Best Barebones Mini PC: The Ultimate Guide to Compact Computing

In the world of compact computing solutions, barebones mini PCs stand out for their versatility and space-saving design. If you’re in the market for the **best barebones mini PC**, you’ve come to the right place. Our comprehensive reviews and buying guide will equip you with the knowledge needed to make an informed decision and find the perfect barebones mini PC to suit your needs. From performance to connectivity options, we delve into the key features of the top contenders in the market to help you choose the ideal barebones mini PC for your requirements.

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Understanding Barebones Mini PC

A barebones mini PC is a compact computer system that comes with only the essential components needed to function. These systems typically include the case, motherboard, power supply, and sometimes the CPU, but generally lack RAM, storage, and an operating system. Users have the flexibility to customize and upgrade these components based on their specific needs and preferences, making barebones mini PCs a popular choice for tech-savvy individuals and hobbyists.

Due to their small form factor, barebones mini PCs are ideal for situations where space is limited or aesthetics are important. They can easily fit into tight spaces or blend seamlessly into a home entertainment setup or office environment. Despite their small size, these systems are capable of delivering impressive performance, with some models supporting high-end processors and graphics cards for gaming or multimedia tasks.

Setting up a barebones mini PC typically involves installing the missing components, such as RAM and storage devices, and then installing the desired operating system. This process allows users to create a bespoke computing experience tailored to their specific requirements. Additionally, the modular design of barebones mini PCs makes them easy to maintain and upgrade over time, helping users stay current with the latest technology trends without needing to invest in an entirely new system.

Overall, barebones mini PCs offer a customizable, space-saving, and versatile computing solution that appeals to a wide range of users, from DIY enthusiasts and gamers to business professionals and media enthusiasts. With the freedom to choose and swap out components, users can create a personalized computer system that meets their exact needs and preferences.

5 Best Barebones Mini Pc

01. Intel NUC 10 Performance Kit

Featuring robust performance in a compact design, the Intel NUC 10 Performance Kit is a powerful computing solution for both work and entertainment. With its 10th Gen Intel Core processor and integrated Intel UHD graphics, this kit delivers smooth multitasking and immersive entertainment experiences. The versatility of the NUC 10 makes it ideal for various applications, from office productivity to light gaming.

Equipped with Thunderbolt 3 connectivity, dual HDMI 2.0a outputs, and room for additional storage and memory expansion, the Intel NUC 10 Performance Kit offers flexibility and future-proofing. Its small form factor is perfect for space-constrained environments while not compromising on performance, making it a standout choice for users seeking power and versatility in a compact package.


  • Compact and space-saving design
  • Powerful performance with Intel Core i7 processor
  • Customizable with memory, storage, and operating system options
  • Supports dual 4K display output
  • Versatile connectivity options including Thunderbolt 3
  • Energy efficient and low power consumption


  • Limited graphics performance for demanding gaming or professional workloads.
  • Higher price point compared to traditional desktop PCs with similar specifications.

02. ASUS PN50 Mini PC

Featuring impressive performance in a compact design, the ASUS PN50 Mini PC is a powerhouse for its size. Equipped with AMD Ryzen processors, this mini PC offers smooth multitasking and efficient computing for various tasks. Its sleek and minimalistic exterior makes it perfect for a clutter-free workspace while delivering excellent performance.

The PN50 boasts a range of connectivity options including multiple USB ports, HDMI, and DisplayPort for flexible connectivity with your devices. With its small form factor, efficient performance, and versatile connectivity, the ASUS PN50 Mini PC is a reliable and powerful option for users seeking a compact yet capable computing solution for work or entertainment.


  • Compact and portable design
  • Powerful performance with AMD Ryzen processors
  • Multiple connectivity options including USB-C and HDMI
  • Energy-efficient and quiet operation
  • Supports dual-display output


  • Limited upgrade options for RAM and storage.
  • Higher price compared to similar mini PC models.

