The Best Laptop Under $500 in 2023

A reliable laptop does not always need to be expensive. We’ve lined up some dependable options, all under $500!

The Best Laptops Under $500 in 2022

Tired of your cumbersome, outdated laptop that takes forever to load up or freezes every time you open an application? If the answer is yes, it’s time to get a new laptop. If you are hesitant about treating yourself to a new laptop because of the price tag, then don’t worry because we have you covered. With all the functionality you could desire, these trusty laptops cost less than $500. You can also find models with full-HD displays, excellent performance, extended battery life, and all the necessary ports. Not only that, but you can also find a touch-screen laptop in this price bracket, albeit one with a smaller display.

Let’s face it, most of us don’t use laptops other than for work purposes or occasionally watching a movie or a video. So there’s no need to spend a great deal on a laptop that costs twice as much and has features that you most likely will never use. While many laptops in this price range come with the same CPUs as more expensive models, they forgo a few features to reduce costs. However, these laptops are pretty decent for their price and reliability.

 

 

 

How We Picked

  • Screen

    When looking for a budget-friendly laptop, you will often find that the screen has a 1366x768 resolution. While this is decent, don’t go any lower than that. It is recommended to look for 1920x1080 pixels. As for screen size, this is purely a personal preference, but a 13-inch should be fine.

  • Storage and Memory

    Some laptops still have a hard drive that takes a long time to load software and makes the laptop bulky. Instead, look for models with flash storage. Most laptops in this price range will include flash storage and a maximum of 4GB of memory. If you don't need to open a lot of tabs at once, this will do it.

  • Processor

    A laptop's processor is a key component. Look for a processor from a more recent generation, such as an AMD Ryzen 4000, 5000, or 6000, or an Intel 11th or 12th generation. If possible, choose a Ryzen 5 or Intel Core i5 processor, or something even better if you can find it for this price.

  • Price vs. Quality

    It's important to keep in mind that inexpensive laptops can handle simple, routine tasks like sending emails. However, a few laptops in this price range have slightly old processors that can be frustratingly slow. Therefore, ensure that these affordable laptops tick the right boxes.

Our Top Picks

Best Pick

Acer Aspire A514-54-501Z 14"

Acer Aspire A514-54-501Z 14″

Enjoy working on a big screen and long battery life.

The ergonomic hinge on the Acer Aspire creates a lifted keyboard for comfortable typing and excellent cooling.

Buy Now for $448.00

Need a 14-inch efficient laptop for work? This is the one! The Acer Aspire 5 is loaded with cutting-edge technologies. It is powerful, safe, and durable. It has great performance and comes with decent battery life. This laptop has a fast processor and an elegant design. What more could you possibly want?

Runner Up

Lenovo Flex 5i 13 Chromebook

Lenovo Flex 5i 13 Chromebook

The Flex 5i combines the power of a traditional laptop with the convenience and mobility of a Chromebook.

It has an HD Premium screen that gives you high-quality visuals, as well as pen support to take notes and annotate documents.

Buy Now for $327.00

The Lenovo Flex 5i Chromebook Signature Edition laptop is an excellent choice for anyone who wants a reliable, high-performance machine. It is a powerful and speedy device that helps make internet usage a better experience. Besides, it’s sleek enough for digital nomads.

Most Cost-Effective

Lenovo IdeaPad 1

Lenovo IdeaPad 1

A decent laptop with a decent price tag.

The Lenovo IdeaPad can run programs from the Windows app store because it runs Windows 11 Home S Mode 64.

Buy Now for $171.95

The Lenovo IdeaPad 1i is a great choice for students, families, and business users looking for an affordable laptop that comes with a variety of features. This laptop is equipped with a high-quality HD screen and provides reliable connectivity, so you have nothing much to worry about.

Everything We Recommend

Best Pick

Acer Aspire A514-54-501Z 14"

Acer Aspire A514-54-501Z 14″

Enjoy working on a big screen and long battery life.

$448.00

Buy Now

Runner Up

Lenovo Flex 5i 13 Chromebook

Lenovo Flex 5i 13 Chromebook

The Flex 5i combines the power of a traditional laptop with the convenience and mobility of a Chromebook.

$327.00

Buy Now

Most Cost-Effective

Lenovo IdeaPad 1

Lenovo IdeaPad 1

A decent laptop with a decent price tag.

$171.95

Buy Now

Who This Is For

As the world advances, the use of technology in our lives has also increased significantly. Nearly everyone uses laptops these days. While adults use them in their professions, children utilize them to do their homework or take online classes. Other than that, people also use laptops to watch movies or videos. However, laptops are not cheap. They usually do require a large amount, but depending on your purpose of using them, you can find a low-cost laptop.

