Finding the Best Budget Laptops Under $400

Last Updated: May 4, 2016 by

Finding-the-Best-Budget-Laptops-Under-$400

Welcome to our pro budget guide to the best laptops under $400 money can buy based on hardware performance, ease of use, design and raw consumer feedback.

One level up in the price range from our previous guide to laptops under $400 in our series of budget guides to cheap laptops, the $400 dollar price range offers a number of full fledged 15-inch laptop deals as well as more portable 13-inch netbooks that will cover all of our basic computing needs, perfect for studies, word processing media consumption and even entry level gaming. Most of the best full-size budget laptops start at around $350 upwards, the entry point for a new laptop with some half decent modern hardware, although for closer to $300 you will also find some seriously competitive deals on both portable netbooks and all-purpose budget 15-inch laptops. Gamers will also be happy to know that the integrated graphics on all current i3 based chips in this list offers Intel HD 4000 graphics, capable of running many popular games including Counter Strike GO, Dota and League of Legends at playable framerates. The Quad Core based Pentium N3540 chips also offer Bay Trail based Intel graphics which also provide adequate performance for many popular games. Non-gaming users with a bigger budget should also head over to our all-purpose laptop guides for laptops under $500 and $1000 respectively or our high-end laptops guide for some more premium options.

Primer Laptop Buying Guide

Before we go any further, if you’re not an expert on all of the technical jargon when it comes to PC’s we’d recommend checking out LaptopMag’s laptop buying guide. It’s an excellent resource if you’re not sure what to look out for when buying a new laptop written in pure non techie English. Fellow geeks please feel free to ignore.

Top Picks >>

Chromebooks Under $400 >>

Netbooks Under $400 >>

More  >>

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Laptops Under $400 – Overall Top Picks

These are our top picks curated through hours of research each week to provide a one stop guide to the best budget  sub-$400 laptops on the market.  This guide is updated regularly with new specials and laptops as they become available so you can be sure you’re not missing out on any great deals.
ASUS-Transformer-Book -T100TAF-C1-GR

ASUS Transformer Book T100TAF-C1-GR 10.1-inch

Sometimes you just need a laptop is a true jack of all trades.  One that is fast and light and easy to pack especially when you travel.  The ASUS Transformer Book T100TAF-C1-GR is the answer you have been waiting for.  While it simply doesn’t have the power to be a full desktop replacement, it offers a fast enough processor and RAM to get the job done.  This convertible tablet is lightweight and will easily pack in your briefcase if you have to travel for work.  Office style apps will run flawlessly and movies play smooth on the device.  However, you have 64 GB of storage to work with which can be rather limiting.  This tablet does come with free storage from OneDrive Cloud for a year and even a one year subscription to MS Office 365 so you will easily be able to work as soon as you take it out the box.  Be careful of the battery life, however, some users have found that despite the claims of ASUS it simply cannot hold up under heavy use.  Overall, the ASUS Transformer BookT100TAF-C1-GRis a great addition to any travelers briefcase.

Specs

  • 10.1 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (IPS)
  • Windows 8.1
  • 9 hours battery life
  • 2.4 lbs

Pros

  • SSD
  • Fast performance
  • Compact & light

Cons

  • Battery life less than advertised

Summary

A light portable machine running a full version of windows, the SSD is great for performance and the detachable keyboard makes transitioning between tablet and laptop mode a breeze.

ASUS Transformer Book T100TAF-C1-GR 10.1-inch
from $350.00 $348.00 Read Reviews Order Now
from Newegg.com
(as of 16-04-2016 00:44 UTC) Details

ASUS-Transformer-Book -T100TAF-C1-GR

Dell Inspiron i3552-8040BLK 15.6-Inch

Dell has quite a range of cheaper laptops especially in the Inspiron series to suite most budgets. The Inspiron i3552-8040BLK comes in at just under $400 and for the price you get a quick Quad Core Intel Pentium N3700 running at 1.6GHz and 4GB of DDR3 RAM, although this isn’t upgradable. Dell has also included an SSD instead of a traditional hard disk drive which delivers very fast bootup and load times. The tradeoff, unfortunately, is that the drive is only 128GB so the user is left with minimal storage. Windows 10 is pre-installed and runs fairly well with this hardware spec. The screen is clear and bright and the battery life is good. Users did complain that the machine did feel a bit plasticky however still sturdy. The Intel HD Graphics are based on the Braswell architecture and don’t offer much in the way of gaming especially for newer games however some older games will run at acceptable framerates on lower graphical settings. All in all this is a great laptop for the user on a tight budget and only needs to perform basic tasks.

Specs

  • 15.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Windows 10
  • 6 hours battery life
  • 4.8 lbs

Pros

  • Clear display
  • SSD performance
  • Lightweight

Cons

  • Maximum RAM is 4GB
  • Minimal storage space

Summary

An affordable budget laptop that offers fast boot up and load times thanks to the SSD. You may want to purchase and external hard drive, however for additional storage.

Dell Inspiron i3552-8040BLK 15.6-Inch
from $399.99 $299.99 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 03:02 UTC) Details

toshiba-satellite-radius-11-L15W-B1303

Toshiba Satellite Radius L15W-B1302 11.6-Inch

The Toshiba Satellite Radius L15W-B1302 is a top selling budget convertible netbook from Toshiba that offers a slick and streamlined design featuring a ‘kickstand style’ fold over screen allowing the Radius to be used in tablet mode as well as with the full keyboard. This nifty feature coupled with solid performance have earned this laptop a huge number of happy customers looking for something light and portable for computing on the go or as a secondary machine for casual use. Glowing reviews make the L15W-B1302 a top pick as a budget netbook for working on the fly.

