15 Best Cheap Laptops under $300 – 2017

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There are hundreds of best laptops under $300 available on the market. When your budget is $300, you have plenty of options to choose from. That’s what makes it tough to finalize, and before you decide, you need to know your usage. These kinds of laptops are not recommended for playing games as they do not have this sort of power. However, one can play light games casually without hurting the device. We would highly recommend that you choose a laptop with minimum Intel Core i3 processor, 4 GB of Memory and 500 GB of Hard Disk. Many do research for days before they finally figure out the best budget laptop for themselves and still end up making the wrong decision. Well, we have already done that for you, and here you will find the most reliable and powerful laptops that are available for under $300.

These budget laptops are decent performers, neither too overpowering nor too slow. Mostly they are preferred for basic tasks like working on MS Office, browsing, watching movies, casual gaming and video chatting. We have listed these laptops according to their specifications, sales, positive reviews, value and build quality. These notebooks can be used for casual tasks by college students, businessmen, graphic designers and video editors. Some of them might have some heating issues, and if that happens, we suggest you start using a decent cooling pad. Other than laptops, you might also find some netbooks and chromebooks in our list of best budget laptops under $300. Also note, chromebooks and netbooks are not suitable for gaming or any other heavier applications.

What to expect from Laptop under $300?

Mostly you’ll find 13-inch laptops in this list as they are the most reliable ones for around $300. If you need a 15-inch display, then you have to compromise on specifications as both of them might not be possible for such price. You can also look for used or refurbished laptops under $300 as they’ll certainly be more powerful and of better size than brand new laptops. The weight of the device also plays a significant role so always prefer lightweight laptops over heavy ones. Battery backup is another important aspect, and you should look for at least 5 to 7 hours of battery life.

How to compare these budget $300 Laptops?

Comparing laptops before buying is a very important thing to do and I believe that’s the only solution to make the entire confusion and settle the battle between plenty of laptops. Firstly, you will have to ensure what size and brand you desire then you can compare their specifications like storage space, memory, processor, OS and battery life. These surely are the must know things before buying your new notebook and one must be very confident about the specifications before finalizing. For me, size of laptop doesn’t matters as long as it’s sturdy enough to handle my applications. In some laptops under $300, you might see the feature of touch screen display and it’s totally up to you if you need it or not.

Our Top Picks for Best Laptops under $300 in 2017

1. Acer Aspire ES1-572-31KW

Acer Aspire ES1-572-31KW

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The Acer Aspire ES1-572-31KW is the best laptop under $300 available on the market as it packs the specifications that are usually seen in laptops under $500. It was launched just last month and is already one of the best-selling laptops under $300 of 2017. It’s a great value for money in Acer Aspire series, and it isn’t the first time that Acer is offering something like this for such an affordable price. To be completely honest, this model packs hardware for $300 that is too good to be true as its processor itself costs over $200 and the 15-inch laptop also features premium and lightweight design. This model comes with 4 GB RAM but many prefer upgrading it to 8 GB RAM, it can be upgraded up to 16 GB RAM maximum if that’s what you need.

Other than design and specifications, it packs clear and loudspeakers that are great while watching movies, listening music and playing games. It features a full HD display with Cine Crystal technology that will make your screen brighter and sharper using the vivid colors. It comes with integrated graphics by Intel and to be particular; it uses Intel 520 HD graphics. Its Chiclet keyboard feels great while writing and its touchpad is well built as well. Overall, it’s among the best i3 laptops and I personally don’t think anyone could get something better than this.

  • 6th Gen Intel Core i3-6100U Processor
  • 4GB DDR3L Memory
  • 1TB 5400RPM HDD
  • Windows 10 Home

2. HP Stream 14-ax010nr

HP Stream 14-ax010nr

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The HP Stream 14-ax010nr is one of the latest laptops under $300 that comes with decent specifications and is especially designed for travelers. It’s available in two different sizes, 11-inch and 14-inch and there isn’t really a big different of price between them so you choose whichever is convenient. It’s a portable mid-size laptop that is made for people who need the device for casual work like browsing, checking emails, video chatting, social networking, etc. I wouldn’t recommend it to those who have to run bulky applications. However, one can effortlessly run MS Office and other average programs.

