The Best Laptops Under $500: Surface, Lenovo, Acer, and More

This text was final up to date by Digital Developments editor Luke Larsen on three/12/2020.

The perfect laptop computer beneath $500 is the Acer Aspire 5. Laptops at this worth level usually have important compromises, whether or not that’s in efficiency, the display screen high quality, or battery life. The Aspire 5, although, manages to have virtually all the things you’d need in a contemporary laptop computer at a big worth low cost.

Past that, we’ve additionally made alternatives for greatest Chromebook beneath $500, greatest 13-inch laptop computer beneath $500, and even the most effective laptop computer beneath $200.

The perfect laptops beneath $500 at a look:

The perfect laptop computer beneath $500: Acer Aspire 5

Mark Coppock/Digital Developments

Acer not too long ago up to date its Aspire 5, enhancing its efficiency, construct high quality, and battery life. The 2019 mannequin is available in at $350 with an Eighth-gen Core i3-8145U CPU, 4GB of RAM, a 128GB SSD, and a 15.6-inch Full HD show.

In case you’re prepared to spend a bit extra, a further $260 will web you a Core i5, 8GB of RAM, a 512GB SSD, and a discrete Nvidia MX250 GPU.

That’s numerous laptop for not some huge cash. Higher but, this can be a well-built finances laptop computer that evokes confidence in hand, and its keyboard and touchpad punch approach above its class. Battery life can be a plus, with the Aspire 5 competing with laptops costing far more cash.

The 15-inch 1080p show is superb for the worth as effectively, although you’ll have to leap simply outdoors the $500 finances so as to add touch-screen performance. Since this laptop computer isn’t a 2-in-1 although, that’s much less of a priority for this form of cash.

Learn our full Acer Aspire 5 evaluate

The perfect 14-inch laptop computer beneath $500: Acer Swift three

Discovering a 13-inch laptop computer for beneath $500 is almost unattainable. That’s a disgrace, because it’s the preferred measurement for a laptop computer. Happily, there are a few respectable 14-inch laptops that simply barely sneak beneath the $500 restrict. The perfect is the Acer Swift three.

Reasonably than lower any corners with a 720p show or a sluggish exhausting disk drive, the Swift three has the sort of up-to-date parts you’d count on in a contemporary laptop computer. The efficiency is as much as par too, sporting a Core i3 processor and 4GB of RAM.

It’s not what I’d name a robust laptop computer, however outdoors the Acer Aspire 5, it’s one of many sooner Home windows laptop computer you may get at this worth.

You’ll should dig a bit to search out this beneath $500, however if you happen to can snag it for that worth, it’s a killer deal. For a couple of extra dollars, I’d suggest bumping it as much as the Core i5 will do wonders for multitasking and operating heavier purposes too.

Learn our full Acer Swift three evaluate

The perfect 2-in-1 beneath $500: Microsoft Floor Go

Microsoft Surface Go Review
Wealthy Shibley/Digital Developments

Microsoft’s Floor Go is the newborn of the Floor vary however that doesn’t imply it’s not a succesful little machine. Beginning at a worth effectively beneath our $500 restrict, you may suppose that this can be a little low-cost, even for what we’re , however you’d be mistaken.

Borrowing lots of the glorious options from its extra pricey siblings, the Floor Go is a sturdy, effectively constructed 2-in-1 that works simply as effectively in pill mode because it does as a laptop computer.

You have to to shell out a bit further for the Kind Cowl if you would like the total laptop computer expertise, however that does go away you with the choice of upgrading later if you wish to unfold out your prices.

Though its display screen isn’t fairly as detailed as one thing you’d discover on a devoted pill just like the iPad, the Floor Go’s show is without doubt one of the greatest we’ve ever seen for a convertible laptop computer at this worth level, even competing with our favourite laptop computer ever, the Dell XPS 13, with regards to distinction and colour assist.

It’s not the quickest gadget on the earth and video games should not simply run on the Floor Go, but it surely packs an honest battery life and at this worth level, you aren’t going to discover a Home windows 2-in-1 that may higher it. Its sequel is rumored to launch as early as Spring 2020.