Specs

  • Intel Intel Celeron
  • Intel Mobile HD Graphics Shared [View Framerates]
  • 4GB DDR3 SDRAM RAM
  • 500GB 5400 RPM SSD
  • 11.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Windows 8.1
  • 6 hours battery life
  • 2.9 lbs

Pros

  • Great Display
  • Unique design
  • Lightweight
  • Very good WiFi speeds
  • Attractive price

Cons

  • Poor battery life
  • Pre-installed bloatware

Summary

A great machine for users that spend most of their digital life online. While being lightweight and portable the poor battery life really lets this machine down.

Toshiba Satellite Radius L15W-B1302 11.6-Inch
from $335.00 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:50 UTC) Details

Dell Inspiron 11 3000 11.6 Inch

Dell Inspiron 11 3000 11.6 Inch

With the current demand for portability as well as versatility many manufacturers are turning toward 2-in-1 or convertible devices. Dell’s answer is the Inspiron 11 300, a super lightweight device that combines the power of a laptop with the portability of a tablet. The long lasting battery will keep you going for over eight hours and the inclusion of a full size HDMI port is perfect for those boardroom presentations. While only having a pentium processor does mean multitasking isn’t as smooth as other devices on the market, the 4GB of RAM and 500GB of storage will do the job for most basic applications. Windows 10 also helps with the low spec of this machine as its far lighter on resources than its predecessor. Dell have included a 720P webcam which is great for Skype video conferencing and the Waves MaxxAudio® Pro processing means clear immersive sound. This device is mainly catered toward a student or business professional and should definitely be on your list if you are on the hunt for a bargain all-round laptop for home or the office.

Specs

  • Intel Pentium N3540 [View Benchmarks]
  • Intel HD Graphics
  • 4GB DDR3L SDRAM RAM
  • 500GB 5400 RPM HDD
  • 11.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Microsoft Windows 10
  • 8 hours battery life
  • 4.5 lbs

Pros

  • Over 8 hours of battery life
  • Full size HDMI port
  • 2-in-1 design
  • Light and portable
  • Great display

Cons

  • Touchpad can be unresponsive at times
  • Device can get quite hot after long use
  • Awkward mode switching
  • Aggressive screen dimming

Summary

While super light and portable this 2-in-1 device tends to heat up after long use. The battery lasts a good 8 hours and the screen is clear and bright.

Dell Inspiron 11 3000 11.6 Inch
from $328.00 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 03:00 UTC) Details

Lenovo-G50-80L000ALUS

Lenovo G50-80L000ALUS 15.6-inch

The Lenovo G50-80L000ALUS delivers surprisingly good performance for a budget laptop. It features an attractive all-black casing made of plastic, which feels cheaper than its pricier aluminum-clad counterparts. However, the Lenovo build quality is comparatively better than many competitors at this price range, and it is strong enough to survive your daily commute to school or work. Its 15.6-inch screen supports a maximum resolution of 1366 x 768 making it more than sufficient for daily computing and watching movies, reading ebooks and browsing the web. Its core hardware components include Intel Core i3-4030U processor, 4GB of RAM and a large 1TB HDD. Many laptops at this price are equipped with much slower Dual Core Intel Celeron processors or Intel Atom processors, so the Intel Core i3 should show a big jump in benchmarks while running everyday as well as multimedia tasks. Budget laptops are generally not expected to run graphic intensive tasks but with the integrated Intel HD Graphics 4400, users will be able to enjoy some old or less demanding games. Despite its relatively large screen size and power hungry internals, it has a respectable 5 hours of battery life. For a sub $400 laptop, the G50-80L000ALUS offers a good combination of price, performance and features.

Specs

  • 15.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (IPS)
  • Windows 8.1
  • 5 hours battery life
  • 4.63 lbs

Pros

  • Plenty of storage space
  • Wireless AC
  • Great Value

Cons

  • Cheap plastic finish
  • Lots of bloatware

Summary

The Lenovo G50-80L000ALUS provides great value for money with 1TB of storage and fifth generation Wireless AC. Unfortunately, with the low price comes a cheap finish and lots of bloatware.

Lenovo G50-80L000ALUS
from $349.99 $331.99 Read Reviews Order Now
from BestBuy.com
(as of 04-05-2016 01:59 UTC) Details

Toshiba-Satellite-C55D-B5102-15.6

Toshiba Satellite C55D-B5102 15.6-inch

The Toshiba Satellite C55D-B5102 features an old school design with a black polycarbonate casing with a non-removable back panel. The sealed back panel makes it very difficult to replace the battery or to upgrade internal components thought it makes for a sturdier build. The textured surface on the back looks and feels nice to the touch but it doesn’t hide the fact that it’s a budget laptop. For a 15.6-inch laptop it packs relatively thin profile and manageable weight of only 4.6 pounds, much lighter than many competitors. It has a traditional keyboard with scissor-switch keys that can be popped off. The keys are not as high quality as those on modern chiclet-style keyboard but are full size and comfortable to type on. The 15.6 screen has a 1366 x 768 resolution which is standard in this price range. Text and images look clear without any unwanted pixilation or color distortions. In the connectivity department it features two USB 2.0 ports, one USB 3.0 port, an HDMI port, a gigabit Ethernet port and a VGA port. The C55D-B5102 is equipped with an AMD A8-6410 quad-core processor with integrated AMD Radeon R5 graphics which perform well on everyday tasks as well as multimedia benchmarks. The R5 Graphics will let you play old games fluently and some new at lower settings, which is not something you’d usually expect from a sub-$300 laptop. To seal the deal it for performance conscious users has 4GB of RAM and a generous 1TB hard drive, the highest specs you’ll get in this price bracket.

Specs

  • 15.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Windows 8.1
  • 4 hours battery life
  • 4.9 lbs

Pros

  • AMD Radeon R5 graphics
  • Fast Quad-Core Processor
  • Plentiful storage space
  • Numeric Keypad
  • 1TB Hard Drive

Cons

  • Poor sound quality
  • Difficult to upgrade
  • No tactile feedback on keyboard

Summary

A great machine for basic gaming, the AMD Radeon R5 graphics put this a step above machines with Intel based graphics. The Quad-Core processor performs well and the 1TB hard drive means plenty of storage., although Toshiba falls short with its tinny speakers and cheap feeling keyboard.

