The Best Laptops Under $250 in 2023

laptops under $250

The Best Laptops Under $250 in 2023

In today’s fast-paced digital world, laptops have become indispensable tools for daily tasks, remote work, and entertainment. Due to technological advances, the market is saturated with laptops at various price points. Therefore, finding the ideal device can be challenging for budget-conscious buyers. We have compiled this list of the best laptops under $250 you can buy today. Furthermore, these laptops balance performance, portability, and affordability to give you the most for your money.

From students to professionals and casual users alike, this list caters to a diverse audience by providing options for everyone. Whether you need a device for browsing the web, streaming shows, or basic work tasks, these laptops won’t break the bank while offering impressive performance. Check out our top picks and find the ideal budget-friendly laptop that meets all your requirements. The following are our top 5 best laptops under $750 that you can buy in 2023:

Best Overall: ASUS VivoBook L203MA 

Best Overall
ASUS VivoBook L203MA Ultra-Thin Laptop
  • Comes with an AMD A6-9220e processor
  • Weighs only 2.2 pounds (battery included)
  • Features an 11-inch HD display
  • Wi-Fi 5 (802.11ac)
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The Lenovo IdeaPad 1 is an entry-level laptop with some basic computing features. It’s ideal for users who require a portable computer for everyday tasks like browsing, emailing, word processing, and video streaming. An Intel Celeron N4000 dual-core processor powers this laptop and offers enough performance for everyday tasks like browsing the web, word processing, and light multimedia consumption. While it may not be suitable for intensive video editing tasks, its integrated Intel UHD Graphics 600 still provides basic graphics capabilities suitable for casual usage.

The ASUS VivoBook L203MA is affordable for under $250, boasting 64GB eMMC storage and 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM. While the capacity may be limited for some users, including a microSD card slot allows for easy expansion. Furthermore, its 11.6-inch HD (1366 x 768p) display offers portability in an ergonomic design – ideal for those constantly on the go. Although not Full HD resolution, it still provides decent visual quality during everyday usage.

Other features such as Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 4.1, and a USB Type-C port provide extra connectivity options, while Windows 10 in S mode provides a secure and optimized user experience. Plus, its impressive 10-hour battery life lets users work on the go without worrying about finding an outlet.

Overall, the ASUS VivoBook L203MA is an excellent option for users searching for an affordable portable laptop that provides essential features and reliable performance when performing daily tasks.

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Best Budget Option: Lenovo IdeaPad 1

Best Budget Option
Lenovo 2020 IdeaPad Laptop Computer
  • Affordable option
  • Features an AMD A6-9220e Dual Core Processor
  • Up to 8 hours of battery life
  • Comes with 64GB eMMC flash memory
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When searching for a budget-friendly laptop with good performance, the Lenovo IdeaPad 1 is an option worth considering. The IdeaPad 1 is equipped with an AMD A6-9220e dual-core processor, providing enough processing power for basic everyday tasks such as web browsing, document editing, and email management. While it may not be suitable for heavier jobs like video editing, its integrated Radeon R4 graphics enable casual gaming and media consumption.

At an affordable price point of under $250, the Lenovo IdeaPad 1 offers 4GB of DDR4 RAM and 64GB eMMC storage – more than enough for light users or those primarily using cloud storage. The 14-inch HD (1366 x 768p) display provides adequate screen real estate for most tasks while keeping the laptop compact and portable.

The IdeaPad 1 boasts essential features like Wi-Fi connectivity and Bluetooth 4.0, keeping you connected to the internet and peripherals. Plus, with up to 8 hours of battery life, you can work or study without worrying about running out of power outlets.

In conclusion, the Lenovo IdeaPad 1 offers an affordable option for those needing a basic laptop for everyday use. 

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Best Travel Choice: HP Stream 11 Link

Best Travel Choice
HP Stream 11 Laptop
  • 11.6-inch anti-glare HD screen
  • Windows 11 pre-installed
  • 4 GB DDR4-2400 SDRAM onboard
  • Graphics Powered by Intel UHD Graphics 600
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As you explore budget laptops under the $250 range, it’s impossible to overlook the impressive capabilities of Windows-based devices. One such device that stands out is the HP Stream 11 Link, which offers remarkable value for its price point.

