Among desktop computers, affordable systems in small form factors are becoming increasingly popular. One of them is the Lenovo H520s, from company’s Essential PC series.
Inside the mostly metal chassis with dimensions 4.1″ X 14.2″ X 12.0″, the H520s packs one of the Intel “Ivy Bridge” processors, ranging from the dual-core Intel Pentium 2020M to the quad Core i7-3770. The system is based on the Intel H61 chipset and the motherboard has two PCI Express half-length low profile slots – one x16 and one x1 – for graphics expandability and other PCIe cards. Speaking of graphics, available options are the Nvidia GeForce GT 620, GT 630, and the AMD Radeon HD 7570, besides the integrated on-CPU Intel HD graphics processor. The mobo accommodates two DDR3 memory sockets (up to 8MB RAM offered), while the chassis supports a single hard drive and an optical drive which can be a DVD burner, Blu-Ray burner, or Blu-Ray combo. Lenovo provides 500GB, 1TB, and 2TB HDD choices on this system.
Besides generally better performance, advantage of desktops over laptop PCs are connectivity features, and the H520s has a plenty of them. On the front panel, the computer has two USBs, headphone and microphone jacks, and a 7-in-1 media card reader. On the rear side, there are HDMI and VGA outputs, Ethernet LAN port, again headphone and mic ports, audio line in, and additional four USB 2.0 connectors. Lenovo also provides a choice of a 2 x USB 3.0 add-on card, which in that case occupies the PCIe x1 slot. Other options are Wi-Fi wireless and TV tuner.
The H520s starts at as low as $300 for a system with the Intel Pentium G2020, a 500GB hard drive, and 4GB RAM, which are not bad components for one of the cheapest desktops on the market. It comes in a package with a wireless keyboard and mouse.