10 Best Laptops Under 500

Wally Nowinski
editor

Our experts used the PerfectRec decision engine to comb through our laptop database and find the best laptops under 500 available in 2024. Here are our top picks.

Our criteria for the best laptops under 500:

  • Budget: We focused on budget and budget only. These are the best laptops in our database under $500.
To consider others factors, try the PerfectRec decision engine to get your personalized laptop recommendation
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10 Best Laptops Under 500

1
Lenovo 14”

Flex 5 14

BEST RATING
Battery Life:
4.6
General: B+, Gaming/AI: B, Eng/Design: B+
Size: 14"
Overall Performance: Good
Portability: Med. thick, light
Battery: Very Good




Expert Summary
The Lenovo Flex 5 14 is a 2-in-1 convertible that can be used as both a laptop and a tablet, making it versatile for various tasks. It's priced in the lower midrange and offers a fair balance of performance and features. With an AMD Ryzen 7 processor and 16 GB of RAM, it's a good choice for general use and capable of handling some engineering and 3D tasks, though not optimized for intensive gaming. It has a 14-inch IPS touchscreen display, a decent battery life, and is lightweight for portability. It also features a decent spread of ports including USB-C, and it charges via USB-C as well, but it lacks a dedicated number pad, yet it includes a backlit keyboard and fingerprint reader for convenience and security.
Pros
  • Convertible laptop and tablet functionality
  • Good battery life for typical use
  • Backlit keyboard with fingerprint reader
  • Portable with very good portability score
  • Decent screen color and general use performance
Cons
  • Screen brightness not suitable for outdoor use
  • Limited color range for professional editing
  • No Thunderbolt or Ethernet ports available
  • Speaker and webcam quality are only fair
2
HP 15.6”

15" Laptop

BEST RATING
Operating Noise:
4.6
General: B+, Gaming/AI: B, Eng/Design: B+
Size: 15.6"
Overall Performance: Good
Portability: Med. thick, light
Battery: Good




Expert Summary
The HP 15" Laptop offers a balance for those on a budget, providing a large 15.6-inch screen with touchscreen capabilities, albeit at a lower resolution. It's not the lightest is, but still reasonably portable. This laptop is equipped with a considerable amount of RAM and a sizeable storage capacity. It runs on an Intel i3 processor with integrated graphics, which is sufficient for general use, but may lack the necessary power for intensive 3D rendering, gaming, or engineering applications. Battery life is adequate for typical use, and the keyboard includes a number pad, although it is not backlit and there are no biometric security features. The build and heat management are fair and it has a variety of ports including USB-C, but lacks Thunderbolt support. Suitable for general use and those who prioritize budget and screen size over high performance and screen resolution.
Pros
  • Spacious storage
  • Large RAM capacity
  • Touchscreen available
  • Decent battery life
  • Good heat management
Cons
  • Basic processor model
  • Low screen resolution
  • Mediocre portability
  • Limited color coverage
3
Lenovo 16”

IdeaPad Slim 5i

BEST RATING
Keyboard Quality:
4.4
General: B+, Gaming/AI: B, Eng/Design: B+
Size: 16"
Overall Performance: Good
Portability: Med. thick, med. heavy
Battery: Good




Expert Summary
The Lenovo IdeaPad Slim 5i, with a lower midrange price, offers a solid balance for everyday use with its Intel i5 processor, 16GB RAM, and 512GB storage; it should handle tasks like web browsing, office work, and media playback well. It has a 16-inch display using IPS technology for better viewing angles, and the resolution is sharp enough for clear visuals, although not the highest available. The battery life is average, not ideal for long periods away from power. This laptop is reasonably portable, but there are lighter options if portability is a priority. With a backlit keyboard and fingerprint reader, it includes features for convenience and security. Suitable for general use and lighter engineering tasks, this laptop won't excel in intensive gaming or complex 3D work due to its integrated graphics. If you're looking for a laptop to use primarily at a desk with occasional mobility, and your tasks are mainly productivity-focused without high-end gaming or professional creative work, the IdeaPad Slim 5i is a respectable choice.
Pros
  • High RAM capacity for multitasking
  • Backlit keyboard aids low-light use
  • Good portability for travel
  • Fingerprint reader for extra security
  • Decent battery life for daily use
Cons
  • Moderate storage capacity
  • Average speaker quality
  • Fair performance for engineering tasks
  • Display colors not very vibrant
4
Acer 15.6”

