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When looking for the best laptops under $600, it’s important to manage your expectations.
This is not a tight budget category, but most models in this price range will not all all-star players. Realistically, in this price range, you won’t be able to do a lot of graphically intense stuff or high-end gaming.
The laptops under $600 are great for everyday use and are perfect for students and other light users. Laptops at this price point are excellent all-purpose notebooks as well.
If you are aware of all of this before, then comes the challenge of finding the right one for you in a sea of laptops. The more models you look at, the more confusing it gets. This is where we come in.
We have done hours and hours of research to find the best laptops under $600 or around that price range. This will save you a lot of time and you will thank us later. Without wasting any more of your time, let’s get in.
|Acer Aspire 5
|ASUS VivoBook 15
|Acer Swift 3||
|Lenovo Flex 5||
Best Laptops Under $600
Here are our top picks for the best laptops under $600.
Best Laptop Under $600 – Acer Aspire 5 A515-55G-57H8
The Acer Aspire 5 is our choice for the best laptop under $600. The laptop that costs a little bit more than $600 but for everything you get in this machine, the extra premium is definitely worth it.
The laptop comes with a 15.6” LED-backlit IPS display that gives you crystal clear pictures with vivid colors. The display is excellent for media consumption as well as everyday browsing and activities. Even if you want to edit photos, this display will give you a nice color-accurate screen to work with.
We have a 10th generation Intel Core i5 processor powering this Acer Aspire 5 laptop. This is a quad-core chip that comes with pretty good clock speed and can handle all your everyday activities without any issues. The Intel cache memory of 6 MB will surely keep enough information in memory when using regular applications like browsers and office apps.
We have 8GB of RAM in the memory department and they are perfect for multitasking. You will be able to run several applications simultaneously without impacting the overall performance of this Acer laptop. The storage on this laptop is a 512GB SSD that brings a lot of performance improvements all across the board.
The laptop also comes with a dedicated graphics card in the form of an Nvidia GeForce MX 250. This is an entry-level graphics card and is perfect for light gaming and even some mid-range games that are graphically intensive. If you want to play some heavy games, you might want to tone down the settings a lot.
The battery life of this Acer Aspire 5 laptop is another excellent selling point. With simple use, you can easily squeeze around 8 to 10 hours of battery life which is fantastic. Even with heavy use, you can easily get around 4 to 6 hours of battery life which is not something you get with every laptop in this price range.
Runner Up – ASUS VivoBook 15 F512JA-AS54
The Asus VivoBook 15 is our second best choice for the best laptop under $600.
Unlike our first choice, this one is actually under $600 and brings some amazing specs to the table. If you don’t want to spend even a penny extra, then this laptop should be your first choice.
The Asus VivoBook 15 laptop comes with a 15.6” LED-backlit display with a resolution of 1920 by 1080 pixels. The IPS panel does a pretty good job when it comes to color representation and presents as with vibrant images that are crisp and with an excellent contrast ratio. The display is perfect for day-to-day use and is a gem for media consumption.
The processor that powers this Asus VivoBook 15 model is an Intel Core i5 processor from its 10th generation. This is a quad-core processor that can clock up to a maximum of 3.6 GHz and brings more than enough power to the table. The processor does a pretty good job when it comes to handling even heavy applications which means you don’t have to be a light user to use this laptop.
We have 8 GB of RAM in the memory department that gives you a lot of freedom to multitask. The 512 GB of SSD storage is very fast and brings a lot of performance enhancements. Together all these three components work well and present a solid user experience to the user.
The battery life of this Asus laptop is also quite good. With simple use, you should easily get around 6 to 8 hours of battery life which is impressive for a laptop in this price range. This number might go down if you start doing some heavy lifting, but for the price, this is quite good.
Best 14” Laptop Under $600 – Acer Swift 3 SF314-42-R7LH
The Acer Swift 3 is an excellent 14” laptop that falls well within the price range and gives as a laptop with all the premium features you can’t expect at this price point. If you’re looking for a portable device, then this one should interest you.
The display we have here is a 14” display that comes with full HD resolution. Thanks to the screen size, the pixel density of this display is a bit better which gives us sharper images and texts. The quality of colors is on point and the contrast ratio is also excellent, thanks to the IPS panel. Viewing angles of this display are also quite nice which makes this an excellent screen for media consumption.
The processor that runs the show on this Acer Swift 3 model is an AMD Ryzen 5 4500U processor. This is a hexa core processor from AMD and does a pretty good job when it comes to handling the everyday needs of even a mid-range user. The processor can go up to a maximum of 4.0GHz which is a lot of power and most of the laptop’s target audience won’t even need half of it.
