What make someone a smarter shopper? The fact is that those who truly excel at buying the best item at the lowest price are those who do their research. Those people that always plan or do some research first before purchasing a certain item can really get what their money is worth. For example, reading this laptop buying guide will teach you all about buying best budget laptops and how to do it right, so don’t stop now!

Laptop Buying Guide

The Power of Touch

Consider a touchscreen laptop. More and more software for PC’s is being created with touchscreen technology in mind, meaning this option will become increasingly essential as time goes on. By purchasing a laptop having that technology now, you can take advantage of the touchscreen features and not feel a necessity to re-buy another computer for several years.

Battery Life

Always check battery life expectations for a laptop. If you are often on the go, having the longest battery life possible will be imperative. The specs that you see for battery usage can often refer to a laptop running at minimal settings. Look at the specs and judge this based on your expected needs.

Upgrading

When purchasing your laptop, do not let the salesman talk you into every upgrade under the sun. Upgraded memory, a huge hard drive and the best graphics card available are important to some, but consider if they will be important to you. If you’re not using your laptop in a way that requires these features, you are only wasting your money buying them.

Do you travel often?

Prior to buying that desktop replacement laptop, think about how much traveling you’ll be doing. Desktop replacement laptops are top of the line in terms of power, but they are sometimes twice as heavy as other laptops. They can be a real hassle to carry around with you if you do lots of traveling. Keep that in mind when purchasing.

Best Budget Laptops Comparison Chart

 NamePriceFeaturesAmazon Rating 
Acer Aspire E 15As low as $279.00Intel Pentium N3700 Processor
4GB DDR3L SDRAM Memory
1TB 5400RPM SATA Hard Drive
15.6" Screen
1366x768 Resolution
★★★★☆
Lenovo ThinkPad 11EAs low as $235.00Intel N2940 1.83GHz Quad-Core processor
4GB DDR3 Memory
500GB SATA Hard Drive
11.6" Screen
1366x768 Resolution
★★★★☆
Lenovo B40-80As low as $399.99Intel Core i3-4005U 1.7 GHz
4GB DDR3L SDRAM
500GB 5400 rpm Hard Drive
14" Screen
1366x768 Resolution
★★★★☆
Dell Inspiron 15 3000 SeriesAs low as $298.00Intel® Pentium® N3700 [Intel® Pentium® Processor N3700 (2M Cache, up to 2.40 GHz)
4GB RAM
500GB 5400 rpm Hard Drive
15.6" Screen
1366x768 Resolution
★★★★☆
Acer Switch OneAs low as $276.00Quad Core Intel Atom Z8300 1.44GHz (2 MB Cache) turbo boost to 1.84GHz
2GB of DDR3L Onboard Memory
32GB Internal Storage plus microSD slot -Expand storage up to 64GB
10.1" Screen
1280x800 Resolution
★★★★☆

5 Best Budget Laptops

Budget is often one reason that your choices are limited. This can often lead you not to have the best one. But recent trend in technology prompted stiff competition between companies. At such, they resorted in offering products that offers common functionality with lowered prices. This actually favors consumers. This is well seen in the realm of laptops.

There are times that you need to buy a new machine because you simply need to upgrade. Or maybe your old machine gave up on you already. Whatever the reason one may get intimidated by the fact that this move will cost a huge fortune. But fortunately these days, laptop prices do not cost an arm and leg. For that, here are among the best budget laptops you can have.

Acer Aspire E 15

To start with, this laptop is powered by Intel Pentium N3700 Processor 1.6GHz featuring 2MB Cache. This CPU may not be very powerful but it is enough to get your day going. As it comes with 4GB DDR3L SDRAM memory, you can have enough space for multitasking keeping you abreast with your daily grind. It also sports that 1TB HDD that can turn up to 5400RPM SATA. While this may not be a gaming laptop in terms of RAM and CPU, it sports a 15.6-Inch HD display huge enough to cover all your necessities. The smaller important bits are its two built-in Stereo speakers, Digital Media Card Reader, 802.11ac Wi-Fi featuring MU-MIMO technology, Bluetooth 4.0 support, 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet LAN, 2 USB 3.0 ports, 1 USB 2.0 Port and 1  HDMI Port with HDCP support. This Aspire E15 comes with an Intel HD Graphics with Windows 10 Home OS.

Pros:

  • Huge display
  • Up to 5-hour battery life
  • Optical drive
  • 1 TB internal storage

Cons:

  • 6 GHz CPU

Lenovo ThinkPad 11E

This laptop is driven by Intel Celeron Quad-core N2940 1.83GHz. This processor is capable of burst up to 2.25GHz. It also has 2MB L2 cache.  It comes with 4GB DDR3 Memory which should cater your daily needs with ease.  It comes with 128 GB storage, small in today’s standard really. But fortunately the same storage comes in the form of Solid State Drive. It results to seamless operation every time, not to mention quieter overall operation. It has an 11.6″ screen with max resolution 1366 x 768 with HD Anti-Glare technology and LED backlight. It’s motivated by its integrated Intel HD Graphics. Other tiny bits is covered as well like having a Bluetooth, 720P HD Webcam, 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11ac, 4-in-1 Media Card Reader, 1 USB 2.0, 1 USB 3.0 and 1 HDMI port. It has Windows 10 Professional, 64-bit in it.

