The school is closed, now an additional PC for homeschooling is needed. TechStage shows what systems from 150 euros can do and what to look for when buying.
If more than one person suddenly has to work from home, jobs quickly become scarce. A laptop is not enough if an adult is in the home office and the children are supposed to attend classes from home. If you want to create more capacity here quickly, you have several options. If you only work on the web, Chromebooks are a simple and relatively cheap update. But as soon as programs are to be installed locally, you can hardly avoid Windows 10. There are also inexpensive notebooks here, but small and compact complete PCs also compete with these systems in the lower price range.
The big advantage: They are much more flexible than notebooks. You can choose the display or the input devices yourself, and they can usually be upgraded at least on a small scale. In this market overview we show the different price ranges and their hardware. We also provide assessments of the tasks for which the respective systems are suitable.
AMD and Intel divide their CPU families into several branches, each of which differs in performance, power consumption and target group. At AMD, the entry-level area is the Athlon series. It comes with on-board graphics, but its performance is limited. Depending on the version, the Athlon CPUs have up to four computing cores.
The Ryzen processors are significantly faster. The individual series are Ryzen 3, Ryzen 5, Ryzen 7 and Ryzen 9. The main difference is the clock, the available CPU cores and the threads. While a Ryzen 3 3100 manages a maximum of 4 cores and 8 threads at 3.6 GHz base clock, a current Ryzen 7 5800X has 8 CPU cores, up to 16 threads and a base clock of 3.8 GHz. Simply put, the higher the Ryzen number, the faster the CPU, but the more power it needs.
At Intel, the division is even larger. There are the big families Atom, Celeron, Core and Pentium. Atom processors are primarily intended for use in systems that need little performance and should have the lowest possible power consumption. They are used in Intel Compute Sticks or Chromebooks, for example. Celerons, on the other hand, are allowed to require significantly more power, they have a higher performance than comparable Atom CPUs, but must be actively cooled. The Pentium systems are located above the Celeron CPUs. They usually have more cores and can drive higher clock rates. The Core series is right at the top, these are currently the fastest (and most power-hungry) CPUs from Intel, divided into Core-i3, Core-i5, Core-i7 and Core-i9.