PC like MacMini

mac-mini-setupPC like MacMini: a reader asks…

I’m looking for new/replacement computers for my company. We are tight on space so I’d like something about the size of a Mac Mini, that runs Windows 10. They just need to do regular office work with Microsoft Office, no fancy stuff. Do you have any suggestions?

When space is at a premium, there are two main ways to go. If you need to also replace old monitors, then you might want to consider the all-in-one type of PC. The entire computer is fit into the backside of the monitor, so all you have to have space for is a monitor, keyboard and mouse. They also have speakers built-in.

One nice example is the Dell Optiplex 3050 AIO, prices starting at $820. These include an Intel i3 processor, and can be setup easel-style or with an optional ($45 more) height-adjustable monitor stand. What makes these attractive is that the price includes Windows 10, 4gb RAM, and a 500gb hard drive. A DVD burner drive is included. What it doesn’t have is touch-screen technology. There are more expensive models with that capability. You could also look at the Lenovo line of all-in-one computers, such as the IdeaCentre line. The prices start at $470 but $600-800 is the sweet-spot in price range for features.


dell-micropc-with-keyboard-mouseIf you have good flat-panel monitors and don’t want to replace them, then the small-form-factor MicroPC would be a good choice. Such as the Dell Optiplex 3050 AIO, starting at $490. The MicroPC will come with a keyboard and wired mouse, if you customize it online at dell.com you can remove those items. It also comes with a (tinny) speaker built into the CPU. If you want better sound you’ll want external speakers, or just plug in a headset.

macmini-vs-dellmicropc-size-weightThe Dell MicroPC form factor is almost the same size as the Mac Mini and weighs just a bit more. So for your employee workspaces, they would require just as little space. What will take space is the monitor, along with the keyboard and mouse.

There are many other options out there that could fit your needs. Since you mention the Mac Mini, I’m wondering if you had considered simply using them? You could install either Parallels Desktop for Mac or VMWare Fusion and install Windows 10, then you could run both MacOS and Windows on the same box.

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