In the market stacked with premium laptop options, identifying the ones below the $300 mark could be tricky. Budget laptops restrict us, in terms of specifications and usage. Moreover, with pricing being a major determinant, we also need to compromise on certain preferences. If you have already selected a price range, we presume that you have toned down your expectations.
That said, budget laptops are no pushovers. If you select the right brand and series, you can still get hold of a device that is productive, utilitarian, and intuitive. The sub $300 laptops are low-end options but that does not mean that they cannot have a decent build quality or come with justifiable specs.
Finally, if you are cutting corners and getting a laptop that meets your budget, try going for something light and portable. In the next few sections, we shall enlist the best options that cost less than $300 while focusing on productivity and value for money.
|Lenovo IdeaPad||Display: 13.3” UHD|
Battery Life: Up to 10 hours
Weight: 0.86 lb
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|HP 14z||Processor: Intel Core i7-3960X|
RAM: 16 GB RAM
Storage: 1 TB
Display: 12.3” PixelSense Display
Battery Life: Up to 9 hours
Weight: 1.76 lbs
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|CHUWI HeroBook Pro||Storage: 512 GB|
Display: 13.3″ Retina Display
Battery Life: Up to 10 hours
Weight: 3.02 lbs
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The Best Laptops under $300 in 2020
Our list comprises of established brands and even a few new players that manufacture exceptional devices. Not just that, mellowing down on the brand increases your chances of getting hold of a more beefed up specs sheet. After hours of researching and testing across diverse parameters, we’ve handpicked the best options you shall consider getting this year (2020.)
1. Best Under $300: Lenovo IdeaPad
Unveiled in 2020, this is one of the best 300 dollar laptops in the market. The gadget assumes a standard clamshell model and weighs almost 4.4 lbs. Not just that, this is a pretty slim device for the sizeable chassis on display. It wouldn’t be wrong to consider this as a pretty compact device for minor productivity tasks.
In terms of display, the 14-inch HD panel is exceptional to look at and even flaunts decent viewing angles courtesy, the 1366×768 pixel screen resolution. The LED-backlit screen is extremely energy efficient and abides by the power saving standards.
Lenovo offers Windows 10 OS straight out of the box. The company sweetens the pot further for the productivity seeking professionals with a year-long Microsoft 365 Office subscription.
The accelerated AMD A6 A6-9220e processor renders decent levels of processing power to this device. The chipset works closely with the AMD Radeon integrated graphics unit and 4GB GPU. Coming to the storage, we expected a bit more than the 64GB eMMC. However, the eMMC technology boots up the device quickly.
In terms of power backup, Lenovo offers a decent 35Wh battery unit. While the performance and support are adequate upon moderate to low usage, we expected the IdeaPad to pack in some more meat, especially in this department. The connectivity features are adequate and the device also offers a decent set of ports for functional tasks.
2. Best Budget Laptop Under $300: HP 14z
HP makes good laptops and this is one budget variant that packs in a pretty appropriate specs sheet for the $300 price tag. This device assumes a standard clamshell form factor and flaunts a decent build quality.
We get a BrightView WLED-Backlit panel with an overall screen resolution of 1366×768 pixels. The HD panel is vibrant enough for the given price tag and the display quality remains consistent when viewed from different angles. Moreover, Windows 10 OS further accentuates the quality of the user interface unlike budget-laptops of the past where manufacturers used to pack in Free DOS, straight out of the box.
In terms of processing power, this laptop provides adequate power courtesy of the AMD Dual-Core E2-9000e processor. With a turbo clock speed of up to 2GHz, the device is still pretty snappy for its price. The processing elements are further complemented by a 4GB RAM (expandable up to 16GB.)
The Integrated AMD Radeon R2 graphics support and 1MB of cache memory work together to achieve decent processing speeds!
Storage-wise, we get a 32GB eMMC storage unit that supports fast data transfers. The 41Wh battery unit complements the innards rather perfectly and translates into almost 8 hours of backup. Additional specs include the TrueVision HD webcam for decent Skype calling quality. When it comes to ports, HP offers two USB 3.1 units for faster data transfers followed on solitary HDMI and USB 2.0 ports.
3. Best for Video Editing: CHUWI HeroBook Pro
The CHUWI HeroBook Pro doesn’t feel like a budget notebook. The laptop is slim with a chassis thickness of 0.8-inch and weighs a mere 3.06 lbs. Moreover, the design elements associated with the CHUWI HeroBook Pro feels premium.
