Accounting is not a very demanding task particularly when you compare it with work related to CAD, simulation, designing and AI.
Hence, the good news here is that the best desktop computers for accounting do not have to be overly powerful machines.
You can in fact get low-mid range features and that would suffice for most of your accounting tasks.
Here we will specifically look at desktop that have the price range as well as the hardware sufficient to perform most accounting tasks.
We will also talk about the hardware that one needs to look out for when choosing the right configuration.
List of Best Desktop Computers for Accounting in 2020
We believe that the following desktops standout in terms of performance as well as value when it comes to pure accounting.
- Dell Inspiron 3880 i3 – Highly Recommended Budget Desktop Computer for Accounting
- Dell Inspiron 3880 i5 – Recommended Mid Range Configuration
- Acer Aspire TC-885-UA92– Great Value
- Lenovo IdeaCentre A340 – Low-end All In One Desktop
- Acer Aspire C27-962-UA91 – High End All In One Desktop for Accountants
1. Dell Inspiron 3880 i3 – Highly Recommended Budget Desktop Computer for Accounting
If you are on a tight budget and you are looking for one of the most highly recommended low-budget desktop suitable for accounting then this should be looked into.
Rest assured, despite being a low-range desktop, this is NOT an entry level machine. While entry level desktops can show lag even on the most minute of tasks, this can glide through all of your office related tasks.
This desktops features an Intel Core i3-10100 processor from the latest 10th generation. While this processor is almost as powerful as the Intel Core i3-9100 from the previous gen, it has hyperthreading enabled.
Meaning, its fours cores can have upto 8 threads in total. This gives it an edge in terms of multitasking. If you work on a lot of sheets at a time, then this will help.
It should be noted that despite being a Core i3 processor, when you compare it with laptop grade processors even those from the Intel Core i5 series, this is significantly faster.
The image above show that the Intel Core i3-10100 is 15% more powerful than the laptop grade Intel Core i5-9300H.
Hence, as far as the performance goes, this processor is excellent.
Other than that, this desktop features 8 GB of RAM which is highly recommended for heavy accounting work and a decent 1 TB of HDD.
The only thing it misses out on is an SSD drive but at this price range, the given hardware configuration is more than enough.
All in all, if you are looking for an economical machine, then this is highly recommended for accountants.
2. Dell Inspiron 3880 i5 – Recommended Mid Range Configuration
Next up we have a desktop for those who are looking for a high performance machine.
While the Intel Core i5-10400 processor, 12 GB of RAM and 512 GB of SSD makes this an overkill for accounting software, if you want a machine that can glide through almost anything you throw at it, then this is highly recommended.
The Intel Core i5-10400 on this machine is more than just capable of handling a whole lot of sheets and data at time. In fact, this processor is even found on many workstation and gaming grade desktops.
Therefore, in case if you are into editing, simulation along with accounting, then this can serve you quite well.
The 12 GB of RAM is more than our recommended 8 GB of RAM. Hence, whether you have a high number of sheets or browser tabs open at a time, you would rarely experience any lag.
The cherry on cake here is of course the high SSD capacity. A good SSD can give you plenty of benefits in terms of performance from quick booting to faster access to your files.
Again, this desktop is certainly an overkill for mere accounting. However, if you want a higher performance machine for your side work on editing or designing software, then this is one of the best desktop computers for accounting in our opinion.
3. Acer Aspire TC-885-UA92 – Great Value
Next up we have a desktop with a great value.
This is the famous Acer Aspire TC-885-UA92. The thing about this desktop is that it features a generation older Intel Core i5-9400 processor, but at an amazingly cheap price tag.
If you can live with the fact that it features a processor from the 9th generation instead of the 10th Intel generation, then by all means go for it.
Here you can see that the performance of the both the latest gen 10 Core i5-10400 and the Core i5-9400 is almost the same, yet the Core i5-9400 being an older processor is significantly cheaper.
This processor, like the one featured in the previous desktop above, is excellent if you are trying to create a workstation grade desktop for your accounting work and more.
Like the previous desktop, this too features a large 512 GB of SSD as well as a good 12 GB of RAM making this literally an overkill for most accounting related work.
However, if you want the ultimate value, in our opinion, and also a fairly popular machine, then this is one of the best desktop computers for accounting.
It should be noted that despite being quite affordable, it too comes as a package with a keyboard and mouse making sure that it does not miss out on anything.
4. Lenovo IdeaCentre A340 – Low-end All In One Desktop
With this desktop we enter the realm of All in One computers.
All in one computers work in a somewhat different fashion as compared to tower desktop computers.
While the tower desktop computers need to have a separately bought monitor, the All in One desktops tend to feature the entire hardware behind there screen.
This is quite convenient, however, it should be noted that the hardware featured in All in One is throttled down version of the tower hardware just like mobile grade hardware.
This is because due to the limited space behind the screen, the hardware needs to be powered down to dissipate lower heat.
In any case, these are excellent and highly recommended for office users thanks to their convenience and aesthetic factor.
