Our comparison table only shows our top 5 picks. You can find the other recommendations within this article.
If you have been wandering around the web looking for best budget laptops under $400, then you have landed on the right page. After writing the article of 15 best cheap laptops under $300 here, we will be listing ten best laptops that cost under $400.
I understand how frustrating and confusing it can get while buying a new laptop and that too when you're on low budget. Well, your research ends here since we have done everything that you were about to and here you'll find the right notebook for yourself.
Laptop market has gone way up in the last couple of years with new kinds such as ultrabooks, convertibles, Chromebooks, etc. and all they have done is create a lot of confusion among buyers.
I know brands create a lot of hype about their products, but we can't just risk our hard earned money on something that's not worth it.
We have shortlisted ten budget laptops here that are very reliable, and if used correctly they will last for a long time.
The $400 laptop can be utilized for virtually all basic tasks like browsing, watching movies, casual gaming, social networking and using MS Office programs.
There were days when $400 couldn't even get you a brand new laptop, but that's not the issue now. You can find many laptops in that price range from top laptop brands like Dell, ASUS, Acer, Lenovo, HP, Toshiba, and Samsung.
We have reviewed these ten laptops under $400 thoroughly, and here you will also find their quick specifications. We have ranked them from 1 to 10, and our rankings are based on its hardware, value, positive reviews, build quality, display, and overall brand value.
You might also see a couple of Chromebooks and netbooks under $400 here and if you don’t need them simply ignore.
Buying Guide for Laptop under $400
When it comes to laptops, there aren't many experts around us who can help with choosing the right laptop. Thanks to the internet, we can easily search for whatever we want and bam! We’re the experts.
Anyways, let's get back to the topic and see the things that you should consider while buying a budget laptop. Almost all brands have their best and worst laptops, so the first thing you should decide is the brand that you want.
Once we have the preferred brand and budget fixed, it becomes very easy to pick out the right notebook.
For $400, you should look for specifications like i3 to i5 processor, integrated Intel graphics, at least 4 GB of memory and 500 GB to 1 TB HDD. Also, make sure that it has all the ports that you will need and a minimum battery life of 4 hours.
Our Top Picks for Best Laptops under $400
This HP Pavilion laptop has been professionally refurbished to look as new and it’s been fully tested. The laptop is fitted with the Intel Core i3-7100U processor which has a speed of 2.4GHz; it also comes pre-loaded with Windows 10.
A great feature on this laptop is the multitouch-enabled, 15.6-inch WLED backlit edge-to-edge screen.
The laptop has an attractive silver finish with black edging around the screen, and it weighs in at 6.32 lbs. The Intel Graphics 620 display offers crystal clear viewing with very little glare or reflection. The machine’s 8GB of RAM is enough for most applications and the laptop runs smoothly.
This laptop has a built-in 1TB HDD which should be large enough to store any media, documents and other content you need while on the move. The laptop features 2 x USB 3.0, 1 x USB 2.0, 1 display port and a HDMI port.
The Pavilion is equipped with microphone and headphone jacks and it has an extended life battery.
It’s worth noting that this laptop may have a few slight scuffs, scratches and other cosmetic issues, but none of these affect its performance in the least. You’re still getting great value for money.
The VivoBook F441 from Acer is equipped with an AMD A9-9429 Dual Core Processor, with a speed of 3GHz that can be boosted to 3.4GHz.
The laptop features a 14-inch FHD display with ASUS Eye Care mode to reduce blue light. The laptop runs Windows 10 and has a built-in VGA web camera.
The VivoBook is lightweight at only 3.9 lbs., meaning you are able to take it virtually anywhere with ease. This laptop is a good choice for music lovers, with good quality audio delivered by ICEpower and SonicMaster technology.
The 8GB DDR4 RAM is capable of keeping up to speed with everything without any sluggishness.
Internal storage space is good, with a 1TB HDD which can be upgraded if you need more space. The laptop is not shy on ports, with 1 x USB 3.1, 1 x USB 3.0, 1 x USB 2.0 and an SD card reader. There is also a headphone jack and an audio in socket.
Battery life is impressive, lasting up to 36 hours on a full charge, depending on usage.
The HP Pavilion 15 is equipped with a dual-core AMD A6 processor, which has a speed of of up to 2.6 GHz. The 15.6 inch HD LED touch screen screen (1366 x 768) provides clarity, so this is a good choice for movie lovers and photo browsers.
The laptop is loaded with the latest version of Windows 10 and is Bluetooth enabled. The Pavilion weighs in at under 4.5 lbs. and its slim design makes it portable and easy to carry around when traveling or commuting.