The memory department on this laptop is flush with 8GB of RAM which should give you enough memory to take your productivity to the next level. With this memory, you can have a few tabs open on your favorite browser, from social media, work on your office document, and also listen to music in the background, happening at the same time.
The storage on this laptop is a 256GB solid-state drive which comes with excellent reading and writing speeds. The laptop does not have a dedicated graphics card which means you will have to depend on the integrated graphics cards for all your gaming needs.
Other notable features on this model or a backlit keyboard, a fingerprint reader, and also the availability of WiFi 6 which is way better than WiFi 5.
Best Touchscreen Laptop Under $600 – HP 14”
If you are looking for a touchscreen laptop under $600, then this HP laptop is a pretty good choice. The laptop brings a decent set of specs that are targeted towards the light user and even some mid-range users.
The display we have here is a 14” LED-backlit display that comes with a resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels. This is just HD resolution and the pixel density is a lot worse than what you would find in a full HD display. But the display comes as a touchscreen which is something you don’t have in the other models. If you want a touchscreen on your laptop, then this one is your best bet.
The processor that powers this HP laptop is an AMD Ryzen 3 processor. This is an entry-level processor that does a pretty good job of handling all your everyday needs without any issues. You might even be able to do some heavy lifting but it is limited. The 8GB of RAM in the memory department offers good support to the processor and also allows you to spread your wings in terms of productivity.
The storage on this laptop is made up of 256GB solid-state drive. This HP laptop needs all the support as it has an entry-level processor, and SSD provides just that. It loads the operating system and other applications as quickly as possible reducing the waiting times to a minimum. Not only that, but the SSD also injects performance announcements wherever possible.
The laptop comes with a USB Type-C port which gives us the latest standard for data transfer and external connectivity. With this post, you can transfer data at very high speeds, charge your device, and also connect your laptop to a high-end monitor. In addition to this post, the laptop also comes with all essential connectivity options which are nice to have.
Best Convertible Laptop Under $600 – Lenovo Flex 5
If you are looking for a convertible laptop under $600, you are not going to find one because there isn’t one. This Lenovo Flex 5 laptop is an alternative that costs you an additional $50 but brings you a lot of convertible goodness in one machine.
This is also one of the most portable laptops we have come across in this price range as it weighs around 3.64lbs. One of the main reasons for this lightweight is the screen which is just 14” in size. The Screen comes with full HD resolution which gives it an excellent pixel density leading to sharp images and texts.
The processor that powers this Lenovo laptop is an AMD Ryzen 5 chip. This is a pretty good device that comes with excellent day to day performance and is a lot cheaper than its Intel alternative. The processor can clock up to a maximum of 4.0 GHz which is a lot of power for most users.
The memory department on this laptop is extraordinary with 16 GB of RAM. This will allow you to do a lot more than you could ever think of. You can run multiple applications side-by-side without affecting the overall performance of the laptop. You will even be able to run virtual machines which are awesome for a laptop under $600.
The 256GB solid-state drive does well when it comes to storage and offers excellent reading and writing speeds. The laptop’s integrated graphics card is decent enough to do some light gaming and might just allow some mid-range gaming at best.
Best Laptops Under $600 – Ultimate Buying Guide
Here’s the perfect buying guide that’ll help you find the right laptop for you under $600.
If you’re not happy with any of our picks above, then this guide will hold your hands in your pursuit of the best notebook that costs less than $600.
Let’s dive in.
Design and Portability
At this price point, finding a well-designed laptop is going to be a bit of a challenge. This price is not very budget, but finding a laptop that is as good as a flagship laptop isn’t just feasible.
In terms of build material, you should expect plastic in most models out there. There will be certain laptops that have a combination of both aluminum and plastic which adds some strength to their overall durability. While lower-end models might exhibit some creaking noise, well-built laptops will not have those. High-end laptops might come with a smaller footprint but you cannot expect those design tweaks in a budget laptop.
Since plastic is the main material used for construction in most laptops in this price range, you will find them to be lightweight. Most laptops will be around 5lbs and there will be certain laptops that might even be around 4lbs. If you are a student, then you might want to go with a laptop that is portable and easy to carry around. This is also true for people who travel a lot. If portability is not an issue for you, then you can go for any-size laptop without holding yourself back.
Display and Audio
Even though we are pushing for a laptop in the budget segment, finding one with a good display is very important. You will be spending most of the time looking at the laptop screen for the most part so having a good display is something you should not compromise on.
The display size depends on what you want. If you want a widescreen display that gives you big real estate, then the sweet spot is around 15.6”. This display size is perfect for media consumption and also will be great for day to day activities. If you are going to work from home or someone who wants to improve your productivity, Then this size is a pretty good choice.
