Budget Laptops Buyers Guide

Shopping for a general purpose notebook can be one of the easiest or the most stressful activities for a family or a student. “General purpose” laptops make up the overwhelming majority of budget notebook and netbook sales worldwide. These systems range from $250 netbooks with 10-inch displays to 17-inch desktop replacement notebooks with budget configurations in the $600 price range.

A general purpose notebook usually doesn’t have a high-performance processor, discrete graphics or entertainment-oriented features like 1080p displays, Blu-ray drives or high-quality stereo speakers. These budget-priced laptops are intended for basic tasks like browsing the web, sending email, using Microsoft Office or similar productivity software, watching web-based videos, balancing your checkbook or playing light games. Although some of these affordable laptops are durable enough to handle years of family or student use, build quality generally isn’t a priority for a general purpose laptop. These systems are priced to essentially be “impulse purchases” for consumers who need a new family PC or laptop for their young student.

You can usually expect the weight of a general purpose notebook to vary greatly in proportion to the size of the display. A typical 10-inch netbook weighs three pounds or less while a budget desktop-replacement notebook with a 17-inch screen will tip the scales at seven pounds or more. Of course, these systems always come with standard 802.11a/b/g or n Wi-Fi and sometimes are even available with a cellular modem or Bluetooth.

Recent Budget Laptops Reviews

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Lenovo Review

Lenovo ThinkPad E450 Review

Despite the E450’s modest size, this 14-inch laptop features a full HD display and comes in a variety of different configurations. Is the E450 as good as it sounds or[...] Read full article

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Acer Chromebook 15 Review

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Acer Aspire R14 Review

This affordable 14-inch convertible ultrabook features a Core i5 CPU and a well built 360-degree hinge. The $650 price tag makes the Aspire R14 less expensive than Lenovo’s Yoga line,[...] Read full article

Toshiba Review

Toshiba Chromebook 2 Review: Surprising Value

Thanks to its 1080p high-definition display and reasonable performance, this is one of the best Chromebooks on the market today. Keep reading to find out why it gets our recommendation[...] Read full article

Lenovo Review

Lenovo Flex 2 Review

It’s hard to make a desktop-replacement laptop standout in a market dominated by gaming rigs, Ultrabooks, and 2-in-1s. But that hasn’t stopped the Lenovo Flex 2 15. Its 300-degree hinge[...] Read full article

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E FUN Nextbook 10.1 Review

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Lenovo Review

Lenovo N20P Chromebook Review

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Asus Review

Asus Transformer Book T100 vs T200: Battle of the Budget 2-in-1

There are a number of convertible notebook tablets on the market but Asus has two of the best 2-in-1 laptops for the holidays. We took a closer look to help[...] Read full article

Lenovo Review

Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 11e Chromebook Review: An alternative to low-end PCs

Lenovo's newest ThinkPad for schools is a Chromebook with amazing build quality. This device offers all the bells & whistles of a low-end notebook for school, but is the $479[...] Read full article

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