Are you looking for budget laptop? Are you a college student or a new gammer who is looking for low budget laptop? If you are looking for a cost effective laptop that fit your needs, you have to do some research. In general, the HP Pavilion 15-CC183CL fit most of pepole. The Dell i5577-7359BLK-PUS and Acer Nitro 5 AN515-51-55WL are the entry level gaming laptop.
Before I show the specifications of the recommended laptops, let me explain how to choose laptop in general.
How to choose a laptop?
CPU is one of the most important component of a computer, It is the brain of the computer. There are two major type of CPU, Intel and AMD. I have used both AMD and Intel CPUs, I would not recommend AMD even though they are cheaper. AMD CPUs have a lot of compatibility issues. Intel CPUs, however, are more reliable and stabler. Intel’s CORE series are the most commonly used in laptop and desktop, respectively i3, i5, i7 and m series. The vast majority of people will recommend to buy i7, as it has the highest performance, however, great performance come with high price, i7 is the most expensive CPU.
If you don’t know if you should choose i5 or i7, I would suggest to go for i5, it is $100-$200 cheaper, but you don’t lose too much noticeable performance. In normal usage, for example, browsing internet and watching movies, you couldn’t tell the differences between i5 and i7. If you are really low in budget, choose i3, don’t think about the m series, it is useless.
Computer memory determine how fast your computer is. People usually think CPU is the speed of the computer, it is not 100% true, CPU loads applications, but once application is loaded, computer will put it in memory, they more memory you have the more applications it can store. If a computer does not have enough memory, it will drop the less frequently used application from the memory, if you need to use that application again, CPU will have to load it from the beginning again.For modem computers, I would suggest to have at least 8GB of ram, 16GB is recommended.
Hard disk is used to store files permanently. There are three types of hard disks, mechanical hard disk drives(HDD), solid state drives(SSD) and hybrid hard drives. The speed of SSDs far surpass mechanical hard disks. When a computer loads a program, CPU read the files stored in the hard disk and load them in memory(RAM), the faster it reads, the quicker you load the program. Generally, SSD is quiet and it reads 3x faster than traditional hard drives. The only downside of SSD is that they are usually more expensive and it has less storage space than HDD, but I think it is worth spending the extra money. Hybrid hard drives was introduced to solve the SSD capacity issue, the loading speed is not noticeable. So Ii do not recommend using it.
Screen resolution is important, the higher resolution, the sharper the screen will be. I would suggest to buy at least 1080P, which is 1920 x 1080 resolution, with this resolution, you can barely see the dots on the screen. With 4K resolution, it is retina, you can’t see the dots with your eyes. There are two types of screen panels, Twisted Nematic (TN) and In-Plane Switching (IPS), TN screen’s view angle is small, brightness is relatively low, so I recommend IPS screen.
Other than the laptop performance, the other thing I consider is the appearance, I would choose thin and light laptops, they are portable, you can easily fit them in your backpack. However, portable laptops come with high price, for example the HP Spectre x360, cost over $1500. Battery Life is also very important, the average laptop battery can only last an hour or two. I need laptop that can last at least 4 hours. Some laptops consume less energy because they have good cooling design, cooling in laptop is very important, it not only saves energy but also made the hardware last longer. The last thing to consider is the screen, most new laptops now use LED screen, they are thinner and the color is very sharp, it also save energy.
1. HP Pavilion 15-cc183cl Touchscreen Laptop - Intel Core i7-8550U - 4GB NVIDIA - 12 GB RAM 1TB HD
This laptop has fast CPU and 12GB of RAM, however, the only downside is not using SSD.
