering quality, design and performance at a great price. One of their better desktops is the ASUS VivoPC M32CD, a tower desktop that goes for $399.99.

Here are the VivoPC M32CD’s features:
  • RAM can be expanded up to 16GB
  • Storage can go up to 3TB
  • Model can be purchased with an Intel Core i3, i5 or i7 processor
  • Comes with Windows 10 Home Operating System
  • Has DDR4 memory which is 2x faster than DDR3
  • Supports 4K video for amazing display thanks to your choice of NVIDIA or AMD graphics
  • Crisp, clear audio thanks to SonicMaster
  • 6 USB ports in total
  • 2 USB 3.1 ports which are 2x faster than the 2 USB 3.0 ports and 20x faster than the USB 2.0 ports
  • Has a 5-in-1 card reader
  • 1 Year warranty
  • Comes with Bluetooth 4.0
The VivoPC M32CD is one of ASUS’ many great tower PCs, each with their own great features.
The 21.5-inch iMac with Retina 4K display is a high-end all-in-one desktop that’s simply ideal from its ultra-thin design to its built-in HD camera. However, if you are on a budget and still want the Mac experience, you should definitely check out the Mac Mini, Apple’s compact desktop. It’s just a fraction of the cost of the iMac, and it even comes with an Intel core i5 processor.
Apple 21.5-inch iMac with Retina 4K display All-in-One Desktop – Intel Core i5 & 1TB Storage

Apple Desktop PC MK452LL/A – 21.5 inch


Features
As a company known for their innovation and design, Apple has cemented itself in our lives and changed the way we do many things, which is exactly what Steve Jobs wanted. It all started in 1976 with the Apple I personal computer kit, but it rapidly evolved from there. Apple is best known for how they’ve revolutionized the distribution of music through iTunes and storing music with iPods.

Decades later, Apple is a company whose products have become an integral part of our everyday lives from laptops such as the Macbook to tablets such as the iPad and the popular iPhone. Apple is a company that’s highly favored by amateur and professional alike.

Their desktops are also impressive. The 21.5-inch iMac carries the signature Apple design and has brilliant visuals. The price is a bit of a steep investment at $1499, but trust us when we say that if any desktop is worth it, it’s this beauty.

Check out its features:
  • Gorgeous Retina 4K display monitor with 9.4 million pixels
  • Turbo Boost increases processing speed from 3.1 GHz to 3.6 GHz
  • Has built-in Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
  • Four USB 3.0 ports along with two Thunderbolt 2 ports
  • Equipped with an HD camera and FaceTime
  • 8GB RAM can be increased up to 16GB
  • Mac OS X El Captain operating system
  • Dual mics and speakers for easy and clear video conversation
  • Pre-paired with Magic Keyboard and Magic Mouse 2
The 21.5-inch iMac with Retina display is just one of Apple’s iMacs, they have a 27-inch iMac as well, and each iMac is configurable which means you can get one for a lower price depending on the specs you choose.
The Dell XPS 8900 is a sleek tower desktop that offers great specs such as an 8GB DDR4 RAM and 1TB hard drive. It’s also upgradeable. If you’re more of a small business owner, you should check out the Dell Optiplex 9020 Micro. It comes built with Intel® vPro™ which makes managerial tasks so much easier.
Dell XPS 8900 Tower Desktop – Intel Core i5

Dell Desktop x8900-631BLK – Intel Core i5 – 8GB RAM/1TB HDD - NVIDIA GT730


Features
Dell is a long-standing name in technology. Their computers and products can be found in offices, classrooms, computer labs and homes around the globe with some people going so far as to shop Dell exclusively. Their name is known not only for innovation but also high quality tech that you can often customize for your specific needs. One of those is the XPS 8900 desktop, a tower PC with a smooth, sleek design that would look great in any home and specs that’ll surely make your life easier. The XPS 8900 starts at an affordable $699.99.

Take a look at its features:
  • Comes with Windows 10
  • RAM is DDR4 which is faster than DDR3
  • RAM can be increased to 32GB
  • You can choose between a traditional hard drive or an SSD drive for faster storage
  • Waves MaxxAudio® software gives you rich sound quality you could only find in a studio
  • 10 USB ports placed at the top and in front for easy access and use
  • 19-in-1 card reader
  • Graphics can be upgraded to suit your needs
  • DVD Drive for playing and burning both DVDs and CD-ROMs
  • Top tray for easy storage of devices when they’re connected
  • 1-Year limited warranty along with onsite service
  • DirectX technology provides higher fps for improved gaming experience
  • Upgradeable
The XPS 8900 is a part of Dell’s XPS line of desktop and all-in-one computers.
The Azulle Quantum Access Stick PC is a small stick that you can take anywhere to turn any TV or other display monitor into a PC running Windows 10 that can support HD video. If the Quantum Access Stick isn’t for you, then check out Azulle’s Quantum Byte Mini Desktop, an affordable compact desktop with an Intel Atom (Quad-core) processor Z3735F.
Azulle Quantum Access Fanless Mini Stick PC – 2GB RAM & Intel HD Graphics

Azulle Desktop QS-1048-QA – Stick PC Only


Features
Based here in the US, Azulle was once known as Quantum Suppliers. But while their name may have changed, their mission hasn’t. That mission is to bring innovative technology to businesses and families at a great price. Azulle is still a relatively small company but that hasn’t stopped them from partnering with big names like Microsoft to fulfill that mission.

One of their products, the Azulle Quantum Access Mini PC Stick, is a computer that you can carry around in your pocket and hook up to any TV or display screen with a HDMI port to turn it into a fully functioning desktop running Windows 10. And if that doesn’t beat all, the best part is yet to come. The Quantum Access Fanless PC Stick goes for under $100 at $79.99-$89.99 depending on your retailer.

Check out the Quantum Access PC Stick’s features below:
  • Windows 10 operating system
  • Processor and memory that can easily handle office tasks, video streaming and even some gaming
  • Built-in HDMI port for easy connection
  • Portable. Simply slip it in your pocket and go
  • Supports wireless and USB wired mice and keyboards
  • Comes with Bluetooth 4.0
  • Has a micro SD card slot
  • Has a micro USB DC port for charging
The Quantum Access Fanless[U1] PC Stick is a part of Azulle’s Quantum Access line of PC sticks and compact mini desktops. You can purchase the Quantum Access PC Stick alone, with a keyboard or with a camera and a keyboard. Whichever option is best for you.

Get the Best Desktop of 2018!

Thanks for checking out our desktop review. Whether it is a tower desktop, or something more compact, or even a PC stick, we know there is something on this list for you. And if you don’t see a model for you, then check out what else these trusted brands have to offer!

Our Top Choice
Acer Revo One RL85 Desktop Computer
Best Value
Asus 6th Generation PC with Keyboard and Mouse
Apple 21.5-inch iMac with Retina 4K display
Dell XPS 8900 PC
Azulle Quantum Access Mini Computer