It’s available in two colors, Violet Purple and Aqua Blue and I would suggest Violet one as it is a lot more attractive and will cost you a nominal extra fee. It has been improved drastically compared to its last year’s model, and it’s undoubtedly the best laptop under $250. It’s also better at multi-tasking as well as performing heavier applications. The only downside of this device is, its limited storage space but one can always use the memory card for extra space. Its keyboard is great, and one can write for hours without any issues, and it’s highly recommended laptop for writers. Overall, we know it has limits on speed and space, but that can’t stop you from your creativity, so if you’re in need of ultra-budget laptop, then this is it.

  • Intel Celeron N3060
  • 4 GB DDR3L SDRAM
  • 32 GB eMMC

3. ASUS Transformer Book T100HA-C4-GR

ASUS TRANSFORMER LAPTOP UNDER $300

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The ASUS Transformer Book is a budget 2-in-1 laptop and is powered by Windows 10. When it comes to build quality and portability, it can’t be compared with any other budget notebook. It delivers a strong performance and comes with a great battery life of up to 12 hours. Some people have had issues with docking system and they believe it’s heavy when docked. It boasts many premium features like solid performance, amazing battery, affordable price and crisp display. Its recent model has been breaking all sales records and it just might be the most popular convertible laptop of 2017. It’s possible to use it only as a tablet and can be carried around easily.

It has been expertly designed to last long unlike other ordinary 2-in-1 hybrids, and it aims to offer portability and performance at the same time. It’s a decent option to use at home, college, office, vacation and cafes. It’s like a companion that is always with you and for whatever you need. The 10-inch device is notably comfortable, and it’s the best value 2-in-1 PC. Sometimes it’s hard to believe that one could get a tablet as well as a laptop for such low price and I will be buying it next month to use it while traveling.

  • Intel Quad-Core
  • 4GB RAM
  • 64GB Storage

4. Acer Chromebook 14

Acer Chromebook 14

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If you’re looking for a Chromebook under $300, the Acer Chromebook 14 is an ideal and most powerful option. It’s primarily manufactured for casual users that want to travel along with their computer. It’s obviously better than usual $200 laptops that are only good for browsing and with this, one can do a lot more than that thanks to its Quad Core processor and 4 GB SDRAM. Its battery life is worth praising and according to our test; it lasted for almost 10 hours and not 12 hours as advertised by Acer. Nonetheless, 10 hours is not bad compared to other laptops under $300. When we talk about its looks, its perfect spaced keyboard, and full aluminum body makes it extremely attractive.

The 14-inch laptop packs a full HD 1080p display which can be simply amazing for watching movies and TV series’. It has almost all the features that a good laptop must have excluding SD card slot which could have been a bonus. Its metal body and IPS display are highly praised by everyone as these were recently added by Acer after being suggested by most of the previous users. There are many Chromebook fans around the world, and almost every one of them is trying to get their hands on it. All in all, it’s a great device with almost no cons, and one can also install Windows 10 on it pretty quickly.

  • Intel Celeron N3160 Quad-Core Processor
  • 4GB LPDDR3 SDRAM
  • 32GB Internal Storage

5. Asus VivoBook X540SA

Asus VivoBook X540SA

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The ASUS VivoBook series is mostly known for their best value laptops and the Asus VivoBook X540SA certainly lives up to their name. It’s extremely lightweight and pretty stylish too; it delivers reliable performance and is surely among the premium laptops under $300. It’s a 15-inch laptop that boasts number of features and according to most of the reviews online, users do not regret buying it. There are many reasons to go with this one such as its full HD display, solid performance, excellent battery and a fantastic design. Being a budget laptop, it has number of ports that help you with connectivity and it can run applications like Adobe Lightroom and Photoshop effortlessly.

The laptop appears to be twice of its price and includes most of the necessary features, and with new SSD, it performs blazingly fast. I bought it last month from Best Buy to review on my Vlog, and I can assure you that it has no major issues or anything that’ll make you regret buying it. However, I would highly recommend that you upgrade it to SSD as it will boost not only your performance but also the boot time. Overall, for under $300 it simply doesn’t get any better than this.

