Best Budget Windows Laptop Under 200

Best Windows Laptop Under 200 – When shopping for the best affordable laptops there’s a lot to consider. Here’s a good breakdown on how to find the best laptop for you.

The Lenovo 100e Chromebook is an ultra-budget laptop that still delivers on what’s important: performance, battery, and portability. If you don’t need something quite so rugged (or Google-centric), we’d also recommend checking out the HP Stream 11. It checks the same important boxes and runs Windows 10 Home.

ROUND UP

1.ASUS VivoBook

Few PC makers do fun, gadgety features on their laptops quite like Asus. For example, for some time now Asus has added extra displays to models such as the ROG Zephyrus G14, with its optional 1,215-mini LED array on the top diagonal half its lid for displaying GIFs or photos, or the Zephyrus Duo 15, with its tilting 14-inch touchscreen that sits between the keyboard and main 15.6-inch display.

Those are gaming laptops, but you’ll also find dual screens on productivity laptops such as the VivoBook S15 S532, which has the second-gen ScreenPad, a touchpad that controls your cursor but is also a 5.6-inch touchscreen.

2.Dell Inspiron

A powerful, reasonably priced big-screen laptop, the Dell Inspiron 16 Plus is equally capable of rendering graphics-intensive games at 1080p as it is playing a 4K movie on an airplane tray table.

The laptop occupies a small slice of the market between Dell’s premium large notebooks (like the XPS 17) and bargain models (like the Inspiron 5000 series). So far, the Inspiron 16 Plus  has the market mostly to itself, but we expect new entrants over the next year. But with this laptop as good as it is—our new Editors’ Choice award winner for midrange desktop replacements—there’s little reason to wait.

3.HP Stream

Equipped with an Intel Celeron processor and a cramped 11.6-inch display, the venerable HP Stream 11, refreshed several times in the course of its life, is one of the most bare-bones Windows laptops you’ll find. We tested the latest  model for sale in 2021; with just 32GB of local storage and 4GB of RAM, it technically can’t run some modern apps.

If all you need is a portal to the internet, and you must stick to a budget and the Windows 10 operating system, the Stream 11 is actually a decent option. Otherwise, you’d do better to increase your budget to around $400 to get a more capable budget Windows machine, or expand your considerations to include Chromebooks.

4.HP Chromebook

Want an inexpensive Chromebook with a large display? The HP Chromebook 14 (reviewed at $248) is a solid choice. A significant upgrade over the AMD model, the Intel version of the Chromebook 14 lasts all day on a charge and has a comfortable keyboard.

The notebook also has a sleek white design and the 1080p display is a luxury at this price point. While other similarly priced Chromebooks offer better performance, the Chromebook 14 is a good all-rounder for basic tasks. It’s even one of the best laptops under .

5.Acer Chromebook

The Acer Chromebook Spin 713 (CP713-2W-5874) is an excellent Chromebook, with long battery life, a reliable keyboard and trackpad, and a vivid display. Compared with the similarly priced Samsung Galaxy Chromebook 2 and Pixelbook Go, the Spin 713 has a taller screen, more ports, and a 360-degree hinge. But it’s noticeably heavier and bulkier, and the other premium options have better build quality. If you find the Spin 713 on sale—or you don’t mind the extra weight—the Spin 713 is worth buying.

The Acer Chromebook 712 (C871-C85K) could be a good option for young kids, if you can find it in stock, thanks to its durable body and spill-resistant keyboard. But it’s a bit slower than our top picks—it can handle remote schoolwork or a video chat, but can’t do both at the same time gracefully. It also suffers from a terrible, low-resolution, non-touch screen, and its keyboard is mediocre.

Best Windows Laptop Under 200 – BUYER’S GUIDE

Portability – A budget laptop doesn’t have to be a clunker. For under $200, you can still find a compact and lightweight laptop. Most of these will be around 11 inches in terms of screen size, and weigh between 2 to 4 pounds. This makes them ideal for slipping into your backpack and taking to school or travel.

Productivity – While most budget laptops won’t be capable of intense tasks like video or photo editing, nearly all of them can handle web browsing, word processing, slideshows, and other productivity functions. The main operating systems you’e likely to encounter in both cases are Google’s Chrome OS and Microsoft’s pared-down Windows 10 S. Both operating systems are somewhat limited, but can let you do everything you might need for the average school day.

Battery Life – At minimum, a budget laptop should be able to handle 6-8 hours of work. That should be enough for a school day or workday, with some room to recharge in the evening. Chromebooks tend to be a bit better at preserving battery life due to their lighter OS, but the same is true of Windows 10 S laptop

Frequently Asked Questions

What’s your budget?

Sure you can find some diamond-in-the-rough, decent Windows laptops and high-quality Chromebooks for under $500, but you may have to deal with a low-performing CPU or a poor multitasker. If you’re a light laptop user, those will be OK, but if you need something more powerful, you may aint to aim higher — the best mainstream laptops typically cost more than $700. If you can, we suggest aiming for the $700 to $900 range.

Do you want a 2-in-1 or a clamshell?

If you enjoy the awesomeness of converting your laptop into a tablet, then the 2-in-1 laptops are a good choice. But keep in mind that most times, you’ll be able to get a lower price and stronger-performing features with a traditional laptop.

How much battery life do you need?

If you’re on the go, you’re going to need to make sure you snag a laptop that lasts more than 10 hours.  But if you’re a homebody or you’re tied to your desk all day, perhaps you can sacrifice some battery life and save some money in the process. Check out our longest-lasting laptops list.

What specs do you need? 

Aim for a Core i5 CPU if you want decent performance. Memory and storage, you should aim for 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD. As far as display, don’t get anything less than 1080p screen — your eyes will thank you later.

You can spend a lot of time delving into specs, but here are the key components to think about. If you just want really good mainstream performance, go for a Core i5 CPU, 8GB of RAM, a 256GB SSD and a 1080p screen.

Gamers and content creators should be on the market for a laptop with discreet graphics, but finding a high-performing GPU under $1,000 might not be an easy task.

WRAP UP

These days, sub-$200 laptops commonly ship with HD displays, full Windows 10 (rather than something more limited, like Google’s Chrome OS), and a decent chunk of internal storage. Many also come with a free year of Microsoft Office 365—perfect for the students they’re targeting.

To find the best of this affordable bunch, we put the most popular models through a series of performance and display tests in our state-of-the-art labs. Then we put them to the test at our desks, to get a feel for real-world factors like keyboard feel, trackpad responsiveness, and build quality.

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