Same power, more disk space

Acer CXI3 Chromebox

Desktop power

ASUS Chromebox 3

The Acer Chromebox CXI3 runs Chrome OS and all your favorite Android applications like a champ, and the list price includes more disk space. Your Windows apps will be left out, though.

$490 at Amazon

Pros

  • 8th generation Intel Core i3 processor
  • Small form factor
  • Chrome and Android app compatibility
  • USB-C 3.1
  • 4K graphics

Cons

  • No Microsoft Windows application support

The ASUS Chromebox 3 makes for a powerful and secure desktop PC for home or the office. The downside is that the base price option gives you less storage.

$475 at Amazon

Pros

  • 8th generation Intel Core i3 processor
  • Small form factor
  • Chrome and Android app compatibility
  • USB-C 3.1
  • 4K graphics

Cons

  • No Microsoft Windows application support
  • It's expensive compared to the competition.

These two Chromeboxes are practically identical. Either can be purchased in multiple configurations, but we're comparing — and recommend — the Core i3 models for the right mix of performance and price. The biggest difference is that the Acer comes with 64GB of storage space versus 32GB for the ASUS and only costs just a bit more money.

A new generation of Chromebox

Manufacturers are getting serious about Chromeboxes, and two of the biggest names in Chrome hardware are Acer and ASUS. Each company has a great Chromebox for 2019, and both models are similar in almost every way. You'll find an 8th generation Intel Core i3 processor, 8GB of memory, 4K graphics, 2 legacy USB ports and a USB-C 3.1 port, and everything else you need for a Chrome desktop powerhouse inside both.

You don't get Windows app support on either, but if you've already bought into the Chrome OS ecosystem with something like a Chromebook, then you know a lot about this anyway.

ASUS Chromebox 3 Acer Chromebox CXI3
Processor Intel Core i3 Intel Core i3
Memory 8GB 8GB
Storage space 32GB 64GB
MicroSD card Yes Yes
Ports 2x USB-A 3,1
1x USB-C 3.1
2x USB-A 3,1
1x USB-C 3.1
Graphics 4K with dual-display support 4K with dual-display support
Vesa mount compatible Yes Yes
Price $475 $490

Both models also feature something that's not very common for small form factor PC's — user upgradable memory and storage. If you ever decide you need more of either, removing a few screws is all it takes to change the RAM modules or the M.2 SSD drive. You probably will never have to do it, but it's always nice to know you can.

It's also very obvious that there's a clear winner here, and that's the Acer Chromebox CXI3. A few dollars more in price gives you double the storage space without turning any screws. Chrome OS was designed with cloud storage in mind, but it's always nice to have a little breathing room on your local disk.

Either makes for a great Chrome-based desktop, but I'd recommend the Acer Chromebox CXI3 just for the bump in disk space.

Room to grow

Acer Chromebox CXI3

Double your disk space for just a few dollars

Both models feature almost identical specs and run the very same operating system, delivered directly from Google. Go for the model with the bigger hard drive.

Still a great Chromebox

ASUS Chromebox 3

32GB could be enough

Might not be as big as the competition, but 32GB is still a lot of space. If you have another reason for buying an ASUS product you'll be more than happy with the Chromebox 3.

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