  • Intel Braswell Quad Core N3700
  • 4GB RAM
  • 500GB HDD

6. HP Chromebook 14-ak060nr

HP Chromebook 14-ak060nr

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The HP Chromebook 14-ak060nr is one of the most efficient and convenient Chromebooks that’s available for under $300. It’s little different compared to most of the ordinary notebooks and is available in two colors, Silver and Sky Blue. There are also variants for processor and memory and you’re free to choose between them. Its colorful design is pretty unique and it’s a great performer even for multi-tasking users. It boasts a full HD 1080p screen and loud audio. While using it, you won’t have to worry about its battery life as it supports up to 8 hours. Its display is little bit of dim compared to regular laptops and other than that, everything seems to be fine.

It’s surely among the best $300 laptops available on the market and its latest hardware is unquestionably behind its success. It’s a great device for casual activities and you’re getting a 14-inch display that is good enough for browsing, documenting and video streaming. Not only that, one can also run most of the android apps on Google’s Chrome OS and it’s undoubtedly better than the competing budget chromebooks. Since the launch of Chromebooks, they have failed to impress me but I wouldn’t say that’s the case with this one. Overall, it’s an excellent little device that is able to perform anything you throw at it.

  • Intel Celeron N2940
  • 4 GB SDRAM
  • 16 GB eMMC

7. Dell i3552-3240BLK

Dell i3552-3240BLK

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The Dell i3552-3240BLK is one of the most affordable laptops in 2017 and this 15-inch laptop is available for the price of netbook and chromebook. Many users wish it had a touchscreen display but I don’t think Dell could possibly make it accessible for such price. It’s a decent performer that includes Intel Pentium processor and one has the option to choose between Pentium or Celeron processor. Also they have variants for choosing between HDD and SSD and I would personally take SSD any day. It’s not too heavy considering its size of 15-inch and it can be a useful device for tasks like browsing, YouTubing, Skyping, etc.

It has many exciting features like a big screen, SSD, Windows 10 and HDMI port. The storage space can be a little issue if you’re going with SSD but I would still recommend SSD, and for your movies and other large files you can get an external hard disk. When it comes to its build, it’s a lot lighter than competing machines and its power is kind of decent. You will have to decide for what precisely you need it, if you’re looking for high-end performing PC then we suggest you better look for something else. Overall, if you need it for casual tasks then light applications run smoothly on it, and at the same time, you save a whole lot of money.

  • Intel Pentium N3700
  • 4 GB DDR3L SDRAM
  • 500 GB HDD

8. Acer Chromebook 15 CB5-571-C1DZ

Acer Chromebook 15 laptop under 300

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The Acer Chromebook 15 is one of the first 15-inch chromebooks and is now available for just $250. I know many prefer to have a portable, sleek and small chromebook as it gets real easy to carry around but to be honest here, it was due to the price, as mini laptops are cheaper than regular sized notebooks. Acer realized it pretty late, and now they’re finally offering this for a discounted price. It delivers the best performance and long lasting battery life which is good for people who prefer to charge their machine while they are sleeping. It has hundreds of positive reviews online and has been upgraded drastically by Acer.

Its big screen is being praised by users worldwide and its performance has also been improved. Thanks to 4 GB RAM, now one can use even heavy programs on it without any lag or dullness. It’s very similar to regular PC with natural keyboard and bigger touchpad. It charges quickly, and within 2 hours it reaches 100% from just 5%. Overall, I can see more than 80% of positive reviews by certified buyers and even though some of them look like paid reviews, it’s unquestionably a reliable and robust budget Chromebook.

  • Intel Celeron
  • 4 GB RAM
  • 16 GB Storage

9. Lenovo Flex 3 11-inch

Lenovo Flex 3 11-inch Laptop 2017

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The Lenovo Flex 3 is one of the premium laptops of all time, and I know it costs over $500, but the 11-inch model is available for under $300. It’s highly recognized for its portable and 360-degree hinge design. It packs decent specifications that will allow your regular programs to work smoothly and since its release last year, Lenovo has sold over a million laptops. Like almost all latest laptops, this one also has an internal battery which is becoming an issue for many as they prefer classical removable batteries in their device. I checked it at a local store, and it was like $50 extra, so I bought it from Amazon and waited for three days.

