Facebook Pixel Code
 

Best All-In-One Computers

Updated July 2018
Why trust BestReviews?
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
Bottom Line
Pros
Cons
How we decided

We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

  • 5 Models Considered
  • 1 Experts Interviewed
  • 145 Consumers Consulted
  • Zero products received from manufacturers.

    We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

    Why trust BestReviews?
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.

    Shopping guide for best all-in-one computers

    Last Updated July 2018

    Whether you’re looking for a new family computer, a standalone kiosk for your business, or a workstation that doesn’t clutter your desk with wires, an all-in-one computer, also known as an AIO computer, is a terrific solution.

    When the very first Apple Macintosh computer was released in 1984, it was nothing short of a technical revolution – and with its built-in monitor and single-box design, it was also the world’s first widely popular all-in-one computer. In the years that followed, computers became essential components of our daily lives. They also became a clutter of wires, monitors, accessories, and peripherals that made messes of desks across the world.

    Thankfully, the all-in-one computer is back. Ideal for people who prefer simplicity and minimalism, all-in-one computers now exist as powerhouse PCs.

    At BestReviews, we pride ourselves on providing consumers with accurate, unbiased reviews of top products. Our mission is to help users make smart purchasing decisions, and as part of this mission, we never accept free manufacturer samples in exchange for a mention or review.

    So if you’re ready for an all-in-one computer that will simplify your workspace faster than you can say “iMac,” please continue reading this shopping guide. Then, when you’re ready to buy, please check out our product recommendations at the top of this page.

    By packing laptop components into a monitor, all-in-one computers give you one thing other machines can’t: more desk space.

    Choosing an AIO monitor

    Should you get an AIO with a traditional or ultra-wide monitor? The majority of AIO computers feature traditional widescreen monitors with the same 16x9 aspect ratio as a TV. That said, “ultra-wide” screens – single, elongated screens that deliver the desktop space of two 16x9 monitors side-by-side in one monitor – are becoming increasingly popular.

    • Ultra-wide screens are ideal for workers who need to see more of a spreadsheet all at once. They’re also helpful for people who prefer to view documents or browser tabs side-by-side.

    • Traditional 16x9 screens are significantly more affordable, so it’s worth it to spend some time considering which form factor is best for you.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    Curved monitors are designed to match the curve of the human eye and, as a result, deliver a wider field of view.

    Choosing an AIO screen type

    Should you get a curved-screen AIO or a flat-screen AIO? The debate between which screen type is better will never die, because both are largely a matter of personal preference.

    • Curved screens mimic the curvature of the human eye, in theory delivering a more immersive visual experience by involving peripheral vision – as long as only one person is watching the screen, that is. Because screen curvature is built around a single user seated in the middle, anyone sitting on either side of the screen won’t be able to see everything, which can make collaboration tough.

    • Flat computer screens, in contrast, don’t involve peripheral vision and are easily seen from any angle.  

    Some all-in-one computers have touchscreens that add a new layer of interactivity (and also drive up the price). If you’re more at home with an iPad than a keyboard, this might be perfect for you. Just keep a screen-cleaning kit handy for dealing with fingerprints.

    Choosing an AIO screen size

    Picking the right size screen for your all-in-one computer is a big decision – one that you can’t go back on or leave for a later upgrade! All-in-one computer screen sizes range from 21” to 34”, although 24” is the most common. As you’re deciding what size to go with, think about your own space and your most typical computer tasks. Do you have enough room on your desk for a 34” screen? Will 24” be enough for your everyday applications?

    FOR YOUR SAFETY

    Most all-in-one computers generate a lot of heat. Be certain to place your all-in-one computer somewhere with enough proper ventilation.

    Windows AIO vs. Mac AIO

    No computer-buying experience is complete without asking the age-old question, “Would you like a Mac or a PC?” Nowadays, the choice has more to do with your personal preference than it does with functionality. Macs and PCs can perform the same tasks, albeit in very different ways, so in this context, it makes more sense to consider your own circumstances and taste.

    Give some thought to whether the apps you use most are available exclusively on either Windows or Mac. Also, consider whether your other devices, such as smart watches and gaming consoles, integrate better with one operating system or the other.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    While the iMac is often cited as Apple’s first all-in-one computer, the original Apple Macintosh from 1984 was their first computer with a built-in monitor.