Learn our full Floor Go evaluate

The perfect Chromebook beneath $500: Samsung Chromebook four+

Cheap Chromebook deals - Samsung Chromebook 4+

Not lots of the laptops on this listing are all that enticing to take a look at. The Samsung Chromebook four+, although, seems surprisingly smooth. Sure, it’s a 15-inch laptop computer, but it surely as much like a MacBook Professional as a sub-$300 laptop computer will ever be. Its bezels are fantastically skinny, the touchpad is massive, and it weighs simply three.75 kilos.

However the Samsung Chromebook four+ is greater than only a looker. It additionally covers the necessities higher than another Chromebook at this worth. It comes with a full 1080p display screen, two USB-C ports, and 4GB of RAM. There are sooner Chromebooks on the market, however this could deal with a modest quantity of Chrome tabs and operating your Android apps.

The perfect laptop computer beneath $200: Lenovo Chromebook S340

The Samsung Chromebook four+ may be prettier, however the Lenovo Chromebook S340 sells for an unbelievable worth. Regardless of having the identical parts as Samsung’s (Intel Celeron N4000, 4GB of RAM, 32GB of storage), the S340 is a whopping $300 cheaper. The S340 even has a touchscreen in addition.

Its one important compromise is the display screen. It measures at a stable 14 inches, however is just a 1,366 x 768 display screen decision with a max of 220 nits. That’s not all that spectacular or sharp, however for a $200 Chromebook, it’ll get you by. You’d be hard-pressed to discover a laptop computer with extra worth than the Lenovo Chromebook S340.

Analysis and shopping for ideas

Are laptops beneath $500 good?

They are often, although discovering one which doesn’t make compromises in a number of areas is troublesome. Attempt to keep away from laptops with a display screen decision beneath 1080p, Home windows 10 laptops with a Pentium processor, or laptops and not using a stable state drive. There are all the time exceptions, however these are the forms of parts that make a big distinction to your expertise with a laptop computer.

No matter which you select, you shouldn’t count on your $500 laptop computer to do difficult duties like video modifying or gaming. These are for primary computing, phrase processing, and internet looking.

Ought to I purchase a Chromebook?

Chromebooks don’t provide Home windows, which  generally is a blessing or a curse, relying in your opinion of Microsoft’s OS. As they’ve matured, Chromebooks have develop into viable alternate options to Home windows PCs, particularly within the lower cost vary. As a result of Chrome OS is a lighter OS with fewer options, Chromebooks usually really feel sooner, and provide higher battery life than their Home windows counterparts (at a given worth).

They even assist Android apps by means of the Google Play Retailer, which supplies you entry to an enormous portfolio of cell apps and video games. That stated, the Android app expertise can go away a lot to be desired, so that you shouldn’t depend on it.

The draw back is which you can’t simply go browsing and set up any software. In truth, something outdoors of what you are able to do in an internet browser is off limits.

Can you purchase a gaming laptop computer for beneath $500?

For probably the most half, no. The most cost effective gaming laptops backside out round $600 or $650. These laptops are already pretty under-powered for contemporary video games, although if you happen to play lighter video games and are prepared to play at low settings, they’ll get by.

Not one of the laptops on this listing are a sensible choice for 3D gaming.

What’s lacking from $500 laptops?

Most $500 laptops are made out of plastic, in contrast to aluminum and different premium supplies utilized in costly laptops. You’ll additionally discover sooner efficiency in these costlier laptops. Quad-core processors and 8GB of RAM are the norm in mid-range laptops, whereas a lot of the choices on this listing have much less.

Costly laptops usually focus on both battery life or graphics efficiency. The Dell XPS 13 will present you all-day battery life, whereas the Razer Blade will allow you to play fashionable video games at excessive body charges. If you’re buying beneath $500, it’s best to count on to a bare-bones laptop computer. It might probably deal with most daily duties with ease, however gaming, photograph/video modifying, and different extra demanding duties could require the next finances.

Editors’ Suggestions