It’s a highly recommended laptop for school going kids and my nephew has been using for about 5 months now. He wanted a 2-in-1 laptop to show off at school and he is been using it pretty safely. I know this isn’t for high-end programs but his school work gets done just fine. Its elegant design and sleekness is what attracted me and one can quickly change its modes. Overall, it’s a very light device and can be a perfect option for travelers as well. If you’d like to know more about it, you can check full review video on my Vlog.

  • Intel Celeron N3050
  • 4GB DDR3L
  • 500GB HDD

10. Lenovo Thinkpad 11E

Lenovo Thinkpad 11E

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The Lenovo Thinkpad 11E is among the best ultrabooks under $300 and it has been one of the finest budget laptops of 2017. It’s a bit heavy for an ultrabook and even lacks touch screen display which is a must in any ultrabook. It’s designed to withstand drops and is extremely reliable and durable. When it comes to performance, it’s an average device and will handle most of the programs smoothly. While we were testing it, we ran into some minor issues like connectivity but after using the correct drivers, issues were resolved. In case you want to upgrade its RAM then you’ll have to replace it entirely as it’s capable of handling only one chip.

It’s specially designed for people in business as well as for school kids. It’s very sturdy when it comes to its construction and can easily handle the rough usage. It includes Windows 10 which works perfectly on its 11-inch display and many people also buy it to use with Linux. It’s a good machine for basic browsing, school work, MS Office, emails, etc. You can’t play games on it, and if you try to play some, it’ll get warm almost instantly. Overall, it might be a little slower notebook but is extremely solid as a rock.

  • Intel N3150 Quad-Core
  • 128GB Solid State Drive
  • 8GB DDR3

11. Dell Inspiron 15 3000 I3558

Dell Inspiron 15 3000 I3558

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The Dell i3558 is an impressive PC for those who need a high-end laptop for $300. It packs all the latest hardware including its battery and is among the lightest budget laptops. When it comes to performance, it can perform poorly sometimes while you’re multi-tasking and features a decent display that is good from various angles. Its speakers are pretty loud and compared to its specifications, you’re paying nothing. I won’t recommend this notebook to college students and gamers who require power as it’s not made to handle heavier tasks. Its battery life was pretty average, 4 hours which is acceptable but not as advertised.

I bought this for my wife last year, as I know her usage is nothing more than YouTube and a few movies and music. It works perfectly and exactly as described and sometimes I think she loves this laptop more than me, lol, just kidding. But overall, we’re very much satisfied with it and had no issues whatsoever. It can be a perfect choice to replace your home desktop as it’s obviously more powerful and also comes with a sharp display.

  • Core i3-5015U
  • 4 GB RAM
  • 500 GB Hard Drive
  • Intel HD Graphics 5500

12. ASUS Transformer Book T100HA-C4-PK

ASUS Transformer Book T100HA-C4-PK

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The ASUS Transformer Book is one of the best convertibles of all time, and now it’s available in glossy pink color as well. It’s an excellent choice for girls as they love pink color and it has been designed nicely. It’s one of the slim and lightweight laptops of 2017 and has already attracted many customers. Its design is way better than Microsoft Surface and it’s able to run anything you throw at it. It’s a fantastic option for people who love to travel and it’s extremely portable and can be carried anywhere with ease. Its tablet itself costs more than $300 but you’re getting the entire package for less than that.

I recommended this to my dad and he’s been pretty happy with it so far. He mostly uses for taking notes and some homework from office. Since it’s packed with touch screen display it becomes very easy for him to use even while laying and I really didn’t expect that he’d like it so much. It can handle programs like MS Word, Excel, One Note and Chrome pretty smoothly and regardless of so much multi-tasking it hasn’t frozen even once. In case you will be using a lot of touch screen I’d suggest you buy a display guard before you start using it. Also if you’d like to increase the space, you can use SD card of 64 GB as it will help a lot. Well, these are things I did for my dad and I hope you’ll do it as well.

