Virtually every business needs to invest in a computer. Just what form that computer takes will, of course, vary across industries and requirements. The portability, compactness, and weight of a laptop computer is sometimes the answer.
But many times, the high-performance power, cost-efficiency, and upgradability of a desktop computer – not to mention the specialized form factors – is exactly the right choice.
Powerful, secure desktop computers still reign supreme for running a small- or medium-sized business. Here are the best 5 desktop computers for business from HP. But first, we’ll clarify what a desktop computer is in 2020, then get into some of the features to look for as you shop for your top desktop computer.
What is a desktop business computer?
Desktop business computers fall into three form factors. There is the traditional tower, the all-in-one (AiO), and the mini PC.
The traditional tower is the one we all think of as a “desktop computer” with a standing, rectangular-shaped configuration that you’ll usually find under your desk. It has three key components that include the tower itself (or body), a separate monitor, and peripherals.
The all-in-one blends the tower and the monitor into one cohesive unit, and stores the components behind or inside the monitor.
The mini PC is an ultra-small form factor desktop that lacks a display but can be placed virtually anywhere in the office – the entire unit often mounts behind certain monitors or can be placed out of the way on a shelf.
Features to look for in a business desktop
Form factor and upgradability
The various form factors of a desktop computer (traditional tower, AiO, and mini PC) each have distinct advantages:
Tower desktops, for instance, have powerful components (e.g., the CPU, GPU, memory, and storage) that are both customizable and upgradable thanks to easy access to internal hardware. Their size lends itself to better air circulation and heat management as well since they can house large fans or liquid cooling units.
AiOs are usually more portable, compact, sleek, professional-looking, and space-efficient, but may not be as upgradable as the traditional tower.
Mini PCs have an ultra-small form factor, and secure, low-profile design. Like the AiOs, they have a limited capacity for internal expansion, but can be customized with a range of exclusive accessories.
Processor and CPU
Make sure that your desktop computer for business has enough processing power via the central processing unit (CPU) to be able to run the demanding applications, software, processes, and projects that your business requires.
Dual-core processors should be fine for most needs, but quad-core CPUs will perform more tasks simultaneously and at faster speeds, which may be something to consider for specific multitasking functions such as number crunching, high-end visual design, and industrial applications.
Both Intel® and AMD® have a number of options to choose from for every power (and budget) range or requirement – from entry-level to high end.
Graphics and GPU
The graphics card (or video card), technically termed the graphical processing unit (GPU) is responsible for accurately processing and speeding your desktop’s visual and design operations.
These are available as both integrated GPUs (those that are built in to the processor) and discrete GPUs (or separate) models. For most business requirements, the former is perfectly fine, although you’ll find a discrete GPU is ideal for more intensive data analysis, 3D, computer-aided design (CAD), video editing, rendering, and animating processes.
Intel, NVIDIA®, and AMD offer professional graphics cards from entry-level to ultra 3D models.
In addition to processing power, you’ll want to ensure that your desktop computer has a sufficient amount of memory (RAM) and storage to run your applications and store your files.
Your desktop’s RAM will affect its performance and speed, so it’s a good idea to look for at least 8GB RAM and 16GB or more if you can, especially for those businesses running multimedia, design, or web development applications.
While desktop computers for business may not require as much storage as consumer desktops, especially if you’re using a network to back up files, look for a minimum of 256GB to 500GB of hard disk drive (HDD) storage and 256GB to 512GB of solid-state drive (SSD) storage.
Your desktop computer is only as secure as the weakest link in the chain, and bad actors know this. Businesses of all sizes and across industries are vulnerable to malware, ransomware, spyware, and viruses. Keep an eye out for security features like antivirus protection, locks, privacy screens, backup storage, and more to help protect your files, data, and programs.
With these features in mind, let’s start looking into the 5 best desktop computers for business.
Looking for a future-proof powerhouse to run your business? The HP Z6 G4 workstation is a workhorse that’s outfitted with processing and performance power that’s designed to grow with your business as you need it to.
Start with the technology you need now, and easily upgrade in the future by choosing from a comprehensive selection of configurations that include single or dual processors and multiple graphics cards.
