The 5 best all-in-one PCs: today's top, one-stop desktops

The best all-in-one may not be the one for all

All-in-ones aren’t your average PCs. They're desktops with integrated displays, frequently complemented by the mobile guts you’d expect from a laptop. As such, they've inherited an unfair reputation for lesser performance compared to their full-on desktop tower brethren.

All-in-ones do, however, have their advantages. These self-contained PCs typically occupy less space than a giant full-size tower, and they also don't create a nest of USB and display cables for pets to gnaw at. What's more, some all-in-ones even double as drawing tablets, as is the case with Dell’s new Smart Desk design.

Made possible by this display-meets-PC convergence, PC makers are finally able to rethink their design strategies, which in the end only benefits us – the users. So, without further ado, here are the best all-in-ones we’ve reviewed, regularly updated in classic TechRadar fashion.

Best all in one PC top PCs compared

Apple iMac with 4K Retina display

Bigger doesn't always mean better

Sure, the 5K iMac is tempting, but what if you don't need or have room for a 27-inch display? Enter the iMac with 4K Retina display, featuring similar specs as the 5K variant but at a lower cost.

Sure, you won't get discrete graphics or the 3.2GHz Intel Core-i5, but surely less pixels makes up for the performance difference. Plus, the 4K iMac's Iris Pro graphics aren't the Intel HD graphics you remember.

They're substantially more capable and come wrapped in a gorgeously compact form factor with a crisp P3 display. For the money, what more could you really ask for from an Apple computer?

HP Envy 34

best all in ones

A tyrant in video production, a spectacle in everything else

One of the best in the business of making luxury entertainment monitors, HP's Envy 34-1090na combines the WQHD matte panel of the impressive HP Envy 32 display with a built-in computer toting some mighty impressive specs.

Featuring a Skylake i7 processor, 8GB of RAM, a discrete GeForce GTX 960A GPU and the marriage of a 128GB SSD and 1TB hard drive, the Envy 34-1090na takes the concept of an all-in-one and adds a curve.

That's right, the Envy 34 packs a wide-angle curved display with all the inputs and outputs needed to put your creativity to the test – mouse, keyboard and speakers included.

iMac with Retina 5K display

Best all in one PC top PCs compared

An expensive luxury, that might just be worth it

While Apple's iMac with Retina 5K display is one of the most impressive all-in-ones around, its price places it out of the reach of most people. Apple's older 27-inch iMac possesses many of its best qualities without the wallet-intimidating price tag.

Apple redesigned its iMac line in 2013 to give it an attractive slimline chassis that houses a sharp 27-inch IPS display with a respectable 2,560 x 1,440 pixel-resolution. Excellent build quality means it's a PC built to last, and a fine option for productivity work, watching movies or light gaming.

LG Chromebase

Best all in one PC top PCs compared

A Chrome OS desktop with simplicity in mind

The LG Chromebase's biggest strength is its simplicity. Essentially a Chromebook crammed into a 21.5-inch 1080p IPS display, the Chromebase runs Google's ChromeOS that lets you do basic PC tasks using Chrome's growing list of web apps.

If you have no need for the bells and whistles that come with Windows 8.1 and OS X and don't mind relying on the internet to get things done, the LG Chromebase is an attractive, affordable and convenient all-in-one.

MSI AG240 All-in-One

Best all in one PC top PCs compared

Gaming performance in an all-in-one package

All-in-ones tend to be advertised as family-friendly alternatives to desktop PCs due to their suitability for the living room, but the MSI AG240 isn't interested in that. The 23.6-inch AG240 is a gnarly gaming PC in an all-in-one's chassis, combining an Intel Core i7 CPU with a powerful Nvidia GeForce GT860M GPU that's backed up by 16GB of RAM.

If you're hankering for a large touchscreen display with the innards of a gaming PC, the dare-to-be-different AG240 fits the bill.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Kane has been fascinated by the endless possibilities of computers since first getting his hands on an Amiga 500+ back in 1991. These days he mostly lives in realm of VR, where he's working his way into the world Paddleball rankings in Rec Room.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Kevin has been a writer for the better part of five years covering everything from green energy to high octane cars, videogames and tech, biohacking, and even city politics. At TechRadar he's settled into a life as the Computing Editor while also covering cameras and shooting video. He can be often found in the lab testing a half dozen laptops at a time or deciding which camera bags to carry for the day.