PC's Under $500 - Gift Guide

Holiday Gift Guide 2015 – 2016: Top 10 Best PC’s Under $500

November 8, 2015 - Written By Justin Diaz

While we already have a list made up of PC’s under $250 for the budget-minded and those looking for something basic, inexpensive, and likely compact or portable, those who need a little bit more out of a computer can find something on this list here. We’ve rounded up the top 10 best PC’s you can pick up for under $500 which gives you a little more wiggle room with options that include more features and better specs.

Alienware AlphaAlienware Alpha

This is definitely geared towards gamers, but the Alpha packs full Windows 8.1 and can be used as a normal PC for regular tasks like work, school, browsing etc. in addition to playing games. It comes equipped with Intel’s dual-core i3 CPU and 4GB of DDR3 RAM (although it can be upgraded to 8GB total with another 4GB memory stick), a 500GB hard drive for plenty of game and file storage space, and a free upgrade to Windows 10. It has 2 USB ports on the front as well as two in the back, alongside two HDMI ports and an ethernet connection. On top of the all these great features, it’s also small enough in size to be perfect for sitting on top of a desk or next to your TV as a home console/computer.

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Dell Inspiron 24 3000 SeriesDell Inspiron 24 3000 Series

While not quite as small as the Alienware Alpha, the Dell Inspiron 24 3000 series desktop actually saves you more space as it’s an all-in-one PC setup. This means the computing hardware is built-in to the monitor itself leaving you more desk space. It’s powered by the AMD E2 7110 CPU clocked at 1.8GHz and comes with 4GB of DDR3L SDRAM, as well as a 500GB hard drive. The display is 23.8-inches in size, and the machine comes running Windows 8.1 but is also capable of upgrading to Windows 10 for free.

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LG ChromebaseLG Chromebase

This is another all-in-one setup but this time coming from LG and instead of running the Windows operating system it comes powered by Chrome OS instead for a more cloud-centric computing experience. It’s powered by the Intel Celeron 2955U CPU clocked at 1.4GHz, and comes with 2GB of DDR3L RAM and a 16GB solid state drive. It also comes with free Google Drive storage, and can support expandable storage via the SD card slot. The screen on the monitor is 22-inches giving plenty of space for viewing things comfortably, and it comes with the keyboard and mouse included in the package. Another additional function is that it can be used as a display for another machine, so if you have a laptop for example that you want to hook up to a bigger monitor, the HDMI port on the LG Chromebase can be your outlet. This unit supports WiFi 802.11 a/b/g/n and ethernet connections as well as Bluetooth.

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Dell Inspiron i3647 DesktopDell Inspiron i3647

If you’re looking for a proper desktop machine without an integrated monitor, the Inspiron i3647 model from Dell is just that, leaving you the freedom to pick your monitor setup. It comes powered by the Intel i3 4170 CPU clocked at 3.7GHz, and comes with 4GB of DDR3 RAM, upgradeable to 16GB total, (RAM memory sticks not included) and a huge 1TB hard drive for plenty of space. It also has a DVD drive tray on front, and 8 USB ports in total while running the latest version of Windows, Windows 10. It also comes packed with a USB keyboard and optical mouse, both from Dell, and while it can be hooked up to the internet via the ethernet port, it also supports WiFi if you’d like to stay wireless.

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HP 22-3010 All-In-One Desktop PCHP 22-3010 All-in-one

HP has been making computers for quite some time and this all-in-one option from them is a great choice for you if you want a reputable brand and a space saving machine. The integrated display is 21.5-inches in size, and the unit comes powered by an AMD E1-6015 CPU clocked at 1.5GHz. It also has 4GB of DDR3L RAM and a whopping 1TB hard drive so you should never be in a need for more storage space. HP has bundled a keyboard and mouse with the unit just in case you don’t need something fancy, and it comes pre-installed with Windows 8.1 but it can be upgraded to Windows 10 for free. Also included in the machine are 3 USB 2.0 ports and 2 USB 3.0 ports, a 3-in-1 media card reader, and an HDMI out with support for dual displays if you want two screens.