Power, memory, and storage to spare
Take on virtually any demanding workload or application requirement, no matter your industry, with the perfect platform for edge-computing environments and machine learning applications.
Support up to two next-generation, high-powered Intel Xeon® Scalable processors for up to 56 total processor cores. You can also get up to 384GB of DDR4-2666 ECC memory or 768GB of DDR4-2933 ECC memory and from 256GB up to 16TB of internal storage: with options that include SAS, SATA, and PCIe SSD.
This workstation is ideal if you’re performing demanding, graphics-intensive work, such as rendering designs and images, creating visual effects, editing videos, running simulations, or bringing virtual reality (VR) to life.
You’ll have access to a range of both NVIDIA Quadro® and AMD Radeon™ professional and high-quality graphics, from entry 3D to mid-range to ultra high-end 3D with anywhere from 2GB to 48GB of video RAM. It’s certified with leading software applications such as Adobe, Autodesk, Dassault Systems, and many more.
The most secure workstations from HP®
The HP Z6 G4 workstation is equipped with advanced security features to ensure that your business’s data, your identity, and the device itself are safe. It includes security software such as HP Secure Erase, HP Client Security Suite, and HP Sure Start, which is the industry's first self-healing BIOS with intrusion detection that automatically detects intrusions in real time, notifies you, and then restores the BIOS you use. It also includes secure authentication, a Kensington lock slot, and full-volume encryption.
Easily upgrade and connect
Designed with tool-less access to the interior for quick upgrades, this workstation is loaded with ports and slots for easy expansion and customizability. There are 6 USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type A charging ports and 2 USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C™ Thunderbolt 3 ports for fast data transfers.
Dual embedded 1GbE LAN ports let you create two network connections without having to purchase an additional PCIe network interface card (NIC).
Intel Xeon processors with up to 56 processor cores
Up to 768GB of DDR4-2933 RAM and 16TB of HDD storage
If you’re looking for the same type of outstanding features as the HP Z6 G4 workstation but have entry-level budgetary requirements or don’t need as much processing power, this tower will fit the bill. One of the world’s most powerful entry workstations, the HP Z2 G4 workstation gives you server-grade power in a desktop workstation with impressive expandability.
This tower has the flexibility with I/O modules to expand and add modules as your connectivity needs change. There are 4 PCIe slots that let you work with large data sets and render complex 3D models in real time with up to NVIDIA Quadro P5000 graphics options.
It has 7 USB 3.0 ports (one for battery charging), 4 USB 2.0 ports, a USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C™ ports, 2 DisplayPort 1.2 ports, and a RJ-45 port in addition to one each of audio-in and audio-out ports.
Memory and storage for now and in the future
This workstation has 4 DD4 memory expansion slots that can give you up to 128GB of memory. Choose from storage options that range from 256GB to 2TB of SATA SSD; 500GB to 6TB of 7200 rpm SATA; and up to 1TB of HP Z Turbo Drive G2, PCIe NVMe SSD.
Quickly access and store massive amounts of data and files with four storage bays. Dual dedicated M.2 storage slots let you install up to 16TB of pro-grade storage hardware for those storage-heavy applications without having to sacrifice standard PCIe slots.
Get powerful performance
Support your unique needs with a choice of Windows 10 Pro 64 or Linux® operating systems. Get powerful performance on single-threaded applications with the latest generation Intel Xeon E processors with up to 8 cores. Or you can opt to select from a range of 8th Generation and 9th Generation Intel Core i3, i5, and i7 processors with up to 8 cores.
A choice of professional GPUs for 3D work
Make the best of your workflows and take on complex 3D modeling processes like Building Information Modeling (BIM), rendering, design, and visualization projects. Choose from multiple Intel, NVIDIA, and AMD professional graphics from entry to ultra 3D, with cards that include:
Integrated entry: Intel UHD graphics 630
Dedicated entry 3D: NVIDIA Quadro P400/P620
Midrange 3D: AMD Radeon Pro WX 3200/4100 or NVIDIA Quadro P1000/P2000
High-end 3D: AMD Radeon Pro WX 7100 or NVIDIA Quadro P4000 or RTX 4000
If you don’t need the power of the workstation towers and are looking to save both space and budget, check out this all-in-one desktop PC. One of the best desktop computers for small business, the HP ProOne 600 G5 21.5-inch All-in-One PC is a great investment that you can quickly deploy into demanding environments. This space-saving AiO has comprehensive manageability, a micro-edge and antiglare display, and strong security features.
