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If you're a casual reader, you probably don't think of cheap Windows laptops when you think of daily drivers. But ignoring these tools would be a big mistake—if not for yourself, then for others Many people have financial constraints, and others simply don't need all the power of a flagship laptop—they just want the best budget machine. There's a good reason why companies like Acer, ASUS, Dell, and others make Windows devices under $500
Which Cheap Laptop Is Best
Affordable Windows laptops are great options for people who only use their computer to check email, shop online, or post on Facebook. (Hi, Mom and Dad?) They're also great for kids who have no business getting their sticky little hands on a $2,000 toy. And depending on what you need it for, these devices can also be daily drivers
Lenovo Chromebook 3 11.6
You can now recommend a Chromebook or tablet to anyone on the list above. The trend isn't wrong, but Chromebooks and tablets aren't the best buy for everyone Tablets only work for mobile consumers who, like kids, wrestle smartphones from their parents because they're smart enough. Tablets can be as expensive as some cheap Windows laptops, and that's without a mouse or keyboard.
Chromebooks are a great option for those who live primarily in the browser, with the tradeoff being that you have to give up the "traditional desktop." Chrome OS is a more limited operating system than Windows in terms of what version you can install and run
What can you do with a cheap Windows laptop? A bit, especially if you're doing one thing (or a limited number of things) at a time They're great for browsing the web, checking email, streaming video, and more — but yes, you can do all of those things on a Chromebook. However, Windows laptops have a big advantage in Microsoft Office Yes, there is a browser-based version, the native desktop app is considered essential by many and runs smoothly even on the most budget laptop. The only caveat is that if you're multitasking or working with large data sets in Excel or lots of photos and graphics in PowerPoint, you may experience slowdowns on low-power devices.
In terms of specifications, one of the bright spots of Windows laptops is storage Even the most affordable devices have at least 128 GB of SSD This is useful if you prefer to store important files locally on the laptop In contrast, cheaper Chromebooks often have less storage space because they are built on the assumption that you store all your documents in the cloud . This is not only less convenient when you need to work offline, but also limits the amount of programs and files you can download. So a Chromebook isn't great for catching up on Netflix before a long trip or using it as a laptop.
Best Budget Laptop: Cheap Windows Models & Chromebooks
Windows also has thousands of apps you can download from its app store Chromebooks have the ability to download some Chrome apps, many browser extensions, and Android apps, but the quality control is… inconsistent. In particular, Android apps are often not optimized for Chrome OS, resulting in a poor user experience. Windows may not have as many apps as Android, but at least overall the experience is pretty standard.
Windows also gives you the ability to download and use programs from other sources, such as directly from the developer You can run Adobe Creative Suite, some VPNs, and things like GIMP, Audacity, and Clip Mate on Windows devices that aren't possible on Chrome OS. Chromebooks limit you to apps and programs in the Play Store and the Chrome Extensions store, making others unusable space-sucking icons in your Downloads folder.
You can get a lot done with a Windows laptop for less, so you have to set your expectations accordingly. One of the biggest downsides to buying an affordable laptop (of any kind, really) is limited power. Many Windows laptops run Intel Celeron or Pentium processors for under $500, but you can find some with Core i3/i5 and AMD Ryzen 3/5 processors at the higher end of the price spectrum.
We recommend getting the most powerful processor you can afford, as this determines how fast your computer will feel overall. RAM is also important because the more you have, the easier it is for your laptop to manage things like a dozen browser tabs while you're editing a Word document and streaming music in the background. But for a laptop under $500, it's better to get the best processor than a laptop with a ton of RAM, because the processor has enough power to handle most of the tasks that a cheap laptop can do. Whether you're editing RAW images or 4K video, you'll want to invest in more RAM...and a laptop that costs over $500).
Laptop Deals: Shop Amazon, Hp, Walmart And Best Buy For Cheap Computers
When it comes to storage, consider how much you want to save locally If you work primarily in Google Docs or store most of your stuff in the cloud, you may not need a machine with a lot of onboard storage. Just remember that apps also take up your digital space, so you might think it might make sense to get a little more storage than you need if you know you'll be downloading large programs. One final note: SSDs are everywhere these days, not to mention faster and more efficient than hard drives, so we recommend getting a laptop with this type of storage.
You don't even have to settle for an all-plastic notebook There are some options in the sub-$500 price range that are at least made of metals like aluminum. They're not only more attractive, they're also more durable.When it comes to screens, there's a good mix of HD and FHD options in this price range, and we'd recommend a laptop with a 1080p display if possible. Touchscreens aren't as common as standard panels in the sub-$500 space, but you're only missing one if you're getting a 2-in-1 laptop.
One last note before we get to our picks: The best cheap laptop models change all the time Unlike more expensive flagships, these laptops can be refreshed twice a year. This can make it difficult to find a specific model at Amazon, Best Buy, Walmart, or another retailer. We also see that prices vary widely depending on the configuration and retailer you look at. We've listed some of our favorite models below, but if you can't find one near you, just check out our specs list for cheap laptops - they'll help you out the best. The machine is currently available
Acer's Aspire 5 series has been a reliable choice for a while - we like its solid performance, comfortable keyboard and good selection of ports.
Asus Rog Strix G15 Advantage Edition 15.6
Acer's Aspire 5 series has been a reliable choice for some time. We recently tested a model with a 14-inch 1080p display and an 11th-generation Intel Core i3 processor, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB of storage. Right now, you can pick up a model with a 15.6-inch screen, an 11th-generation Core i3 processor, 8GB of RAM, and a 128GB SSD for around $300.
The performance of our review unit was similar to the previous Aspire 5 model we tested, with a good screen and keyboard providing a comfortable typing experience. The latest Aspire 5s supports WiFi 6, and most models have one USB-C (which is separate from the power supply), three USB-A, an HDMI connector and a (gas) Ethernet port. The battery life is also solid: this model has an average battery life of 10 hours. In the previous version, our time was around six, so this is a much needed improvement
The Lenovo Flex 5 14 is a good choice if you want a more portable budget laptop with a battery that lasts all day. It's powered by an AMD Ryzen 3 4300 processor with 4GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD, and has a 14-inch 1080p IPS display and a host of ports, including a USB-C connection. If you're thinking about future-proofing, that USB-C port is crucial You may not have many USB-C accessories right now, but that's sure to change in the coming years
The typing experience is also top-notch: while it doesn't have a number pad, its keys have a rounded bottom shape similar to the keys on Lenovo's ThinkPad machines. They are
The 9 Best Cheap Laptops To Bag On Any Budget
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