Back in the day people were quietly fascinated when they could store tons of data and information on a tiny device and carry it about on a keychain. If you happen to be one of those people or even if you’re just fascinated with the evolution of technology then this article is guaranteed to blow your mind. Imagine how much easier life would be if you could turn any HDMI compatible screen into a fully functional computer just by plugging in something as small as a pen drive. Although it might sound crazy the list of devices mentioned below are completely capable of doing so. Although PC sticks aren’t really the latest tech in the market, they are a lot out there who still don’t know about them. PC sticks have been around for a while now and with more manufacturers getting themselves involved in production interested buyers now have a range to choose from. If you already know about PC sticks and you’re just confused about what to buy then this guide will surely help you. But if you aren’t then fear not cause the list of PC sticks mentioned in this article happen to be the best at the time of writing and will definitely help you make the right decision.
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Intel Compute Stick CS325 (Core m3)
When it comes to microcomputing it’s best when left to the experts. This “Compute stick” from Intel happens to be one of the best PC sticks in the market when quality and reliability are taken into consideration.
The Intel compute stick gives you top-notch performance as it houses an Intel Core m3-6y30 processor along with 4GB of RAM. Out of the box, the CS325 runs on the 64-bit version of Windows 10 and offers 64GB of onboard storage. The CS325 has a total of 3 USB ports, one on the device itself and two on the power adapter apart from that the device also has Bluetooth 4.2 built in so pairing a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse to it can save you a USB port.
The Intel Compute Stick CS325 will cost you approximately $350 and although it might seem a bit pricey it is a perfect option for someone looking for a high-performance PC stick with that runs on a windows platform. The stick comes in 3 variants and for those of you looking for higher performance the company also gives you an option to choose a stick with an m5 pro processor for added performance.
Intel Compute Stick 2nd Gen
This is another stick from Intel and unlike the one mentioned above, this stick is slightly better in its own ways. The Intel compute stick 2nd gen is a less costly version than the above model and should definitely be considered if you are looking for an inexpensive pocket-sized PC from a well-trusted brand.
The 2nd gen sticks run on the 32-bit version of Windows 10 and house an x5-Z8300 Intel Atom processor along with 2GB of ram. The performance on this device is top of the line and can definitely enhance your experience. The device has a 32GB SSD, however, this can be extended to a whopping 128GB if necessary. Intel included two USB ports on the 2nd generation Compute Stick one 2.0 and a faster 3.0 so it’s much easier to connect external devices whenever necessary. Plus, it also supports wifi connectivity along with Bluetooth 4.0, so using a Bluetooth keyboard or mouse will free up those USB ports for other things.
The computer stick 2nd gen retails for about 125$ and is worth every penny if you are looking for something inexpensive from a trusted company. Users also have an option to choose up to 3 or 4 years of an extended warranty for a few extra bucks.
Lenovo IdeaCentre Stick 300
In the world of portable computing, Lenovo seems to have a good name when it comes to performance and service and it seems like they are not far behind in the PC stick game. The IdeaCentre stick from Lenovo is almost like a replica of Intel’s 2nd gen compute stick for a pocket-friendly price.
The IdeaCentre stick 300 comes with the 32-bit version of Windows 10 pre-installed. Inside the device, you will find an Intel Atom Z3735 processor accompanied by 2GB of RAM and 32GB of storage meaning it will stream all your favorite shows and movies, and let you browse the web with ease. But if you’re worried about limited space is a problem it won’t cause like Intel’s PC stick, the microSD card slot will allow you to expand your storage capacity, making it easy to store all the data you need. In terms of connectivity, the IdeaCentre stick is a little limited as it houses a single USB port, although it does support Bluetooth 4.0 so connecting a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse will leave you with a spare USB port for other necessary devices.
The Stick 300 should definitely be considered if you are looking for something that is pocket-friendly with decent features. The IdeaCentre stick 300 is slightly cheaper than Intel’s compute stick and it offers almost the same functions. The stick can either be purchased by itself or with Lenovo’s multimedia remote that is designed for the stick.
If you still haven’t made up your mind after checking out Intel’s and Lenovo’s PC sticks then maybe this mini PC stick from the Taiwanese multinational computer and phone manufacturer Asus should be taken into consideration.
The ASUS vivostick ships with Windows 10 pre-installed and inside the device you will find a quad-core Intel Atom x5-Z8350 processor along with 2GB of RAM and 32GB of storage. The device also houses two USB ports one 2.0 and one 3.0 so external connectivity will not be an issue. Compromising the expandable memory option Asus has added a headphone jack, allowing you to use wired headphones or speakers with the VivoStick.Apart from that thing like Bluetooth connectivity for an external keyboard and mouse remain the same.
The vivo stick is a perfect option if you are looking for something easy to use and set up and you don’t mind the limited onboard storage. The vivostick retails for around 120$ and for a few extra dollars a 3 to 4-year protection plan can be added.