Space saving and sleek
This AiO looks perfectly at home at the front desk or in an owner’s office. It features extensive cable management to help keep cables hidden and a professional-looking, sleek design from the front, back, and sides.
The micro-edge, anti-glare, and WLED backlit 21.5-inch diagonal FHD IPS widescreen LCD display provides plenty of screen space. To meet your unique workspace and use case requirements, you can pair this space-saving AiO with mounting options such as the HP Adjustable Height Stand or the HP Fixed Height Tilt Stand.
Choose your processing power
It includes a 9th Generation, 6 core, 65W Intel Core i5-9500 processor plus an integrated Intel UHD Graphics 630 card. But if you don’t need as much processing power, it offers the option to select from dual- and quad-core processors such as the Intel Celeron®, Pentium®, and the Intel Core i3 processors.
On the other hand, you can choose more processing power with either an Intel Core i7 or i9 with up to 8 cores.
Memory and storage options
The HP ProOne 600 G5 AiO includes 8GB of DDR4-2666 RAM, but you can choose from 4GB up to 64GB. Internal storage of 256GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD and 2TB of SATA HDD come standard, but available options include no internal storage or up to 1TB of SSD storage.
You can also add 16GB of Intel Optane™ memory, which converts your computer’s temporary memory into permanent memory, increasing your system’s responsiveness by remembering your most frequently used applications for faster launch the next time they’re opened up.
Protect your AiO against evolving malware threats with manageable, self-healing, and hardware-enforced security solutions that include HP Sure Start, HP Sure Click, and HP Sure Sense, which uses deep learning AI to provide exceptional protection against advanced malware.
Keep downtime low and productivity high with HP BIOSphere Gen5: firmware-level automation with automatic updates and security checks.
Enjoy a modern-looking workspace with the sophisticated style and serious performance of the HP EliteOne 800 G5 AiO. Like the HP ProOne AiO, it’s equipped with processing power, memory, storage, and security features that make it stand out among the AiO category, as well as other business desktop form factors.
Amazing from any angle
This extremely thin AiO is designed with a 23.8-inch diagonal, anti-glare, FHD IPS widescreen, WLED-backlit, and micro-edge bezel display in a sophisticated style that looks stunning in any workspace. Collaborate clearly and easily through the display with crystal clear audio and your choice of a front-facing pop-up IR camera or a dual-facing pop-up FHD camera.
And with the optional HP Sure View Gen3, you can make the display appear dark to those around you at the touch of a button.
Power and performance included
Like the HP ProOne 600 AiO it’s equipped with a 9th Generation, 6 core, 65W Intel Core i5-9500 processor plus an integrated Intel UHD Graphics 630 card. Similarly, you can decrease or add more processing power up to an Intel Core i9 with up to 8 cores.
It’s outfitted with 8GB RAM or you can configure up to 64GB. Internal storage of 128GB M.2 PCIe NVMe SSD comes standard but you can configure up to 2TB as well as up to 2TB of SATA storage.
Keep your AiO safe
You can deploy security options that include the HP Manageability Integration Kit, which helps speed up image creation and management of hardware, BIOS, and security through Microsoft System Center Configuration Manager.
And with HP Multi-Factor Authenticate, you can fortify your AiO with up to three authentication factors for log-in that include an optional fingerprint reader and IR camera facial recognition.
Elegant, extremely thin profile with a depth of only 7.1 inches
While most mini PCs run on similar components as laptops including lower power processors, smaller hard drives, limited memory, and rarely include accessories, the ultra-powerful enterprise-class HP EliteDesk 800 G5 desktop mini PC is an exception. This mini is truly mighty, equipped with Windows 10 Pro, 8GB RAM, 500GB of SATA HDD, and HP USB Business Slim Wired Keyboard, and an HP USB Optical Mouse.