- Processor & Memory: Intel Core i7-8550U Processor at 1.8GHz 12GB DDR4 (2 DIMM) RAM
- Drives: 1TB 5400RPM SATA Hard Drive DVD Writer (writes to DVD/CD)
- Operating System: Microsoft® Windows 10 Home (64 bit)
- Communications: Intel® Wireless-AC WLAN + Bluetooth HP Wide Vision HD Webcam with Integrated Dual Digital Microphone
- Graphics & Video: 15.6" Touchscreen WLED-backlit FHD IPS (1920 x 1080) Display 4GB NVIDIA GeForce 940MX Graphics
2. Acer Nitro 5 Gaming Laptop, Intel Core i5-7300HQ, GeForce GTX 1050 Ti, 15.6” Full HD, 8GB DDR4, 256GB SSD, AN515-51-55WL
This is an impressive laptop that’s worth your consideration and represents a good value for a few reasons. This is the nicest ‘feeling’ Acer product I’ve reviewed. This is a premium product. The external branding is a more muted than on a lot of ‘gaming’ laptops and this model will not look gaudy in a classroom or office environment. That’s not the case for many competitors, which look obnoxious. The red screen bezel is a muted red, more like an accent, and the only really distinction will be that sweet backlit keyboard. While you can tell this is a gaming laptop at first sight, it still looks professional. The laptop has a high performance SSD hard drive, with no moving parts, leading to a perception of a very fast system because Windows and your programs will load very quickly, however, there’s only 211 gb free on the hard drive. That’s not a problem if you just delete games you aren’t using, and adding another hard drive is possible.
- 7th Generation Intel Core i5-7300HQ Processor (Up to 2.5 GHz)
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 Ti with 4 GB of dedicated GDDR5 VRAM
- 15.6" Full HD (1920 x 1080) widescreen IPS display
- 8GB DDR4 Memory & 256GB SSD
- Up to 8.5-hours of battery life
3. Dell Inspiron Gaming Laptop - 15.6” Full HD, Core i7- 7700HQ, 8 GB RAM, 1000 GB HDD + 128GB SSD, GTX 1050, Metal Chassis - i5577-7359BLK-PUS
-Cheapest gaming rig for this specs.
-Very long battery life - 10 hours
-It runs anything for now.
-3 USB 3.1s, 1 of which is thunderbolt
-128GB SSD is enough for Windows 10 only,
-8 GB of RAM is not enough
-It weighs 3 kg
-Heavy charger to power up battery
- 7th Generation Intel Core i7-7700HQ Quad Core (6MB Cache, up to 3.8 GHz)
- 8GB 2400MHz DDR4 up to 32GB (additional memory sold separately)
- Dual drives with 128GB Solid State Drive + 1TB 5400 rpm Hard Drive, No Optical Drive option
- 15.6-inch FHD (1920 x 1080) Anti-Glare LED-Backlit Display
- Windows 10 Home 64-bit English
4. ASUS ZenBook UX430UA-DH74 14” FHD wideview display 8th gen Intel Core i7 Processor, 16GB DDR3, 512GB SSD, Backlit keyboard
It's an amazing laptop, beautiful and very powerful for how thin it is. It is ultra portable with a lot of RAM and SSD spaces.
- 14-Inch wide-view Full-HD nano-edge bezel display in 13.3" chassis with Windows 10 Pre-installed
- Latest 8th generation Intel i7-8550U 1.8 GHz Processor (Turbo to 4.0 GHz)
- Fast storage and memory featuring 512GB SSD with 16GB DDR3 RAM. Display : 7.18mm-thin bezel with 80% screen-to-body ratio for larger visible screen area
- Extensive connectivity with micro HDMI/USB Type C, 802.11a/c WiFi, and SD Card Reader
- Sleek and light weight 2.75 lbs aluminum body for comfortable portability
If you still don’t know which model to choose, here is my configuration suggestions:
- CPU: i5 or above, but at least the 6 generation, e.g. i5-6xxxxU series.
- RAM: at least 8GB.
- Hard Drive: at least 256GB SSD.
- Graphic card: 950M or above.
- Screen resolution: 1920x1080 or above.
A decent laptop with above configuration should cost about $500 to $800. For example, this Acer Aspire E5-576G-5762 is less than $600.
Different laptop serves different purpose, if you are a college student, I would suggest to buy the HP Pavilion 15-CC183CL, if you are a new gamer with limited budget, the Acer Nitro 5 AN515-51-55WL is not a bad option. I am a big fans of portable laptops, I would choose the ASUS ZenBook UX430UA-DH74, but many people complains about the fan noise, be aware of that. Enjoy!