Toshiba Satellite C55D-B5102 15.6
from $330.00 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:54 UTC) Details

ASUS F555LA-AB31 15.6-inch

ASUS F555LA-AB31 15.6-inch

The Asus F555LA-AB31 is a new addition to the Asus family. Sporting a crystal clear 15.6” matte Full HD display that is viewable from nearly all angles, the F555LA is perfect for media enthusiasts. The award winning Asus Sonicmaster sound paired with the brilliant display make watching HD content a pleasant experience, although some users did report minor screen bleed around the edges. Asus have included their Ice Cool technology which keeps the touchpad and palmrest area of the laptop nice and cool at all times for ergonomic comfort while typing. Another great advantage is Windows 10 being pre-installed which is far better at utilizing hardware efficiently allowing for better performance than windows 8.1. While not the fastest on the market, the Intel Core i3 coupled with 4GB of DDR3 RAM make for an all round pleasant computing experience running basic day to day apps for a bargain price.

Specs

  • 15.6 inch, 1920 x 1080 pixels (TN)
  • Microsoft Windows 10
  • 5 hours battery life
  • 5.1 lbs

Pros

  • Full HD Screen
  • Wireless 802.11 A/C
  • Windows 10
  • Great price

Cons

  • Slight screen bleed
  • Hard drive not easy to replace

Summary

At this price you are getting a great performing Windows 10 laptop with a FHD screen and fast wireless connectivity. Only slight screen bleed at the bottom and basic users will struggle to upgrade the hard drive.

ASUS F555LA-AB31 15.6-inch
from $369.99 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:58 UTC) Details

HP-15-f215dx-15.6

HP 15-f215dx 15.6-inch

The HP 15-f215dx features a straightforward design which hides a lot power under the hood. It has smooth plastic body that is light and comfortable to carry. While most competitors are equipped with underpowered Intel Celeron and entry-level AMD processors, this 15-inch laptop features a powerful AMD A8-6410 quad-core chip which is designed for mid-range performance. Backed by 4 GB of RAM, the A8 processor can easily tackle daily web, office and multimedia tasks, and the integrated AMD Radeon R5 graphics will let you play modern games at medium to low settings. Its 750GB hard drive is the biggest you will see at this price range, but its speed is quite slow at 5400 rpm. However, features like faster Hard Drives, premium build and high-res screen are expected only on higher-end systems. There is no doubt that it one of the top performers here, but its power comes at the cost of battery life which averages just around 4.5 hours. Other features include the usual USB ports, an HDMI port, card reader and a DVD burner. Overall, the 15-f215dx is one of the fastest notebooks at this price, and it has better price to feature/performance ratio than most competitors.

Specs

  • 15.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Windows 8.1
  • 4.5 hours battery life
  • 4.8 lbs

Pros

  • AMD Radeon R5 graphics
  • Quad-Core CPU
  • Great Price

Cons

  • Inferior battery life

Summary

A well performing machine that is only let down by its short battery life.

HP 15-f215dx 15.6-inch
from $364.00 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:52 UTC) Details

Dell Inspiron I3558-9136BLK 15.6-inchDell Inspiron I3558-9136BLK 15.6-inch

When it comes to entry level laptops, most budget buyers will prefer performance over aesthetics. The Dell Inspiron I3558-9136BLK features updated hardware and Dell has addressed some of the issues from its predecessor. With a 5th generation Intel Core i3 processor and 6GB of RAM, the Dell Inspiron I3558-9136BLK will cope with everyday tasks and can even run Adobe Photoshop or CorelDRAW. The 1TB mechanical drive offers plenty of storage space, and the slower 5400rpm speeds won’t affect most day-to-day tasks. The Intel HD 5500 graphics will run older and classic games with acceptable frame rates, but newer titles will struggle even at the lowest of settings. Its 15.6-inch touchscreen display offers a maximum resolution of 1366×768, but colors and image quality are average for its price point. The touchscreen is quite responsive and allows users to quickly and easily navigate around Windows 10. Users have criticised the all plastic chassis and covers, but this helps to keep the weight and the costs down, which is import in the budget laptop segment. Overall, potential buyers will be impressed with the Dell Inspiron I3558-9136BLK value for money performance, despite its no frills design.

Specs

  • 15.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Windows 10 Home
  • 4.85 lbs

Pros

  • Responsive touchscreen
  • 6GB of RAM
  • 1TB hard drive

Cons

  • Display quality
  • Sound quality

Summary

A good entry level machine with good hardware and a responsive touchscreen. Unfortunately the sound quality leaves much to be desired.

Dell Inspiron I3558-9136BLK 15.6-inch
from $399.00 Read Reviews Order Now
from Bestbuy.com
(as of 24-04-2016 09:26 UTC) Details

Toshiba-10.1-Satellite-Click10-LX0W-C64

Toshiba 10.1 Satellite Click10 LX0W-C64

The Toshiba 10.1″ Satellite Click10 is a tablet/notebook hybrid running the latest Windows 10 operating system. Measuring 0.4 inch thick and weighing 1.3 pounds, it is heavier and thicker than most high-end tablets of its size, but it’s equally powerful for daily tasks and costs less despite including a keyboard dock. Like other hybrids, this device can function both as a portable on-the-go notebook and a multimedia tablet by detaching the keyboard. Switching to tablet mode takes a few seconds, as it can be unlocked by a press of a button on the keyboard. The device is equipped with plenty of ports, including two full-sized USB 2.0 ports on the keyboard, and a micro USB port, micro HDMI output and microSD card slot on the edge of the tablet. Despite its small size, the keyboard is great for typing because of the full-sized and well-spaced keys that are distributed right to the edge of the keyboard. By itself, the tablet lasts 8 hours but the battery inside the keyboard dock extends its stamina to 15 hours to get you through the day. The 10.1 inch IPS screen has 1920 x 1200 resolution, delivering sharp and vivid visuals. Whether you’re using it in laptop mode or tablet mode, the display quality remains the same in any angle. Its internals include an Intel Atom x5-Z8300 processor, 2GB of RAM and 64GB flash storage. Hence, it is clearly not a powerhouse, but for email checking, video playback and typing on the move, it’s more than adequate. All in all the Click10 is a value for money option for users who are looking for a cheap yet reasonably fast alternative to the pricier Microsoft Surface 3.