CHUWI packs in a 14.1-inch Full HD panel that boasts of anti-glare properties, resolution of 1920 x 1980 pixels, and exceptional viewing angles. The screen supports the wider vision and puts minimal strain on the eye despite you being glued to the screen for hours.
This sub-$300 device offers Windows 10 OS straight out of the box and includes one-touch Cortana accessibility. Overall, in terms of the user interface, this device certainly leaves a lasting impression.
Coming to the internals, it comes forth the Intel Gemini Lake N4000 processor, manufactured via the 14nm processor, it is capable of attaining turbo speeds of up to 2.6GHz and is complemented by 8 gigs of RAM.
The Intel UHD 600 GPU performs better than expectations. This gadget also brings forth a 256GB SSD storage unit, capable of the highest possible writing and reading speeds. For the given price point, there aren’t many devices that can beat the featured processing power.
The battery unit is capable of lasting up to 9 hours based on moderate to heavy usage. If you are a light user, the 38Wh battery might last an entire day. Besides that, CHUWI also provides fast charging support in case you need quick spurts of power to resume productive tasks. If you are in a search of the best laptop for video editing under 300 dollars, this is a great option to consider.
Additional specs include a decently sized keyboard with exceptional key travel and a conglomerate of ports not seen even in the more premium gadgets. The high-speed M.2 port and the Micro-HD outlets stand out followed by 5 other functional units.
4. Best 2 in 1 Laptop Under $300: Jumper EZbook X1
The Jumper EZbook X1 is an exciting convertible flaunting a metallic chassis and enviable aesthetic slimness. Despite incorporating aerospace-grade alloyed body made of aluminum, the gadget feels feathery at a mere 2.3lbs. At 8mm, this is one of the thinnest gadgets in the concerned price bracket. Here is one reliable convertible that supports multiple usage modes courtesy of the 360-degree rotating hinge.
The 11.6-inch display packs a punch. The full HD capacitive touch screen packs in 1920×1080 pixels and looks exceptionally vibrant. Moreover, this device runs Windows 10 straight out of the box which is a pretty decent addition by the company considering the budget tag. The Windows-powered interface looks better on the IPS screen which also flaunts a 178 degree, viewing angle.
When it comes to the processing power, the EZbook features the Intel Dual-Core Gemini Lake N4100 processor that is pretty fast and assisted perfectly by the Intel HD 9th Gen graphics. The integrated GPU clocks at 700MHz and performs better than expectations. The Dual storage units involving eMMC and SSD make for snappy data reading and writing speeds. Jumper EZbook offers 64 gigs of storage for each unit.
Despite the lowest possible price point, the SSD and eMMC storage units make sure that the boot-up time is minimal. This device offers a battery backup of up to 5 hours. Besides that, the device also offers a decent set of ports and outlets with the highlights being Micro USB and USB Type-C port.
5. Fastest Laptop under $300: Microsoft Surface Go
You must be extremely lucky to get a Microsoft Surface Go at a $300 price tag. Despite this being a renewed device, there are minimal blemishes and performance compromises on this aesthetically brilliant gadget.
The lightest Surface weighs a mere 1.15lbs and flaunts a metallic chassis. Other design-centric highlights include a detachable form factor followed by the reliable kickstand.
The 10-inch display associated with this device is pretty sharp at 1800×1200 pixels. The viewing angles are clear and the color reproduction is decent enough for a renewed device. We get Windows 10 OS with this gadget.
Needless to say, this is a professionally inspected gadget that doesn’t fall short in terms of processing power. The Intel Pentium Gold 4415Y chipset is a powerful addition followed by 4GB of RAM and 2MB of cache memory for faster renders. The Intel HD GPU is an adequate addition to the existing specs sheet. In terms of storage, we get a 64GB eMMC unit.
Battery life gets an obvious cut but still offers 7 hours of playback support. Apart from that, the device also brings in a dual set of cameras at 8MP at the back and 5MP at the front. The USB Type-C connector is a desirable addition as well.
Also, If purchased from Amazon, you get a 90-day professional warranty on this renewed Microsoft Surface Go. Not just that, you only get the tablet and the generic package doesn’t include the stylus pen or the keyboard.