  • Intel Quad-Core Cherry Trail
  • 4 GB RAM
  • 64 GB SSD

13. Lenovo Thinkpad T420 (Certified Refurbished)

Lenovo Thinkpad T420

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Many prefer to buy a brand new laptop and usually say no to refurbished one. In case you’re fine with that, you can get a high-end and robust performer for just under $300. With this, you will be using Core i5 processor which is just impossible for such price. It’s an all-purpose laptop and can also handle many favorite games with ease. Its battery life is incomparable and features a ThinkPad patented keyboard for professionals. The 14-inch laptop also boasts solid performance and loud sound that can’t be compared as well. It has been praised for its keyboard by many critics, and the only downside is its textured touchpad which doesn’t feel as smooth as it should.

It’s little bit bulky and thick unlike most of the recently launched laptops but when it comes to performance, it has to be the king. As many say, it has a “REAL” keyboard which is mostly preferred by writers, coders, developers and editors. It provides an excellent value and you’ll even get a good price while reselling it. If you’re looking for even more powerful laptop then I would recommend you switch its HDD to SSD and upgrade its RAM. With these improvements, it will become a powerhouse that’ll be able to handle high-end applications effortlessly.

  • Intel Core i5 2520M
  • 8 GB RAM
  • 320 GB HDD
  • Windows 7 Professional

14. Samsung Chromebook 2 13-inch

Samsung Chromebook 2

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The Samsung Chromebook 2 was first released in late 2014 and is still known for being one of the best laptops under $300. It’s very light, slim and features an excellent battery life. Recently Google has made massive changes to its Chrome OS, and now it’s more functional and straightforward. These kinds of budget laptops are faster than ever now thanks to Chrome OS that doesn’t use much power. It’s available in 11-inch as well, but I highly prefer this one as both are very similar and there isn’t a big difference in price. It’s a good option for people who’re mostly browsing entire day, and it can also handle programs like Office and Google Docs. Unlike Samsung Chromebook, this newer version has made a lot of progress, and it’s more cold, fast and silent. Its keyboard might not be top class, but it gets the job done.

This ultra-slim Chromebook is packed with spiffy looks and is a fanless device that doesn’t get warm quickly. You don’t have to shut it down every time you’re not using it, and you can close it, and once you open it, it’s on instantly. It features a comfortable touchpad, and after doing some tests on it, I’d say, it has been under-rated by many reviewers. So if you’re going to buy a new Chromebook, I would highly recommend that you consider this.

  • Samsung Exynos 5 Octa 5800
  • 4 GB RAM
  • 16 GB SSD

15. Dell Inspiron i3552-4041BLK

Dell Inspiron i3552-4041BLK

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If you’re looking for a laptop under $250, then the Dell Inspiron i3552-4041BLK is a pretty good choice. It’s designed for professionals and is among the best thin laptops of 2017. It’s good for basic tasks like Skype, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, etc. It’s available with SSD which makes it blazingly fast while browsing. In 2017, it’s one of the best low-end laptops under $300 on the market. It could have gotten better with touch screen display for extra 50 bucks, and I also wish it came with a Windows 10 re-installation disk. It’s a decent PC that can run games like Minecraft, Counter Strike and Sims 3. It’s a good choice for casual gaming but certainly not the best gaming laptop for a top-notch experience.

When we talk about performance, it’s not the best but should get your work done, and it isn’t recommended for power users. We have tested some necessary applications on it like MS Office, Skype, Chrome, Firefox and VLC Player, and they seem to work smoothly. You will not face any serious issues with it but with time it might get little slower, and you’ll have to format it to make new again. It’s recommended to people who don’t need much storage or those who prefer keeping their data in the cloud. Overall, it feels a little bit of cheap notebook, but that’s what you get for such price.

  • Intel Celeron
  • 4 GB RAM
  • 500 GB HDD

So these are the most reliable laptops under $300 we could find, all of these have good ratings, sales, positive reviews and average specifications. If you’re still not sure about them and want a better one, then you can check our list of best laptops under $400 and $500 and see what suits you best. Also, if you need a laptop for playing games then check our guide of best gaming laptops under $500. These notebooks are made for basic tasks and can last for up to 3 to 4 years with ease.

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