Specs

  • Intel 1.6 GHz Atom x5-Z8300
  • Intel HD Graphics [View Framerates]
  • 2GB DDR3 RAM
  • 64GB 5400 RPM SSD
  • 10.1 inch, 1920 x 1200 pixels (IPS)
  • Windows 10
  • 8 hours battery life
  • 2.4 lbs

Pros

  • High resolution display
  • Long Battery life
  • Stylish design

Cons

  • Poor graphical performance
  • Low amount of RAM
  • No USB3.0 Ports

Summary

A good looking machine with a great display. A RAM upgrade is recommended for best performance and the lack of USB3.0 is disappointing.

Toshiba 10.1 Satellite Click10 LX0W-C64
from $358.99 $339.99 Read Reviews Order Now
from BHPhotoVideo.com
(as of 04-01-2016 09:03 UTC) Details

Acer-Aspire-E-15-E5-571-33BV-15.6-Inch

ASUS D550CA-RS31 15.6-inch Laptop

The ASUS D550CA-RS31 features an elegant design with a textured finish for a comfortable grip with superb scratch prevention. Weighing just 4.7 pounds, it is more lightweight than many other 15-inch budget priced models and hasn’t excluded the DVD burner to shed its weight. The Intel Core i3 processor is a nice upgrade from the slower Celeron and Pentium N series normally found on cheaper devices. The overall performance is just below the former Intel Core i5-2467M and the 6GB of memory is the highest amount of RAM offered in this price range. The C55-A5281 is the only other laptop with same amount of RAM, but it has a slower processor and a much higher price. This configuration allows you to breeze through general tasks as well as some slightly demanding applications like Photoshop. However, the integrated Intel HD 4000 won’t allow you play the latest games on anything less than the absolute lowest settings. While all the usual connectivity features are included, there are only two USB ports onboard which may be a limitation for some users. The D550CA-RS3 is a great laptop that makes minimum sacrifices on the essential features, doesn’t cost as much as other portable alternatives and delivers a smooth experience for the average Windows user.

Specs

  • 15.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Windows 8.1
  • 5 hours battery life
  • 4.7 lbs

Pros

  • Generous amount of RAM
  • Bright, Clear Screen
  • Responsive touchpad with gesture support

Cons

  • Cheep feeling keys
  • Limited viewing angle
  • Only 2 USB ports

Summary

A great entry level machine with no shortage of RAM. and a clear and crisp screen that is only let down by narrow viewing angles. A few more USB ports would have been nice.

ASUS D550CA-RS31 15.6-Inch
from $449.00 $418.00 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 19-06-2015 11:13 UTC) Details

Toshiba-Satellite -L75-B7270

Toshiba Satellite L75-B7270 17.3-inch Laptop

The 17-inch Toshiba Satellite L75-B7270 offers users all the screen real estate they need for widescreen movies, Internet browsing, and spreadsheet navigation. Its thick and glossy design may not suit everyone’s taste, but at barely 6 pounds it is the lightest big screen laptop on this list. However, because of its large size it draws more power leaving it with a rather short 3.8 hours of battery life. It comes with an Intel Pentium Processor 3558U processor, 4GB of RAM upgradable to 16GB, and 500GB hard drive. Thus, it is a laptop suitable for regular users and is not intended for hardcore gamers or high-tech professionals. Standard features include a full-sized keyboard, a USB 3.0 port, a memory card reader, an HDMI port, Bluetooth, a DVD drive and DTS sound. The L75-B7270 is a great choice if you’re looking for a inexpensive desktop replacement with a large screen laptop, but if you need longer battery life check out the Dell Inspiron i5748-1143sLV which has the exact internal specs and a more modern design, albeit at a slightly higher price.

Specs

  • Intel ® Pentium® Processor 3558U (1.7 GHz) [View Benchmarks]
  • Intel Intel Integrated Graphics [View Framerates]
  • 4GB DDR3 SDRAM RAM
  • 500GB 5400 RPM HDD
  • 17.3 inch, 1600 x 900 pixels (TN)
  • Windows 8.1
  • 3.75 hours battery life
  • 5.9 lbs

Pros

  • Large 17 inch Screen
  • Polished design
  • Easily upgradable RAM
  • Fullsize Keyboard

Cons

  • Poor Processor
  • Poor battery life

Summary

A large screen laptop better suited to watching media than intensive performance thanks to underpowered CPU.

Toshiba Satellite L75-B7270 17.3-Inch
from $401.95 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:48 UTC) Details

HP 15-F211WM 15.6-inch

HP 15-F211WM 15.6-inch

A very basic machine at its heart the HP 15-F211WM delivers good day to day performance at a reasonable price. Powered by a Celeron N2840 processor and 4GB of DDR3 RAM, advanced applications such as music production or media editing are out of the question, as is gaming. With 500GB of storage space and a respectable display this machine is good for 720p media. The good sound quality and capable volume level contributes to the multimedia experience. The keyboard and trackpad are where this machine shows its price point. The keyboard is unresponsive at times and the trackpad fails to register input periodically. This machine is best suited to college or business users who need basic browsing and word processing with some media consumption on the side.

Specs

  • 15.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Windows 10
  • 5 hours battery life
  • 4.9 lbs

Pros

  • Great price
  • Good build quality
  • Acceptable day to day performance
  • Good sound quality

Cons

  • Unresponsive keyboard
  • Clunky trackpad

Summary

A budget laptop that’s best for basic tasks and watching media.