6. Best For Students: Asus VivoBook L203MA
This Asus VivoBook L203MA is designed to perfection. At 2.1 lbs, this is one of the lightest laptops in our list. What stands out is the 180-degree hinge that makes the gadget highly productive and functional. It wouldn’t be wrong to consider this VivoBook as an aesthetic brilliance courtesy of the slimness of profile.
The company offers an 11.6-inch HD (1366 x 768) screen which is pretty vibrant. Moreover, Asus supports the Tru2Life video technology for bringing graphics and visuals to life. The SonicMaster technology from the company is a great acoustic addition that readily complements the realistic imagery.
Windows 10 Home edition is the operating platform which is further bolstered by the S-mode for additional power savings. The company also packs in a complimentary, year-long Microsoft 365 Office Suite.
In terms of processing power, the Intel Celeron N4000 chipset performs better than expectations. With 4MB of cache memory and a turbo clock speed of 2.6GHz, this sub-$300 laptop from Asus offers decent firepower in the processing department. We also get decent RAM support at 4 gigs followed by a standard 64GB eMMC unit that complements the sleekness.
Asus boasts of a battery life of up to 10 hours which is exceptional for a productive. Not just that, we also get a dedicated webcam and a decent collection of functional ports, including Type-C and USB 3.1, to go with the existing specs sheet. If you’re a student, you would be happy to know that this laptop comes with a 1-year of Microsoft Office 365 access.
Although, it isn’t suitable for resource-intensive study purposes such as Engineering, Civil Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Medical School, Machine Learning, GIS studies, Business studies, it sure is a relevant choice for kids or for basic tasks such as note-making, minimal web browsing, etc.
7. Best Convertible Laptop Under $300: Acer Spin 1
The renewed version of the Acer Spin 1 is as good as the new and packaged one. While you can still expect a minor reduction in battery life and a few dents here and there, the gadget looks and feels just like the actual one, sitting pretty at the store. This device is carefully crafted and flaunts a convertible form factor. Moreover, at 2.76lbs, the laptop is still quite light.
Coming to the display, we get an 11.6-inch touchscreen with a screen resolution of 1920×1080. Unlike some of the other sub-$300 devices in the market, the device is known for its excellent color reproduction. The Full HD IPS screen is one of the best features of this renewed laptop. The user interface looks minimalistic and is further complemented by the Windows 10 in the S-Mode. The gadget screen also flaunts exceptional viewing angles.
The Acer Spin 1 packs in a quad-core Intel Pentium N4200 processor which is a decent addition to the existing price bracket. Needless to say, getting a quad-core processor at this price is highly commendable. The chipset works closely with the integrated Intel HD graphics and 4GB of RAM. We also get a fast rendering 64GB SSD storage unit.
Battery life that is originally rated at up to 10 hours might give you 8 hours of playback support on the renewed model. In addition to that, we also get built-in speakers with stereo output followed by a decent collection of ports. We also get a 16GB Ptech SD card bundled with the package. Lastly, this refurbished model comes with a 90-day warranty when purchased from Amazon.
8. Lightweight laptop under $300: Acer Swift 1
Here is an aesthetic laptop that flaunts a metallic chassis. The gadget weighs a mere 2.87 lbs and is still quite sleek. Moreover, the design elements feel top-notch and the Acer Swift 1 leaves a lasting impression on the users.
In terms of display, we get a 14-inch full HD a highly subsidized price tag which certainly is a standout inclusion. The LCD screen also flaunts the ComfyView IPS technology which further complements the Windows 10 operating system in the S or power-saving mode.
The quad-core Intel Pentium Silver N5000 processor is a significant addition for such an affordable price point. The chipset is perfectly complemented by the Intel UHD 605 GPU. Moreover, Acer also pairs along with a 4GB DDR4 RAM which is fast and complements the processing power of the laptop. The flash storage unit is, however, restricted at 64GB.
When it comes to battery support, the Swift 1 isn’t a path breaker. The 4670mAh battery unit can last up to 7 hours on moderate to lower usage. In terms of ports, we get the USB Type-C unit followed by the USB 3.1 for faster file transfers.
9. Best with Chrome OS: Asus Chromebook
The new Asus Chromebook is crafted with perfection. The metallic finish renders a premium feel to the device that weighs a mere 2.6lbs. In terms of design and aesthetics, it is the 180-degree hinge that stands out. This feature improves the functionality and mobility of the device.