    AIO prices

    It’s easy to get sticker shock when shopping for all-in-one computers, especially when the prices can be double or triple the cost of a traditional desktop computer. But size comes at a premium. All-in-one computers are essentially laptop components built into a monitor, so pricing is better aligned with high-end laptops. When you consider everything that’s included (a monitor, keyboard, mouse, and speakers), many all-in-one computers are an unexpected bargain.

    EXPERT TIP

    Most all-in-one computers have webcams built into their monitors. If you’re concerned about privacy, webcam covers are an easy, inexpensive way to keep yourself safe.


    Staff  | BestReviews

    How to future-proof your AIO

    Most all-in-one computers were not made to be upgraded or modified at all, so it’s important to pick one that’s adequate for both the present and the future. When it comes to future-proofing your machine, there are three main components worth investing in.

    • CPU: Your computer’s Central Processing Unit (CPU) is the heart of it all, so be sure you have one that’s up to the task. When checking out specific models, look at what generation of CPU is inside (e.g., 7th-generation Intel i7), and determine if that generation is reasonably current. (Avoid CPU iterations that are more than two years old.)

    • RAM: Your computer’s Random Access Memory (RAM) strongly influences its ability to run multiple tasks simultaneously. Most all-in-one computers have models available with more RAM than the base model, and those are a worthy upgrade.

    • Hard drive: Consider both the space and type of hard drive you’re looking for. If you need a lot of space, you may want to opt for a platter-based hard drive. If you prefer speed and don’t need as much room, consider a solid-state hard drive (SSD).
    DID YOU KNOW?

    Most all-in-one computers cannot be upgraded, so be certain to invest in a model that has the right features to last you for at least three years. In particular, buy a model with as much RAM as you can afford.

    Tips

    When you’re comparing all-in-one computers, keep the following tips in mind.

    • You may not need a “cutting-edge” model. Your choice of computer should depend more upon how you’ll be using it than whether it has the latest, greatest technical specifications. If you plan to use the computer for processor- and RAM-intensive tasks like video editing, gaming, or graphic design, get the best computer you can afford. If you plan to use it mainly for web browsing, email, documents, and the occasional movie, a more basic model would likely suffice.

    • Make a plan for any mobile computer needs. All-in-one computers do a lot of things well, but traveling is not one of them. If you need access to your files when you’re away from your computer, consider signing up for a cloud hosting service. If you frequently need a change of scenery while you work, consider a laptop instead – because you can’t take an all-in-one computer to your local coffee shop.  

    • Determine how many USB ports you’ll need. Tabulate the number of accessories and gadgets you’ll need to connect to your computer via USB; your printer, phone, smart watch, and even your portable flash drives will all need ports of their own. If your all-in-one computer doesn’t have enough available USB ports, consider buying a separate USB hub.

    Most computers will require software updates before their first use. If you’re giving one as a gift or planning when to use one for the first time, budget time in advance to go through the updating process.

    FAQ

    Q. Can I add a second monitor to an all-in-one computer?
    A.
    Most, but not all, AIO computers have ports for connecting a second monitor. If you absolutely must have a two-monitor setup, make sure the all-in-one computer you buy has an HDMI or DisplayPort video port.

    The type of hard drive inside an all-in-one computer has a significant impact on its performance. Solid state drives (SSDs) are significantly faster and more durable than traditional platter-based hard drives.

    Q. Will I need to buy separate speakers?
    A.
    Most all-in-one computers come with built-in speakers which are adequate for video conferencing and the occasional YouTube video. If you’re going to be doing any critical listening on a regular basis, you’ll want to opt for a separate set of speakers or headphones.

    Q. Can I use an all-in-one computer for gaming?
    A.
    Yes, but don’t expect miracles. Computers rely heavily on their video cards to render intense graphics with high motion, and most all-in-one computers come with video cards better-suited for casual use. Gaming is still a possibility on an all-in-one computer, but keep your expectations realistic; think more along the lines of Candy Crush than Call of Duty.

    The team that worked on this review
    • Alice
      Alice
      Web Producer
    • Eliza
      Eliza
      Production Manager
    • Jaime
      Jaime
      Writer
    • Melissa
      Melissa
      Senior Editor