Best budget laptops 2023 | ENBLE

Best budget laptops 2023 | ENBLE

The Best Budget Laptops for Every Need

Not everyone needs the fastest CPU and the highest-quality high-resolution display. Sometimes, a machine with a last-gen CPU and a decent Full HD display is plenty for the web browsing, email, and Office applications that make up their workflow. This can be true for students, and sometimes buyers are looking for a secondary machine to augment one of the best laptops you can buy.

That’s where budget laptops come in. The definition is a loose one, with some machines costing a bit more but offering a lot more to go with it. But they’ll save you hundreds over midrange and premium laptops that are overkill for what you need.

Finding Value in Budget Laptops

Budget laptops are a great way to get the functionality you need without breaking the bank. Whether you’re a student, a casual web surfer, or simply looking for a secondary machine, there is a budget laptop out there for you. These laptops may not have all the bells and whistles of their more expensive counterparts, but they deliver where it counts.

In this article, we’ll explore some of the best budget laptops in different categories, from premium “like” devices to Chromebooks for extreme value. Let’s dive in and find the perfect budget laptop for you!

Dell XPS 13 (9315)

A surprisingly affordable ‘premium’ Windows laptop

Why you should buy this: It’s an amazing laptop for under $1,000.

Who it’s for: Anyone who wants a premium laptop for much less money.

Why we picked the Dell XPS 13 9315:

Yes, the XPS 13 9315 costs $849 for its entry-level model, which is at the high end of the budget range. But it makes this list because you simply won’t find a Windows laptop for less than $1,000 that can match the XPS 13’s excellent build quality, attractive aesthetic, and outstanding battery life.

For that low price, you get a 9-watt Intel Core i5-1230U CPU with 10 cores and 12 threads that delivers competent productivity performance. It’s not the fastest laptop we’ve reviewed, but it’s sufficient to get your work done. As a lower-watt part, though, it affords outstanding battery life. You even get a 512GB SSD, which is a lot at this price, with a build quality and good looks that are unusual without spending a lot more.

Dell XPS 13

Asus ZenBook 14 OLED

Best budget laptop

Why you should buy this: The features and battery life are game-changers at the price.

Who it’s for: Anyone who wants a beautiful display for less money.

Why we picked the Asus ZenBook 14 OLED:

Sometimes, companies have to cut corners to fit a laptop into a $700 price. The display is often one casualty, with a panel that might suffer in terms of color quality and contrast. The ZenBook 14 OLED is an exception, offering a spectacular OLED display that’s bright, colorful, and displays inky blacks. It’s equal to displays on laptops costing twice as much.

But that’s not all. The AMD Ryzen 5 or 7 CPUs on offer provide competent productivity performance to go with great battery life. And, the laptop’s build quality is excellent, with a great keyboard and touchpad with an LED numeric keyboard. It’s a tremendous value all-around, landing it on our list of best laptops.

Asus ZenBook 14 OLED

Surface Laptop Go 2

An excellent budget laptop for students

Why you should buy this: It’s the best budget laptop for students.

Who it’s for: Students, buyers on a budget.

Why we picked the Microsoft Surface Laptop Go 2:

Students usually want a few things in a cheap laptop — something that’s easy to carry around, that provides good enough performance for getting their homework done, and something that’s not going to embarrass them when they pull it out to take notes. Oh, and it needs to be affordable. Microsoft’s new Surface Laptop Go 2 meets all those criteria — making it one of the best laptops for students in college.

We’ve linked to our Surface Go review above because the biggest change to the Surface Go 2 is the upgrade to 11th-gen Core CPUs. Graphics have been upgraded to Intel Iris Xe, the entry-level storage has been doubled to 128GB, there’s an improved webcam, and the laptop ships with Windows 11 Home instead of Windows 10 in S mode. The Surface Laptop Go 2 is also a highly mobile device with a 12.4-inch IPS touchscreen display that, although it’s not quite FHD resolution, is still of very high quality and a pleasure to use.

Surface Laptop Go 2

Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3

A Chromebook 2-in-1 that won’t break the bank

Why you should buy this: It’s the best budget Chromebook.

Who it’s for: Anyone on a budget who doesn’t mind sacrificing performance for extreme value.

Why we picked the Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3:

Chromebooks have become popular budget choices over the last few years, and many have won us over as well. One style that hasn’t done as well as some others is the detachable Chrome OS tablet. That changed with the introduction of the Lenovo Chromebook Duet, now in its third generation, which not only is a very usable tablet but one that represents tremendous value thanks to the included kickstand cover and detachable keyboard.

The Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3’s low price brings some limitations and basic specs. Its Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c Gen 2 processor, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of storage don’t deliver stellar performance, although it’s good enough for the kinds of tasks you’ll want to run on it. The display is very nice, with a 15:9 2K (2000 x 1200) resolution that’s not as pixel sharp as Apple’s baseline iPad that the Duet competes against. If you want a tablet for web browsing, light productivity work, and consuming media, then the Chromebook Duet 3 and Chrome OS have you covered.

Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3

HP Victus 15

Solid gaming for less than $1,000

Why you should buy this: It’s the best budget gaming laptop.

Who it’s for: Gamers and only gamers.

Why we picked the HP Victus 15:

Although the best gaming laptops are typically expensive, the HP Victus 15 is a great example of why they don’t need to be. Often priced at less than $900, you get some impressive specs. That includes a 13th-gen Intel Core i5-13500H, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 GPU, 8GB of RAM, and a 512GB solid-state drive (SSD), with options for faster CPUs, more powerful graphics, extra and faster storage, and memory if you don’t mind spending a little more. Every model comes with a 15.6-inch, 1080p IPS display, and for just a little more, that display can run at a refresh rate of 144Hz.

With a decent build quality and surprisingly good gaming performance, the Victus 15 offers an all-around solid gaming package at an impressively competitive price. It does have its weak points, most notably that the starting graphics card isn’t as powerful as what you’ll see in more expensive laptops, but it’s still enough for entry-level gaming.

HP Victus 15

Dell Inspiron 15 3000 Laptop

A business laptop for less

Why you should buy this: It’s the best budget business laptop.

Who it’s for: Office workers who want to save the cash for other investments.

Why we picked the Dell Inspiron 15 3000:

Whether you’re typing up another spreadsheet or winding down with a game at the end of a long workday, the Dell Inspiron 15 3000 strikes a great balance as a business laptop. It features powerful and efficient general computing power, like a 12th-generation Intel Core i7-1255U CPU, 16GB of RAM, and a 512GB SSD. That’s a lot of computer for just $700, even if Intel did just announce their 13th-gen Core processors.

With the typical Inspiron build quality, we’d expect this system to borrow several great design features from the more premium XPS range but make them available in a more affordable form. It’s not the lightest laptop at just under 4 pounds, but it has a great, spill-resistant keyboard, Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth connectivity, and a top-mounted 720p webcam for conferencing.

The Dell Inspiron 15 3000 also comes in an attractive business black paint job, which helps it fit in with any setup.

Dell Inspiron 15 3000

Microsoft Surface Go 3

The all-around best 2-in-1 for less

Why you should buy this: It’s the best budget 2-in-1.

Who it’s for: Anyone who needs the on-the-go mobility of a small, 2-in-1.

Why we picked the Microsoft Surface Go 3:

The Surface Go 3 may be limited by its small size and, at the entry level, by a low-powered Intel Pentium processor, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of storage — the processor can be upgraded to an Intel Core i3 and twice the RAM and storage for $230 more — but it offers something never before seen in the Windows world: A truly budget-minded 2-in-1 laptop. Its build is every bit as solid as its bigger sibling, the Surface Pro 8, and it boasts a beautiful, bright display to boot. The best part? It’s actually thin and light enough to be held in one hand like a proper tablet, which is a key reason why we see this as the best budget 2-in-1 laptop.

While performance doesn’t feel as smooth as on something like an iPad or even a Chromebook, those devices can’t do quite as many things as the Surface Go 3, which runs a full version of Windows 10. On the battery front, however, it’s a bit lacking. That’s its most unfortunate compromise since this is a device made for portability. Also, we still wish the excellent Type Cover keyboard and Surface Pen came bundled in.

Microsoft Surface Go 3

Frequently Asked Questions

To help you further in your quest for the perfect budget laptop, here are some frequently asked questions:

  • Q: What are the benefits of buying a budget laptop?
    • A: Budget laptops offer good value for money, providing essential functionality without breaking the bank. They are great for everyday tasks like web browsing, email, and Office applications.
  • Q: Are budget laptops suitable for gaming?
    • A: While budget laptops may not be able to handle high-end gaming, there are some options available that offer decent gaming performance at an affordable price.
  • Q: Can budget laptops be used for professional work?
    • A: Yes, budget laptops can be used for professional work. They may not have the same performance and premium features as higher-end laptops but can still handle tasks like document editing, spreadsheet calculations, and video conferencing.
  • Q: Are budget laptops durable?
    • A: The durability of budget laptops can vary depending on the brand and model. However, many budget laptops offer decent build quality and are designed to withstand everyday use.
  • Q: Can budget laptops handle photo and video editing?
    • A: Budget laptops may not have the same processing power as high-end laptops specifically designed for photo and video editing. However, they can still handle basic editing tasks with the right software.

In conclusion, budget laptops offer a cost-effective solution for those who don’t require top-of-the-line performance and premium features. From the Dell XPS 13 and Asus ZenBook 14 OLED, which offer exceptional value for their price, to the Microsoft Surface Laptop Go 2, ideal for students, and the Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3, perfect for extreme value, there is a budget laptop to suit every need. Whether you’re a student, a casual user, or a gamer, these budget laptops provide great functionality without breaking the bank.