When it comes to the display, this Chromebook offers a 14 inch HD screen with a screen resolution of 1366×768 pixels. This inclusion is pretty standard for the given price tag. However, the NanoEdge display technology from Asus makes the screen look bigger and more vibrant. The bezels are narrow and there is also an anti-glare screen coating to minimize reflections and strain on the eyes.
The Chrome OS is a decent addition to the repertoire which supports android apps, basic productivity jobs, and also offers 100GB of cloud storage support. This OS offers automatic updates, faster boot times, and built-in protection from viruses.
The processing power in this device is also pretty adequate courtesy of the Intel Celeron N3350 processor and the HD 500 graphics. The 4GB RAM support is a decent inclusion but the 32GB eMMC storage unit leaves a lot to be desired. While the reading, writing, and boot-up processes are quick, we expected a bit more storage space.
Battery life is a major highlight with this device running strong for up to 10 hours at a stretch. However, the figure depends on the usage. Moreover, the device also brings in high-end stereo speakers which play a decent role in amplifying the overall acoustic performance. The ergonomic keyboard also deserves a mention followed by a decent collection of USB Type-A and Type-C ports.
10. Best HP Laptop under $300: HP Chromebook 14
Here is one good-looking Chromebook that features decent design elements and aesthetics. The 180-degree hinge is the standout element that makes productivity fun. Moreover, HP Chromebook 14 is also pretty sleek and portable for such an affordable price point. The gadget weighs only 3 pounds which is a decent figure for laptops that feature 14-inch screens.
In terms of display, there aren’t many budget Chromebooks that can match what HP 14-db0050nr has to offer. The 14-inch screen is perfectly complemented by the Full HD (1920×1080) pixels resolution. The IPS WLED panel makes sure that the viewing angles are fantastic and the interface with Chrome OS looks exemplary. Moreover, the operating platform allows us to install and use diverse Android applications with ease.
In terms of processing power, the AMD A4 9120C dual-core chipset steals the show. The processing performance is more than decent and well-complemented by the integrated graphics support. In addition to that, we get 4 gigs of RAM. The eMMC storage unit at 32GB is fast but underwhelming in terms of capacity.
The battery life on this Chromebook is up to 8 hours or slightly more, depending on the usage. Other elements include the decent set of speakers powered by B&O followed by 100 gigs of cloud storage support. The device also brings in a dedicated webcam and the card reader for improving the functionalities. Lastly, HP also packs in a decent collection of USB ports to increase the usefulness of this Chromebook.
Frequently Asked Questions
In this segment, we answer the most pressing questions concerning budget laptops.
Are $300 laptops good for office jobs?
Laptops that are priced under $300 can be good choices for basic and some advanced office tasks. You can use the same for creating presentations, content, basic graphics, and even for attending to Skype calls, provided the device has a decent webcam and built-in microphone.
Can we play games on budget laptops?
Budget laptops usually offer integrated graphics from Intel or AMD. Therefore, you can only play online games on these machines. Graphic-intensive games aren’t supported even if you pair additional RAM.
Who can opt for laptops under the $300 mark?
Users who are interested in basic streaming, minor online tasks, basic productivity jobs, professional indulgence with minimal graphics requirements, and content creation can opt for budget laptops under $300.
When should we select a budget laptop?
If you already own a premium device, you can opt for a budget laptop as your second tool for indulging in productive tasks. Having an affordable secondary laptop means that you do not put additional pressure on the premium device.
Can $300 laptops be used for video editing?
The processing power of laptops below $300 isn’t enough to indulge in professional video editing. However, if you have a Chromebook, you can use the basic android video editors to work on basic smartphone videos where the requirements aren’t high-end.
You are hard-pressed for choices if you are only willing to spend $300 on a new laptop. While we did list 10 feature-packed options, the final choice depends on your preferences, choice of form factor, and the OS.
If you are looking for a Windows-powered device, we would still recommend the refurbished Microsoft Surface Go for its brand value.
If you aren’t looking for renewed devices, consider the underrated Jumper EZbook. If your preferences are aligned to the standard clamshell models, CHUWI HeroBook is the one to consider.
Lastly, for Chromebook enthusiasts, the one from HP is the best possible choice.
Budget laptops, if selected strategically, can still bring a lot to the table, in terms of specifications. However, you should be willing to research extensively.
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