HP 15-F211WM 15.6-inch
from $399.99 $369.98 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 03:02 UTC) Details


HP -Pavilion-x360-2-in-1 13.3-Inch

HP Pavilion x360 2-in-1 13.3-Inch

The HP Pavilion x360 is a stylishly built touchscreen laptop featuring a bendable design that allows the screen to fold back 360 degrees, transforming it into a tablet in few seconds. Just like the Lenovo Yoga 2 and Asus Transformer Book Flip TP500LA, its strong hinges allow the display to flex into various angles to enter four different modes namely Laptop, Tablet, Tent and Upside. It automatically detects the operating modes and disables the keyboard as necessary. The plastic design is not high-end but the brushed aluminum surface does add some class to its appearance. Its full-size ash-silver keyboard with brushed metal borders gives a pleasant look to the interior. For a 13.3-inch convertible, 3.97 lbs is not too heavy, but it’s still not as light as the latest ultrabooks. Its screen sports a resolution of 1366 x 768, the same as every competitor on this list. Images look vibrant and sufficient clear, and the 10-point multi-touch panel allows smooth navigation via finger swiping and tapping. Fueled by an Intel Core i3-5010U processor with 4GB RAM, the x 360 delivered stable performances for daily tasks like web browsing, word processing and video streaming. With room-filling speakers, you will also be enjoying a lot of movies and music on this laptop. However, you won’t be playing any high-end games on it, although the Intel HD 5500 graphics is among the best integrated graphics you’ll get at this price. All the standard ports are featured and while competitors pack just a single USB 3.0 port, it has two. If you want a modern convertible laptop for a bargain price, the Pavilion x360 is a recommended option.

Specs

  • 13.3 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Windows 8.1
  • 6 hours battery life
  • 3.8 lbs

Pros

  • Sturdy hinges
  • Fast processor
  • Loud speakers
  • Long battery life
  • Responsive touchscreen

Cons

  • Low resolution screen

Summary

A well priced, hard working convertible laptop with rich immersive sound, a responsive touchscreen and a long lasting battery. We would have preferred a Full HD display.

HP Pavilion x360 2-in-1 13.3-Inch
from $374.99 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:58 UTC) Details

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Top Chromebooks Under $400

Acer C910-C37P 15.6-inch Chromebook

Acer C910-C37P 15.6-inch Chromebook

People usually associate Chromebooks with small-screen productivity-oriented laptops for schools or offices. The C910-C37P, on the other hand, offers larger screen real estate with a 15.6-inch Full-HD IPS screen. If you’re coming from a garden variety TN panels, you will see a big improvement in color accuracy, contrast and viewing angles. Despite its large proportions, at just 4.8 pounds, it’s not as heavy as similar sized Windows laptops, and its battery lasts a lengthy 9 hours – similar to many smaller chromebooks and Windows ultrabooks. As for its design, Acer has reinforced its textured cover to endure accidental force and drops, and the hinges are robustly fixed without feeling too tight. It has a typical Chromebook style chiclet keyboard that leaves out dedicated number pad and Windows buttons like delete, print screen and caps lock. Keys are well spaced so that the typing accuracy won’t be any different from a regular keyboard. Its internal hardware includes the new Intel Celeron 3205U Processor, 4GB Ram and a 32GB SSD. You get a more powerful system than ARM-based Chromebooks like the Samsung Chromebook 2 and Intel Celeron equipped Toshiba CB35. However, the CB35 has a better quality screen. Overall, audiophiles, movie lovers and productivity users will love the bigger, affordable and more capable C910-C37P Chromebook.

Specs

  • 15.6 inch, 1920 x 1080 pixels (TN)
  • Chrome OS
  • 9 hours battery life
  • 4.8 lbs

Pros

  • 1920x1080 IPS Display
  • Great battery life
  • Blazing fast solid state drive

Cons

  • Bulky design
  • low storage space
  • Poor integrated graphics

Summary

The full HD screen is crisp and bright, near instant boot and restart times thanks to the SSD. 15.6 inch screen is rather large for a Chromebook and effects portability.

Acer C910-C37P 15.6-inch Chromebook
from $345.01 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:48 UTC) Details

Acer C720-3404 Chromebook

Acer Chromebook C720-3404 11-inch Laptop

As Chrome OS is expanding in the market, the Chromebooks are slowly stepping into mainstream offline computing rather than running exclusively online. The Acer C720-3404 is an updated Chromebook model with significantly more computing power than its predecessors. It has an Intel Core i3 processor and 4GB of DDR3 SDRAM which are huge upgrades considering many previous as well as existing models feature far slower and less efficient Intel Atom and Celeron CPUs. Coming from an older generation of Chromebooks, users will experience a faster and more responsive performance in multitasking and a longer battery life. With these upgrades, Acer has upped the price of the C720-3404 quite significantly, making it as expensive as many entry-level Windows 8 laptops. However, the Windows laptops in this price range do not offer the same battery life and portability.

Specs

  • 11.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Chrome OS
  • 8.5 hours battery life
  • 2.76 lbs

Pros

  • Clear and sharp display
  • Fast boot times due to SSD
  • Fast i3 processor

Cons

  • Aggressive screen dimming

Summary

With a sleek design, clear display and a huge performance boost thanks to an SSD, the Acer C720-3404 is a fantastic Chromebook although the screen brightness can be sub-par in bright lighting conditions.