Pros:

  • Battery life up to 6.6 hours
  • SSD technology
  • CPU speed has Burst mode up to 2.25 GHz

Cons:

  • Smaller screen at 11.6”
  • Small internal storage capacity

Lenovo B40-80

If you want to have better quality performance without breaking a bank, this machine will fit your needs. With Intel Core i3-4005U sporting Dual Core technology that runs at 1.7GHz, this machine surely can take the beating.  This i3 has 3MB L3 Cache.  It comes with 8GB system memory that features DDR3L capable of operating at 1600MHz. In simpler terms, you’ll have more than enough space for your multi-tasking needs. Storage space is through its 500GB Hard Drive. This computer comes with an Intel HD Graphics 4400 coupled with 14.0″ LED backlight, Active Matrix TFT Color LCD with widescreen display. Smaller bits like having a built in Wi-Fi 802.11b/g/n Wireless LAN, a Bluetooth 4.0, 10/100/1000Mbps Ethernet Connection, 2 USB 3.0, 1 USB 2.0, 1 HDMI Audio is covered as well. There’s no optical drive in this machine so you have to resort in having an external one if you need it. Windows 10 Home 64-bit Operating system comes preinstalled from the factory.

Pros:

  • Intel Core i3 processor
  • 8 GB RAM
  • Complete line of connectivity options
  • Speedy overall operation

Cons:

  • No optical drive

Dell Inspiron 15 3000 Series

Powering this machine is the Intel® Pentium® N3700 processor. It has a 2M Cache and can keep on going up to 2.40 GHz. The system is paired to an integrated Intel® HD Graphics. Storage space comes in the form of 500GB hard drive capable of running up to 5400 rpm. It also sports a 4GB Single Channel DDR3L RAM clocked at 1600MHz. While this machine may be an average in terms of its other specifications, it stands out in terms of screen size. With full 15.6-inch HD Truelife and LED-backlight to boot, it simply brightens all of it. Also, it comes with 1 USB 3.0, 2 USB 2.0, 802.11bgn WIFI, Bluetooth 4.0, Media Card Reader and tray load DVD Drive. Windows 10 comes preinstalled with this system.

Pros:

  • Big screen with Truelife technology
  • Good enough processor
  • Addition of optical drive

Cons:

  • Single channel RAM, forget about adding another module
  • Not for heavy users

Acer Switch One

If you’re confused whether to have a tablet PC or a standard laptop, this machine might just fit the bill. This machine has quad core Intel Atom Z8300 that ticks at 1.44GHz with turbo boost of up to 1.84GHz. It comes with 2 MB Cache. This computer has an integrated Intel HD Graphics. RAM space is through its 2GB module that sports DDR3L technology. Storage space is not the forte of this machine with a mere 32GB in it. This device comes with a micro SD slot which can expand the internal storage space by up to 64GB.  It can operate in four modes and is light, portable and very much convertible. Screen comes in the form of 10.1-Inch HD LED IPS Touchscreen with max resolution of 1280 x 800. And as with other IPS screen, it comes with a wide viewing angle of up to 178°. It comes with 2 cameras, one front-facing and one rear-facing HD camera both with 2.0MP. Connectivity options are well covered like having a Bluetooth 4.0, 802.11a/b/g/n Wireless LAN, 1 Micro HDMI, 1 Micro USB and 1 USB 2.0. It also has 2 built-in front facing stereo speakers to boost sound quality. Windows 10 Home comes with this device along with its 2-Cell Li-Polymer (5740 mAh) battery that can last up to 8 hours.

Pros:

  • It’s light and potable: 1.39 lbs. for the tablet 2.5 lbs. for the bundle
  • Aluminum chassis results to that premium and sturdy feel.
  • Can work up 8 hours in a single charge
  • Speedy enough CPU
  • IPS Screen with wide viewing angle

Cons:

  • Small screen when used as a laptop
  • Small storage capacity

You might also consider these list of laptops under 700, under 500 and under 300. If you are really on a tight budget and thinking of buying a refurbished laptop, here’s a quick guide for you:

Refurbished Laptops Buying Guide

There are thousands of electronics appliances manufactured every year. And often than not, on every thousand, there are at least one failed product. Although it may not mainly on the functionality as others may be on the cosmetic side. The good news from this is that manufacturer’s tries to make up from the said defects and tries to return the product to almost “mint” condition. Then they return it on the shelves labeled as “refurbished” in a pretty discounted price. But then you’ll never know what you paid for until you’ve truly used it. For that, this short checklist might help you out.

Manufacturer’s return policy

Even though you are a buying refurbished laptop, as a consumer, you are entitled for a return policy. Of course, you can expect the same components to fail twice but the mere reason that they care to return the unit to the shelves is a clear indication that it works and that you’ll be getting what you paid for. And that is the functional unit and not the damaged one.

  1. Refurbished laptops do come with lesser prices. That’s around 20% less than the original price. But it could be higher ore lesser. For that you have to do a little homework. Check out several stores that might offer the same products. Go to online stores. Check on what’s on sale. Of course, you cannot expect that they will have the same units as with the brand new ones on display. But it still pays to check as there could be a great bargain lurking around the corner waiting.
  2. As with any purchase, price is just one of the many aspects. For that, before you purchase a refurbished unit, check on the background. Maybe the reason many refurbished units are available is the fact there is a design flaw. Maybe the unit is prone to heat thus causing chip creep inside. For that many buyers are returning that unit but the manufacturer found nothing about it then return it for sale as refurbished. And even though it is certified, errors and malfunctions can still be returning even after a few changes in the hardware. Thus it really pays to have some background check.
  3. Of course there are numerous manufacturers of laptops. And defects are often inevitable, although a single failure in a thousand is almost negligible. Thus you will find offers from refurbished units from all sorts of brands available. But then you have to compare their offers. Some may offer huge discounts than others on their unit so you better check it for your own benefit.

Further you really have to be cautious in buying refurbished unit. This does not mean all refurbished units are bad. You just have to make sure you are not only looking into the low price aspect alone.