Best notebooks under $500

Contents

Best Notebooks under $500

  1. 10 Inch
  2.  
  3. 13 Inch
  4.  
  5. 14 Inch
  6.  
  7. 15 Inch

Nowadays Paying $500 for a laptop doesn’t mean you’ll be dissatisfied with your purchase, the top-notch notebooks under $500 offer plenty of features and performance that were only available on top dollar models before. 

They are valued to include good displays mostly “Full HD” as well as a decent performance along with battery life, last but not least the ports as much as needed. The list interestingly contains touchscreen notebooks although they are on the smaller side, but certainly are amongst the best in the price category. 

After going through critic and user reviews, we came up with the top notebooks that are updated to the currently available options in the market as of the moment, you’ll find all the variables considered and analyzed to make it super easy to reach what you are looking for.

10 inch

Microsoft Surface Go 2

Microsoft

Microsoft upgraded their surface to a bigger screen as well as a slightly faster processor. The resolution got a light bump as well. It is an interesting device for users looking for a portable laptop that offers good picture quality and adequate processing power for simple tasks, it proves to be a compact and highly versatile device.

The surface go 2 has a cheap 4GB/64GB version if your budget is limited, but we generally advice against it because of insufficient ram to smoothly run windows 10.

P&G Processor score

1514
  • Intel Pentium gold 4425Y 1.7 GHz
  • 8GB RAM
  • 128GB SSD
  • Intel UHD Graphics 615
  • 1920 x 1280 ‎10.5 Inch
  • 6 hours
  • 1.2 Ib
7.5Expert Score

Pros
  • Unique design and fine build quality
  • Good display with accurate colors
  • Quiet
  • Optional LTE
Cons
  • Throttles under load
  • Keyboard and mouse are sold seperatley
  • 1 USB C port

CHUWI Hi10

Chuwi

If your computer usage is not complicated and most of your  time goes to web browsing and emails then the Chuwi maybe a quite affordable option for you. Available under $300, the unit looks good, offers a similar performance to the Microsoft surface.

It’s suitable for users looking for a light usage portable device, its sleek and crisp IPS display made it a good choice for that purpose, its certainly one of the most affordable options out there.

P&G Processor score

2006
  • Intel Celeron N4120 1.1 GHz
  • 6GB RAM
  • ‎128GB eMMC
  • Intel UHD Graphics 600
  • 1920 x 1280 IPS ‎10.1 Inch
  • ≈ 3-4 hours
  • 1.15 Ib
7Expert Score

Pros
  • Great chassis and build quality
  • Sleek design and Lightweight
  • Very Affordable
  • Quiet
Cons
  • Keyboard and stylus cost more to get
  • Short battery life
13 inch

Jumper EZbook X3 Pro

Jumper

If you are on a tight budget and are still looking for laptop that provides a good office experience plus adequate browsing capabilities with size and weight in mind then this laptop may just be what you are looking for. It does a fair job in terms of performance when looking at its components such as SSD, reliable display that offers decent brightness, expandable and easily accessible memory. The case feels like high quality compared to competition.

P&G Processor score

1563
  • Intel Celeron N4100 1.1GHz
  • 8GB RAM
  • 128GB SSD
  • Intel ‎UHD Graphics 600
  • 1920X1080 13.3 Inch IPS display
  • 6 hours
  • 2.97 Ib
7Expert Score

Pros
  • Ultra slim, stylish and high-quality design
  • Large sized touchpad
  • Bright screen
  • Silent when operating
  • Easily accessible + expandable memory
  • Supports M2 SSD
Cons
  • Excessively reflective display
  • Webcam is subpar
Best gaming Laptops 2020

Lenovo IdeaPad S145

Lenovo

The Lenovo s145 scores well with its fast SSD, it operates quietly and does not seem to heat at all. The s145 is the kind of laptop that will not put a dent in your pocket yet delivers a decent level of office experience, its Pentium Gold seems to fit the case. Upgrading is user friendly in that category it is simple to open the case to maintain or upgrade. Overall it’s as cheap as it gets while maintaining usability and reliability.

P&G Processor score

1779
  • Intel Pentium Gold 5405U 2.3 GHz
  • 4GB RAM
  • 128GB SSD
  • Intel ‎HD Graphics 610
  • 1366x768 14-Inch LED display
  • 4.5 hours
  • 4.1 Ib
7Expert Score

Pros
  • Fast NVMe SSD
  • Quite fan
  • Runs cool
  • Competitive price
  • Extra Sata slot for storage upgrade
Cons
  • Battery life below average
  • Dim display
  • Only 4GB of RAM

Lenovo V14

Lenovo

The unique features that makes this entry level Lenovo different are the good hardware build and the low price tag, these are the devices intended for work, it’s a well known business laptop, it proves to be a cheap office notebook that is tailored for browsing and simple apps. The build is rigid and plain, it is a very usable office notebook if you hook it up to a big screen.

P&G Processor score

2617
  • Athlon 3150U 2.4 GHz
  • 8GB RAM
  • 128GB SSD
  • Radeon RX Vega 3
  • 1920x1080 anti-glare ‎14 Inch
  • 6 hours
  • 3.5 Ib
7.7Expert Score

Pros
  • Robust build
  • Reliable performance
  • Decent performance under load
  • Full HD display at an affordable price
Cons
  • Display contrast and brightness could have been better

Samsung Galaxy Book Go

Samsung

The Galaxy book comes updated from the previous model with a Snapdragon 7c Gen 2, in a light, compact and shockproof design. The most celebrated feature of all is an impressive 18-hour battery life, the most sought for by users who are looking for portability on the go. It is tailored for office apps, browsing and light apps. The snapdragon operated galaxy book is quiet when operating (fan less design) and the durable design makes it a very attractive offer at this price point.