Aspire 5 15

BEST RATING
Portability:
4.3
General: B+, Gaming/AI: B, Eng/Design: B+
Size: 15.6"
Overall Performance: Good
Portability: Med. thick, light
Battery: Good




Expert Summary
The Acer Aspire 5 15 is offered at a lower midrange price and is equipped with a 15.6-inch IPS screen with full HD resolution. It does not support touchscreen functionality. Powered by an Intel i5 processor with integrated Iris Xe graphics, it provides a balance of performance suitable for general use and can handle some light 3D and engineering tasks. It has a solid battery life but may not be ideal for intensive gaming, although casual gaming should be acceptable. With 512 GB of storage and 16 GB of RAM, it's capable of multitasking efficiently. The laptop is fairly portable at under 4 pounds and 0.7 inches thick and comes with a backlit keyboard, fingerprint reader, and a good array of ports including USB-C and HDMI. Its build and speaker quality are fair, while the keyboard and webcam are rated good. Overall, the Acer Aspire 5 15 well suits everyday tasks and modest design work.
Pros
  • Good portability and battery life
  • Performs well for general use
  • Full HD screen with backlit keyboard
  • Number pad and USB-C charging
  • Fingerprint reader for security
Cons
  • Not suited for advanced 3D or engineering tasks
  • Mediocre speaker and webcam quality
  • Average build and heat management
  • Limited color accuracy for professionals
5
ASUS 16”

Vivobook 16X

BEST RATING
Battery Life:
4.2
General: B+, Gaming/AI: B, Eng/Design: B
Size: 16"
Overall Performance: Fair
Portability: Med. thick, med. heavy
Battery: Good




Expert Summary
The ASUS Vivobook 16X offers a balance between performance and price, being in the lower midrange category. It features a large 16-inch IPS screen with a 16:10 aspect ratio, suitable for productivity tasks but with a standard 60Hz refresh rate that's adequate for general use rather than fast-paced gaming. Powered by an AMD Ryzen 7 5800HS with integrated Vega 8 graphics, the laptop is capable of handling daily tasks and lighter creative workloads, though it's not designed for intensive gaming or high-end 3D rendering. Its battery life is suitable for several hours of typical usage, making it moderately portable at a bit over 4 pounds. The Vivobook 16X is equipped with 512GB of storage and 12GB of RAM, enhancing multitasking abilities. It also has a decent selection of ports including USB-C, HDMI, and an Ethernet port, plus a backlit keyboard with a number pad, enhancing utility for work and study. Overall, the Vivobook 16X is good for general use, fair for 3D/machine learning applications, and fair for engineering tasks.
Pros
  • Large 16-inch display
  • Reasonable battery life
  • Multiple USB-C ports
  • Number pad on keyboard
  • Good heat management
Cons
  • Heavy at over 4 pounds
  • No touchscreen or high refresh rate
  • Mediocre speaker quality
  • Limited color space coverage
6
Lenovo 14”

IdeaPad 3 14"

BEST RATING
Operating Noise:
4.9
General: B+, Gaming/AI: B, Eng/Design: B+
Size: 14"
Overall Performance: Fair
Portability: Med. thick, light
Battery: Good




Pros
  • Large storage capacity
  • Ample RAM
  • Good battery life
  • Decent general use performance
  • Lightweight for portability
Cons
  • Basic processor
  • Integrated GPU limits gaming
  • No USB-C or Thunderbolt ports
  • Subpar engineering performance
7
Lenovo 15.6”