Featuring an 11.6-inch anti-glare HD screen, the HP Stream 11 Link provides a comfortable viewing experience, especially when compared to other Windows laptops in its class. The device also offers excellent audio quality, thanks to the built-in dual speakers that ensure clear sound during video calls, movie-watching, or music playback.

Under the hood, the HP Stream 11 Link is equipped with an Intel Celeron processor, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of storage, ensuring smooth multitasking capabilities for daily tasks. Whether you need to work on a Word document, browse through numerous browser tabs, or even edit presentations, the HP Stream 11 Link can handle it all with ease.

Moreover, the HP Stream 11 Link comes with a pre-installed copy of Windows 11 and a one-year subscription to Microsoft 365 Personal, adding even more value to this budget-friendly laptop. The combination of its hardware, software, and overall performance makes the HP Stream 11 Link a noteworthy contender in the sub-$250 laptop market.

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Best Performance: Lenovo IdeaPad 1 14

Best for Performance
Lenovo IdeaPad 1 14 Laptop
  • 14" Full HD display for brilliant visual
  • Dual speakers and integrated microphone
  • USB 3.0, USB 2.0, HDMI, SD card reader
  • Up to 8 hours of battery life
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When looking for laptops within the budget-conscious range, the Lenovo IdeaPad offers exceptional value. This laptop balances affordability and performance seamlessly to provide users with a reliable device without breaking the bank.

The Lenovo IdeaPad 14″ Full HD display delivers brilliant visuals that rival those of higher-priced Windows laptops. Its brightness and clarity make for an enjoyable user experience, whether you’re working on a project, browsing the web, or streaming your favorite shows.

Sound quality is another area where the IdeaPad excels, boasting dual speakers for clear and immersive audio on Zoom calls, movies, or music listening sessions. Its integrated microphone provides a convenient communication experience – ideal for online meetings and virtual hangouts.

When it comes to performance, the Lenovo IdeaPad delivers. Equipped with an Intel Celeron processor, 4GB RAM, and integrated Intel UHD graphics, this laptop can handle everyday tasks effortlessly. Multitasking with multiple browser tabs open, editing documents, or working on presentations – no sweat – the IdeaPad can handle it all effortlessly.

In conclusion, the Lenovo IdeaPad is an ideal budget-friendly laptop without skimping on performance, display, or sound quality. Its combination of features makes it one of the top choices in the under $250 price range, proving you don’t need to spend a fortune on top-notch computing experiences.

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Most Durable: ASUS Chromebook C202

Most Durable
ASUS Chromebook C202 Laptop
  • Ruggedized and spill-resistant design
  • Comes with an Intel Celeron N3060 processor
  • Compatible with all Google apps
  • Anti-Glare Display
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The ASUS Chromebook C202SA-YS02 is an affordable laptop with great performance at an affordable price point. Though not a 2-in-1 device, its ruggedized and spill-resistant design features a 180-degree hinge for convenient opening/closing.

This Chromebook is powered by an Intel Celeron N3060 processor with 4GB of RAM and 16GB eMMC storage, offering sufficient performance for most daily tasks like browsing the web, streaming videos, or working on documents. Furthermore, its operating system enables rapid boot times and app loading times for a smooth user experience.

One of the greatest advantages of the ASUS Chromebook C202SA-YS02 is its compatibility with all Google apps, which come standard on every Chromebook. This means you can quickly edit, download, and convert Microsoft Office files into Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides without any hassle or complexity.
Furthermore, the Chromebook’s rugged design and spill-resistant keyboard make it an ideal choice for students or those who are always on the go. Furthermore, its 180-degree hinge allows for versatile viewing angles in various lighting conditions – perfect for classrooms as well as professional settings.
Overall, the ASUS Chromebook C202SA-YS02 is a great choice for those seeking an impressive laptop at an unbeatable price.

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How to Pick the Best Laptops Under $250: Step-by-Step

Finding the ideal laptop for your requirements can seem daunting, but by following these guidelines, you’ll be in a better position to make an informed decision.

  • Determine your budget
  • Identify your needs and priorities
  • Choose an operating system
  • Research laptop specifications
  • Read reviews and compare models
  • Consider the brand and customer support 
  • Test the laptop in person 
  • Look for deals and discounts
  • Make your purchase

Determine Your Budget

Decide how much you’re willing to spend on a laptop. This will help you narrow your options and focus on models within your price range.