P&G Processor score

2219
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c Gen 2
  • 4GB RAM
  • 128GB UFS
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon graphics
  • 1920x1080 14-inch LED display
  • 18 hours
  • 3.06 Ib
7.7Expert Score

Pros
  • Outstanding battery life
  • Decent display
  • Nice build quality and durable design
  • Doesn't heat up under workload
Cons
  • Only 4GB RAM
  • No expandable storage

HP Stream 14

Samsung

This is probably one of the cheapest laptops on the market right now and that comes with obvious tradeoffs. What this laptop can do is mostly very basic web browsing and light office editing, most likely using google apps and online cloud. It’s also useful if you don’t like Chromebooks and like to use windows apps and features, it also comes with a free 1 year of office. With the low price It’s a safe bet for school or where you don’t want to risk a lot for a laptop.

P&G Processor score

1064
  • Intel Celeron n4000 1.1GHz
  • 4GB RAM
  • 64GB eMMC
  • Intel UHD Graphics 600
  • 1336x768 14-inch display
  • 9 hours
  • 3.17 Ib
6.8Expert Score

Pros
  • Slow performance
  • Very affordable
  • 1 year of Microsoft office worth $69
Cons
  • Only 4GB RAM
  • Flimsy chassis
  • Limited storage
15 inch Laptops

ASUS VivoBook 15

Asus

Easily one of the best under $500 laptops, the Vivobook boosts an i3-1005G1 which happens to be one of the fastest in this price category, it certainly notable for its specifications and performance in comparison to other budget options out there in the market, the thin bezel design makes the laptop a perfect choice for video streaming, office work, and multi-tasking under variable loads. This laptop checks the list for most users demands.

P&G Processor score

2943
  • Intel i3 1005G1 1.2 GHz
  • 8GB RAM
  • 128GB SSD
  • Intel ‎UHD Graphics (G1)
  • 1920x1080 15.6 Inch
  • 5.5 hours (Fast charging)
  • 3.7 Ib
8Expert Score

Pros
  • Good performance
  • Satisfactory keyboard experience
  • Easily serviceable
  • Fingerprint reader
  • Relatively quiet fan
Cons
  • Whole chassis is plastic
  • Limited storage
  • Screen has limited contrast and subpar color reproduction

Acer Aspire 5 A515

acer aspire 5 a515
Acer

The Aspire 5 is comes in a well designed, relatively high quality chassis albeit using all plastic design , the unit comes with a 10th gen intel and being the central part of the build it connects all other items to bring you a shiny performance suitable for most office work and browsing purposes, it fulfills expectations and ticks the sufficient performance box easily, the display is simple and it continues to be a decent office notebook for everyday use.

P&G Processor score

2943
  • Intel i3 1005G1 1.2 GHz
  • 4GB RAM
  • 128GB SSD
  • Intel ‎UHD Graphics (G1)
  • 1920x1080 15.6 Inch
  • 6.5 hours
  • 3.97 Ib
7.7Expert Score

Pros
  • Good build quality
  • Decent port selection
  • Affordable with dependable performance
  • Fingerprint reader
  • Backlit keyboard
Cons
  • Only 4GB RAM
  • Display could be brighter

Lenovo IdeaPad 3

Lenovo

The low noise and temperature during operation is the motto of the IdeaPad 3 which are key features of good performing office laptops, its i3 processor offers just about sufficient energy for internet and office apps. When under stress the IdeaPad proves to produce little noise and hardly heats at all, available at a relatively low price makes this laptop interesting for students.

P&G Processor score

2943
  • Intel i3 1005G1 1.2 GHz
  • 8GB RAM
  • 256GB SSD
  • Intel ‎UHD Graphics (G1)
  • 1920x1080 LED anti-glare ‎15.6 Inch
  • 6 hours
  • 3.5 Ib
8Expert Score

Pros
  • Fast NVMe SSD
  • Runs quietly
  • Reliable performance
  • Doesn't heat up under workload
  • Larger than average storage at this price point
Cons
  • Poor webcam
  • No USB-C
  • No Backlit keyboard

FAQS

Intel or AMD ?

At this moment – after the strong comeback at 2017- AMD’s  processors have granted the respect of the tech community and has proven to be as good as intel’s and even surpassing them at some points. However at the under $500 notebooks segment the intel i3 1005g1 seems to be the most bang for buck chip available for now. 

What about display ?

1080p displays are becoming the industry standard, but at the competitive sub $500 notebook market some laptops drop the the higher resolution for a 768P panel, it’s still higher than HD quality however we would only recommend accepting the lower resolution if the display is smaller than 15″ inch, that would compensate by pumping the pixels per inch number. 

What is the right amount of RAM ?

If your use includes office apps, light web browsing and emails we reckon that 4GB of RAM will be sufficient, anything more than like streaming, multi tab browsing, running multiple instances of apps and editing large files we heavily recommend at least 8GB of RAM specially that windows 10 is already RAM hungry.

Hang on where are the Chromebooks ?

Google will be shutting down chrome apps by June 2022. What this means is that all the google apps won’t be available to run offline as of that date, online apps will still be available for use but the Chromebook won’t be able to access them offline, this is a strong drawback and we don’t feel confident to recommend it at the time being.

What is P&G Processor score ?

This score uses an algorithm to represent a combination of synthetic benchmarks (Geekbench and Cinebench R20) to approximately show what performance to expect from the indicated processor. The higher the figure the faster the processor. The score does not calculate GPU capabilities and is subject to change based on manufacturer specs and hardware configuration.

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