IdeaPad 3 15"

BEST RATING
Operating Noise:
4.9
General: B+, Gaming/AI: B, Eng/Design: B
Size: 15.6"
Overall Performance: Fair
Portability: Med. thick, light
Battery: Good




Expert Summary
The Lenovo IdeaPad 3 15" is a budget-friendly laptop with an Intel i5 processor and integrated graphics, suitable for everyday tasks and light productivity. It comes with a 512GB storage drive and 8GB of RAM, a combination that offers a decent balance for general use. The 15.6-inch IPS display offers clear images at a standard 1920 x 1080 resolution, but it isn't touchscreen. The battery life is modest, making it more suited for use where charging options are accessible. Weighing 3.59 pounds and measuring 0.78 inches thick, it's relatively portable but might feel bulky compared to ultrabooks. It includes a numeric keypad, backlit keyboard, and a good variety of ports including USB-C and HDMI. The IdeaPad 3 is not designed for intensive gaming, 3D rendering, or machine learning tasks, but it's a good match for more straightforward engineering software. Overall, this laptop is a good choice for students or home office use where high performance is not a critical requirement.
Pros
  • Solid build quality
  • Good portability
  • Decent general use performance
  • Backlit keyboard and number pad
  • Ample storage capacity
Cons
  • Moderate battery life
  • Average display for color work
  • Not ideal for 3D/machine learning tasks
  • No hardware ray tracing or DLSS support
8
HP 14”

14" Laptop

BEST RATING
Operating Noise:
4.6
General: B+, Gaming/AI: B, Eng/Design: B
Size: 14"
Overall Performance: Fair
Portability: Med. thick, very light
Battery: Good




Pros
  • 16GB RAM enhances multitasking
  • Large 1024GB storage space
  • Moderate battery life for standard use
  • Portable design under 3.5 pounds
  • Good general use performance
Cons
  • AMD Ryzen 3 less suitable for intense tasks
  • Graphics not ideal for gaming, 3D rendering
  • Subpar color coverage for professional editing
  • No touchscreen functionality
9
ASUS 14”

Zenbook 14

BEST RATING
Portability:
4.6
General: B+, Gaming/AI: B, Eng/Design: B+
Size: 14"
Overall Performance: Fair
Portability: Thin, very light
Battery: Good




Pros
  • High-resolution OLED screen
  • Lightweight and portable
  • Multiple USB-C ports
  • Good keyboard and trackpad
  • All-day battery life
Cons
  • Average speaker quality
  • Limited thermal management
  • Fair webcam quality
  • Moderate fan noise under load
10
HP 15.6”

Envy x360 15"

BEST RATING
Operating Noise:
4.6
General: B+, Gaming/AI: B, Eng/Design: B
Size: 15.6"
Overall Performance: Fair
Portability: Med. thick, med. heavy
Battery: Very Good




Expert Summary
The HP Envy x360 15" is a 2-in-1 convertible laptop, so it works both as a laptop and a tablet, offering flexibility if you like touchscreen capabilities or need a device that can double as a tablet. It has a lower midrange price and is quite light, which makes it easily portable. With an AMD Ryzen 5 processor and integrated Vega 7 graphics, it can handle general use like browsing, office tasks, and light multimedia creation but may not be best suited for intensive gaming or engineering software. The battery life is decent for typical usage, and the build quality is good. If your tasks are more demanding in 3D or machine learning applications, you may find its performance limited. The keyboard and webcam quality are marked as good, and it has a backlit keyboard with a number pad for easier typing in low light conditions. It also features a solid heat management system for sustained use.
Pros
  • Convertible laptop-tablet design
  • Good general performance for everyday tasks
  • Decent battery life for typical use
  • Backlit keyboard with fingerprint reader
  • Has USB-C charging capability
Cons
  • Limited color coverage may affect creative work
  • Not ideal for engineering tasks
  • Not suitable for intensive 3D tasks
  • Modest screen brightness