Dogzily.com – Best Mini PCs: There are various good mini PC brands that you can find on the market, from HP, ASUS, to Apple. Just like desktop PCs, mini PCs are used for various things, such as getting work done, editing, and even gaming.
Mini PC comes with a wide selection of processors, from AMD, core i5, to core i7. Of course, the higher the specs, the higher the price. There are also mini PCs at more affordable prices, starting at 1 million.
If you are still unsure about choosing the right product, read this article! This article has been reviewed by our software engineer, Yosua Surojo.
How Mini PCs Work
Mini PC is a computer CPU that is small in size, but has almost the same function as a computer CPU. To use it, you need to connect your mini PC to a monitor, mouse and keyboard. Only then can the mini PC be operated like a desktop PC.
The difference is that mini PCs are smaller, making them more practical for mobility. Compared to desktop PCs, the power consumption of mini PCs is also small. Even so, the price range of mini PCs varies widely.
There are mini PCs with a price of 1 million, there are also those that cost tens of millions. It depends on the RAM, processor, storage system used, and so on.
Generally, the higher the price of a mini PC, the higher the specs. You can also upgrade the kit in it, such as RAM and internal storage as needed. Are you interested in owning it? Come on, find out more info!
Collaborating With Experts: How To Choose A Mini PC
Before choosing a mini PC, understand a few things first, such as the type of mini PC, operating system, processor, and RAM. Well, we will explain each of these points in detail here.
① Choose the type of mini PC according to your needs
If you look at the completeness of the kit, there are two types of mini PCs, namely ready-to-go and barebones. Of course, each type of mini PC has its own advantages.
Ready-to-go, more practical and can be used immediately
The ready-to-go Mini PC has a complete kit and can be used immediately without having to assemble it first. Starting from the case, motherboard, processor, RAM, to the hard drive, everything is included in the purchase package. This type is suitable if you are looking for a practical product. For those of you who want to use a PC device with a new impression, choose the ready-to-go type.
Barebones, high flexibility at a more affordable price
The barebones type only has a case, motherboard and processor in the purchase package. This means you have to buy and install RAM and hard drives ( internal storage ) separately. The advantage is that you can choose the type and capacity of RAM and hard drive according to your needs. The price is more economical than the ready-to-go type.
This type of Mini PC is generally in demand by users who want to replace a PC by reusing old components. For example, you want to use a kit from an old PC and have no intention of buying new RAM and internal storage . As a result, data and programs stored, both in RAM and internal storage, can still be accessed.
② View the types of operating systems available
Many mini PC products already provide an operating system (OS), such as Linux, Windows, Android, or OS X. As an illustration, below we will explain several types of OS systems on mini PCs.
- Android OS has a system similar to Android smartphones. As a result, you can also install applications available on the Play Store. However, Android OS mini PCs are still difficult to find in the Indonesian market.
- There is also the OS X operating system which is exclusively used on Apple products. OS X is great for those of you who will be working on images and videos.
- The Windows operating system is widely used on computer devices. Windows OS is ideal for those of you who use mini PCs for office work.
- There is a Linux OS that is often used by programmers.
Choose a mini PC with an operating system and features that you are familiar with so that it is easier and more practical to use. However, there are also products that are not equipped with an OS, so you need to install it yourself. If the mini PC does not provide an OS, check the type of OS that is compatible with the mini PC.
③ Check important specifications that affect mini PC performance
At least, there are three things that will affect the performance of the mini PC, namely the processor, RAM, and internal storage. Of course, the mini PC specs you choose should suit your needs. Read on!
Processor: The main key that affects the performance of a mini PC
The processor can be said to be the brain of a PC so that it affects its performance. Several types of processors in mini PCs are AMD, Apple M1, and Intel. Of the three types, Intel Celeron and Intel Core are most often installed on mini PCs. Check out the full explanation below.
- Intel Celeron processors are usually used for low – end class PCs. One type is Intel J4125. These processors are more affordable, save electricity, cool, and don’t break down quickly. However, Intel Celeron is not suitable for running heavy applications or games.
- If you want an Intel processor with stronger performance, Intel Core is the right choice. Intel Core names consist of the letter “i” followed by a number, such as i3, i5, and i7. The bigger the number, the higher the specs and performance. Intel Core i5 and i7 are usually used for heavy data processing. For example, for video editing or playing AAA games.
RAM: Affects data processing performance when running applications
Mini PCs come with varying RAM capacities, starting from 2GB, 8GB, up to above that. Of course, the higher the RAM, the process of mini PC performance will be easier and faster.
- We recommend a mini PC with 4GB of RAM and above. 4GB of RAM is capable of running a 64-bit operating system and is used to complete office work. You can run light document processing and photo editing applications.
- For heavier data computing needs, choose a mini PC with 8GB of RAM and above. 8 GB of RAM can be used for more complex and detailed photo editing to HD quality video rendering. If you subscribe to the Adobe Creative Cloud full service, a mini PC with 8GB of RAM is a must-have.
