Best All-In-One PCs and Macs
The Apple iMac was designed by the legendary Apple designer Sir Jony Ive and first introduced in 1998. It has evolved into a sleek and stylish desktop computer that looks great and doesn’t take up a lot of space. All-in-one PCs running Windows have also been around for a while but they currently offer one thing the iMac doesn’t and that is a large touchscreen. Before Windows 8 there wasn’t as big a need for touchscreen PCs however that all changed with Windows 8’s with its Metro interface that begs to be tapped, swiped and manipulated by hand. Here’s a roundup of some of the all-in-one (AIO) PCs we like:
Apple iMac; Nicest Looking But Still No TouchscreenWe start off the roundup with the most elegant AIO PC in the world; the Apple iMac. The iMac comes in two sizes a 21.5-inch that starts at $1,299 and 27-inch version that starts at $1,799 and goes up to $1,999 if you want the faster processor and graphics engine. One of the most impressive things about the iMac is its high resolution (2560 x 1440) display and sleek design. By placing the components in a bulging area in the back of the unit, the Apple designers made it look razor thin at the edges. Apple iMacs are clearly the standard to beat but you still have to use a mouse or a Magic Trackpad if you prefer since Apple doesn’t offer a touchpad version like most of the PC versions. That advantage for the PC AIOs could change when gesture devices like the new Leap Motion allow users to swipe and tap without touching the screen.
Samsung Series 7 All in One; an iMac Competitor?With Samsung nipping at Apple’s heels in so many categories it’s no wonder they would offer a competitor to the iMac. The latest Samsung Series 7 AIO PC comes in a 23.6-inch version ($1,099) or 27-inch version ($1,699) and even includes a DVD player (although Blu-ray would have been even better). The Series 7 1920 x 1080 screen resolution is not as impressive as the iMac’s but reviewers were impressed by its gesture control which you can use in addition to touch control. The Series 7 AIO PC can also play in the Samsung “AllShare” ecosystem which means you can move media around on Samsung devices similar to what you can do with Apple products using AirPlay.
Lenovo IdeaCentre A720 Can Go HorizontalThe IdeaCentre A720 has been around for over a year but it’s still one of the nicest looking 27-inch AIO PCs that now runs Windows 8. The A720 has an adjustable screen that can be lowered into super-sized tablet mode. The 27-inch 1920 x 1080, A720 is powered by a 3d gen Intel i7 (Ivy Bridge) processor, an NVIDIA GeForce GT 630M 2GB graphics card and can include up to 8GB of DDR3 memory or up to 1TB of HDD storage. Lenovo also offers a “B” series of AIO PCs that range in size and price from the 21.5-inch $800 B320 to the 23-inch $1249 B540. They all have Intel Core series processors and touchscreens powered by NVIDIA GeForce graphics. The budget “C” series AIO PCs come in different sizes and prices including the $650 20-inch C340 and the $780 23-inch C540. Lenovo has even more AIO PCs but we still like the A720 with its big 27-inch touchscreen the best.
Coming Soon; ASUS Transformer AIO Is a Small Computer and a Large TabletWhile not the largest screen AIO on the market, the new ASUS Transformer AIO PC with its 18.4-inch 1920 x 1080, “removable” screen can be used as an over-sized tablet when not fixed on the stand. The Transformer AIO has all the latest components like a 3d gen Intel processor in the base additionally, the detachable 18.4-inch screen has its own Tegra 3 processor that can run the Android OS or act as a remote display for Windows running on the base station. The detachable tablet uses dual band (2.4 and 5 GHz) Wi-Fi commonly found in newer wireless routers to help make the Remote Desktop more responsive as well as provide faster connectivity in general. The Transformer AIO is due out in April at a price starting at $1,299.
  Who Needs a Touchscreen?Soon you may not even need a touchscreen to control your PC without using a mouse or touchpad. Gesture control has been making inroads into the user interface domain but now there is one device called Leap Motion that could bump gesture UI up a notch. Leap Motion’s controller is about the size of a cigarette lighter and can distinguish very fine movements. Leap Motion is encouraging developers to use their API to develop applications for any device that could benefit from gesture control. Leap Motion controllers will soon be available at your local Best Buy and rumor has it there will be applications to make it work with lots of AIO PCs including the Apple iMac.  
The Vizio CA27-A1; Big Screen for Reasonable PriceThe Vizio CA27-A1 AIO PC is priced around $1,300 and offers a big 27-inch, 1920 x 1080 touchscreen display and all the latest Intel and NVIDAI components including USB 3 ports, HDMI and a wireless keyboard and touchpad however, the CA27 doesn’t include an optical drive which is becoming less necessary as streaming media takes over as the delivery method of choice. One nice addition for the price is 2.1 SRS surround sound with a small subwoofer although some reviewers complain that the sound quality isn’t as good as an iMac without a subwoofer.
HP Spectre One Has NFCHP was one of the first manufacturers to go up against the iMac with its TouchSmart AIO PC introduced in 2007. Their latest entry is a stylish 23.6-inch, 1902 x 1080p AOI called the Spectre One. In addition to the latest Intel and NVIDIA components, USB 3 and HDMI, the Spectre One adds NFC which allows you to tap it to connect to another NFC-equipped device like a smartphone or tablet. The Spectre One starts at $1300 which includes a cordless keyboard and trackpad.
Sony VAIO Tap 20 is Battery PoweredSimilar to the Lenovo IdeaCentre, the Sony VAIO Tap 20 has a 20-inch screen with a somewhat lower 1600 x 900 resolution than other AIO PCs. The Tap 20 can fold down into a flat position. Unlike most other AIO PCs, the Tap 20 has a built-in battery that can run the computer up to three hours; an interesting feature but we’re not sure how mobile an 11.5 lb. computer is going to be.
Dell XPS One 27 and Brand New XPS 18As the name suggests, the Dell XPS One 27 AIO PC has a large high resolution (2560 x 1440), 27-inch display and can be configured with all the bells and whistles of a top-of-the line AIO PC including a high-end Intel Core i7 processor and Nvidia GeForce GT 640M graphics processor along with lots of USB 3 ports (6) and, of course, it has a price tag to match. The entry level, non-touch XPS One 27 sells for $1399 while the “fully loaded” XPS One with a touchscreen, Blu-ray player and cordless keyboard and mouse starts at $2,599. Reviewers give the XPS One 27 high marks for performance but we think when you move up to the touchscreen version you’re paying a lot more than some comparable AIO PCs.

Hot off the presses is an announcement from Dell introducing a battery powered AIO similar to the ASUS Transformer called the XPS 18. It’s an 18.4-inch 1920 x 1080p tablet that weighs around 5 lbs. that’s powered by a processor from the Intel Core family and runs Windows 8. Pricing will range from $899 to $1299 when it goes on sale in April.

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