The best computer for you largely depends on your needs. When choosing one, your main goal is to find a PC that can handle your day-to-day demands without slowing down or heating up your whole space.
If those demands include intensive tasks like video editing or gaming, you might need something with more powerful specs. But, if you'll only need something for sending out emails and streaming content, you're better off with a more affordable system.
Luckily, you have a lot of options just with the type of computer you want, much less specific brands and what they bring to the table. Just keep in mind that there are a lot of things to consider before you go shopping for your next PC. You wouldn't want to waste a lot of money on a kitted-out model if you can't maximize its power, after all.
We'll help you get something that's the best value for your money, instead of getting one that's overkill or a cheap one that barely runs. We've put our many years of PC experience to use to by running them through their paces and choosing only the best computers on the market.
Whether its the best budget gaming PC or the best all-in-one computer you're after, chances are we've tested it. And, you'll find something from our picks below to suit your needs and wallet.
One of the best workstations might be ideal if you need to do heavy-duty content creation. Otherwise, one of the best computers below will more than suffice. We've even included the best prices available so you can save if a PC deal is available.
The best computer 2023
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We haven't finished our latest review of the Dell XPS desktop, but given what we've seen already in our testing, we really couldn't wait to let you know how great a computer it is.
Powered by 12th-gen Intel Core processors (up to an Core i9-12900K), and up to an Nvidia RTX 3090, this rather compact desktop PC packs an enormous punch. And given that it's a Dell PC (Dell remains one of the best OEM systems integrators in the world), the hardware in the XPS desktop manages to edge out similar systems from rivals with the same hardware configurations at a generally lower price.
So whether you're just looking for a new home office PC or you're looking for a dedicated creative workstation that doesn't break the bank (with some serious gaming performance on the side to boot), then you really cannot miss with the XPS Desktop.
One of Apple’s biggest surprise hits of recent years is the updated Mac mini, powered by Apple's inaugural silicon, the Apple M1 chip. Though it has some more powerful hardware under the hood, it still keeps things classy with its much-loved design.
It’s more powerful than ever – with more than decent video editing performance, even at 8K, and can now run iOS apps and the best Mac games thanks to this new chip. All the while, it still keeps its title as the cheapest Mac ever – terrific news for budget-minded Apple fans, even as we anticipate the release of another Mac Mini refresh with the new Apple M2 chip in 2023.
Considering that the M2 MacBook Air saw a major price increase, an M2 Mac Mini might see something similar, so this M1 model will still remain dear to our hearts for its excellent performance and affordability, something we can all benefit from these days.
Read the full Mac mini (M1, 2020) review
It certainly won't be for everyone, but sometimes you just want the best of the best, the absolute cream of the crop. By our judgement, that's the MSI MEG Aegis Ti5: an almost ludicrously powerful gaming PC with a jaw-droppingly unique chassis that includes a 'Gamer Dial' on the front, which can be used to tweak your system performance settings and also display information or fun animations on its dinky circular display.
Naturally, the MEG Aegis Ti5 comes in a variety of models, all equipped with the latest gaming hardware. The newest top-spec configuration uses the top-of-the-line Intel Core i9-12900K CPU and an Nvidia RTX 3090 graphics card, and there are a tonne of different models available if that isn't exactly what you're looking for. Of course, most of these models will cost you a pretty penny, but if you're looking for the best in performance, look no further.
Read the full MSI MEG Aegis Ti5 review
The 2021 redesign of the ever-present iMac is as good as it looks, boasting an enlarged display (24 inches, up from the previous 21.5-inch models) and a selection of vibrant color schemes. The new iMac runs on Apple's own silicon now, utilizing the powerful Apple M1 chip to elevate performance beyond the older Intel-powered iMacs. It's a versatile and effective platform for any professional workload, and gaming on a Mac is even a tangible option nowadays too.
If you want an all-in-one system that is ready to go straight out of the box, the 2021 iMac is a fantastic choice, arguably the very best option on the market right now. It even comes with Apple's wireless Magic Keyboard and Magic Mouse - colored to match your iMac, we might add - so you can get to work the moment you set it up. A full HD webcam and studio-quality triple microphone setup make for excellent clarity in video calls. The new display is a bright and colorful high-resolution screen that serves wonderfully for photo and video editing, too.