As far as this AIO desktop is concerned, it is the weakest in this list in terms of performance, but a great performer, nevertheless, for accounting work.
The main attraction here, of course, is a beautiful 24″ Touchscreen that requires no assembly or connectivity to work.
It comes with a decent Intel Core i3-9100T processor along with a good 256 GB of SSD. The only drawback here is that it offers a mere 4 GB of RAM, which meets the minimum requirement, but if you want to meet the recommended requirement of 8 GB, you can find those variants as well.
Being an AIO desktop it comes with a mouse, keyboard, webcam, built in DVDRW drive and even a mouse pad.
In short, if you are looking for low powered AIO model, then this is the best desktop computer for accounting.
5. Acer Aspire C27-962-UA91 – High End All In One Desktop for Accountants
Finally here we have one of the latest and the greatest AIO desktop with mid range hardware and an excellent price point.
Like most Acer machines, this AIO desktop tends to offer much more for much less.
This AIO offers a large and a comfortable 27″ screen with FHD resolution. Unfortunately this is not a touch screen, but the large screen can make your work very comfortable.
It features the latest Intel Core i5-1035G1 processor and while this is not close to performance as the Intel Core i5-10400, it is more than sufficient for accounting related work.
The beauty here lies in the fact this is the only desktop here that features a dedicated graphics card i.e the NVIDIA MX130.
This is certainly not a graphics card that you may want to game on, but if you like to edit photos, or design graphics as well as accounting, then the GPU acceleration from this will most certainly help you out.
Other than that, it offers a good 12 GB of RAM and a large 512 GB of SSD drive making it excellent in both memory and storage department.
To add further to the amazing value of this machine it features keyboard and a mouse both of which are wireless. It also offers a webcam, WiFi and a Bluetooth like most AIO desktops do.
In short, if you are looking for a premium grade AIO model at a rather reasonable price tag, then this is the best desktop computer for accounting in our opinion.
What Kind of Hardware to Look for Accounting?
Let us talk about the type of hardware one needs to look for in accounting jobs.
The overall perception is that you don’t quite need a powerful system. Since you will be mostly using sheets either Microsoft excel, Google Sheets, or software like Quickbooks, you don’t really need an over the top computer hardware.
These software are designed to even work on highly budget systems even those powered by Intel Celeron processors.
Hence, if you are worried about overspending, keep things simple as the hardware requirement is very relaxed for accounting software.
Take Quickbooks, as an example, the system requirements here call for at least 4 GB of RAM and a simple processor (Core 2 duo or Higher).
Core 2 Duo are processors from ancient history and if those can support a famous software like Quickbook, then rest assured that all the latest processors would be able to handle just as well if not better.
While minimum requirements are fairly low for accounting, we suggest you go for recommended requirements. Meeting the recommended requirements will make sure that you do not face any bottlenecks or lags when doing some heavier work.
As such, we recommend the following:
While accounting can be done on seriously cheap computers such as those featuring Intel Celeron or Pentium processors, we recommend that you at least invest in an Intel Core i3 or the equivalent Ryzen 3 processor.
These processor will make certain that your heavier work goes on without any lag.
A good system with an Intel Core i5 or a Ryzen 5 processor is certainly the holy grail for performance not just for accounting but also for other heavier tasks, but do not aim for anything higher than this.
It should be noted that not all processors are created equally. For instance a “u” designated Intel Core processor is weaker than an “H” or a “K” designated processor.
This is because the “U” designated processor operates at lower wattage and frequency to conserve power and to dissipate less heat. As such, this makes them ideal for mobile or compact systems.
You do not need to worry about this at all.
The integrated graphics cards that come with most processors is more than enough.
The only thing you need to make sure is that you have sufficient video output ports for display connectivity.
If you are planning on connecting two screens, for instance, you need to make certain that the desktop has two of the myriad of port types i.e HDMI, VGA, DP, Thunderbolt, DVI-D.
RAM is another integral ingredient for accounting machines.
The higher the RAM, the more data you can process at a time and the more sheets you can have opened at a time without any lag.
The minimum requirement for most software is to have 4 GBs of RAM, however, we recommend that if your budget allows you invest in a desktop with 8 GB of RAM.
This will ensure smooth performance.
There are two types of storage drives: Hard Disk Drives and Solid State Drives.
The conventional HDD that is found in most system is cheap and offers a lot of storage but it is slow. The SSD is expensive but offers speed at least 5 times as fast as the HDD.
If your system has an NVME SSD, which is not as rare as you may think, it can offer speeds as high as 20 times as fast as a normal HDD.
If you are to experience the most noticeable difference in performance, get an SSD. An SSD will allow your system to boot fast as well as allow you to open your sheets and workbooks in a jiffy.
In this article we had a look at some of the best desktop computers for accounting. We generally looked at desktops that are rather affordable and meet the recommended requirements of most accounting software.
It must be re-iterated that while you may be tempted to go for overkill machines featuring Intel Core i7 and what not, that is absolutely not necessary.
A good machine with decent low-mid range processor should more than suffice. The only thing we recommend is that you avoid entry level systems that feature Pentium or Celeron processors.