The Best Laptops Under $300

Good budget laptops are not easy to find. With computers, you tend to get what you pay for. However, there are exceptions to that rule.

Cheap laptops, even ones below $300, do not have to be of poor quality. In fact, it is possible to get an extremely powerful machine at a decent price. The laptops outlined in this guide, while affordable, give you great results every time you turn them on.

Quick Summary

  • Few budget laptops can match the power of the HP Stream 11. This machine is an extremely efficient Windows 10 laptop that comes packed with a range of important features. The battery life, which is one of the main calling cards, lasts all day and the device has strong power output. It also is incredibly portable, weighing just 2.5 pounds and measuring a mere 0.7 inches thick.
  • The Dell Inspiron 3000 is a versatile machine that expertly combines both work and play. At 15.3 inches, the LED-backlit display looks great and the colors pop off the screen. The built-in webcam works well, the audio is crisp, and the battery lasts for hours. Add on the Intel Pentium N5000 processor with 4GB of RAM and you have a device that can do a little bit of everything.
  • Most laptops under $300 give you limited options. However, the Lenovo Ideapad S145 is all about versatility. The computer utilizes a 15.6 HD display (1366 x 768 resolution) along with a Dual-Core Pentium processor so that you can stream videos or browse the internet with ease. While the 4GB memory isn’t enough for high-powered programs, it is perfect for a casual device.

Who Should Get This?

Laptops under $300 are perfect for anyone on a budget. The machines give you plenty of features more expensive computers have, but at a fraction of the price. Though they won’t provide you with a ton of fancy upgrades, they are more than serviceable for people who need a work or relaxation device.

Students, in particular, can make great use of any devices in the $300 price range. Cheaper laptops are much more about function than anything else. That makes them perfect for anyone who needs a computer for one or two main uses.

Best Laptops Under $300: What to Consider?

Display

Often, cheaper laptops sacrifice their resolution to reach their lower price range. Rather than settling for such models, it is important to look for machines with bright, vibrant displays. High resolution is key. Though it is hard to find cheaper HD models, there are quite a few with fantastic screens and wide viewing angles.

Sound

No matter what you use your laptop for, everyone can appreciate good sound. It’s always nice to listen to music, and when you stream your favorite shows or movies you want to hear the characters speak. As such, invest in laptops that have high-quality speakers. For under $300 models that typically means a good audio range that can handle loud noises.

Construction

Another corner that many cheaper laptops cut is their construction. Durability is critical when analyzing laptops that cost $300 or less. Many machines work right away, but a lot of them don’t hold up to a lot of use over the years. There is no point in investing money into something that’s going to break. Pay attention to materials, brands, and reliability.

Best Laptops Under $300: Our Picks

1. HP Stream 11


The HP Stream 11 is a perfect choice for people who want a cheap, portable device. Measuring just 0.7 inches thick and coming in at 2.57 pounds, this computer is perfect for those on the go. It also has quite a bit of power, including an all-day battery, tucked into its light frame.

What We Like:

  • Long battery life
  • Strong performance for the price
  • Portable and lightweight
  • Streamlined design

What We Don’t Like:

  • Webcam could be better
  • Cramped keyboard
  • Washed out display

>> Learn More on Amazon <<

2. Dell Inspiron 3000


The Dell Inspiron 3000 is a wonderful budget laptop. This model, made with a special heat-resistant material, is durable and sturdy. It stays cool during long play sessions and rarely heats up. The 15.6 screen is sleek, while the LED-backlit display looks amazing. The 4 GB of RAM gives plenty of space, but there is an extra slot if you want to go up to 8 GB.

What We Like:

  • Stunning display
  • Cooling material resists overheating
  • Strong processor
  • Solid battery life
  • Extra RAM capabilities

What We Don’t Like:

  • Performance can be inconsistent
  • Not as well lit as other models

>> Learn More on Amazon <<

3. Lenovo Ideapad S145


The Lenovo Ideapad is a light, well put together machine perfect for recreational use. Though its 4 GB of RAM won’t allow you to do a ton in terms of premium programs, the lightweight device is more than serviceable for relaxing in the bed or on your couch. The Dual-Core processor and 15.6 HD display also work together to give you a bright, vibrant screen.

What We Like:

  • Intel Dual-Core Pentium processor
  • 15.6 HD display
  • Light and easy to carry around
  • Good amount of storage space for the cost

What We Don’t Like:

  • Full plastic body
  • Touchpad can be slow
  • Shallow keyboard

>> Learn More on Amazon <<

Useful Tips and Resources

No matter how much your laptop costs, it always helps to protect it. A good case can go a long way, but a laptop backpack may be an even better option. They work well for students, but can be utilized by all users.

Additionally, it always helps to protect your laptop both inside and out.

Final Words

High price does not always mean high quality. The three laptops in this guide, while not as expensive are more well-known models, give you a lot of bang for your buck.

Each model comes with its own specialties, features, and construction. While they do not have the wide upgrade range seen in more expensive laptops, they work extremely well.

If you’re looking to get a new machine on a tight budget, or if you simply want a cheaper device for more casual use, you will not find anything better.

Chris is a computer geek for a decade. He loved talking to computers via codes, and now he finds it more interesting communicating with the real people. He now writes everything related to computer issues and loves helping people solve problems.

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