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For your kid’s general use, you can purchase a reliable PC tower from well-known brands such as Acer, Asus, Dell, or HP at a price range of $500 to $600. These options will serve you well for an extended period of time. In terms of specifications, we recommend the following for a basic Windows 11 computer:
- The Intel Core i5 (12th- or 13th-generation) or AMD Ryzen 5 (5000, 6000, or 7000 series) are recommended options.
- Built-in graphics that come pre-installed on computers, such as Intel UHD, Iris, or basic AMD Radeon.
- 16GB of RAM or more
- 512GB or larger NVMe SSD drive
- At least one or two USB-C and USB-A formats should be present on the front, with a total of four or more USB 3.1 or 3.2 ports.
- Wi-Fi and Bluetooth wireless
- There should be a minimum of one PCI-E (x16) expansion slot available to allow for the addition of a video card.
Is your kid someone who is interested in engaging in PC gaming or dedicating time to editing photos or videos? It is recommended to enhance the configuration by increasing the amount of RAM and opting for superior graphics options. Anticipate that the prices will range from $800 to $1,200, potentially exceeding that range, specifically if you choose a cutting-edge video card.
- Nvidia RTX or AMD Radeon RX graphics processing unit (GPU)
- 16GB of RAM or more
- 450-watt (or more) power supply
Both Microsoft Windows and Apple’s MacOS perform similar functions, but they have different approaches. Unless you require a specific application exclusive to one operating system, it is advisable to choose the one that you find most user-friendly. Typically, Microsoft Windows is used on most desktop computers, while Apple’s iMac, Mac Mini, Mac Studio, and Mac Pro desktops operate on MacOS. Additionally, there are Chromeboxes available that use Google’s ChromeOS, which are generally simpler to use and more affordable than Windows PCs or Macs, although they are unable to run Windows or Mac software.
The market leaders in CPU production, Intel and AMD, to find a wide array of processors for desktops running on Windows. These processors, also known as CPUs, serve as the central processing unit and act as the brain of the computer.Intel’s or AMD’sWebsites providing information on how to achieve your desired performance are available. Intel is currently on its 13th generation of Core chips and is expected to release its 14th-gen processors in early 2024. Meanwhile, AMD’s current desktop processor is the Ryzen 7000 series. In general, a faster processor speed and more cores will result in better performance.
Apple manufactures its own chips specifically for Mac computers, simplifying the process. The Mac Mini comes equipped with either an M2 or M2 Pro processor, and the latest iMac is the initial Mac desktop to incorporate the M3 chip. As for the Mac Studio, it offers either an M2 Max or M2 Ultra chip, while the Mac Pro utilizes the M2 Ultra. Overall, a higher number of cores generally results in improved performance.
The GPU is responsible for managing the screen and producing the visual content, as well as enhancing performance for graphics and AI tasks. In Macs, Apple’s M2 and M3 processors combine the GPU. In Windows desktops, there are two categories of GPUs: integrated (iGPU) and discrete (dGPU). An iGPU is integrated within the CPU, while a dGPU is a separate unit with its own dedicated memory (VRAM) that it communicates with directly, resulting in faster performance compared to sharing memory with the CPU.
The iGPU shares resources like space, memory, and power with the CPU, which limits its performance. While it is suitable for compact desktops like all-in-ones or small form factor PCs, it is not as powerful as a dedicated GPU. Some games and creative software may refuse to run unless they detect a dedicated GPU or adequate VRAM. However, regular tasks such as productivity software, video streaming, web browsing, and other common applications can run smoothly on an iGPU.
If you have demanding graphics requirements such as video editing, gaming, streaming, and design, you will require a dedicated graphics processing unit (dGPU). There are only two major companies that produce them: Nvidia and AMD. However, Intel also offers some options utilizing their CPUs’ iGPU technology, which is either branded as Xe or UHD Graphics.
To ensure efficient performance, we strongly advise having at least 16GB of RAM for your computer’s memory. RAM is responsible for storing data for running applications, but it can reach its limit quickly. In such cases, the system switches between RAM and SSD, resulting in slower operations. Some cheaper models may come with only 8GB of RAM, which, when coupled with a slower disk, can lead to a frustratingly laggy Windows experience.