If portability is very important for you, then you should go for a laptop with a 13.3” display. Finding a smaller laptop in this price range is a challenge. These laptops belong to a segment called ultrabooks and they are usually a lot more expensive than $600. However, you will have some luck in finding 14” laptops which are excellent for portability. We have included one 14” laptop in our list as well.
Next, let’s talk about the resolution. Ideally, you will want a full HD resolution on your display. Full HD resolution is the maximum you can expect in this price range and will give you the best pixel density there is. The good news is that you will find a lot of full HD displays in this price range and we have included some as well. But not all of them are going to have this resolution and you will also find HD displays that excellent other specifications. This situation will present to you a dilemma of whether you should go for display or the hardware inside, and you are the best judge of it.
The display should also come with decent maximum brightness. A common maximum brightness in this price range would be from 200 to 300 nits. This brightness is not going to help you walk under the bright sun but it will give you a helping hand if you work in a brightly lit room.
If possible, you can also try getting an antiglare display. This display will help you reduce the number of reflections you get on the screen so that you can work without getting distracted. One minor caveat is that you might lose a bit of color accuracy in pursuit of anti-glare, but for some, it is worth it.
Let’s talk about audio. For a laptop that is priced under $600, the speakers are going to be average at best. You’re not going to get speakers that are as good as the MacBook Pro which is almost 2 to 4 times the cost.
The best-case scenario is getting a speaker that can fill a medium-sized room without a lot of noise. Another common issue with speakers in this price range is that they can add a bit of distortion to the audio quality at higher volumes so make sure you keep them at the mid-level to get the best sound quality. If you are someone who worries a lot about sound quality, then it is better to go with a dedicated speaker than relying on the laptop speakers.
Having a good processor on your laptop is a necessity.
From a laptop that comes around the price point of $600, you can expect decent processing power. In most cases, you will find a dual-core processor but if you search enough, you will also find quad-core models that might cost you a bit more but are worth every penny.
Our recommendation would be to go for a dual-core processor if you are a light user. If you are a student or a home user, then you may not have to deal with Pro applications or heavy applications that involve creative work. If your daily activities are mostly browsing then, streaming videos, taking notes, and social media, then do you look or processor will be more than enough.
If you are someone who needs a bit of power to go through your everyday routine, then you need a quad-core processor. This quad-core processor is a good fit for those who edit photos, work with heavy applications like huge spreadsheets, professional apps, and more.
Having good clock speed is also essential so that the processor can give you what you need without having to overclock every single time. Make sure that the processor comes with at least 2GHz of base clocking frequency. This, however, is not going to be the case with most of the models as most laptops come with a base clock speed of 1.1 or 1.0 GHz. That is also fine but the laptop will go into a turbo boost if you are someone who does a lot of work.
When it comes to picking the right brand, most people will usually prefer Intel. Intel processors have proven themselves on the market and they are a very good choice for beginners. But if you want to save some money or get more value for the price, then going with AMD would be a smarter choice. AMD processors have improved a lot over the years and are now neck and neck with Intel in terms of performance. Taking advantage of AMD processors might give you some more budget to play with or more performance per dollar.
Let’s talk about memory. As a minimum, we would recommend having at least 4GB of RAM on your laptop to have a usable experience. This is the bare minimum any laptop should have these days especially if it is running a full operating system like Windows.
If a laptop prioritizes the display or other specifications over memory, then there is a good chance that you are going to end up with only 4 GB of RAM. With this memory, you will be able to handle everyday tasks without any issues. You can browse the web, stream online content, enjoy social media, and do a lot more with a little bit of multitasking.
If you are a productivity-focused person, then having 8GB RAM on your laptop is a must. It is not going to be a huge challenge to find a laptop with 8GB RAM in this price range and we have a lot of them on our list above. This RAM will give you the freedom to multitask without worrying about the performance of the laptop. You can run several applications together and have a smooth experience.
If you are going to go for a laptop that has just 4GB of RAM, do check if they allow you to upgrade it later. This means you can upgrade the RAM in the future when you need it.
Another nitpicky thing is to go for a RAM that is DDR4 type. This type of RAM is a lot faster than the previous generation DDR3 and gives you more performance per dollar.
How much choice when it comes to storage is always a solid-state drive. For a laptop that is priced under $600, getting a solid-state drive with enough storage capacity is going to be quite a challenge. The best storage you can possibly get at this price range is 256 GB and that is only possible when the manufacturer compromises on a lot of other hardware.
If you are a light user who doesn’t have a lot of need for storage space, then you can even settle for 128 GB solid-state drive so that you don’t have to compromise on the other hardware in your laptop. This way, you can get enough processing power and memory and also the speed of a solid-state drive.