You will undoubtedly have to compromise on the screen, battery life, and some other features, but if you plan to use a laptop for tasks like writing, creating spreadsheets in Excel, sending emails, or any other activity that does not specifically need a lot of processing power, you can easily find a reliable, long-lasting laptop for under $500. You don’t need to spend a lot of money on a laptop with capabilities that you won’t use very often. The laptops on the list below are suitable for everyone, even kids, to carry out daily tasks.

Chromebook vs. Windows
The debate between a Chromebook and a Windows laptop has sparked several contentious discussions. As the Chromebook advances, offering a straightforward experience that is very user-friendly, Windows has also improved markedly.

Chrome OS is a compact operating system since it is centered around the Chrome app and web-based processes. On a Chromebook, all the programs you access come from the Google Play Store, unlike Windows 10 and macOS, which both allow for the installation of third-party software. As a result, you won’t have to worry about background processing or clogging-causing programs. However, this also implies that you are unable to use your preferred Windows or macOS applications.

You have a wide range of hardware options with Windows, including clamshell notebooks, convertibles with 360-degree hinges, 2-in-1 Windows tablets with removable keyboards, and Windows tablets. The majority of Chromebooks are clamshells. However, regarding the interface, compared to Windows 10, Chrome OS’s interface is less complex and more user-friendly.

Generally, Windows works with practically every program. The Chromebook is not the same in this case. Although you can run a lot of apps and games on Chromebooks that support android, the Windows collection is greater in this.

Windows supports a wide range of photo editing applications like Photoshop Elements and the rest of the Adobe Creative Suite. On the web-based Chrome OS platform, you can find some simple editing tools like Photoshop Express (for devices that support Android) and Pixlr Editor (for devices that don’t support Android). Windows is better suited for this purpose for both novices and experts.

Despite being quite useful, Chrome doesn’t work with all extensions. If you use a Chromebook, you’re stuck with this issue. However, Chrome and nearly every other web browser may be used with Windows. In other words, you can customize your experience to suit your preferences with Windows.

The main drawback for Chromebook users is the relatively small amount of space you’re likely to have on your laptop’s hard drive. You may use 100GB of Drive cloud storage for free for the first two years, but after that, you’ll have to pay $1.99 per month to use it. If you require additional capacity, you can also buy up to 1TB of online space for $9.99 per month. A 30TB storage plan can be purchased for $300 per month by those who require a lot of storage. Windows, in comparison, provides a ton of storage. Those who maintain large collections of images, films, and other information will benefit from Windows’ local storage capacity.

In conclusion, both Chromebook and Windows have pros and cons. A Chromebook will work well for you if you are comfortable on the cloud and wish to complete tasks in a simple yet secure setting. However, Windows is the best option if you require strength and adaptability.

What’s the notable difference between a cheap and a high-end laptop
Are you wondering why laptops that cost half as much as some of the latest laptops are equally good at performing basic tasks?

The price of a computer is significantly influenced by the processor, which is the most crucial part and the heart of the computer. You will have to spend extra if you need to process particularly heavy applications on a laptop. A less expensive laptop will have a slower processor that will struggle to handle demanding programs. When compared to less expensive laptops that just offer 4GB of flash storage, high-end laptops typically offer more storage space.

Inexpensive laptops have a resolution of about 1920×1080 pixels, which is a Full HD resolution. The resolution of more expensive laptops, however, is 2560×1440 or 3840×2160. This is a significant difference. High-end laptops frequently contain solid state discs (SSD), which are more powerful and effective but will increase the cost.

With the reduced cost, you will have to compromise on some features, battery life, display, and storage. However, if you don’t need a laptop for use other than basic tasks, then a laptop under $500 will suffice.

Why You Should Trust Us

Unfortunately, many items are erroneously advertised on the internet. Even though the majority of these products seem intriguing, very few of them live up to the hype. This makes it difficult to purchase items like a dependable laptop. Based on our extensive market research, going through dozens of reviews, evaluating the functionality of each device, and reviewing general user input, we have put up the list of laptops below. These are the best options, so purchasing them won’t let you down.

How We Picked

Purchasing a laptop is not an easy task. This is why we paid special attention to all the laptops before enlisting them.

Images on a screen with a 1366×768 resolution will be slightly hazy. A laptop with a resolution of 1080p is preferable unless you are really on a tight budget. This will make a significant impact whether watching Netflix movies or working on Word projects for extended periods. As for the screen size, a 13 to 14-inch screen is best in terms of portability and functionality. Make sure to choose a laptop with a responsive keyboard and mousepad unless you want to use an external keyboard and mousepad. At this price, it is common to find 15-inch or larger laptops with cheap plastic cases. When you type on a robust laptop, it shouldn’t bend under your fingertips, and it shouldn’t creak every time you use the touchpad or the spacebar.