03. Zotac ZBOX Magnus EN52070V

Featuring a powerful Intel Core i5 processor and NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 graphics, the Zotac ZBOX Magnus EN52070V delivers impressive performance in a compact form. With 16GB of RAM and a 1TB SSD, this mini PC is capable of handling demanding tasks with ease, making it ideal for both work and play.

The sleek design and versatile connectivity options, including HDMI 2.0 and DisplayPort outputs, make it easy to set up a multi-monitor workstation or enjoy high-quality gaming on the big screen. Overall, the Zotac ZBOX Magnus EN52070V is a powerhouse of a mini PC that offers excellent performance and expandability in a small package.


  • Powerful performance with NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2070 graphics
  • Compact and space-saving design
  • Multiple connectivity options including USB-C, HDMI, and DisplayPort
  • Upgradeable RAM and storage options
  • Energy-efficient and quiet operation


  • Expensive compared to similar mini PCs
  • Limited storage capacity
  • Limited upgrade options for hardware components

04. Gigabyte BRIX S Mini PC

Featuring a compact design and powerful performance, the Gigabyte BRIX S Mini PC is a versatile computing solution for both work and entertainment. With its Intel Core processor and support for up to 32GB of RAM, this mini PC delivers smooth multitasking and seamless operation for everyday tasks.

Equipped with multiple connectivity options, including HDMI and USB ports, the BRIX S offers flexibility for connecting to various devices and peripherals. Its sleek aluminum chassis not only looks modern but also helps in efficient heat dissipation, ensuring reliable performance over extended use. A perfect choice for users seeking a compact yet capable computing solution.


  • Compact size
  • Powerful performance
  • Energy-efficient
  • Customizable options
  • Multiple connectivity ports
  • Ideal for space-saving setups


  • Limited upgrade options due to compact size
  • Higher price compared to traditional desktop PCs

05. ASRock DeskMini A300

Packed with impressive features, the ASRock DeskMini A300 offers a compact yet powerful computing solution. Its support for AMD AM4 processors provides excellent performance for both work and play. The small form factor allows for easy placement on any desk or workspace.

With support for up to three displays and dual-channel DDR4 memory, this mini PC delivers a seamless multitasking experience. The customizable design allows users to upgrade components according to their needs, making it a versatile choice for various computing tasks. Overall, the ASRock DeskMini A300 is a reliable and efficient option for users seeking a compact desktop solution with robust performance.


  • Compact size
  • Customizable components
  • Supports AMD Ryzen processors
  • Dual M.2 slots for storage
  • Good value for money


  • Limited expansion options
  • No dedicated graphics card support

Reasons to Invest in a Barebones Mini PC

Barebones mini PCs have gained popularity due to their compact size, energy efficiency, and customizable features, making them a practical choice for various needs. One of the primary reasons people opt to buy barebones mini PCs is their versatility. These small form factor computers can be easily customized with preferred components such as processor, RAM, and storage to suit individual requirements. Whether for office work, entertainment, or as a compact home server, the flexibility of barebones mini PCs allows users to create a system tailored to their specific needs.

Another compelling reason to consider a barebones mini PC is their space-saving design. With limited desk space becoming a common issue, these compact systems offer a neat and clutter-free solution without compromising on performance. Additionally, barebones mini PCs are known for their energy efficiency, consuming significantly less power compared to traditional desktop computers. This not only reduces electricity costs in the long run but also contributes to a more eco-friendly computing setup.

For those looking for the best barebones mini PC, weighing the quality of components, performance capabilities, and overall value is essential. Investing in a high-quality barebones mini PC ensures reliable performance and longevity. Whether for everyday tasks or demanding applications, the best barebones mini PC will offer a seamless computing experience while fitting effortlessly into any space.

Key Considerations for Choosing the Best Barebones Mini PC

Key Considerations for Choosing the Best Barebones Mini PC: Selecting the ideal barebones mini PC entails evaluating key factors such as processor power, RAM capacity, storage options, connectivity ports, and expansion capabilities. These aspects determine the performance, storage capacity, and versatility of the mini PC, ensuring it meets your specific computing needs effectively.