The excellent sound is delivered by dual speakers and audio playback is faultless. The laptop also includes a DVD burner which is becoming increasing rare in recent laptop models.
The machine boasts an impressive array of ports including a 3-in-1 card reader, 1 X USB 3.0, 1 x USB 2.0, 1 x HDMI ports and an ethernet connection. There is also a combined headphone/microphone jack and the battery life is approximately 5 hours on a full charge.
4. ASUS X555QA
The ASUS X555QA laptop features a fast AMD quad-core processor with a speed of up to 3.6 GHz. The laptop has a 15.6-inch HD LED screen, powered by ASUS Splendid software enhancement technology.
The computer is loaded with Windows 10 Professional with provides extra security and connectivity features compared to the Windows 10 Home. This is an ideal choice for a daily use laptop.
The ASUS is slim, portable and lightweight, weighing in at just 4.4 lbs., making it easy to slip into a bag or briefcase.
ASUS SonicMaster audio technology delivers high-quality sound for those wanting to watch movies or listen to music. The laptop arrives out of the box with 8GB RAM, which can be doubled if the need arises.
The 256 SSD should be adequate for most users to store movies, music, documents and other content. The laptop has VGA and HDMI ports as well as two USB 3.0 port.
If money is your first concern and you need a full value device, then you should consider this model from Dell Inspiron series.
This 15.6" HD laptop with Intel Integrated HD 620 Graphics works very well with Windows 10 and is very responsive and smooth. It's a tough and reliable laptop that includes an 8 GB of RAM. The 1 TB hard drive will be sufficient for all but the most demanding storage requirements.
A backlit keyboard could have been excellent, but not every brand utilizes it in their budget laptops. The exact color of this notebook is somewhere between black and silver which also makes it a little bit of glossy.
There is also a newer model available of this, but it might cost you little over $500. Its touchpad isn't as expected and might cause some issues for writers and coders. Other than that, it's all good and should last for 3 to 4 years easily.
The HP Stream is an ideal option for people that need something sturdy, affordable and very portable. It's a perfect device for watching movies on VLC Player, Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, etc.
This laptop ships with the Windows 10 Pro operating system. The Pro version gives you security, connectivity and other features beyond the more common Home version. At this price, this is an incredible feature.
Its Intel HD Graphics GPU is very efficient and can easily handle most of the light games. HP might not be everyone's favorite brand, but if you're satisfied with its price and specifications, then it certainly deserves your consideration.
Overall, it's a good performer thanks to the Intel Celeron N3060 processor. The 2.5 lbs weight will be greatly appreciated by someone who travels often or who carries their laptop in a backpack. Travelers and students will also love the 8 hour battery life. If you have any questions about it then feel free to leave a comment.
The 11-inch convertible features top of the line specifications including IPS display and SSD. It's an excellent laptop for multitasking, gaming, studying, watching videos, etc.
It boasts a great design which can be folded on itself and can be used as a tablet without detaching its keyboard. It boots up surprisingly fast and is fully ready to use within 30 seconds.
Its display is very responsive unlike other best 2-in-1 laptops, and it's able to handle plenty of programs. It's very exciting while folding it and unfolding it back.
Its 11-inch size is perfect for such device, and it can't get any better for under $400. If you need a laptop to play games on it, then this is a big no.
It's not made for gaming but necessary tasks and has been designed to be extremely portable. All in all, it's a high-value product with incredible features and is an excellent performer.
This compact laptop from ASUS is fitted with the most recent Intel Atom Quad Core x5-Z8350 processor, with a speed of 1.92GHz.
The 10.1-inch screen provides crystal clear images when viewed from virtually any angle. The laptop runs Windows 10 and it features a detachable keyboard and touchscreen pen.
The Transformer Mini is ultra-thin and it’s made from a magnesium alloy. Weighing in at less than 2 lbs., this makes it a perfect choice for people on the move. The audio quality on this laptop could be better but it compensates for that by being so versatile in other ways.
The device can be used as a laptop or tablet and the 4GB RAM is adequate for a laptop of this size and price.
If you require a large amount of internal storage then this laptop is not for you as it only offers 128GB. You do however, have the option to use external drives. Ports are sufficient with 1 x USB, 1 x micro USB, 1 x micro HDMI, micro SD and a headphone jack.
One of the really good features on this machine is that all of the ports can be used in tablet mode. The battery will last up to 12 hours between charges, depending on usage.