As opposed to the conventional hard drive, we favor laptops with flash storage. This significantly affects performance. The most you can buy for this price is 4GB, in addition to flash storage. You will require extra storage if you plan to run a lot of apps.

Look for a laptop with a battery life of at least 10 hours if you want it to last all day without needing to be recharged. This is enough time to get your work done. Keep in mind that the weight of the laptop increases with the size of the battery.

Cheaper laptops come with a lot of unneeded junk that you may delete to free up space and speed up the processor. Ports are also important. Look for a laptop with USB-C and USB-A ports, and if it has HDMI, the better it is.

It is difficult to find an aesthetically beautiful laptop with all of the features you like on this budget, but it is possible to get a decent laptop for your daily tasks.

Our Picks For You

Top Pick - Acer Aspire A514-54-501Z 14″

Top Pick

Acer Aspire A514-54-501Z 14"

Acer Aspire A514-54-501Z 14″

Enjoy working on a big screen and long battery life.

The ergonomic hinge on the Acer Aspire creates a lifted keyboard for comfortable typing and excellent cooling.

Buy Now for $448.00

Who It’s For

The Acer Aspire 5 is great if you're looking for a compact and powerful computer to use at home on the couch, on car trips, or just around the house. It comes with 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD, so you can easily access your files and store media.

Why It’s Great

Power through your workday with the Acer Aspire 5. The Acer Aspire 5 laptops are equipped with an Intel® CoreTM i7 processor, 12th Gen NVIDIA® graphics, and dual fans supporting multiple cooling modes. You can also experience the powerful performance of this laptop through a touch screen and a good selection of ports. Besides all these features, Acer BlueLightShield provides you with the best possible safety while browsing the internet or working on your laptop.

Potential Flaws

This laptop has a few shortcomings that you should be aware of. It is large and bulky, which makes it inconvenient at times, especially when traveling. It also comes with a lot of pre-installed bloatware that takes up a lot of space. The touchpad was also criticized by some consumers as being a little challenging to operate.

Other Features

The Acer Aspire is a great laptop given its price. It is a bit expensive compared to the other options, but the long-lasting battery, excellent graphics, and durability make it worth the additional cost.

Product Specifications:

CPU: Intel Core i5-1135G7
Memory: 8GB
Display: 14-inch 1080p LCD
Storage: 256GB PCIe solid-state drive
Connectivity: 2x USB 3.2 Type-A, 1x USB 2.0 Type-A, 1x USB 3.2 Gen 1 Type-C (data only), 1x Ethernet, 1x HDMI 1.4, 1x 3.5mm combo audio, 1x DC-in barrel plug
Dimensions: 0.71 x 8.88 x 12.9 inches
Weight: 3.75 pounds

Runner Up - Lenovo Flex 5i 13 Chromebook

Runner Up

Lenovo Flex 5i 13 Chromebook

Lenovo Flex 5i 13 Chromebook

The Flex 5i combines the power of a traditional laptop with the convenience and mobility of a Chromebook.

It has an HD Premium screen that gives you high-quality visuals, as well as pen support to take notes and annotate documents.

Buy Now for $327.00

Who It’s For

This Chromebook is perfect for your on-the-go life, and it's just what you need to get your journey started. Featuring an Intel Core i3 processor, it offers superfast performance and great energy efficiency. Its small size also makes it easy for you to take with you.

Why It’s Great

The Lenovo Flex 5i is an attractive addition to the Chrome OS ecosystem, with rugged construction and a good keyboard that works well with Android apps. This Intel Core i5-powered Chromebook is a great laptop for speedy, secure browsing, with an 11th Gen processor and a 13.3-inch FHD IPS touchscreen display (1920x1080). It has a 360° hinge that lets you prop the screen up at virtually any angle and use the laptop anywhere you can use your device.

Potential Flaws

Though this laptop doesn't have any major drawbacks aside from the disadvantages of using a Chromebook, it does sometimes need to be recharged before the end of the day. Some people also complained that the lid needed to be opened with two hands sometimes.

Other Features

It is designed to provide excellent performance while still being energy efficient and offers 4 GB of memory, which will provide plenty of room to store your media, documents, and other files. With its more affordable price point, this Chromebook will quickly become a family member. Who doesn't like an elegant, modern laptop that has great performance and is powerful? This laptop is affordable and worth purchasing.

Product Specifications:

CPU: Intel
Memory: 4 GB DDR4
Display: 13.3-inch 1080p IPS touchscreen
Storage: 32GB eMMC
Connectivity: 2x USB-C with DisplayPort, 1x USB-A, 3.5mm audio jack
Weight: 2.97 pounds

Most Cost-Effective - Lenovo IdeaPad 1

Most Cost-Effective

Lenovo IdeaPad 1

Lenovo IdeaPad 1

A decent laptop with a decent price tag.