Performance Capabilities

Performance capabilities are critical to consider when selecting a barebones mini PC to ensure it can meet your computing needs efficiently. This factor directly influences the PC’s processing speed, graphics quality, and multitasking capabilities, determining its overall performance level. Whether you plan to use the mini PC for basic tasks or demanding applications, opting for a model with strong performance capabilities ensures smooth operations and better user experience. By evaluating this factor carefully, you can choose a barebones mini PC that aligns with your performance requirements and offers optimal functionality for your intended use.

Expandability Options

One should consider expandability options when choosing a barebones mini PC to ensure future customization and adaptability. The ability to upgrade components like RAM, storage, and expansion cards allows for improved performance and versatility as computing needs evolve. By selecting a mini PC with ample expandability options, users can prolong the lifespan of their system and avoid the need for frequent replacements. This factor not only enhances the overall functionality of the mini PC but also offers cost-effective benefits in the long run by accommodating future upgrades without the expense of purchasing an entirely new system.

Connectivity Ports

Considering the variety and number of connectivity ports available on a barebones mini PC is crucial for ensuring compatibility with other devices and peripherals. Having adequate ports such as USB, HDMI, audio jacks, and LAN ports can greatly enhance the functionality and versatility of the mini PC. Users may need to connect multiple devices simultaneously, such as monitors, keyboards, mice, external storage drives, and more. Choosing a mini PC with a diverse range of connectivity options ensures easy integration with existing setups and enables seamless interaction with various hardware components, ultimately enhancing productivity and convenience.

Form Factor And Design

Consider the Form Factor and Design when choosing a barebones mini PC as it directly affects its portability, space-saving capabilities, and overall aesthetics. The compact size and sleek design of the mini PC can determine its versatility in various settings, whether it be for home entertainment centers, office workstations, or gaming setups. Additionally, the form factor and design can influence the ease of upgrading components and accessing ports, ultimately impacting the user experience and convenience. By carefully evaluating these aspects, you can ensure that the barebones mini PC aligns with your specific needs and preferences.

Price And Budget-Friendly Options

Price and budget-friendly options are crucial considerations when choosing a barebones mini PC due to the potential impact on overall affordability and value for money. By staying within a set budget, individuals can ensure that they are not overspending on features or specifications that may not be necessary for their specific needs. Opting for a cost-effective solution allows for a more sensible investment while still meeting the required performance requirements. This approach helps users maximize their purchasing power and ensures that they are getting the most out of their barebones mini PC without breaking the bank.

Barebones Mini Pc Components

In the Barebones Mini PC Components section, we delve into the essential parts that make up a barebones mini PC kit. These components usually include a motherboard, processor, memory (RAM), storage options such as SSD or HDD, and often a power supply unit. The key feature of barebones mini PCs is their customizable nature, allowing users to select and install compatible components according to their specific needs and preferences.

The motherboard is the backbone of the mini PC, determining compatibility with other components and providing connections for peripherals. Selecting a motherboard with the right chipset, socket type, and expansion slots is crucial for building a functional system. Processors, or CPUs, come in various models and generations, offering different levels of performance and power efficiency. Users can choose from budget-friendly options to high-end processors based on their computing requirements.

Memory, or RAM, plays a vital role in the overall performance of a mini PC by affecting multitasking capabilities and system responsiveness. Storage options like SSDs provide faster data access speeds compared to traditional HDDs, enhancing the overall system speed and responsiveness. Lastly, the power supply unit (PSU) ensures stable power delivery to the components, and selecting one with sufficient wattage and efficiency is crucial for the system’s longevity and performance. Understanding these key components is essential for users looking to build a barebones mini PC tailored to their specific computing needs.

Assembly And Setup Instructions

In this section, we will guide you through the assembly and setup of your barebones mini PC. The first step is to carefully unpack all components and identify each part according to the user manual provided. Pay close attention to detail to ensure a smooth assembly process.

Next, start by securing the motherboard into the casing, making sure to align the screw holes correctly. Install the CPU, RAM modules, and any storage devices as per the manufacturer’s instructions. Take extra care when handling sensitive components like the CPU to avoid damage.