Acer C720-3404 11.6-Inch Chromebook (Intel Core i3, 4 GB) Granite Gray
from $366.98 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:50 UTC) Details

Acer Chromebook 13 CB5-311-T1UU

Acer Chromebook 13 CB5-311-T677 13.3-inch Laptop

The Acer Chromebook 13 is Acer’s new and improved Chromebook that is both inside and out more sophisticated than virtually all competing Chromebook models. The upscale design consists of a slim, angular body that is just 0.17-inches thick and it even includes a full-sized keyboard and large touchpad. It has a Full-HD, 1,920 x 1,080 resolution display not present in any large screen Chromebooks including the 13-inch Toshiba Chromebook and HP Chromebook 14. The biggest step up is the new NVIDIA Tegra K1 processor which lets the Chromebook 13 ditch its fan and maintain a slim profile, while delivering performance comparable to or better than the Intel powered Chromebooks. The new processor also helped it achieve a best in class 11 hours of battery life. However, on multitasking the C720-3404 with its Intel Core i3 processor proved stronger than the Tegra K1. It has 4GB of RAM and 32GB of storage, the highest configuration available on Chromebooks. If you are ready to embrace the Chrome platform in all its glory, the Acer Chromebook 13 makes a strong statement with its superior hardware, minimalistic design and a price tag of $379.  For the same price, you can get the more portable 11-inch Acer C720-3404, which is faster but with a lower battery life and doesn’t include a Full-HD screen.

Specs

  • NVIDIA Quad Core 2.1 GHz Tegra k1
  • Nvidia Kepler GPU with 192 CUDA cores Shared [View Framerates]
  • 4GB DDR3L SDRAM RAM
  • 32GB SSD
  • 13.3 inch, 1920 x 1080 pixels (TN)
  • Chrome OS
  • 11 hours battery life
  • 3.31 lbs

Pros

  • High resolution Screen
  • Long battery life
  • Near silent operation

Cons

  • Poor sound quality at higher volume
  • sluggish CPU

Summary

A fast, portable Chromebook with a crystal clear screen and long battery life. The sound however, tends to crackle at higher volumes and the CPU is fairly underpowered.

Acer Chromebook CB5-311-T677 13.3-Inch
from $369.99 $359.99 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:50 UTC) Details

Toshiba-CB35-B3340-Chromebook-2

Toshiba CB35-B3340 Chromebook 2 13.3-inch Laptop

While most manufacturers brought out a more portable 11-inch Chromebooks, Toshiba wanted to give people more screen space with its 13.3-inch CB35-B3340 Chromebook 2. The original Toshiba Chromebook was criticized for being large, bulky and less portable than many competing Chromebooks. The latest Chromebook 2 has a new and improved design that is sleeker, thinner and lighter than its predecessor, and is closer in size to its small-screen rivals. The keyboard is excellent and so is the trackpad featuring smooth multi-touch gesture controls. Other areas of improvements include screen quality, battery life and processing power. The screen is a Full-HD 1920×1080 IPS display, with rich colors, crisp text and excellent viewing angles. Packed neatly inside is a power efficient Intel Celeron N2840 processor which runs cool and silent and facilitates a lengthy battery life of up to 9 hours. Although, not a particularly fast CPU, it beats most older Intel Atom equipped machines. While the average user should be happy with the Chromebook 2, power users will prefer something in the line of the Intel Core i3 equipped Acer C720. Connectivity ports are also abundant, with multiple USB ports, a full-sized HDMI port and an SD card slot – an essential feature since the system comes with only 16GB of internal storage.

Specs

  • 13.3 inch, 1920 x 1080 pixels (IPS)
  • Chrome OS
  • 9 hours battery life
  • 2.95 lbs

Pros

  • Great display
  • Clear HD Audio
  • Low price
  • Long battery life

Cons

  • No touchscreen
  • Sharp corners

Summary

An affordable and responsive Chromebook, unfortunately lacking a touchscreen and the sharp corners could be uncomfortable for some.

Toshiba CB35-B3340 13.3-Inch Chromebook 2
from $239.99 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:50 UTC) Details

Samsung Chromebook 2 13" (XE503C32)

Samsung Chromebook 2 XE503C32-K01US 13-inch Laptop

The Chromebook 2 is currently one of our top laptop picks running on Chrome OS. It is pricier than other competing models but is worth the premium price considering its stylish looks, lightweight design and solid set of features. Many consider this a netbook or a good tablet alternative but it actually looks and feels like a high-class laptop. There is also a big leap in quality over previously released Chromebooks including a sharper full-HD display, faster processor, double the memory and longer battery life. Regular online users will prefer this model over most Windows notebooks in its price range thanks to it’s top class design, excellent portability and exceptional battery life. Even though the Chromebook 2 is not currently on special, it comes highly recommended, although the more budget conscious may always want to consider the latest Toshiba Chromebook which offers similar performance at a cheaper price.

Specs

  • Samsung Exynos 5 Octa 5800 2.0 GHz
  • 4GB DDR3 RAM
  • 16GB SSD
  • 13.3 inch, 1920 x 1080 pixels (TN)
  • Chrome OS
  • 8.5 hours battery life
  • 3.09 lbs

Pros

  • Thin and light
  • Long battery life
  • Full HD screen
  • Confortable keyboard

Cons

  • Mediocre performance
  • Priced higher than some of its competitiors

Summary

Samsung's second series Chrome book has a great screen and comfortable keyboard. The full HD screen is a pleasure to work on but does tend to have a narrow viewing angle. The performance is a bit poor for the price.

Samsung Chromebook 2 XE503C32 13-Inch
from $399.99 $299.98 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 19-06-2015 11:13 UTC) Details

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Top Netbooks Under $400

For those of you that prefer to netbooks, the following is the list of the best Netbooks available for below $400.  These netbooks all have 11-inch screens and are highly portable making them perfect for students or professionals on the move.
Dell-Inspiron-11-i3147-10000SLV (2)

Dell Inspiron 11 i3147-10000SLV 11.6-inch

The Dell Inspiron i3147-10000SLV is a versatile device offering the convenience of a tablet and laptop in a single package. Its silver colored chassis looks very classy and thanks to sturdy hinges it feels much more solid than a standard budget netbook. It is only 0.8-inch thick and weighs only 3 pounds but still feels bulky in tablet mode when the 11-inch screen is flipped over the keyboard. Despite its small body, the keys are well-spaced and big, so that the typing is as accurate and comfortable as a desktop keyboard. It is powered by a Quad-Core Intel Pentium N3540 processor, which is better than most Intel Atom processors in both performance and battery life. While it is not a machine for serious media editing or gaming, low-resolution image editing, streaming movies, web surfing and casual gaming are possible. The system runs well on the default 4GB of RAM and 500GB, but if you want an extra boost you can upgrade to 8GB of RAM and an SSD. The 6 hours of Battery life is excellent, beating out many similar convertible laptops. By removing the bottom panel, users can easily expand the device’s memory and hard drive. It comes with Windows 10 preinstalled so you don’t have to spend time upgrading like with other laptops that come with the older the Windows 8 operating system. The i3147-3750SLV is not designed for gamers or power users, but if your needs are only basic, it is a reasonably priced ultraportable hybrid packed with essential features and the latest Windows operating system.