- 8 GB of RAM can already play AAA class games with a resolution that must be configured to a lower level.
- If you are looking for a mini PC for gaming, use a mini PC with 16 GB of RAM. Unfortunately, ready-to-go mini PCs with 16GB of RAM are still hard to find. You can choose a barebones mini PC and upgrade the RAM yourself.
- A PC with 16 GB of RAM can also be used to run heavier applications. Examples of applications are Adobe Premiere Pro, Adobe Photoshop, and Adobe After Effects. With large RAM, you can also operate design or 3D modeling software, such as CAD with 4K quality video rendering.
Internal storage: Important for storing data
Internal storage is an important part for storing data. The internal storage capacity also varies, such as 32 GB, 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB, 1 TB, and so on. Usually, the bigger the mini PC’s storage capacity, the higher the price.
If you choose a mini PC with small internal storage, you can use additional portable storage. An example of this additional storage is an external hard disk or cloud system storage.
- For light daily needs, a mini PC with 32–128 GB of internal storage is considered sufficient. This capacity is suitable for storing work documents from MS Office and the like.
- If you also want to save photos and videos, you should choose a mini PC with 256 GB of internal storage.
- Those of you who work as designers and video editors, choose a mini PC with 512 GB or 1 TB of storage.
④ Check other features that support mini PC performance
Apart from specifications, there are other supporting features that affect mini PC performance. Some of these important things, such as the cooling system, connection port, and VESA mount. Let’s understand more fully the supporting features!
Cooling system, keeping the mini PC engine temperature cool
The small size makes the mini PC more at risk when it overheats. Overheating makes mini PC performance not optimal so it is important to check the cooling system. This cooling system, such as fans, ventilation holes, or a combination of both. There is also a type of casing material that can suppress excess temperatures. Therefore, don’t forget to check it too, OK?
Connection port, connect mini PC with other devices
Another aspect that must be considered is the connectivity that is on the mini PC. The mini PC you choose should have a USB port, either USB-A or USB-C, or as needed. Apart from that, there are still other important types of ports, namely HDMI, audio jack, LAN, and micro SD card reader. Therefore, choose a mini PC with connection port compatibility according to the device you are using.
VESA mount, convenient for attaching to the wall or back of the monitor
Do you want to stick your mini PC behind the screen or on the wall? If so, check for the presence of a video electronic standard association (VESA) mount. If there is a VESA mount, the mini PC can be connected with a bracket that also has the VESA standard. That way, installing the mini PC behind the screen or wall becomes easier.
⑤ Consider an upgradeable mini PC
Like any other computer or desktop, many mini PC products are upgradeable. This type can add or increase important components, such as RAM, internal storage, or graphics card.
There are also mini PC types with kits that are sold separately. You can also choose the CPU, RAM, and storage system you want. In this case, you need to check the slot and compatibility between the add-on kit and the mini PC.
For example, you intend to buy an Intel Core i3 mini PC. If you’re upgrading to a Core i7, you’ll need to solder the slots. However, doing so may invalidate the warranty that applies to your Intel mini PC.
10 Best Mini PCs Recommendation
Next, we will recommend the ten best mini PCs products that we have determined based on how to choose above. These products are carefully selected by considering product quality, buyer reviews, and the level of trust in the seller.
1. Raspberries Pi 4 Model B
Raspberry Pi 4 is recommended for those of you who are looking for a mini PC with a complete, fast and updated network system. This is because of the dual band Wi-Fi 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz. Plus, the ethernet port has a maximum connection of 1 GB/s.
That way, connecting to the internet to a PC, either by Wi-Fi or LAN, is no longer a problem. Meanwhile, this Bluetooth mini PC is version 5.0 and uses Bluetooth low energy (BLE). Therefore, the power required to operate the Bluetooth is very small.
- The choice of RAM is more diverse
- It has a graphic processing unit (GPU) which is convenient for multimedia and gaming
- Faster data transfer thanks to USB 3.0
- No case included, you need to purchase separately
2. Beelink BT3 PROII
Choose Beelink BT3 PRO II if you are looking for a mini PC at an economical price. Compared to other products, this mini PC is more affordable. Even so, the performance it offers is no joke. This product is equipped with dual band Wi-Fi and is supported by 4K Ultra HD, you know. The bag won’t dry out if you buy it, deh!
- One package is equipped with a power adapter, HDMI cable, and mini PC bracket
- The guidebook is only available in English
3. Beelink Office Mini PC GK55
The Beelink GK55 Mini PC is designed with a silent cooling fan so that the engine can work optimally and stay cool. Meanwhile, the sound of the engine is not noisy either. This product is suitable for those of you who like to work in a calm atmosphere.
Apart from that, there is also dual HDMI which allows you to connect your mini PC to two monitors at the same time.
- Features USB 3.0 with dual HDMI and dual band Wi-Fi
- Light weight, less than 500 grams
- The internal storage options are quite diverse
- The warranty is limited
4. ASRock DeskMini X300 Series
Are you looking for a mini PC for gaming? DeskMini X300 from ASRock has qualified specs for gaming. This product is a barebones Mini PC that uses the X300 chipset. You can also pair it with Athlon 2000GE, Ryzen 3 3200G, up to Ryzen 7 4750G processors.
