A significant progression of technology can be witnessed in the last few years. One such example can be found in the fact that gaming laptops have become more powerful than ever before. They are becoming more capable of supporting higher resolution at a steady framerate which puts them in competition with gaming PCs. A lot of things have to be considered when looking for a gaming laptop such as individual needs, is it going to be used purely for gaming or gaming is just an add on and you just want a powerful laptop. However, the most common concern for an average buyer comes in the shape of price tag. This list aims at helping you decide on a laptop that supports gaming and perfectly fits all of your other needs and is covered in your budget.
List of the 5 Best Gaming Laptops Under $500
Factors to Consider Before You Choose Gaming Laptop
There are a lot of things that a consumer needs to consider while deciding on which laptop to purchase. All of these things vary according to an individual need and preferences but here we will list down things that you need think about before searching for a laptop.
It is the first and foremost thing that should be considered before buying anything. It narrows down your search range to a fixed set of items and also stops you from spending more than you can afford just because you have a clear-cut idea of what you need.
Use is very important as it sets the guideline for the product that you are looking for to meet your demands. List down anything and everything that you intend to do with your laptop so that the specifications of a laptop meets your needs.
It also plays a major role in the type of laptop that you are looking for. If your work involves travelling a lot with your laptop then it is advised to look for something that is light weight and has a longer battery time.
If you are looking for the best gaming laptop in a budget of $500, then you have come to the right place as we have narrowed it down to 5 of our favorite gaming laptops.
5 Best Gaming Laptops Under $500 Reviews By Consumer Reports.
1. Acer Aspire E 15 E5-576-392H
The Acer Aspire E series is aimed at every-day users with a range of needs. It boasts an attractive design and comes with a lot of attractive features such as an impressive performance enabled by the 8th Gen Intel Core i3 processor.
- 8th Generation Intel Core i3-8130U Processor (Up to 3.4GHz)
- 15.6″ Full HD (1920 x 1080) widescreen LED-lit Display
- 6GB Dual Channel Memory, 1TB HDD & 8X DVD
- Up to 13.5-hours of battery life
- Windows 10 Home
- 1. It allows a very easy access into the hardware, with only 3 small Philips head screws, that makes the back-panel pop open so that you can upgrade memory, hard drive or attach an SSD in the built it M.2 slot.
- 2. It features a DVD drive, which is getting rarer by every passing day. So, if you are more into installing games using a disk, then is the one for you.
- 3. The latest Gen Intel CPU allows seamless operations no matter what you decide to test it with.
- 1. Some users were not happy with the Full HD screen but then again you cannot compare it with a higher end 4K screen.
- 2. The 1TB HDD hard disk is slow in comparison to other devices with a speed of 5400RPM. However, this can be easily resolved by opting for the SSD version of this laptop.
- 3. The installed memory is divided into 2 separate chips of 4GB and 2GB into the two modules.
If your use involves light gaming in addition to all other normal daily operations then this might be the laptop for you. The hard disk issue can be resolved easily by opting for the SSD replacement and the memory can always be swapped for one single chip of 8GB. If you are looking for something in a budget and can easily make these changes to your new laptop, then you can consider buying it.
2. Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575-33BM
One more from the Acer Aspire E series which is similar to its predecessor. This laptop has a really stylish design with a really nice and unique color, the Obsidian Black. It provides a really strong wireless connection as it has the 802.11ac wireless with the new MU-MIMO technology.
- 7th Generation Intel Core i3-7100U Processor
- 15.6” Full HD (1920 x 1080) widescreen display
- 4GB DDR4 memory, 1TB hard drive
- Up to 12 hours of battery life
- 1. The 7th Gen Intel Core i3 has a really low 15-watt usage and runs quietly and does not tend to heat up.
- 2. The back lit keyboard allows you to type or play games even in the dark. Apart from that, it also gives a really nice look to the laptop.
- 3. The battery life is amazing in the sense that you will only need to charge it once a day. So, you don’t have to carry your power brick everywhere with you.
- 1. Some users have reported lines of dead pixels on the screen after some use. This is generally due to putting weight on the screen so if you can take good care of the laptop, then it shouldn’t be a problem for you.
- 2. There is sort of a rattling feeling with the touchpad but then again who uses a touchpad for gaming.
- 3. The semi-replaceable battery is not easy to change if you run into any battery related problems.
It is a really good laptop for its price with a huge fanbase and numerous testimonials. However, keeping all of the cons in mind, if you can take good care of your laptop and are very much dependent on a mouse such that you won’t be needing the touchpad then this laptop can be a very good addition to your gaming set up.