More nimble than ever
One of the best small business desktop computers, the compact HP EliteDesk 800 desktop mini lets you experience performance, security, and manageability tailored for the modern workplace.
It’s perfect for functions that let it run unattended, behind a screen, or serve as a “point-of-sale” terminal or within a kiosk in retail settings. It’s great for running Microsoft Office applications and executing other light computing duties as well.
It’s mini, but it’s mighty
It may be only 1.33 inches high and weigh 2.13 lbs, but this mini business computer is mighty. And it’s available in processor configurations to suit your business and budget. Tackle demanding challenges with up to a 95W 9th Generation Intel processor as well as optional Intel Optane Memory, up to 64GB memory, and up to 2TB of SATA HDD.
Make it your own
You can install the HP EliteDesk 800 mini PC securely inside the optional HP Mini-in-One 24 display or attach it behind an HP EliteDisplay. Or you can mount it, display it, or customize it with space-saving optional exclusive HP accessories.
Optional ports for evolving connectivity help you expand your business when necessary. And you can speed up networking with an optional 100 Mbps/sec or 1 Gbps/sec fiber network card.
Only 1.33 inches high and weighs 2.13 lbs
Includes 8GB RAM and 500GB of SATA HDD
HP USB Business Slim Wired Keyboard and HP USB Optical Mouse
Display and customize with optional, space-saving HP accessories
The best business computers to buy are those that fit your specific needs. Are you looking for raw processing power? Expandability? Customizability? A slim profile? Something that fits your budget?
Desktop computers for business offer enough variety within each of the various form factors to meet those needs and more.
Because we think that future-proofing your business is never a bad idea, we recommend the entry-level, yet impressively expansive, and server-grade power-equipped HP Z2 G4 workstation as the ideal choice.
About the Author: Jolene Dobbin is a contributing writer for HP® Tech Takes. Jolene is an East Coast-based writer with experience creating strategic messaging, marketing, and sales content for companies in the high-tech industry.
Prices, specifications, availability and terms of offers may change without notice. Price protection, price matching or price guarantees do not apply to Intra-day, Daily Deals or limited-time promotions. Quantity limits may apply to orders, including orders for discounted and promotional items. Despite our best efforts, a small number of items may contain pricing, typography, or photography errors. Correct prices and promotions are validated at the time your order is placed. These terms apply only to products sold by HP.com; reseller offers may vary. Items sold by HP.com are not for immediate resale. Orders that do not comply with HP.com terms, conditions, and limitations may be cancelled. Contract and volume customers not eligible.
HP’s MSRP is subject to discount. HP’s MSRP price is shown as either a stand-alone price or as a strike-through price with a discounted or promotional price also listed. Discounted or promotional pricing is indicated by the presence of an additional higher MSRP strike-through price
The following applies to HP systems with Intel 6th Gen and other future-generation processors on systems shipping with Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1 or Windows 10 Pro systems downgraded to Windows 7 Professional, Windows 8 Pro, or Windows 8.1: This version of Windows running with the processor or chipsets used in this system has limited support from Microsoft. For more information about Microsoft’s support, please see Microsoft’s Support Lifecycle FAQ at https://support.microsoft.com/lifecycle
Ultrabook, Celeron, Celeron Inside, Core Inside, Intel, Intel Logo, Intel Atom, Intel Atom Inside, Intel Core, Intel Inside, Intel Inside Logo, Intel vPro, Itanium, Itanium Inside, Pentium, Pentium Inside, vPro Inside, Xeon, Xeon Phi, Xeon Inside, and Intel Optane are trademarks of Intel Corporation or its subsidiaries in the U.S. and/or other countries.
In-home warranty is available only on select customizable HP desktop PCs. Need for in-home service is determined by HP support representative. Customer may be required to run system self-test programs or correct reported faults by following advice given over phone. On-site services provided only if issue can't be corrected remotely. Service not available holidays and weekends.
Microsoft Windows 10: Not all features are available in all editions or versions of Windows 10. Systems may require upgraded and/or separately purchased hardware, drivers, software or BIOS update to take full advantage of Windows 10 functionality. Windows 10 is automatically updated, which is always enabled. ISP fees may apply and additional requirements may apply over time for updates. See http://www.microsoft.com.