In the ever-evolving landscape of remote work and online education, the need for an efficient desktop computer on a budget has never been more vital. With the prevalence of online learning, students now require a dedicated computer to handle assignments, presentations, and projects. While laptops are a popular choice, desktops offer distinct advantages, including upgradability and larger displays. In this guide, we’ll explore budget-friendly desktop options to suit various needs.
HP Elite Desktop Computer PC, 3.1 GHz, Intel Core i5, 16GB, RAM, 1TB HDD, New 22 inch LED Monitor, RGB Speaker and Keyboard Mouse, WiFi, Windows 10 Pro (Renewed)
Step 1: Determine Your Preferred Form Factor
Before delving into specific desktop models, consider the available form factors:
Dell Optiplex 9020 Small Form Factor Desktop with Intel Core i7-4770 Upto 3.9GHz, HD Graphics 4600 4K Support, 32GB RAM, 1TB SSD, DisplayPort, HDMI, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth - Windows 10 Pro (Renewed)
Desktop Towers: These pre-built towers house essential components like the processor, RAM, and storage. You may need to purchase additional peripherals such as a monitor, keyboard, mouse, speakers, and webcam separately. Alternatively, you can connect the tower directly to your TV via HDMI for a larger display.
Lenovo ThinkCentre M900 SFF Desktop Computer, Intel Core i7-6700 Upto 4.0GHz, 32GB RAM, 1TB SSD, 4K 2-Monitor Support DisplayPort, HDMI, DVD-RW, AC Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, TDL - Windows 10 Pro (RENEWED)
- Lenovo IdeaCentre 3 Series: Starting at approximately $240 (USD), this series offers options powered by an AMD Athlon Silver 3050U CPU or Intel solutions, with prices ranging from $350 to $410. Keep in mind that base models come with Free DOS, requiring a separate Windows 10 license purchase. An upgraded budget of around $435 includes Windows 10 Home, an AMD Ryzen 3 3250U CPU, increased RAM, and SSD storage alongside the traditional mechanical hard drive. Lenovo’s compact IdeaCentre 3 series offers diverse configurations.
Lenovo IdeaCentre 3 Desktop Computer, Ryzen 3 3250U, 16GB RAM, 256GB NVMe SSD + 1TB HDD, USB 3.1, HDMI, VGA, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Windows 11 Pro
- HP Slim Desktop Series: HP’s Slim Desktop series starts at approximately $240 and includes Windows 10 even on the entry-level model. The series features various configurations, some of which come with a copy of Microsoft Office Home and Student 2019 suite.
HP Newest Slim Desktop (Mini Tower), Intel Core i3-12100, 16GB RAM, 512GB PCIe SSD, Intel UHD Graphics 730, HDMI, RJ-45, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Wired Keyboard & Mouse, Windows 11 Home, Black
Mini PCs: These compact, palm-sized devices, reminiscent of the Apple Mac mini, deliver decent performance for basic tasks and are easy to conceal behind a monitor or TV. Note that mini PCs are usually sold as barebones systems, requiring separate purchases of RAM and storage.
- Intel NUC Pro Mini PC: Priced at around $435, this mini PC features an 11th Gen Core i3 CPU. However, it does not include RAM and storage, necessitating user installation and Windows setup.
Intel Mini PC, Intel NUC 11 with Newest 11th Gen Core i5-1135G7, 16GB DDR4 & 256GB PCleX4 SSD, Intel Iris Xe Graphics 8K, 2X Thunderbolt 3, WiFi 6, Bluetooth - Built-in Win 11 Pro
All-in-One PCs (AiO): AiOs are space-efficient one-stop solutions, with all components integrated behind the display. They include built-in speakers and webcams and come with Windows 10 pre-installed.
- HP All-in-One 21: Starting at around $385, this model features an entry-level Intel Celeron CPU, a 1TB hard drive, and 4GB of RAM. For increased power and future-proofing, consider the HP All-in-One 24 series.
HP 23.8” All-in-One Desktop PC, Intel Celeron Processor J4025, 8 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD, Full HD Micro-Edge Display, Windows 11 Home, 720p Privacy Webcam, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth Combo (24-cb0010, 2022)
- Lenovo IdeaCentre AIO 330: This budget-friendly option includes a 19.5-inch display, Intel Pentium Silver CPU, 4GB of RAM, and a 1TB hard drive. For a stylish and robust choice, explore the Lenovo IdeaCentre A340 (22), which offers a 21.5-inch display, Intel 10th Gen Core i3 CPU, 8GB of RAM, and a 1TB hard drive, priced at around $595.
Lenovo F0G100N1US, IdeaCentre AIO 3-2022 - All-in-One Desktop - 24" FHD - HD Camera - Win 11-8GB Memory - 1TB + 256GB Storage - AMD Ryzen 3 5425U - Black - Mouse & Keyboard Included
- Asus Vivo AiO V222: Priced at approximately $540, this AiO features a 10th Gen Intel Core i3 CPU, 4GB of RAM, a 1TB hard drive, a 21.5-inch full-HD display, and includes a wireless keyboard and mouse. Higher and lower-priced variants are available to suit various budgets.
ASUS V272UA-DS501T Vivo AiO 27" All-in-One Touchscreen Desktop, Intel Core i5-8250U, 8GB RAM, 1TB HDD, HD Webcam, 802.11ac, Keyboard and Mouse
Complete Desktop Solutions: Manufacturers offer complete desktop solutions that include the tower, monitor, keyboard, and mouse. These bundles are ideal for online learning and typically require only a webcam for interactive classes.
- Dell Inspiron 3891 Desktop: Starting at just $485, this package includes an Intel Pentium Gold CPU, Windows 10, 4GB of RAM, a 1TB hard drive, and a 22-inch monitor. Dell provides a range of configurations based on your workload and requirements.
Dell Inspiron 3891 Compact Tower Desktop - Intel Core i5-11400, 12GB DDR4 RAM, 1TB HDD, Intel UHD Graphics 730 with Shared Graphics Memory, Windows 10 Home - Black
By considering your preferred form factor and budget constraints, you can make an informed choice when selecting an affordable desktop computer for online learning. With these options, students can ensure they have the necessary tools to excel in the virtual learning environment.