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While you might think that buying a new laptop is a big investment, you don’t actually need to spend thousands of dollars on a quality laptop. In fact, for around $500, you can find plenty of options to choose from. You need to know which features you prioritize.
Every few months, newer, more advanced models are released by various tech companies. At the same time, prices for older models decrease, giving you many more affordable choices to consider. So, it’s possible to find a laptop that has all the features you need for under $500. That being said, many $500 laptops just aren’t worth it.
If you’re in the market for a new budget-friendly laptop, you’ve come to the right place. In this guide, we’ll go through some of the best laptops you can find that cost $500 or less. We’ll also give you a detailed review of each product, so you’ll know exactly what to expect from a laptop that’s priced under $500.
The ASUS Chromebook Flip C434 is one of the best budget laptops you can find for this price range. Not only is it a great laptop, but it can also be converted into a tablet with a 360-degree hinge. Therefore, you can set it to laptop, tablet, and tent mode for the optimal typing position.
This laptop comes with the Intel Core m3-8100Y Processor, which will enable fast performance and multitasking. The 14-inch display packs a 1920 x 1080 resolution, which will allow you to see images and videos in great detail. It also features NanoEdge technology and ultra-narrow 5-millimeters bezels, which lets the 14-inch screen fit in a 13-inch chassis. Furthermore, the narrow bezels allow for 100% sRGB coverage.
The ASUS Chromebook Flip C343 comes with only 4GB of RAM and 64GB of eMMC storage. If this isn’t enough space for you, you can upgrade to the 8GB ASUS Chromebook Flip. However, it might exceed your budget. With the ASUS Chromebook Flip C434, you’ll have access to all your favorite apps in the Google Play Store. Other features include a premium backlit keyboard, a touchpad with palm-rejection and multi-touch support, and dual high-quality stereo speakers. It can last up to 10 hours without recharging. In terms of connectivity, you’ll find two reversible USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-C ports, one USB 3.1 Gen 1 Type-A port, and a microSD slot.
There are plenty of features that make this laptop a great find for less than $500, and it has the capacity to meet all your requirements. The best thing about this laptop is its powerful snappy performance. With the Intel Core i3-8145U processor, you’ll be able to finish all your daily computing tasks with no issues.
The Acer Aspire 5 offers a 15.6-inch full HD display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. Due to its narrow bezels, the display has an aspect ratio of 16:9 (82.58% screen-to-body ratio), giving you more space to work. The display also features a blue light filter, which will prevent eye strain and increase productivity.
There are other cool features the Acer Aspire 5 comes with, such as a backlit keyboard, a biometric fingerprint reader, and Windows Hello sign-in options. Voice-activated Alexa is built-in, so you’ll be able to use voice control to get things finished quicker. Regarding connectivity, this laptop has one USB 2.0 port, two USB 3.2 ports, an HDMI port, a DC-in AC adapter jack, and a headphone/microphone jack. The Acer Aspire 5 has a battery life of 10 hours, so you won’t need to charge it for a whole day. While it is portable, this device is somewhat heavy too, as it almost weighs four pounds.
With its flip-and-fold mechanism, you can use the HP Chromebook x360 as a laptop and a tablet. Thanks to the 360-degree hinge, you can rotate the laptop and use it in four different modes – laptop, tent, display, and tablet mode. Aside from reaching maximum comfort, you’ll also achieve an optimal typing position. It doesn’t have a detachable keyboard, like some other laptops, but it’s still easily adjusted.
The HP Chromebook x360 delivers powerful performance. So you’ll be able to play games, chat with your friends, do your assignments, browse the web, and many other things without the device lagging or crashing. The 14-inch display micro-edge bezel is also a touchscreen, which allows for faster and easier access. One of the most impressive features this laptop has to offer is its battery life. It can last up to 12 1/2 hours without the charger, giving you the freedom to carry it with you wherever you go. It’s also lightweight, which makes it even more portable.
This device has only 4GB of RAM, but since it runs on Chrome OS, you’ll be able to store all your files online. In addition, you’ll also be able to access and download any app you find on the Google Play Store. Other features include high-quality audio speakers, a built-in webcam, and a digital media card reader. The HP Chromebook x360 is compatible with the USI universal stylus, although it’s sold separately. When it comes to available ports, it has one USB Type-A port, two USB Type-C ports, a microSD reader, and a headphone/microphone jack.
The ASUS VivoBook 15 is the ideal budget laptop for those who need fast performance and a full HD display. With the latest 10th Gen Intel Core i3-1005G1 CPU, this laptop will deliver excellent, high-rate performance and the ability to multitask. One of the best features this laptop has to offer is the 15.6-inch Full HD display. With a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels, this screen’s four-way Nano Edge bezel design allows for an 88% screen-to-body ratio.
This near-frameless design allows you to see accurate imagery and high-definition color contrasts. At the top of the screen, you’ll find an HD camera. While this laptop has a slim, minimalistic design, it still might be too heavy for some users, as it weighs almost four pounds. When it comes to connectivity, the ASUS VivoBook 15 features a reversible USB Type- C port, an HDMI port, a microSD card reader, a USB 3.1 port, and two USB 2.0 ports. There are more than enough ports to connect your laptop to various other devices. The ASUS VivoBook 15 has 8GB of RAM and 128GB of internal storage.