A solid-state drive will impact the laptop‘s performance in a lot of ways. It can boot the operating system in just a few seconds which will reduce a lot of waiting time in the case of a mechanical hard drive. This solid-state drive will also launch applications quickly and can move data very fast as well.
If even if you are on a budget, we recommend to not take the route of the mechanical hard drive. These hard drives are very slow and can bring you down when it comes to performance. The fastest solid-state drive is 17 times faster than the slowest mechanical hard drive which gives us the whole story.
If you must have a lot of storage space, one compromise we can suggest is having a combination of both a mechanical hard drive and a solid-state drive. This setup is called hybrid storage and it will give you the benefit of both space as well as speed.
If you plan to game on your laptop or if you want to do some graphics work on your device, then having a good graphics solution on your laptop is very important.
For under $600, you are not going to find a laptop with a dedicated graphics card. Most laptops with dedicated graphics cards start at around the $700 or the $800 range. If the graphics are very important to you, then we highly recommend switching gears and moving your budget a bit higher so that you can get good graphics performance.
Having said that, the integrated graphics cards you get in modern laptops are a lot better than what we used to find. The 10th generation Intel chips come with excellent integrated graphics cards that can help you do even mid-range gaming without any compromise. AMD is no slouch when it comes to flexing its graphics card powers.
With the integrated graphics cards, you will be able to do some light gaming without any compromise and even at the highest settings. In this case, you will get excellent frame rates and there will not be any chopping or screen tearing of any kind. If you want to do some mid-range gaming, then you will naturally observe the frame rate dropping, and depending on the game, you may have to adjust the settings to get a playable frame rate.
Integrated graphics will be more than enough for most users who want to work on casual graphic design. If you want to edit photos on Photoshop or use an application like Illustrator, having a quad-core processor on your laptop should help you cross the line without any difficulty.
If you are a student or someone who moves around a lot, having a laptop with good battery life is very essential. When you’re on the move, you are completely dependent on your laptop’s battery and you need to make sure that it’s a good one.
When it comes to battery life, there are a few all-stars in this price range that can give you a battery life of more than seven hours. We have included them in our list above so make sure you check them out.
With light use, your laptop should give you around 6 to 8 hours of battery life. If you can get more, then don’t leave that laptop for life. But most laptops in this price range will give you around 4 to 5 hours of battery life. As we mentioned above, there are a few all-stars and we have mentioned them on this list.
This battery life is not going to be the same when you do some heavy stuff. When you’re editing photos, streaming online with the speakers, and doing other stuff, you will notice that the battery life comes down drastically. In such scenarios, expecting around 3 to 4 hours or even three hours of maximum battery life is very normal.
Make sure that the laptop comes with a decent-sized battery that will last for a long time. The battery should not leak and shouldn’t lose performance after a very short time. Do read user reviews to see if the laptop really performs as well as the manufacturer says.
Having essential connectivity options on your laptop is not something you can overlook. Make sure that your laptop comes with USB ports that are good for data transfer and external connectivity.
In a few years, the new USB standard would be the USB 3.2 Type-C reversible port. It is a shame that most laptops or pretty much all laptops in this price range will not include this port because of the budget. If you want to Futureproof your laptop, then we suggest adding $100 more to this budget where you can get this port and get set for the future.
Your laptop should also have the latest wireless connectivity standards. Having 802.11ac WiFi as important as you can browse the internet at very good speeds without the need for using an ethernet port. Your laptop should also have Bluetooth built-in so that connecting with Bluetooth-enabled external devices is a breeze.
You need to make sure that your laptop comes with a good keyboard and touchpad.
Having a keyboard that doesn’t work will make your life miserable. The keyboard on your laptop must have a nice build and the keys should come with a decent amount of travel. The typing experience on your keyboard is something you shouldn’t compromise on as it can bother you every single time.
Having a backlit keyboard has a great advantage but most models in this price range or not going to give you that. There are a few laptops that come with a backlit keyboard in this price range and we have included the best of them on our list above.
With very few laptops in this price range come with a fingerprint reader. This is a premium feature that is usually found in laptops that are priced much higher than the range you’re working with. But if you are willing to do the research, you will find a laptop or two with a fingerprint reader which is definitely not an essential feature. So do feel free to skip if that is not important to you.
The touchpad on the laptop should have a smooth surface and must support all the gestures of the Windows operating system. Your daily experience may vary depending upon the touchpad on your laptop and selecting the right one is in your hands.
That’s all we have for this ultimate buying guide for the best laptops under $600.
We heartfully hope that this guide was able to give you the light you are searching for. If you are still unable to find the right device for you, do email us and we will try to give you a solution at the earliest.
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