Tower personal computers often offer available internal slots where users can insert additional RAM sticks. However, all-in-one and small form factor PCs might not have this feature. In the rare case they do, accessing the DIMM slots could be challenging.
It is possible to find a lower-priced hard drive in a less expensive desktop, while gaming PCs tend to have larger hard drives. However, faster solid-state drives (SSDs) have become the predominant choice, as they greatly enhance performance. It is important to note that not all SSDs offer the same speed, and cheaper desktop computers generally have slower drives. If your computer only has 8GB of RAM, it may rely on the SSD for storage, causing a noticeable slowdown while you are actively using the system.
Purchase a storage capacity that fits your budget, however, we suggest a minimum of 512GB for most desktop users. If you have extensive media or game collections to store, it is advised to opt for 1TB or higher. If you opt for a smaller drive, you can typically add a second internal drive to a tower PC. Alternatively, for all-in-one and small form factor PCs, it is often easier to enhance a limited internal drive with an external drive or cloud storage.
An all-in-one computer combines the display with the computer’s internal components, which are located either behind the display or within its base. This design allows for a more compact and seamless setup, but limits the options for future upgrades. When it comes to the display, it is recommended to choose a large screen with high resolution. We suggest the following ideal options:
- A screen size of 24 inches with a resolution of 1,920×1,080 pixels, also known as 2K or 1080p.
- A 27-inch display with a resolution of 2,560×1,440 pixels, also known as 1440p.
- 32 inches at 3,840×2,160 pixels (aka 4K)
Best Desktop Computers – ItsMyBot’s Suggestions
1. Apple iMac with M1
The Apple iMac with M1 is a great desktop computer for kids who want to learn how to use the mouse and keyboard. It has an Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of RAM, a 1TB hard drive, and a 24-inch display.
This is a great choice because it’s powerful enough for most tasks but should be able to handle anything you throw at it if your child happens to be interested in video editing or gaming. It is also suitable for software-intensive tasks like music production or photo editing. Its robust hardware capabilities make it a versatile choice for young learners.
2. Acer Aspire TC-895-UA91 Desktop
The Acer Aspire TC-895-UA91 Desktop is an ideal choice for kids keen on both gaming and productivity tasks. Equipped with an Intel Core i7-8700 6-Core Processor, 16GB DDR4 Memory, 1TB HDD, Windows 10 Pro, and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 6GB Graphics Card, it ensures seamless multitasking and smooth gameplay.
This computer also comes with an Intel UHD Graphics 630 GPU which makes it ideal for playing demanding games such as Fortnite or Apex Legends.
3. Dell OptiPlex 3020 Small Form PC
For a budget-friendly option, the Dell OptiPlex 3020 Small Form PC Desktop Computer stands out. Featuring an Intel Core i5-8500T 2.7GHz processor, 8GB DDR4 RAM, 1TB HDD, and Intel UHD Graphics 620 GPU, it’s an excellent choice for your child’s first computer. With Windows 10 Pro, it serves as a valuable learning tool, whether your child is coding, playing games, or exploring educational content.
The monitor that comes in this package is pretty basic. Still, it does its job well enough for most families who want to get their kids started on their PCs without breaking the bank too much on hardware upgrades later on down the road when they can afford them (or even just having enough money left over after paying off all those bills).
4. Mini PC Intel i7-10750H
The Intel i7-10750H is a good choice for kids because it has the power to run multiple applications simultaneously and play games. It also has an SSD that can handle large files, like videos or photo albums.
The RAM is 8GB DDR4, so you’ll have plenty of room to multitask between apps. There’s 128GB of storage space, not as much as we would like to see in this price range, but enough for most users’ needs without worrying about filling up too quickly due to heavy use!
The graphics card inside this mini PC uses Intel UHD Graphics 630, which only supports low-resolution screens like 720p/1080p monitors at 60Hz refresh rate but should still provide enough performance for most users’ needs!
