Dell Vostro 460 with Core i5-2nd Generation Processor is a bridge unit between the consumer world and the business world: It has some of the benefits you’ll find in consumer-grade desktop PCs, like its Intel Core i7-2600 processor, but otherwise the Vostro is all business. It’s designed for companies without a dedicated IT department, and it’s a far better solution than simply dropping a powerful consumer PC in your office. The Dell Vostro 460 is the SMB system to buy if you need more power than our Editors’ Choice HP Compaq 4000 Pro ($549 direct, 4.5 stars), which is best suited for clerical tasks.
Sometimes buying business tech can get reduced to a simple catch-phrase: Just the basics, ma’am. When it comes to desktop PCs meant for small businesses, you need a system that can be relied upon to get the job at hand done: not much more, and definitely not much less. But while this utilitarian approach will serve most business-critical needs well enough, you don’t necessarily have to sacrifice a system’s good looks in the process.
Take, for instance, the Dell Vostro 460 mini-tower we tested. Configured properly, it can be a performance powerhouse, while its simple and elegant design helps you get your work done in style. But the details are all in the configuring.
Aimed squarely at small businesses, the Vostro 460 series has a budget-friendly starting price of $529. For lots of horsepower, however, you’ll need to pony up more cash than that for a beefier config. We looked at a 3.4GHz Intel Core i7-2600 based version, which sold for $1,163 direct from Dell.com at the time of this review. You can custom-configure the Vostro 460 or choose among Dell’s pre-configured “Ships Fast” bundles, which Dell promises to deliver to your door within two business days of purchase. However you slice it, this PC could be a perfect fit for your small business’ needs, or it could be overkill; it all depends on the choices you make. (For more advice on not overspending on a business PC, see our Small-Business Realist’s Guide.) We maintain that this is a solid small-business desktop choice, if you configure it with foresight.