It can last without the charger for about 7.5 hours. However, it charges very quickly – in about 50 minutes, it can regain 60% power. With its ErgoLift hinges, you’ll be able to tilt the screen at any angle. For an optimized typing position, you can also tilt the keyboard tile at 2 degrees.
If you travel all the time and like to take your laptop with you, you need a device that’s both portable and long-lasting. That’s exactly where the Lenovo Chromebook Duet comes in handy. Not only does it weigh only 0.99 pounds (2.03 pounds with the keyboard), but it also has an impressive battery life of 10 hours. That’s not even the best thing about this laptop.
It’s actually a 2-in-1 laptop, which means that you can detach the keyboard and use it in tablet mode. While you usually need to pay for the keyboard separately, that’s not the case with the Lenovo Chromebook Duet. It also comes with an adjustable kickstand, which you can use to position the tablet into tent mode.
Its screen is only 10.1 inches long, which might not be enough for some users. With a resolution of 1920 x 1200 pixels, the IPS screen can produce amazing visuals and vibrant colors. It takes the Lenovo Chromebook duet about 10 seconds to boot. All the apps and programs are automatically updated in the background. Since this laptop is not that large, it only comes with one USB-C port.
There’s only 4GB of RAM on this device, as well as 64GB of internal storage. However, since the Lenovo Chromebook Duet runs on Chrome OS, you will receive 100GB of cloud storage through a one-year Google One subscription.
If you’re looking for a laptop with a modern, slim design, take a look at the HP Stream 14-inch Laptop. It comes in several colors: brilliant black, diamond white, rose gold, and royal blue. Even though the 14-inch display has a resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels, it features BrightView technology. Thanks to this feature, the display can produce a bright, clear picture, even when you’re outdoors.
With an average battery life of 14 hours, the HP Stream 14-inch Laptop can be used outside the whole day, and you won’t even need to charge it. It’s lightweight as well, so you can take it with you wherever you go. It features a touchpad with gesture capabilities, a built-in webcam, and a digital media card reader. By purchasing this laptop, you also get a one-year subscription to Office 365. In other words, you’ll have access to apps such as Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and similar.
What’s more, you’ll receive 1TB of cloud storage. As for connectivity options, you’ll find one HDMI 1.4 port, two USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports, one USB 2.0 port, and a headphone/microphone jack on this laptop. This laptop comes with only 4GB of RAM and 64GB of eMMC storage.
The Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5 is designed to give you optimal comfort with its flip-and-fold mechanism. You can easily flip it into tablet mode and use the display as a touchscreen. This laptop has narrow bezels and IPS (in-plane switching) technology that allows you to use it with a wider viewing angle.
Aside from its 360° convertible design, its 13.3-inch screen has a 1920 × 1080 resolution. Another great thing about this laptop is that it delivers fast performance, thanks to its Intel Core i3-10110U processor. You’ll be able to stream movies and TV shows, browse the web, make video calls, all at the same time. When you have several tabs open, this laptop can work just as fast as any bigger Windows 10 laptop.
With a battery life of 10 hours, it’s bound to last through the whole day without needing the charger. In addition, it weighs 2.97 pounds, which makes it portable too. To make working on this laptop even easier, you can also use the Lenovo digital pen. However, this accessory is usually sold separately from the laptop.
While this laptop only has 4GB of RAM, you can sign in to your Google account and store all your files on the Google Drive cloud. Not to mention that over two million apps will be available to you, all on Google Play. This laptop also features a built-in webcam and two user-facing stereo speakers. If you want a compact laptop that delivers speedy performance, which will fit into your price range, then the Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5 might be what you’ve been looking for.
If portability and flexibility are what you’re looking for, then take a look at the Microsoft Surface Go 2. Since this product is a 2-in-1 laptop – meaning that it can also be used as a tablet – it comes with a rather small 10.5-inch screen. This size might not meet everyone’s needs, but if you’re on the go all the time, it fits perfectly in your bag. Not to mention that it weighs only 1.2 pounds (1.75 pounds with the type cover), making it quite lightweight. Due to its size, along with the 10-hour battery life, the Microsoft Surface Go 2 is one of the most portable devices out there.
In addition to tablet mode, you can use it in laptop and studio mode. The Surface Go Signature Type Cover can be easily attached and detached so that you can switch between these three modes without effort. Along with the type cover, you can pair this device with the Surface Pen and Surface Mobile Mouse. However, these two accessories are sold separately. Since it’s a small laptop, it only comes with a USB-C port and headphone jack. On the other hand, it does feature excellent Full HD front and rear-facing webcams.
It also has 8GB of RAM and a memory storage capacity of 128GB. With the Intel Pentium Gold Processor 4425Y 8th Gen, you’ll be able to use this laptop for everyday computing needs, like answering emails, browsing the web, using social media apps, and similar activities.
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