Buying Guide – Desktops

What are desktops?

Before the advent of laptops, desktop ruled the world of computers. A desktop or a desktop computer is a computer that fits on a disk. It comprises of: 

  • Monitor
  • Keyboard
  • Mouse
  • Form factor (tower)

An ideal desktop is one that is inconspicuous and keeps on working quietly year after year with very low maintenance.

Why should you get a desktop?

Apart from the allure of familiarity, desktops offer many advantages, including:

  1. Upgradability: Due to their form factor, desktops can be upgraded easily increasing their life.
  2. Reliability: Many businesses and homes still prefer a desktop because it’s a more stable system.
  3. Budget: For a personal computer, nothing can get more affordable than a desktop, depending on the components you want to choose from.
  4. Immobility: Due to their size, desktops can only be used a single location and are not portable as laptops.
  5. Versatility: Desktops nowadays comes in a variety of form factor from the thin-as-a-laptop desktop to all-in-one (AIOs) desktops.

In this regard, Lenovo has a wide range of desktops to suit the pockets and specifications of different users.

What are the different types of desktops? 

Desktop have undergone a massive change in the last decade, especially in terms of its form factors.

All-in-One (AIO) Desktops: AIO computer is a desktop computer that houses all its components except the keyboard and mouse inside the monitor. The components are usually housed behind the monitor or on the base where the monitor is mounted. There are several advantages of buying an AIO desktop. They save space, eliminate wire clutter, and offer reduced power consumption and heat generation. AIOs comes in three types:

  • Everyday AIOs: These are the affordable AIOs which can be used for every day purposes such as internet surfing, word processing, and multimedia consumption.

Example: Lenovo C series which offer up to 5th Gen Intel i5 processor with up to 8 GB RAM and an NVIDIA graphics card.

  • Multimedia AIOs: Multimedia AIOs are packed with more features for high performance.

Lenovo offers multimedia AIOs with up to Intel Core i7 processor and up to 16 GB DDR3L RAM.

  • Enterprise AIOs: These are the AIOs packed with enterprise-level productivity features and enhanced security features. These are perfect for the corporate desk which occupy 80% less space over a traditional enterprise PC.

Example: The Lenovo ThinkCenter Edge Series are a perfect example of enterprise AIOs.

Small Form Factor Desktops: Small Form Factor (SFF) desktops are designed to support the same features as modern desktop computer.

  • They occupy less space over their conventional counterparts.
  • Their compact size provides great aesthetics.

Example: The Lenovo S500 SFF is a good example of an affordable SFF Lenovo desktop with native USB 3.0 support with fast wireless connectivity. Also, the Lenovo M Series SFF are business machines that are the perfect solution for corporate users with their energy-efficient yet powerful features.

Ultrasmall Tower Desktops: The Ultrasmall tower desktops are larger than the SFF desktops, but are space-saving when compared to their standard counterparts. They offer much of the features of the SFF desktops, but also offer the advantage of upgrading them. They can be used best for family entertainment purposes.

Example: The H Series of desktops from the family of Lenovo desktop are a perfect example of this category of desktops with up to 4th Gen i7 processor and up to 16 GB of RAM.

What are the things you should look for when buying a desktop?

Operating System:

The two most popular operating systems you can choose from are Windows and Mac OS (from Apple). Both have their advantages and disadvantages. 

  • Mac OS is available in handful of systems compared to the wide acceptance of Windows OS.
  • Windows OS allows for tweaking and personalization and is available in a wide range of hardware.
  • Mac OS fans consider that Apple OS delivers much better overall experience.


The CPU is the brain of the computer and you have two choices here: Intel or AMD. Intel are the well-known of the lots, but AMD processors also can provide high performance at an affordable price point.

  • Core i3, i5, and i7 are the most popular Intel processors while for AMD it’s the A series and FX series
  • Intel processors are generally locked in fixed clocking speed while AMD processors can be overclocked.
  • AMD processors are more affordable compared to Intel processors
  • Intel processors are better at power conservation, speed and processing power

As you can see, both processors have their strengths and so you need to select the processor according to your need. However, when buying a desktop, you should at least buy a processor with Core i3 capability or comparable AMD processors. 


Solid state drives (SSD) and hard disk drives (HDD) are the two types of computer hard drives used for permanently storing the data. HDD features magnetized metal disk while SSD features multiple interconnected flash memory sticks. The disc needs to spin in HDD to access memory location while in SSD there are no moving parts.

  • SSD are more expensive than HDD
  • SSDs offer better performance and reliability than HDD

Look for at least a 1 TB HDD or a 512 SSD when buying a desktop.


If your desktop has slowed down recently, the first thing you should do is upgrade your RAM (Random Access Memory). While previously, a standard desktop had a 4 GB of RAM, this is considered as bare minimum now. You should at least consider an 8 GB RAM while buying a desktop. However, what will be even better is to have a 16 GB RAM, because RAM does not cost much. Typically, there are two RAM slots in a desktop motherboard. You can easily upgrade the RAM by inserting another one if you want to make it faster.

Ports/Drives/Network Connections:

  • A desktop needs to have a minimum of 4 USB ports with 2 of them at least being a USB 3.0 ports. USB 3.0 ports are much faster than their predecessors at accessing and transferring data. A 6 USB port desktop is a good choice.
  • HDMI is another must-have input nowadays, which are standard in many AIOs today. It allows you to connect cable box or game console to your AIO as a second device giving you superior image quality.
  • Optical drive is fast losing its sheen as people are preferring USB drives for data sharing. It’s not a must-have for even a desktop. However, if you want to play your DVD collection or have Blu-ray disc, then you can choose to have a Blu-ray drive.
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are other two potentially useful ways to connect your desktop with other devices without much hassle. However, they are not absolutely necessary. A desktop being a stationary device will have an Ethernet port for internet access. Ethernet ports are sturdier and reliable when compared to Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

Desktop Categories: 

General-Purpose Desktops: These are the most common type of desktop, which are budget friendly. Some of their features include:

  • Budget friendly
  • Made for browsing the internet, general office work, and light multimedia consumption.
  • They can come in all types of form factors such as All-in-Ones, small form factors, and ultraslim tower design. 

Example: Lenovo offers a line of budget-friendly desktops that are perfect for home with enhanced multimedia capabilities. Some of the Lenovo Desktop series are C Series, H Series, and S Series. 

Gaming and Multimedia Desktops: Gaming desktops are specifically designed for playing computer games. They are similar to the conventional desktops, but have game oriented components, such as: 

  • High-end graphics card
  • High processing power
  • Adequate storage space
  • More than one monitor.

This can considerably increase the price of the desktop.

  • The multimedia desktops also tend to have TV tuner, Blu-ray drives, and gesture controls.

Example: The Lenovo Ideacenter AIO 7200 offers 23.8” screen with superb sound and upgradable features making it the best Lenovo desktop for the use.

Business Desktops: Business desktops are designed for people who use their laptops for business and professional use. While consumer desktops focus more on style, business desktops focus on robustness and provide more usability options. Business laptops provide the standard advantages offered by all laptops, including:

  • Better computing and processing power
  • Ease of connecting to wireless networks
  • Immobility which results in theft barrier in offices


When buying a desktop, it is important to answer these two questions:

  • What is your need?
  • How much budget you have?

Once you are able to answer the two questions clearly, then you can confidently choose from the wide range of desktops offered by Lenovo.

On thedstore.com, you can buy all the latest desktops and AIOs. Being Lenovo’s official online store, thedostore offers 100% original Lenovo products.