ASUS Chrome bit CS10
This PC stick is another one from the Taiwanese manufacturer ASUS and is perhaps one of the smallest and most compact PC sticks on this list. This stick is best for someone who travels a lot and is looking for something ultraportable that can keep them entertained while staying at a hotel or someplace else.
The ASUS Chrome bit is designed to run on Googles Chrome OS and is very easy to set up. Inside the device is a quad-core SoC that is packed with four ARM Cortex-A71 cores with its speed cloaked at 1.8GHz, and coupled with a Mali-T764 GPU for graphics. Apart from that it also houses 2GB of RAM and 16GB of eMMC flash storage. Since the stick runs off Chrome OS users are exposed to an entire world of Chrome OS apps designed specifically for this device.
The chrome bits is a perfect option for someone who is just getting into the PC stick game or someone who happens to travel a lot and looking for a pocket-friendly PC stick that offers both performance and durability. Although the Asus Chrome bit CS10 Stick PC does provide almost everything you need it should definitely be considered if you’re looking for a budget PC stick.
Azulle Quantum Access LAN PC Stick
The Azulle Quantum Access LAN PC Stick is quite different from the other PC sticks mentioned on this list when its looks are taken into consideration. This PC stick is perhaps the only PC stick that has an external wifi antenna attached to it making it look like a wifi dongle.
The azulle quantum access LAN PC stick might look like a normal wifi dongle but it is fully capable of turning any TV or Monitor that supports HDMI into a PC. The PC stick comes with Windows 10 pre-installed and inside the device, you will find Intel’s quad-core Atom Z3735F processor along with 2GB of RAM making it powerful enough to handle most basic day-to-day tasks. The device comes with 32GB of internal storage and since that might be too little for some the company has added a microSD slot on the device so downloading apps or other data will not be a problem. As far as connectivity is concerned the device houses a single USB 2.0 port and apart from that it also has an ethernet port.
The azulle quantum access stick is worth consideration basing on the fact that it delivers all the tit promises. The stick can is best for someone who is looking to upgrade their TV or someone who is looking for an on the go entertainment option.
Azulle Access Plus
The Azulle access plus is quite similar to the one mentioned above although this device has slightly better performance and connectivity features. If you are almost convinced by the Azulle Quantum Access LAN PC Stick and you are looking for slightly better performance then this is a perfect option.
The access plus is the 2nd generation of the Original access LAN Stick and still remains world’s only computer Stick with an Ethernet port. The device is quite similar to the previous version apart from a few minor tweaks. Out of the box the device starts up with windows 10 and inside the device is a Intel HD Graphics card (Gen 8)capable of providing full HD 1080P video playback along with a quad-core processor, 4GB of DDR3L RAM, 64GB of onboard storage, and a micro SDXC card slot providing up to 128GB of expandable storage. As far as connectivity is concern the device houses two USB ports one 2.0 and one 3.0 along with a headphone jack and the traditional ethernet port. Apart from that dual band wifi and Bluetooth connectivity remain the same.
The Azulle access plus is a perfect option if you are looking for an upgrade from the Azulle access or even if you are looking for a new device. The access plus offers decent performance and is worth every penny. The device comes with a range of memory options and bundle packs to choose from
MINIX Neo Z83-4
The MINIX Neo Z83-4 is different from all the devices mentioned on this list and although it does not fall under the stick category the reason it is still mentioned is that of its compactness and functionality. This device should definitely be considered if you are looking for a mini pocket sized pc to add to your tv and take your streaming to a whole new level.
This palm-sized PC is a combination of ultra-compact design and premium performance. Out of the box, the device runs on Windows 10 and it is equipped with Intel’s Cherry Trail Quad-Core processor along with 4GB of DDR3L RAM and 32GB of Samsung eMMC memory and like most of the devices on this list, the MINIX can easily accommodate up to 128GB of memory via sd card. The device also houses dual output display ports (Mini DP and HDMI) along with Dual-Band Wi-Fi, Gigabit Ethernet four USB ports (3x 2.0 1x 3.0) and a 3.5mm headphone jack.
This device is perhaps one of the best mini PC’s and comes in various options where memory in concern. The device is guaranteed to enhance your experience and is definitely worth every penny. Although this device doesn’t fall under the stick category it is still one worth considering based on its performance and portability.
Above is a list of the best portable PC solutions and the devices mentioned above are guaranteed to enhance your micro computing experience. These devices can easily be added to any TV or monitor and instantly turn it into a PC. These devices are ideal if you are looking for something portable to carry around on short business trips or even if you are looking to upgrade your TV or monitor. All of the devices mentioned above happen to be the best in the market at the time of writing this review and each one is an excellent option in their own ways. Wheather you are looking for something simple or something with a high performance the devices above have you covered.