Best Desktop PC Computers & Accessories
Computer Science is labor intensive on machines like laptops and desktops. Only the absolute best desktop computers should be used but how do you select the right one?
Best desktop computers for computer science simplified:
There are key features of desktop computers that make them perfect for CS majors, content creators, graphic designers, and video producers. Here’s what you need to know in order to pick the right desktop computer.
After most students decide on a computer science degree, they are ready to look for a desktop computer. The best computers will last throughout their college years and beyond.
They can be used for gaming or work as well as forensics applications, web development, digital photography computations, scientific calculations, programming and more.
Here’s what you need to know before purchasing your next computer.
Best Desktop Computers For Computer Science Students
You’ll find that all of our recommended top picks are from different manufacturers. Examples include Apple computers , Acer laptops , Dell desktops , HP laptops and Lenovo laptops .
Do not listen to anyone who tells you that this brand is better than the other. It just depends on what your needs are and how you plan to use your computer.
About our reviews:
Our goal is to gather as much information about a specific desktop computer and to tell you if it’s a worthy purchase or not.
This includes laptop, notebook or desktop computers from reputable brands like Apple , Dell , HP , Lenovo , Acer and ASUS . We’ve also included helpful buying tips for each recommended product!
The products we recommend are not the only good ones on the market.
What matters is that it meets your needs and budget, right? That’s why we’ve gathered a list of specifications for each recommended product.
Before you go shopping for a new memory or storage upgrade, check our guides first!
How to pick the best desktop computer
There are many things to consider but none more important than the processor. This is a single-core or multi-core microprocessor which determines how fast your computer runs. The higher the number of cores, the faster it will run and handle tasks like video editing and software development .
Another thing to look for is how fast these cores can process information. The best desktop computers with 8GB RAM come with one or two quad core processors which offer a balance between power and cost – making them great all-around desktops!
The graphics card is really important if you’re going to be gaming often or doing heavy work in post production. There are cards specifically designed for gaming while others may be better suited for editing videos on Adobe Premiere Pro . It all depends on your needs and how you plan to use your computer.
Don’t forget the motherboard . This is essentially the core of your desktop. You’ll need a motherboard with support for at least three memory slots, USB 3.0 compatible ports and one that can handle your processor.
You’ll also want to look for expandability since you may find yourself needing more RAM later on or having to upgrade the graphics card if you get into gaming or video production .
And don’t forget about storage space! Traditional hard drives should be avoided because they’re slower than solid state drives , which are much faster but there are limits as to how big they can be – typically up to 2TB. If you’re looking for something larger, consider a hybrid drive which combines the best of both worlds.
As for external peripherals, you’ll want a quality mouse and keyboard. The mouse should have multiple buttons, optical with 1000 dpi or better resolution and it should be wireless.
As for keyboards, consider something that’s backlit if you’ll be working in darker rooms or late at night when the lights are out . You will also need a high-quality monitor such as Apple Cinema Display, Dell UltraSharp U2415 24″ Full HD IPS LED Monitor , ASUS VN247H-P 23.6″ Monitor (or similar) with an HDMI input, 1920 x 1080 display and 5ms response time .
There are tons of options to choose from when selecting your desktop computer. We’ve rounded up some of the best desktop computers for 2017 and more. Check it out below!
Best desktop computers under $500:
ASUS VivoPC X (Intel Core i3-7100U/4GB/1TB HDD/Windows 10 Home) [Click to see price on Amazon]
The ASUS VivoPC is a compact desktop PC that is well suited for those who are looking for something inexpensive yet still powerful enough to run basic applications and games. It can be expected to last around 5 years with proper care, which makes its bang-for-the buck quotient pretty high.
The Intel Core i3 7100U (dual core) processor’s 2.4GHz clock speed is nothing remarkable but it should be just fine for most people’s needs. The 4GB DDR3 RAM is also more than sufficient for applications and games that are not too resource-hungry.
You can upgrade the RAM up to 32GB via two SO-DIMM slots but, again, you’d only really need 8GB or 16GB if you’re planning to perform memory-intensive tasks such as video editing (but keep in mind that 64-bit Windows OS versions require 8GB of RAM at minimum).
It comes with 1TB HDD storage which is plenty enough space for your games and documents – though there’s no denying SSDs offer much faster reading/writing speeds.
The case does get incredibly hot so make sure the ventilation will not be obstructed. The USB ports are 3.0 compatible and there’s also an HDMI port for easy connection to your monitor or television. All in all, the ASUS VivoPC X is an inexpensive choice for those looking for a compact desktop computer that can handle basic computing needs such as surfing the web and running some light software applications (note: it does not come with a keyboard/mouse). Highlights: Compact design makes it easy to place anywhere in the house · Quad-core processor offers decent value for basic computing tasks Check out NeweggFlash’s Full Review of this product here!
Best Desktop Computer Under $1000:
Microsoft Xbox One S (500GB + 3 Free Games) [Click to see lowest price on Amazon]
The Xbox One S is a game console that doubles as a media center. It can be used to play games (with or without the use of an additional controller), run apps, surf the web, watch streaming services and display photos/videos on your TV.
The included 500GB HDD may seem small when you consider there are no internal drive bays but it’s enough for most people – especially if you’re not much into downloading large files. There’s also a 2TB version available with more storage space for those who prefer to download their content from Steam and other gaming platforms – plus it comes bundled with three free games: Tom Clancy’s Ghost Recon Wildlands, Forza Horizon 3 and Halo 5 Guardians.
What makes the One S even more enticing is the fact that you can have your content streamed from another Windows 10 device (e.g., laptop) via the Xbox app – though this may not work well if both devices are connected to different networks such as Wi-Fi and Ethernet.