5. DELL Optiplex 9020 Ultra Small Tiny Desktop
The DELL Optiplex 9020 Ultra Small Tiny Desktop Micro Computer PC is a great option for your kids. This computer comes with an Intel Core i3 processor and 8GB of RAM, enough to handle most tasks without slowing down the system. It has 1TB of storage space, which should be enough for most people’s needs.
The graphics card in this computer is an Intel UHD Graphics 630, so it can run games without any problems! And there are plenty of other features on this device: It comes with Windows 10 Pro operating system preinstalled; it has WiFi connectivity, and its display options range from 1080p HD displays up to 4K Ultra HD ones (depending on what you want).
The price tag isn’t too bad, So if you’re looking for something cheap yet still perform well enough to keep up with whatever demands your child might put on their new toy, this would be a good choice!
6. Dell Business Desktop Optiplex 3060 Computer
The Dell Business Desktop Optiplex 3060 Computer is perfect for your child’s first desktop computer. With a powerful processor and plenty of memory, this machine will help them learn how to use a computer while also providing a professional-looking workspace that looks great on their desk or in their room.
This machine comes equipped with an Intel Core i7-8700 3.2 GHz Processor, 8GB DDR4 2666MHz Memory, 256GB SSD, and Intel UHD Graphics 630 graphics card so they can play all kinds of games without any issues! It also has a Windows 10 Pro 64-bit operating system preinstalled. You don’t need to worry about installing another operating system onto this system once you’ve bought it (which saves money).
7. Mini PC Windows 10 Pro
If you’re looking for a great computer to help your kids learn, the Mini PC Windows 10 Pro is the one. This compact desktop has powerful features and comes with Windows 10 Pro installed, so they can easily get started with their new device. It has an Intel i7-10750H processor, 8GB DDR4 memory, 256GB SSD storage (0%), NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 graphics card (1 GB GDDR5), 13.3″ IPS FHD display (1920 x 1080).
The Mini PC comes with WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity to connect wirelessly with other devices like tablets or phones; USB Type-C input allows you to use peripherals like mouse/keyboard combo kits without having to use an adapter cable; HDMI output allows you to connect another monitor if needed or even watch video on YouTube!
8. BMAX Mini PC
The BMAX Mini PC is a great choice if you’re looking for a mini desktop that can handle the basics. It has an Intel Celeron N3350 CPU, 4GB RAM, 64GB eMMC storage, and Windows 10 Home preinstalled.
The BMAX Mini PC has an HDMI port connecting to your TV or monitor. There are also two USB 3.0 ports on the back of this computer so you can connect to other devices such as printers and mice without having to use an adapter (if necessary). The battery life of this device is pretty good, too; it should last about 8 hours on average after being charged fully!
9. HP Elite Desktop PC Computer
The HP Elite Desktop PC Computer stands out as a high-performance choice for kids interested in demanding tasks. It has a powerful Intel Core i7-8700T processor, 16GB DDR4 RAM, 1TB HDD, and NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050Ti graphics card. This desktop computer can run most games at 1080p resolution on high settings.
The display of this laptop is 27″ FHD IPS monitor with 1920×1080 resolution (Full HD), which makes it suitable for playing games like Fortnite or Call of Duty: Black Ops III on medium to high settings as well as watching movies or listening to music at 1080p resolution with minimal lag time between frames.
In the ever-evolving landscape of education and entertainment, choosing the best desktop for kids, 10 and up, holds paramount importance. As we conclude our exploration of the “Best Desktop Computers for Kids,” it’s clear that the options available mirror the diverse interests and ambitions of young minds.
From cutting-edge gaming rigs engineered to enhance their gaming adventures to streamlined, budget-friendly models perfect for academic tasks, our list has been thoughtfully curated to meet every requirement. Each desktop not only opens the door to knowledge and creativity but also stands as a steadfast companion in their digital odyssey.
In this digital age, providing the right tools isn’t just a purchase; it’s an investment in their future. Here’s to empowering the next generation with the tools they need to explore, create, and dream big. Happy computing!