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Best Mac Desktop for Students of 2019



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Best
Mac Desktop for Students
iMore
2019

Students do not have many choices when it comes to buying a Mac desktop. Of those available, we recommend the 21.5-inch iMac 4K (2019). There are other options that are worth considering depending on your needs.

Best General: 21.5-inch iMac 4K (2019)

Featuring an aluminum and glass corner with a five-millimeter thin profile, iMac 4K ship with a matching Magic Keyboard and Magic Mouse 2. iMac 4K (2019) that we recommend comes with a 3.0GHz 6-core 8th generation Intel Core i5 processor, Turbo Boost up to 4.1GHz, 8GB 2666MHz DDR4 memory, Radeon Pro 560X with 4GB GDDR5 memory and 1 TB Fusion Drive for storage. You can upgrade some of these for more money. Our tip: splurge on memory, if you can, which is available up to 32 GB.

The iMac 4K (2019) comes with macOS Mojave (upgradeable to macOS Catalina), which includes a system-wide dark mode for the first time and new privacy controls. The current version of macOS also includes three iOS apps that jump to the Mac for the first time: Home, News and Stocks. There is also a new desktop Stacks feature and enhancements to the Finder.

There is nothing negative about this desktop, except knowing that it is the most expensive 21.5-inch iMac currently on the market. In addition, if you have been counting on a 27-inch model, you will no doubt be disappointed with this one.

Cons:

  • Only monitor would be screen size
  • Most expensive 21.5-inch model

Best general


21.5-inch iMac 4K (2019)

Best for most students

Your dorm or apartment will love this computer, which can remain a prominent fixture for your entire college career.

Best Value All-In-One: 21.5-inch iMac 4K (entry-level)

For $ 200 less, you can buy this entry-level iMac 4K Retina model, which offers a 3 , 6GHz four-core 8th-generation Intel Core i3 processor, 8GB of DDR4 memory, Radeon Pro 555X with 2GB of GDDR5 memory, and 1 TB of serial ATA drive. This iMac model is the one you should buy in a pinch if you can't wait to buy our overall winner.

Don't start upgrading the internal ones. By doing so, you will begin to add more costs that can make it more expensive than our recommended model.

Benefits:

  • Less money
  • Still a 4K display

Cons:

  • i3 vs i5 processor
  • No Fusion drive

Best Value All-In-One


21.5-inch iMac 4K (entry-level)

Budget Selection

You'll still get Apple's impressive 4K Retina display on this iMac model. Inside you will find cheaper parts.

Best Budget: Mac mini (2018)

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At the end of 2018, Apple released the fourth generation Mac mini, almost four years after the latest model was unveiled. The cheapest model offers a 3.6GHz four-core 8th-generation Intel Core i3 processor with 8GB of 2666MHz DDR4 memory and 128GB of PCIe-based SSD storage, while the more expensive version starts with a 3.0GHz 6-core 8th generation Intel Core i5 processor and 256 GB PCIe based SSD storage.

If you are looking at a Mac mini, you are already aware that you need to add a monitor, keyboard and mouse. In that situation, we recommend (once again) to upgrade the memory from the least. Ideally, you should start with the more expensive version, if only because you get more storage space.

Pros:

  • Least expensive solution
  • Recently updated

Disadvantages:

  • Remember, no monitor or accessories
  • Can be expensive fast

Best Budget


Mac mini (2018)

Look, no screen!

Mac minis is a great solution if you already have a great display and other accessories. Otherwise, stick to the iMac.

Best Big Screen: 27-inch iMac 5K (2019) entry

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The entry-level 27-inch iMac 5K offers amazing features, including a 3.0GHz 6-core 8th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, Turbo Boost up to 4.1 GHz, 8 GB 2666 MHz DDR4 memory, Radeon Pro 570X with 4 GB GDDR5 memory and 1 TB Fusion Drive storage, as with our overall range, if you can upgrade only one component, consider increasing the memory size. [19659008] For most students looking for a 27-inch iMac 4K, this model is ideal, however, if you plan to use your computer for photography, illustration, or video editing, consider the next model on this list.

Pros:

  • Beautiful Retina 5K 5120-by-2880 P3 display
  • Only $ 300 more than our total selection

Disadvantages:

  • Price may rise quickly with additions
  • 8 GB memory may not be enough
  • Hard to move

Best Large Display


27-inch iMac 5K (2019) entry

Look at that screen!

Forget 4K when you can have 5K. Great internet and a robust display in a package.

Best for Creatives: 27-inch iMac 5K (2019)

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This 27-inch iMac model looks exactly like the one above. However, inside you find significant upgrades, starting with a 3.7 GHz 6 core 9th Generation Intel Core i5 Processor with Turbo Boost up to 4.6GHz You'll also find 8GB of 2666MHz DDR4 memory, configurable up to 64GB, 2TB Fusion Drive and Radeon Pro 580X with 8GB of GDDR5 memory.

Cards for the iMac Pro (starting at $ 4999), this is the best 27-inch iMac you can buy and is the one that is ideal for advertising among us. If you can, maximize your memory; you'll be glad you did.

Pros:

  • Lots to love
  • Memory up to 64 GB

Cons:

  • Animals
  • Don't buy unless you need extra power [19659013] Best for Creatives


    27-inch iMac 5K ( 2019)

    Fantastic internals

    Your friends will be jealous of this impressive beast. Just make sure you really need accessories before you spend your money.

Bottom line

It's 2019 and Apple has updated its iMac lineup for the year. Our favorite student model, the 21.5-inch iMac 4K (2019), includes many great features for both high school and college students.

The model includes a 3.0GHz 6-core 8th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, Turbo Boost up to 4.1GHz, 8GB 2666MHz DDR4 memory, Radeon Pro 560X with 4GB GDDR5 memory and 1 TB Fusion Drive for storage. If you can, upgrade your memory to a maximum of 32 GB and enjoy!

Credits – The team that worked on this guide

Bryan M. Wolfe is a dad who loves technology, especially something new from Apple. Penn State (go Nittany Lions) graduated here, also a big fan of the New England Patriots. Thanks for reading. @bryanmwolfe

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