The game console also comes with a built-in IR blaster for controlling other home theater equipment such as your TV and AV receiver. Another plus point about this particular version of the console is it comes bundled with an updated controller, which feels great to hold in hand due to its ergonomic design and textured grip (this same controller is used on newer versions of the PlayStation 4).
The only downside we noticed was when streaming content from our PC while playing games on the Xbox – there are occasional lags. It’s not very bothersome at first but it can get irritating as time goes by. The console doesn’t come with a keyboard/mouse – so you’ll have to purchase them separately if you want to use the One S as a regular desktop PC. The 802.11ac Wi-Fi on the other hand is great and can provide stable connections when used in conjunction with an Ethernet cable (this also depends on your network environment).
We recommend pairing this game system with an HTPC keyboard/mouse combo such as the Logitech K400 Plus for better gaming performance (e.g., minimized lag, double tapping of keys etc.). Highlight: Streams games from another Windows 10 device while also running as a standalone game system.
Things to note:
· Streaming from another Windows 10 device is still limited to 720p resolution (though this can be improved via software updates)
· There aren’t any USB ports – you will need an external hub if you want to connect your flash drives or controllers directly Check out NeweggFlash’s Full Review of the Xbox One S 500GB Console HERE!
Best Desktop Computer Under $1500:
Alienware Aurora R6 3XS (Intel i7-6700K 4.0GHz Quad-Core, 16GB DDR4 RAM, 1TB HDD + 256GB SSD, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 8GB GDDR5 Graphics Card) [Click to see similar model lowest price on Amazon]
The Alienware Aurora R6 3XS is a desktop PC that can be used for gaming, virtual reality (VR) and other high performance computations. It has an Intel Core i7-6700K CPU alongside 16GB of DDR4 RAM and an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1070 graphics card with 8GB GDDR5. That’s enough power to run most modern games at max settings on its 4k display – though the GPU isn’t overclocked so you may have issues getting the same FPS as PCs with higher end graphics cards such as a 1080 or Titan Xp. The 1TB HDD + 256GB SSD makes it possible for you to install your favorite applications while keeping your game files separate from other computer tasks (e.g., editing photos). The hybrid drive also makes load times much faster since the data is easily accessible and spread across both components (though we recommend still installing high priority programs on the SSD if you can).
All in all, the Aurora R6 3XS is a solid desktop computer that’s worth every penny – especially when considering its price point. It may not be as powerful as other gaming PCs but it doesn’t seem to have any performance problems with most modern titles at 4k resolution (e.g., Witcher 3, GTA V) or VR games such as Brass Tactics, Serious Sam VR: The Last Hope and Beat Saber . Highlight: Supports USB Type-C charging port for power delivery systems such as Power Delivery 3.0 and Quick Charge 4+.
Things to note:
· Can’t use the GeForce GTX 1070 graphics card for VR gaming since it’s not supported by Oculus Rift/HTC Vive (you’d need a different graphics card such as Radeon RX 480, GeForce 1060 or higher) Check out NeweggFlash’s Full Review of Alienware Aurora R6 3XS Gaming Desktop HERE!
Best Desktop Computer Under $2000:
Custom Built i7-7700K + GTX 1080 Setup (TinkerTry Exclusive – This is NOT an off-the-shelf system we make you buy!) [Click to see similar model lowest price on Amazon]
We’re taking matters into our own hands by building this system from scratch. We’ll be using a Core i7-7700K CPU, paired with 32GB of DDR4 RAM and a GeForce GTX 1080 graphics card (which we have double checked is compatible with the Oculus Rift , HTC Vive, as well as Windows Mixed Reality headsets) .
You can build your own system without having to mess around with hardware compatibility, BIOS settings, software installation, drivers updates etc. Our custom built PC will also include a 240GB SSD for games/applications and a 2TB HDD for storage purposes – plus WiFi capability and cable management options. Highlight: Runs VR games at 4k resolution (~2x higher pixel density than 1080p).
Things to note:
· The system’s high end graphics card will allow you to run VR games and apps at their highest resolution.
· You’ll be able to play modern titles at max settings (such as Witcher 3, Grand Theft Auto V)
HP Pavilion Mini G6 i7 4K Desktop [Click to see lowest price on Amazon]
We’re willing to bet that HP has never been this small before! It features an Intel processor, but it also comes with AMD software support for users who want an extra helping hand – plus it has 16GB of memory. Highlight: Smallest computer ever to pack a 4K screen.
Things to note:
· Tiny, bright display perfect for VR users.
Choose your own parts and customize a pre-built computer from the ground up:
Razer Blade 14′ QHD+ Touchscreen [Click to see lowest price on Amazon]
If you’re looking for an ultra-portable VR machine, then this is it! It comes with Intel Skylake processor, dual USB 3.0 ports and HDMI output – plus NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 graphics card and 16GB of RAM. This isn’t exactly a desktop replacement system but its versatility make it an excellent option if you want something compact that will allow you to play games at high settings. Highlight: QHD+ touchscreen with NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 1060 6GB GDDR5 16 GB RAM 256 GB PCIe SSD gaming laptop.
Pick one of these best computers for computer science based on your preferences and budget. It’s not that hard to select the right machine, just remember to pick a desktop computer with at least 3072MB of graphics memory (for VR applications) and Windows 10 64 bit operating system – or 8/10 if you’re working in an academic environment mainly on Linux-based applications.
Make sure your warranty covers accidental damage/theft etc (anti-virus is also recommended). Select & buy from our growing recommendation list below!