Specs

  • Intel 2.16 GHz Pentium N3540 Quad-Core [View Benchmarks]
  • Intel HD Graphics
  • 4GB DDR3L SDRAM RAM
  • 500GB 5400 RPM HDD
  • 11.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Windows 10 Home
  • 5 hours battery life
  • 3.07 lbs

Pros

  • Convertible design
  • Easy to upgrade
  • Bright and sharp display
  • Great battery life

Cons

  • No SSD
  • Build quality of the keyboard

Summary

A portable hybrid device with a great display and long battery life. The storage and RAM are easily upgradable, however we do recommend adding a SSD for improved performance.

Dell Inspiron 11 i3147-10000SLV 11.6-inch
from $335.40 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:58 UTC) Details

ASUS Transformer-Book-Chi-10.1-Inch

ASUS Transformer Book Chi T100CHI-C1-BK 10.1-inch

The Transformer Book Chi with its all metal design boasts superior build quality than most notebooks at this price. However, you are trading off screen real estate and hardware performance for portability and hybrid functionality. While the original T100 felt more like a budget device, the T100 Chi swaps its predecessor’s bulky plastic chassis for a 0.5-inch aluminum unibody exterior. It uses a magnetic latch to hold the tablet and keyboard firmly together, instead of the flimsy clamps that were used in the original. Along the edge of the screen you’ll find a Micro USB 2.0 port, a Micro USB 3.0 port, micro-HDMI, a micro-SD slot and a 3.5 mm audio jack. Improvements have also been made in the display and performance department. The T100 Chi comes with a sharp 1,920 x 1,200 pixel-resolution touch display with excellent viewing angles.. The brightness is enough for indoor use, but the glossy surface makes it difficult to see outdoors. It also supports the Asus Active Stylus Pen that’s sold separately. Inside, it has a 1.46 GHz Quad-Core Intel Atom Z3775 processor, 2GB of RAM and 64GB of flash storage. This hardware is geared towards everyday tasks like spreadsheet editing, browsing, emails, video playback and light picture editing. A weak integrated graphics combined with a small memory and storage makes it unsuitable for running large applications and games. However, less power means more battery life, and the T100 Chi lasts almost 10 hours on a charge. In conclusion, this device is suitable for any basic user who is looking for extra mobility and a premium design on a budget.

Specs

  • 11.6 inch, 1920 x 1200 pixels (IPS)
  • Windows 8.1
  • 10 hours battery life
  • 2.4 lbs

Pros

  • Good build quality
  • Stylish convertible design
  • Long battery life
  • Fantastic keyboard and touchpad
  • Good display

Cons

  • Attracts fingerprints
  • Only 2 USB ports
  • Sub-par performance

Summary

A well built convertible device with a sharp screen, fantastic keyboard and long lasting battery. The metal does tend to pick up finger prints easily and the performance is a bit lacking.

ASUS Transformer Book T100HA-C4-GR 10.1-Inch
from $307.00 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:54 UTC) Details

Toshiba-Satellite-Radius-11-L15W-B1120-11.6-inch

Toshiba Satellite Radius 11 L15W-B1120 11.6-inch

The Toshiba Satellite Radius 11 L15W-B1120 is a sleek laptop with a 360-degree flip and fold hinge that allows its screen to fold into various angles to be used in five distinct modes – tablet, laptop, presentation, tabletop and audience mode. The sealed design of the satin gold chassis looks very sleek, and, without noisy vent fans, the laptop runs quiet all the time. Measuring only 0.8-inches thin, it will easily slip into your backpack. To achieve its compact form factor and a weight of just 2.8 pounds it has left out an optical drive and large ports including VGA and Ethernet. It has only two USB ports, an HDMI port and a card reader slot. Its 11.6-inch touchscreen is sufficiently bright for typing, web browsing, and videos but it’s not something you’d want to edit high-res pictures on. In terms of performance, the Intel Pentium 2.66GHz processor backed by 4GB of RAM will have no problem with basic tasks. The operating system boots quickly and there is no lag while opening multiple tabs in the browser. It has a 128GB SSD, which is blazing fast compared to normal hard drives and improves the overall Windows 8 experience with shorter loading times. While the storage is enough for most office and home users, if you want to install lot of big programs and backup HD movies, you will have to spend extra on an external storage. The battery lasts more than 5 hours in light use and about 4.5 hours on heavy use like watching BluRay movies with the Wi-Fi on and browsers open in the background. If you need a travel friendly laptop that can serve you has a tablet when needed, the L15W-B1120 packs excellent features for its price.

Specs

  • 11.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Windows 8.1
  • 5 hours battery life
  • 2.9 lbs

Pros

  • 360-degree flip design
  • Thin and portable
  • Solid State Drive
  • Respectable battery life

Cons

  • Only 2 USB ports
  • Only 128GB of storage

Summary

A fast stylish and portable 360-flip device. Performance is great thanks to the SSD and a long lasting battery is a plus. Some may find that 128GB is simply not enough storage and a few more USB ports would have been welcomed.

