Basic Desktop Computer for Grandpa


My 70+ father in law wants me to buy him a desktop computer. Something reliable and smooth for basic browsing, emails and potentially Skype calls.

Was looking at Dell Optiplex but there are so many to choose from and I just don't know much about computers anymore…

I'm assuming anything with at least 8GB RAM and an SSD drive would run quite smoothly for above mentioned tasks? Is there any budget ones that stand out in anu way?

All the money I save on the computer I can spend to get him a decent and big screen for those old eyes ;)

Cheers community.



  • Intel NUC units are pretty good units. Very simple to set up and run. Very small form factor. And since it's only for light weight stuff like email and browsing, they would do that without much of an issue. Latest gen (or even last gen) i3 with 8gb ram and a 500gb SSD would be more than enough.

  • +4 votes

    A refurbished all-in-one such as this is not the worst idea. Not the latest gen but should not be much slower than a modern i3 either.

    • These are great to use and really good value.
      A traditional desktop for the price wouldnt include a screen or wifi!
      NUCs or similar would cost a lot more as theres much less demand for these.

  • Honestly for those needs a desktop computer seems an odd choice. I would think an ipad could be a good choice (plus keyboard) equally good could be a chromebook.

    I used to always buy my mum laptops and then would invariably end up being tech support… after Ipad 2 I never went back to a proper computer for her and I never had another tech issue.

    If he is insistent on desktop I would go Chromebox over Windows or Mac.

    • Definitely go Ipad with Keyboard. You can then fob them off to the nearby Apple store for support (they run workshops for free for oldies)

  • I would be looking at an iPad or a laptop.

  • for "basic browsing, emails and potentially Skype calls" grandpa should consider

  • Get him an iPad, one with cellular if he gets out and about a lot. Telstra's iPad plans don't have excess data charges. And a case that will increase odds of survive a drop.

  • Get an iPad. As everyone has mentioned above, Computers are more complicated. Having recently acquired the iPad from the eBay sale at $299, it’s a great purchase and really fun to use with the pencil.

  • Refurbished Dell or HP Elitedesk G1 with i5, 8gb ram and ssd would be fine if he really wants a desktop computer. I use a hp elitedesk g1 and put in a low profile gtx 1050 ti card in it and its to got plenty of power for casual gaming.