Once all hardware components are in place, connect the necessary cables such as power, data, and peripherals. Refer to the motherboard manual to correctly identify where each cable should be connected. Double-check all connections before powering on the system for the first time.

Finally, follow the setup instructions provided by the manufacturer to configure the BIOS settings, install the operating system, and drivers. Take your time to ensure the setup is done correctly to avoid any potential issues later on. Proper assembly and setup are crucial for optimizing the performance of your barebones mini PC.

Troubleshooting And Maintenance Tips

Troubleshooting and maintenance tips are crucial for ensuring your barebones mini PC runs smoothly. One common issue users face is overheating, which can be resolved by ensuring proper ventilation and cleaning dust build-up from fans and components regularly. Another common problem is software errors, which can often be resolved by updating drivers, operating system, and running antivirus scans to remove malware.

For hardware issues, troubleshooting can involve checking connections, testing components individually, and consulting user manuals or online forums for guidance. Regular maintenance tasks include backing up important data, updating software, and monitoring system performance to catch potential problems early. It is also important to keep your barebones mini PC in a clean and dust-free environment to prevent overheating and hardware degradation over time.

By following these troubleshooting and maintenance tips, you can maximize the performance and lifespan of your barebones mini PC. Regular upkeep can help prevent major issues and ensure that your system continues to run smoothly for years to come.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Features Should I Look For When Choosing A Barebones Mini Pc?

When choosing a barebones mini PC, consider the processor type and speed to ensure it meets your performance needs. Look for expandability options like available RAM slots, storage drive bays, and USB ports for customization. Additionally, check for compatibility with the operating system you plan to use and consider the overall size and form factor to fit your intended space and usage requirements.

Are Barebones Mini Pcs Suitable For Gaming?

Barebones mini PCs can be suitable for gaming, depending on the specific model and the games being played. While they may not offer the same level of performance as full-sized gaming PCs, some barebones mini PCs are designed to support casual gaming or less demanding titles. It’s important to consider the specifications and upgrade options of the mini PC to ensure it can handle the gaming requirements before making a purchase.

Overall, barebones mini PCs can be a budget-friendly and space-saving option for gaming, especially for those who play older or less resource-intensive games. However, for gamers looking to play the latest AAA titles at high settings, a full-sized gaming PC may be a better choice to ensure optimal performance.

How Much Technical Expertise Is Required To Assemble A Barebones Mini Pc?

Assembling a barebones mini PC requires basic technical knowledge and skills. You need to be familiar with identifying and connecting computer components such as the processor, RAM, storage, and power supply. Following the manufacturer’s instructions carefully and having the right tools on hand can make the process easier for beginners. While it may seem daunting at first, with patience and attention to detail, even someone with limited technical expertise can successfully assemble a barebones mini PC.

What Are The Advantages Of Using A Barebones Mini Pc Over A Traditional Desktop Computer?

Barebones mini PCs offer a compact size, making them ideal for saving space in small work areas or for use as a portable computing solution. They are also energy-efficient, requiring less power to operate compared to traditional desktop computers, which can result in cost savings on electricity bills. Additionally, mini PCs are often less expensive than full-sized desktop computers and can be a budget-friendly option for those looking for basic computing needs.

Can A Barebones Mini Pc Be Upgraded In The Future?

Yes, a barebones mini PC can generally be upgraded in the future. These mini PCs often have modular components like RAM, storage, and sometimes even the CPU that can be easily replaced or upgraded. Additionally, many barebones mini PCs come with expansion slots or ports that allow for further customization and upgrades, such as adding a dedicated graphics card or additional storage drives. Overall, barebones mini PCs offer flexibility for future upgrades to meet changing needs and technological advancements.


In the realm of technology and computing, the search for the best barebones mini PC is a crucial one for users seeking compact yet powerful solutions. Our guide has provided insights into top-rated products in this category, offering a comprehensive overview of features, performance, and value. Whether you prioritize portability, customization potential, or performance, the best barebones mini PC presented here can cater to your unique needs, ensuring a seamless computing experience. Upgrade your setup with the best barebones mini PC today to unlock a world of possibilities in a compact form factor.

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