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Acer Aspire ATC-705Acer Aspire ATC-705

Acer’s ATC-705 model Aspire desktop is a decent option if you want something with slightly more powerful specs than some of the others on this list. It won’t be a powerhouse machine, but it comes with respectable hardware as it’s powered by the Intel i5 4460 CPU clocked at 3.2GHz alongside 8GB of DDR3 RAM. It also comes with 1TB of hard drive space, and Windows 10 already comes pre-installed so you won’t have to worry about using the free upgrade. For connections it has 6 USB ports total, 4 that are USB 2.0 and 2 that are USB 3.0, as well as a port for HDMI, gigabit ethernet, an SD card reader, and it comes with support for high-definition 5.1 channel audio if you really like your sound.It also supports WiFi 802.11ac and Bluetooth connections, and comes with a keyboard and mouse so you’ll be ready to use it right out of the box after hooking everything up.

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HP Pavillion 550HP Pavillion 550

If you want something a little sleeker looking than some of the other options on this list, HP’s Pavillion 550 desktop is a nice surprise. It comes in a silver color with a slightly textured design, and is powered by an Intel i34170 CPU clocked at 3.7GHz. For memory it’s packed with 8GB of DDR3 SDRAM, and for storage it has 1TB of space in the 7200rpm hard drive. It’s also pre-installed with Windows 10 which means you won’t have to spend time waiting for the free upgrade to complete. It supports both WiFi and Bluetooth and has 6 USB ports, 2 USB 2.0 and 4 USB 3.0, as well as a 7-in-1 media card reader.

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Cybertron PC LazerCybertronPC Lazer

CybertronPC can be generally associated with gaming PC rigs, but they can make a decent general PC machine too. The Lazer offers up an AMD Athlon 5150 quad-core CPU clocked at 1.6GHz, coupled with an AMD Radeon HD 8400 GPU for the graphics, 4GB of DDR3 RAM, and a 500GB hard drive. It comes packaged with a keyboard and mouse so you’ll be set to take it out of the box, set it up, and start using it right away. It supports USB 3.0 and USB 2.0 with 2 ports and 4 ports respectively, as well as ethernet, DVI, VGA, and HDMI connections.

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Lenovo C40 All-In-OneDesktopLenovo C40 All-In-One

Lenovo’s C40 all-in-one desktop isn’t just a nice looking machine as it offers up some decent hardware for general use. Everything but the mouse and keyboard are integrated into the 21.5-inch display, so you can save yourself some space on the desk by not having a PC tower. The C40 is running Windows 10 so you won’t have to worry about upgrading, and it’s powered by and AMD A4-7210 CPU clocked at 1.8GHz, with a 500GB hard drive for storage, 4GB of DDR3 RAM, and an AMD Radeon R3 graphics chip. It has 2 USB ports, both 3.0 standard, as well as ethernet and 2 HDMI ports. It also supports WiFi 802.11ac if you prefer your internet connection to be wireless.

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ASUS M32AD DesktopASUS M32AD

Rounding out this list is a desktop from ASUS, equipped with an Intel Core i3 4170 CPU clocked at 3.7GHz, 8GB of DDR3 RAM, Intel Integrated HD Graphics, and a 1TB hard drive for storage. On the front of the machine you have one optical drive for CD/DVD, as well as audio ports for the inline mic and 3.5mm audio out, and 2 USB ports. On the back you have 6 more USB ports, two that are USB 2.0, 2 USB 3.0 and 2 USB 3.1 ports, as well a port for HDMI out, VGA, ethernet, and audio ports for speakers, headphones and mic. This PC also supports WiFi 802.11ac and Bluetooth 4.0 connections, and it comes running Windows 10 out of the box so there will be no need to wait on the time of the upgrade installation. Lastly, it also comes with an ASUS keyboard and optical mouse so after setup it will be ready to use.

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