Identify Your Needs and Priorities

Consider your primary usage scenarios, such as gaming, productivity, multimedia editing, or everyday tasks. Determine which features are most important to you: performance, battery life, screen size, portability, plus build quality.

Choose an Operating System 

Opt for an operating system (OS) that you feel comfortable with, or that meets your requirements. Popular choices include Windows, macOS, and Chrome OS; each has advantages and drawbacks, so research which is best suited to meet your requirements.

Research Laptop Specifications

Based on your needs and priorities, research the following specifications:

  • Processor (CPU): Controls overall performance and multitasking capabilities.
  • Graphics (GPU): Essential for gaming and multimedia editing.
  • RAM: Impacts multitasking ability as well as system performance.
  • Storage: SSDs offer faster access and reliability than traditional HDDs, though they may have less capacity.
  • Display: Screen resolution and type (IPS, TN, or OLED) will affect image quality and viewing angles.
  • Battery Life: Check manufacturer claims and third-party reviews to assess battery performance.
  • Ports and Connectivity: Ensure your laptop has all necessary ports, such as USB, HDMI, SD card slots, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth capabilities.

Read Reviews and Compare Models

When researching laptop models, check for reviews from reliable sources like tech websites, magazines, and user testimonials on retail websites. Compare the desired models based on specs, performance, build quality, and battery life.

Consider the Brand and Customer Support

Research the reputation of the laptop manufacturer and their customer support. Look into warranty terms, return policies, and available support channels (phone, email, chat).

Test the Laptop in Person if Possible

When considering which laptop to purchase, take the opportunity to visit a local store and test out the keyboard, trackpad, display, and overall build quality. Make sure they meet your expectations.

Look for Deals and Discounts

Before deciding, check for any available discounts, deals, or bundled accessories. Shopping during sales events or using student or military discounts can help you save money.

Make Your Purchase

Once you’ve taken these steps and identified the laptop best suited to your requirements, feel confident purchasing it. Remember to add any necessary accessories like a laptop bag, external hard drive, or peripherals.

Using a Laptop Under $250: What It’s Like

After extensive research and analysis, it has become evident that using a laptop under $250 offers advantages and drawbacks.

On the plus side, budget laptops can be an ideal solution for those who require a basic computer for web browsing, emailing, and other simple tasks. These lightweight, portable machines have extended battery life, making them perfect for on-the-go usage. Furthermore, many budget laptops boast sufficient storage space and RAM – more than enough for basic needs.

However, using a laptop under $250 can have its share of drawbacks. These devices often lack sufficient processing power and may struggle to handle more complex applications or multitask efficiently. Furthermore, their screen resolution and quality may be lower than more expensive models, negatively affecting the user experience.

Overall, if you’re searching for a budget-conscious laptop to handle basic tasks, under $250 models can be an excellent choice. They may not have all the bells and whistles of more expensive models, but they still get the job done at half the price.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are These Laptops Suitable for Gaming?

Laptops under $250 are designed for basic tasks like web browsing, word processing, and video streaming. While they may not be suitable for gaming with demanding games that need high-performance graphics and processing power, you may still be able to play less demanding titles at lower settings.

Can I Use These Laptops for School or Work?

Yes, laptops under $250 are usually sufficient for basic tasks like note-taking, web browsing, and creating or editing documents. For more demanding tasks such as video editing, 3D modeling, or running resource-intensive software, you may require a more powerful laptop.

How is the Battery Life on These Budget Laptops?

Battery life will vary depending on the model and usage, but budget laptops typically offer an impressive 6-10 hours battery life. Check each manufacturer’s specifications for more specific information regarding each laptop’s battery capacity.

Are These Laptops Upgradable?

Laptops in this price range often lack upgradeability. While you can upgrade storage or RAM in certain models, processor, and graphics card upgrades are usually impossible. Always double-check the manufacturer’s specifications for upgrade possibilities.

What is the Best Operating System for Budget Laptops?

Budget laptops typically run either Windows 10/11 or Chrome OS. Windows offers a wider range of software compatibility, while Chrome OS provides an easier web-based experience with lower system requirements. Ultimately, the choice should depend on your preferences and what tasks you plan to use the laptop for.

What should I consider before buying a laptop for $250?

Before purchasing any laptop, whether it has a price tag of $250 or $1,000, you should always consider key features that are important to you. Some things you should do your research on when you’ve found a model you want to purchase includes battery life, screen size, RAM, and storage size.

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