3. Lenovo Ideapad (2017)
The Lenovo Ideapad 2017 has a really nice display so that you can see all the details when playing games. It has a really stylish design and is really sleek so that it stands out among all other options for a laptop which can support gaming.
- 15.6″ HD display with 1366 x 768 resolution; Integrated AMD Radeon graphics card
- 8GB DDR4 memory
- Powered by a 2.70GHz AMD A12-9720P Quad core processor
- 802.11 ac Wi-Fi technology
- 1. The screen resolution is something that stands out in this laptop supported by the AMD Radeon graphics card. This will add to the gaming experience provided by the laptop.
- 2. It is extremely light, weighing at approximately 5.07 pounds so that you can carry it wherever you like without being burdened by it.
- 3. The keyboard is a tactile keyboard so that it really gives a nice feeling when typing or playing games. It also stands witness to the build quality of this laptop.
- 1. The laptop has a conventional HDD so it takes a lot of time to boot up. Apart from that, the HDD makes other operations a bit slower but the performance is good enough to support light gaming.
- 2. The battery time on this device is very limited as compared to the other laptops on this list. The laptop is capable of doing just around 3 hours on a full charge.
The Lenovo Ideapad is an ideal laptop for the purpose of having a mobile device inside your house. The limited battery time does not allow you to take it outside and have no access to a charging port as sooner or later you are going to need it. It is an overall powerful device and is going to fit all of your gaming needs perfectly.
4. HP Pavilion 15.6” 15-BS095MS
It is a super stylish laptop with a diagonal HD SVA WLED-backlit touchscreen. This is the only laptop, which made this list, to have a touchscreen.
- Intel Core i5-7200U 2.50 GHz up to 3.10 GHz with Turbo Boost Technology
- 8GB DDR4 SDRAM
- 2TB 5400 RPM SATA
- 15.6 in diagonal HD SVA WLED-backlit touchscreen (1366 x 768), 10-finger multi-touch support
- 1. The 8GB of memory and the 2TB of hard disk is a steal in this price range.
- 2. The 7th Gen Intel Core i5 processor makes sure that you can play your favorite games without any lag at a steady framerate.
- 3. The touch screen is a really good feature as it makes using the laptop a lot easier and it can be multipurposed.
- 1. The 2TB of hard disk is really good but as soon as half of it gets occupied, the laptop becomes a bit slower in its operations.
- 2. The build quality is not the best we have come across in a laptop. The keyboard gives a really fragile feel and the materials seems like cheap plastic.
- 3. The battery is not very long lasting as it can give around 4 hours while doing nominal work on the laptop.
Although this laptop boasts a lot of impressive specifications, it lags in a lot of other departments. The design of the laptop does not look very sleek and the build quality is not that good, however, it is a perfect replacement for your desktop if you don’t want it for mobile operations. The specifications will support all the games that you have wanted to play.
5. Lenovo Ideapad (2018)
A newer version of its predecessor the Lenovo Ideapad 2017, it is an upgraded and better version of it. Powered by an AMD Radeon processor, it gives a new meaning to the term processing speed.
- AMD A12-9720P Quad core processor with 2.70 GHz in base, and Turbo to 3.6 GHz
- 8GB DDR4 memory; 1TB 5,400rpm HDD hard drive provides plenty of storage; DVD-RW
- 15.6″ HD display with 1366 x 768 resolution; AMD Radeon R7 graphics
- Weighs 4.85 lbs. and measures 0.9″ thin
- 1. The laptop is very well built and sturdy. The build quality can be seen by just holding it, which gives a sense of the sleek finish and minimum lines on the laptop.
- 2. The processor is super-fast and does not lag as long as you put considerable load on it.
- 3. The specifications for the laptop are really good given the price-tag.
- 1. The ram is soldered in, which means that you cannot replace the ram and there is also not a second port so that this laptop has a fixed ram of 8GB.
- 2. The screen is not as good as other laptops on this list so it makes it difficult to use it for gaming if you want a perfect resolution for all of your gaming needs.
- 3. Some users have reported that the charger gets really hot while using the laptop so you need an external fan just for the charger if you plan on spending long hours playing games on it.
You can obviously not expect to run high intensity gaming on budget laptops but the laptops that made our list will provide a good experience for light gaming. All of the laptops, in this list, are aimed at the needs of different users, so it better to know beforehand all of your preferences and then deciding on which one you want to opt for. These are all the laptops under $500 that can support your gaming needs.