The Lenovo IdeaPad is a reliable laptop that has wonderful multitasking capabilities. If you are looking for a laptop for work and pleasure, this is a versatile choice that you won’t regret buying.
It isn’t ideal for heavy-duty gaming, but if you are a light gamer in need of a laptop that has a high-quality screen and fast response time, this is a great option. It is also very lightweight, and it looks sleek and styling. You can slip this into your bag without it taking up a lot of room.
I have a DJ friend, who is using this model for her work and with only RAM upgrade, it handles most of her music and DJ applications with ease. Its memory can be upgraded up to 16 GB which is great even for gamers.
Overall, it's a fully upgradeable notebook that's available for under $400.
This laptop from Acer features the 8th generation Intel Core i3-8130U processor with a speed of 2.2GHz that can be turbo boosted to 3.4GHz.
The laptop is equipped with a 15.6-inch backlit LED widescreen, which is ideal for watching movies or streaming video clips. It comes loaded with Windows 10 and there’s a built-in HD webcam as well as a DVD drive.
The Acer Aspire has a sleek black design and it weighs in at only 5.27 lbs, making it a good choice for commuters and students on the move. The sound quality is good and is delivered by the 2 built-in stereo speakers.
The 6GB of RAM it comes with is adequate for everyday use, but may need upgrading for some applications that require more power.
Storage capability on this device is good, thanks to the built-in 1TB HDD which is ample for most users.
This Acer Aspire boasts a number of ports, including 1 x USB 3.1, 2 x USB 3.0, 1 x USB 2.0 and there’s an HDMI port with HDCP support. The battery life is excellent. When fully charged it can last for up to 13.5 hours.
BEST LAPTOPS UNDER 400 WORTHY MENTIONS
Don’t worry if you didn’t find your dream budget laptop in the list above; we have some more very worthy laptops for you that we couldn’t resist featuring in this post. You will find our runner up laptops below, along with a brief overview of their specifications that should make reviewing and comparing each of them easier for you.
I believe you are done reading our article and now understand what laptops are best for under $400. You also need to check their reviews and specifications before buying, and you should always go with your favorite brand.
In case your budget is little more or less then you can also check our guides for best laptops under $500 and cheap laptops under $300. If you are playing games on your new PC then also make sure it has some decent graphics. Let us know if you have any questions regarding the best laptops under $400.
Buying Guide for Laptops Under $400
Use the tips and tricks in this post to find the best laptop for less than $400. Just because you are looking for a budget laptop does now mean you should settle for less than worthy features. These guidelines should make you understand the standard of laptops you can get for the price.
Screen Size and Display Quality
You aren’t going to be able to find a very small, compact laptop at a budget price. Small laptops with teeny tiny screens are expensive due to the technology involved in making all of the parts small.
If you are looking to pay between $400 and $500, you can expect to find laptops with screens between 14 and 17 inches. Fortunately, budget laptops’ screen quality is usually very high and you can even find laptops with an ultra HD screen for a reasonable price.
RAM and Processor
Do not expect a laptop under $400 to have more than 8GB RAM. Although you can find laptops with 8GB RAM for less than 400 dollars, most of them will have 4GB RAM. Either way, 4GB and 8GB RAM are more than enough for light work and pleasure.
The best laptops under $400 have an Intel Celeron or Pentium series CPU. These processors are great for surfing the web, but they aren’t excellent multitaskers. Of course, this is something that is to be expected, as of course, something has to give!
Chromebook or Windows Laptop?
Chromebooks and Windows laptops have been in competition since the beginning of time, but the truth is that one isn’t better than the other. Before jumping to conclusions, think about what you need to do on your device.
If you need a safe device capable of doing all of the basic computer tasks, a Chromebook is a brilliant option. If you need to use multiple software, Windows laptops will be better for you as they have a wider range of capabilities.
Best 400 FAQ
Here are a handful of the most common budget laptop questions and answers. Enjoy!
Q: What is the best laptop to buy under $400?
A: Lenovo has some brilliant budget laptops on the market. Check out the top picks in this article to see which ones are the best.
Q: Is a $400 laptop worth it?
A: Absolutely! You do not have to spend hundreds of dollars on fancy laptops unless you need to operate complicated software. Laptops under 400 dollars are great choices for people that intend to do office-type work or surf the web.
Q: What is the best but cheapest laptop to buy?
A: Acer has some wonderful cheap laptops on the market that are high-quality and budget-friendly.
Q: What is the best value laptop 2021?
A: The Lenovo IdeaPad is the best value laptops of the year.