Read the full iMac (24-inch, 2021) review
A frankly inspired piece of computer hardware engineering, the Corsair One i300 is a marvelously compact workstation computer that leverages some smart internal design choices to offer top-tier performance with a footprint barely any larger than the Lenovo IdeaCentre Mini 5i seen higher up in this very list. It also runs quieter than many powerhouse PCs thanks to its single roof-mounted fan and perforated side panels.
The One i300 is likely to be a bit overkill for the average user, given its high-end internal components and steep entry price. Still, this is indisputably the most powerful compact form factor PC available right now, and Corsair offers a variety of models with both AMD and Intel processors. If you're looking for a high-end PC for resource-intensive content creation tasks or 4K gaming (or both!), this is an excellent pick. The remarkably compact design does mean that cracking open the chassis to upgrade your components is a tricky - though not entirely impossible - proposition, but thankfully the hardware on offer here means the Corsair One i300 should serve you for years to come.
Read the full Corsair One i300 review
If you're a creative professional, the Mac Studio is basically the best computer you can buy right now. Think of it like a super-charged Mac Mini aimed directly at digital content creators, equipped with a powerful M1 Max or M1 Ultra chip from Apple along with a whopping 128GB of RAM. These chips are actually more effective for high-end content creation than the newly-introduced M2 chip thanks to their laser focus on creative workloads rather than the more general functionality of the M2. Heavy workloads like rendering complex 3D animations or editing 8K footage are all in a day's work for the Mac Studio, provided you've got a suitable display to plug it into.
Like the Mac Mini, the Mac Studio is extremely compact and effectively silent when running, so you won't have to worry about clearing desk space or listening to fans humming while you work. Unlike some of the computers on this list, the Mac Studio can't be upgraded - a side effect of its compact design - and it's also very, very expensive. But if you're a professional creative, this is undeniably worth the asking price.
Read the full Apple Mac Studio review
How to choose the best PC for you
How to choose the best PC for you
Finding the best computer can be challenging since there are so many different types of desktop PCs. We look at all different kinds and compare them to other PCs in their class and consider everything from price to performance.
Just because something is cheap doesn't mean it's bad, so budget PCs need just as close an inspection as high-end systems, and in all cases we consider the performance of the PC against the expected price for a product in that class.
That means a PC less than $500/£500/AU$800 won't be as powerful as the best gaming PC, but if it outperforms our expectations then it is a strong candidate for our list. Meanwhile, if a PC has best-in-class performance but is selling for three times what it should, we're very unlikely to recommend it to anyone since you can pay considerably less with just a slight decrease in performance.
Which computer configuration is best?
The best computer configuration will depend on what you’re using your PC for. You need to pay attention to the CPU, GPU, hard drive and SSDs, and RAM in your tower because each individual aspect needs to be changed for the optimal computer configuration.
If you’re using your desktop PC for everyday tasks, you won’t need a high-powered CPU or GPU and the standard SSD and RAM will do just fine. Gaming PC towers, however, will need those high-power CPUs and GPUs as well as lots of hard drive and SSD storage to account for high-resolution gaming.
Which is the best computer brand?
The best computer brand depends on what your PC’s functionality is and what you use it for. Dell and Lenovo make great everyday use computers if you like Windows operating systems, but Apple also has great desktop computers if you’re able to afford how expensive they can be.
On the other hand, if you want a PC that has gaming capabilities, you’ll want to look at brands like MSI, Corsair, or even Alienware (a gaming-focused brand owned by Dell) if you’re looking for the highest quality gaming PC.
Many computer brands have the best PCs that are top-quality and affordable, so the best computer brand for you will ultimately depend on what you want your PC to accomplish.
How We Test
Here at TechRadar, we believe in rigorously testing every piece of hardware that passes through our hands. If it fails to impress during testing, we'll always let you know; we won't recommend you buy any product that falls short of the performance median for its price range.
Our testing process varies from product to product, but we're always sure to run the most appropriate tests considering the target purpose of whatever we're reviewing. This means we're always sure to run plenty of gaming tests on a gaming laptop, or editing benchmarks for a desktop workstation PC. We also always examine the build quality of a product to see whether it aligns with the attached price tag.
If you want to know more about how we test and rate the computers in this guide, check out our explainer on how we test laptops and desktops to learn more.