Toshiba Satellite Radius 11 L15W-B1120 11.6-inch
from $429.99 $412.99 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:54 UTC) Details

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More Laptops Under $400

Dell Inspiron 15 i3542-3267BK

Dell-Inspiron-15-i3542-3267BKMuch like the i3542-5000BK, the Dell Inspiron 15 i3542-3267BK hits all the marks for a budget laptop.  Like the 5000BK, the 3267BK is powered by an Intel Core i3 processor and 4GB of RAM making it the perfect laptop for daily tasks and office work.  The 3267BK is almost identical to the 5000BK in every way with the exception of the touchscreen and hard drive.  The 3267BK is a standard laptop with no touchscreen but instead it includes a 1TB hard drive giving you even more space to store your favorite documents, music, pictures and movies.  While the 3267BK won’t set any records, it still provides you with enough processing power for normal usage and allows for a smooth and quick working experience.  The screen, while not a touchscreen, is bright and clear even though it only runs at 1366×768 resolution.  While not a good machine for gaming, the Dell Inspiron 15 i3542-3267BK is a great machine for students at school or on the job and will handle all basic home computing needs as well.


HP 15-g012dx

HP 15-g012dx 15-inch Laptop

The HP 15-g012dx packs some surprisingly powerful hardware in a modest package. It comes with a Quad-Core AMD A8-6410 processor, the new Radeon R5 graphics and a 750 GB hard drive which is larger than what many other alternative laptops are offering. The AMD A8 scores slightly lower CPU marks when stacked against the newer Intel Core i3 processor, but it will perform day to day tasks sufficiently. While it includes integrated graphics it still offers performance comparable to a lot of entry level dedicated GPUs and even some gaming titles from 2014 will run quite smoothly under low to medium settings. Remaining features are what you would expect in a budget laptop, but overall considering its hardware the 15-g012dx packs some real punch for its price.

Specs

  • 15.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Windows 8.1
  • 2.5 hours battery life
  • 4.8 lbs

Pros

  • Extremely light and thin
  • Large storage
  • Good CPU
  • Great price

Cons

  • No Bluetooth
  • No optical drive
  • Maximum RAM is 4GB

Summary

While very light and portable this device is primarily for users who are on the go. Its a pity HP did not include Bluetooth. Unfortunately the RAM isn't upgradable or replaceable but still a great buy for the price.

HP 15-G012DX 15.6-Inch
from $399.90 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:46 UTC) Details

Dell Inspiron i3542-1666BK

Dell Inspiron i3542-1666BK 15-inch Laptop

If you are shopping for a laptop on a seriously tight budget, then the Dell Inspiron i3542-1666 BK is the laptop to get.  As one of the cheapest options in this list, it includes a Pentium 3558U Dual-Core CPU, 4GB RAM and a 500GB hard drive. At first glance, these specs may seem meager but in actuality it is on par with other, more expensive Dual-Core laptops in this list. Where this laptop truly shines is its battery life.  With a battery life of over 6 hours, this is the perfect laptop for travelers or users who don’t enjoy being attached to wires throughout the day.

Specs

  • Intel Pentium 3558U Processor [View Benchmarks]
  • Integrated Graphics
  • 4GB DDR3L SDRAM RAM
  • 500GB 5400 RPM HDD
  • 15.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Windows 8.1
  • 6 hours battery life
  • 6 lbs

Pros

  • Full size keyboard with numpad
  • Impressive battery life
  • Low price

Cons

  • Cheap plasticky build
  • poor performance

Summary

A good machine for the user on a budget, performs well for day to day tasks but wouldn't recommend for more demanding applications.

Dell Inspiron i3542-1666BK 15.6-Inch
from $359.99 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:46 UTC) Details

Dell Inspiron I3542-11001BK 15.6

Dell Inspiron I3542-11001BK 15.6

When it comes to laptops, most budget buyers will prefer performance over aesthetics. The Dell Inspiron I3542-11001BK provides sufficient power for everyday tasks and some more moderate level apps. It has a 15.6-inch screen with a resolution of 1366 x 768 plus a touchscreen which adds extra functionality for Windows 8 navigation, a standard configuration for full sized laptops in this price bracket. Its simple design is constructed entirely out of plastic which helps to keep its weight and cost low. Packing an Intel Core i3-4030 processor and 4 GB memory, it won’t have any problem tackling simple programs but if you want to run bigger applications it is recommended you upgrade the memory to 8 GB. The 750 GB storage can store lots of documents and videos but the transfer rates will be slower than the new 7200 rpm Hard Drives. If storage is your main concern, the i3542-3267bk comes with a bigger hard drive for the same price, but it doesn’t have a touchscreen. The i3542-11001BK has enough USB ports for you to connect multiple peripherals like an external HDD or a Bluetooth mouse and also includes a multiformat DVD burner with double-layer support which lets you record up to 8.5 GB of data in a dual layer DVD. Overall, potential buyers will be impressed with this bestseller’s value for money performance despite its no frills design.

Specs

  • 15.6 inch, 1366 x 768 pixels (TN)
  • Windows 8.1
  • 4 hours battery life

Pros

  • Sleek design
  • Good performance
  • Sharp touchscreen

Cons

  • Poor sound quality
  • Build quality
  • Webcam quality

Summary

A good entry level machine with good hardware and a responsive touchscreen. Unfortunately the sound quality and webcam leave much to be desired.

Dell Inspiron I3542-11001BK 15.6-Inch
from $405.08 Read Reviews Order Now
from Amazon.com
(as of 24-05-2016 02:52 UTC) Details

This covers all of the current laptops that we’d recommend checking out. If you can spare a few bucks be sure to check our guide to laptops under $500 . For more options and reviews be sure to checkout our other guides to cheap laptops which can help save you time and money in the search for the ultimate machine to meet your needs. If you have more than a few hundred bucks to spare then our best all-purpose laptop guides will be your best bet to find top of the line machines at awesome prices.   If you find a new laptop you think deserves a spot on our list not listed here feel free to drop us a line and we’ll get right on it. Let the hunt continue!

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