The Lenovo IdeaPad can run programs from the Windows app store because it runs Windows 11 Home S Mode 64.

Buy Now for $171.95

Who It’s For

Take on your daily workflows and entertainment with the Lenovo IdeaPad 1. Powered by a powerful Intel Celeron N4020 processor, you’ll be able to multitask and get things done with ease.

Why It’s Great

Lenovo's IdeaPad 1i is the perfect companion for your daily life. Its super compact and lightweight design makes it easy to take with you anywhere. It features a built-in 14-inch display that serves up the latest movies, news updates, and more when you're on the go. It has a decent battery life and is perfect for anyone looking for a laptop for daily use.

Potential Flaws

The main drawback to this laptop is that it has an underpowered processor. This might be a problem if you intend on using your laptop to run heavy apps.

Other Features

The IdeaPad 1 laptop is sleek and stylish, with a durable metal look and an aluminum keyboard area. It has the latest technology, including 4 GB of RAM, 64 GB of storage, an Intel Celeron N4020 processor, Windows 11 S mode, and Ice Blue color. Features include two USB 3.0 ports, one USB 2.0 port, and an HDMI output. Though this laptop is not as powerful as the other options, it is still pretty decent for its price. It is worth considering if you are on a budget and need a laptop for basic tasks.

Product specifications:

CPU: Intel Celeron N4020
Memory: 4GB DDR4
Storage: 128GB eMMC
Display: 14-inch
Resolution: 1,920 x 1,080
Weight: 3.1 pounds

Almost Made The Cut - Microsoft Surface Go 3

Almost Made The Cut

Microsoft Surface Go 3

Microsoft Surface Go 3

One of the best 2-in-1 laptops on the market.

The Surface Go 3 gets off to a quick start thanks to a fast processor clocked at 1.6 GHz and 4 GB of RAM.

Buy Now for $399.99

Who It’s For

If you are ever on the move and you need a laptop that can quickly convert to a tablet, you are in luck. The Microsoft Surface Go 3 comes in an array of stylish colors that fit into any space, making it the perfect addition to your workspace.

Why It’s Great

From its sturdy body to its super-sharp 10.5" touch display, the Surface Go 3 has a lot to offer. It's our bread-and-butter laptop and tablet, too. The best part? It's light and ultra-portable, so you don't feel like you're lugging around a heavy box. It offers a supremely portable Windows 11 experience that's great for web browsing, office productivity, and movies. It's also great for enjoying music or podcasts on the go. The surprising performance at this price point is helped by its crisp display, compact size, rock-solid hinge, superior build quality, and responsive touchpad.

Potential Flaws

Though this laptop has a lot to offer, it can get expensive, especially if you are on a tight budget and there are other options almost as good as this for a far lower price. The biggest disadvantage of this laptop is that its battery life is not long enough to last through an entire day of work or classes. The touchpad and keyboard are also confined, making it slightly uncomfortable for some people.

Care and Maintenance

Since a laptop is an electronic device, it needs to be cleaned carefully. This may seem like a tedious task, but it is extremely important to clean your laptop regularly to avoid poor performance and overheating. Make sure your laptop is disconnected from all power sources and turned off before cleaning it.

To clean the inside, you will need some compressed air. If your laptop opens, remove the battery (if possible) and then unscrew the back panel. Use brief bursts of compressed air to move dust from your laptop’s center to its vents. Then use small bursts to clear all of the dust from the vents. Reassemble your laptop using the screws after you’re finished.

If your laptop doesn’t open, blow compressed air into its vents in short spurts. If you find any stains on or around the board, wipe them with 90%-100% isopropyl alcohol on a cotton swab.

For the keyboard, use a soft microfiber cloth and wipe the keys. To clear dust, use compressed air, and then swab your keyboard with 90%-100% isopropyl alcohol. A gentle toothbrush can also be used for this.

When cleaning the screen, gently wipe it off with a soft microfiber cloth. If the screen is particularly dusty, you may want to moisten the cloth with a little water before wiping. Never use rough clothes since they will leave a mark.

When not in use, wrap the cord and place it along with the laptop in a safe, dry place, such as a laptop bag.

The charger and cord need to be carefully cared for, just like a laptop. Avoid wrapping them too tightly. During the charging procedure, the transformer may become warm. Place your laptop where there is good airflow to prevent overheating while it is charging. Keep the chords away from liquids and sharp objects.

Overheating in laptops is a very common issue, but there are ways you can prevent this. Ensure that the fans are cleaned. One of the most prevalent causes of overheating is a lack of ventilation space. Elevate your laptop or buy a cooling pad for it to fix this problem. Avoid using heavy processes that will strain the CPU. Last but not least, keep your laptop away from high-temperature areas.