For graphics, this mini PC uses IGP Radeon Vega with a high clock speed. These specifications make this mini PC capable of running e – sports games such as DOTA 2. AAA game types such as Shadow of The Tomb Raider can also be played at 30 fps and above. Fun is not it?
- Has the ability to overclock
- Because the size is quite small, this product cannot use AMD CPUs that do not have an IGP
5. ASUS ASUSPRO E520
Do you need a mini PC for business that is environmentally friendly and energy efficient? We suggest you to choose this product. ASUSPRO E520 has been tested to have efficient and eco – friendly operational power.
This is proven by certification from Energy Star. To operate this mini PC, you only need 11 watts of electrical power. That way, operational costs from using this mini PC from ASUS can be reduced.
- Can be installed vertically, horizontally, or attached to the back of the monitor
- Has a warranty of up to 3 years
- Allows to connect to two monitors
- According to some reviewers, playing 4K 60 fps quality video is quite time consuming
6. HP t630 Thin Client
Do you often use cloud storage services for work needs? The HP t630 Thin Client looks like it will work for you. This mini PC is claimed to have the most secure and complete portfolio for cloud computing and virtual desktop infrastructure.
Not only that, this product is specially made with information technology decision maker (ITDM) in mind.You can transition from PC mode to virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) or cloud computing more easily.
- Equipped with an AMD-x86 quad-core chipset capable of running heavy applications
- The choice of RAM and internal storage is quite diverse
- There is no information about the cooling system
7. ASUS Mini PC PN51
ASUS PN51 has a small size and weight below the average mini PC in general. Thanks to that, this product is very practical for traveling. This product is recommended for those of you who work at home and office, but want to use the same PC.
This mini PC also supports Bluetooth 5.0 and Wi-Fi 6. Not only that, for the cooling system it has a fan speed setting so you can adjust it easily. Small cayenne pepper, yes!
- Up to three monitors can be used at the same time making it ideal for multitasking workers
- Equipped with a USB lock feature, which can reduce the risk of data theft or exposure to viruses and malware
- According to some reviews, the upgrade options are limited to RAM, storage, and the Wi-Fi module only
8. Apples Mac mini M1 (2020)
Generally, Apple enthusiasts always use Apple products. If you are looking for a mini PC from Apple, the Mac mini M1 (2020) could be the best choice. This Mini PC uses the M1 Chip and macOS Ventura which has high performance.
With a small body, you can use it as a workstation for work needs. This product is also suitable for those of you who work as a sound engineer. Its 8- core CPU is capable of running more tracks, plug – ins, and filters in Logic Pro.
- The graphics it has make the image display when gaming smoother
- Equipped with accessibility features that can help people with disabilities maximize their use
- Not supplied with adapter, sold separately
9. Intel NUC 10 Performance kit NUC10i7FNH
We recommend Mini PCs from Intel for those of you who are looking for high-performance products. No kidding, this mini PC has an Intel Core i7 processor that is capable of running heavy applications.
Even so, you need to buy RAM and internal storage because this product is a barebones type. Because of this, you can also choose RAM and internal storage according to your needs.
- Has a warranty of up to 3 years
- RAM installation is relatively easy and when running this mini PC is not noisy according to some buyers
- Not equipped with 3.5 mm audio and digital microphones
10. HP Elite Slices
HP Elite Slice presents a mini PC with an elegant design. The shape is square and slightly thick with a golden HP logo in the middle. The combination of black base color with golden color makes this mini PC look luxurious.
Not only beautiful visuals, this PC is capable of displaying integrated graphics with the Intel HD Graphics 530 GPU. As a result, this mini PC is able to play videos smoothly. Of course you will be spoiled with an ultra-realistic visual appearance and stunning image details.
- The presence of three speakers and HP Audio Boost support makes the audio quality more optimal
- There are two storage options, namely HDD and SSD
- When installing and removing additional modules is very easy because it is without cables
- Some reviews complain that the bass doesn’t kick enough
- The built-in wireless keyboard and mouse require a USB receiver
Can Mini PCs Be Used For Gaming?
Yes, as long as you choose a product with specifications or upgrade options that meet the system requirements of the game being played. In other words, make sure the specifications meet the minimum system requirements or recommended system requirements.
There are various types and specifications of mini PCs that you can find on the market. After reading the selection guide and recommended products, have you made your choice?
For both gaming and work needs, make sure the mini PC has the specs that meet your needs. In addition, check the compatibility and practicality when carried. That way, your activities will be helped by the existence of a mini PC. Happy choosing!
5 Best Mini PC recommendations
- Raspberry ｜Pi 4 Model B
- Beelink ｜BT3 PRO II
- Beelink ｜Office Mini PC GK55
- ASRock ｜DeskMini X300 Series
- ASUS ｜ASUSPRO E520
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