Are you worried about obtaining a gaming laptop with a fantastic performance at such a low price of $500? Don’t be, as gaming has been made easy by recent and new designs that possess the same features that a high-end gaming laptop will have but at a pocket-friendly price.
There’s pressure to buy laptops with better graphics and better performance, everyone hates to be restricted, but money doesn’t necessarily have to prevent you from obtaining a good laptop at an affordable price of $500. The fact that you might not be able to get a laptop with a good enough performance at a low cost, it doesn’t mean you can’t. There is a wide variety of excellent gaming laptops available in the market, and you don’t need to consider twice before purchasing them.
We have carefully selected and reviewed the best gaming laptops under $500 based on their exceptional performance, higher graphics card, and better display options amongst many other features.
Table of Contents
Best Gaming Laptops Under $500
1. Dell Inspiron 15 5000 (2018)
“Our Top Choice”
- 8th Gen. Intel Quad-Core i5-8250U...
- 15.6" Touchscreen Truelife LED-Backlit...
- 802.11AC, DVD-RW, Bluetooth 4.2, HD...
- Backlit Keyboard, HDMI, 2x USB 3.1, 1x...
- 3-cell 42 WHr Battery, 4.80lbs, Windows...
The Inspiron 15 5000 Flagship Premium is one impressive laptop from Dell, I must acknowledge because the manufacturer came quite close to achieving a well-rounded machine with just a few small compromises. What Dell brings is an across-the-board best beast with features that are above average and packed in a sleek case. It’s remarkable.
Looks and Design
Although the Dell Inspiron 15 5000 series does not appear as a gaming laptop, it comes with a classic black lid chassis that makes it look a high-end machine. And are you aware that with laptops in the $500 range, you cannot get attractiveness cheaply? There is a wide range of laptops presently available that looks as cheap as its price states, but this is not the case with Dell.
The Dell Inspiron’s interior is not as stylish and sophisticated as the exterior, but it’ll perform well irrespective of this. What you will find under the black lid is an Intel Core i5-8250U clocked at 1.6GHz, and Max turbo boost of up to 3.4GHz, Integrated Intel HD Graphics 620, an impressive 12GB of DDR4 RAM, and a 1TB 5400 RPM Hard drive.
That Hard drive sets an incredible speed record, and for that price range, you are going to count yourself lucky to have one. Most low-end laptops like the Dell Inspiron comes with 8GB of RAM at their best, but this laptop offers a shocking 12 GB of RAM, and this doesn’t occur often.
In terms of display, it has a 1920 x 1080 Full HD display which allows you to have an enjoyable gaming experience. I will also like to call your attention to its 1080p touch screen, which is entirely sensitive and will require a gentle touch for you to operate. However, its touchpad is quite large and a little clumsy, it makes a click like something has got lose any time you touch the pad.
An exciting feature is SmartByte technology from Dell, which ensures you can carry out gaming and stream smooth and uninterrupted; this allows you never to miss a second of the action. This network solution provides that any application or game you install to get the bandwidth they need for optimal performance.
Also, Dell’s Waves MaxxAudio Pro helps to pump up your sound, which enables you to hear anything from gaming actions and film scores to concert songs with rich, resonant, and audible tones.
The Dell Inspiron 15 5000 Flagship Premium Series is an affordable and budget-friendly laptop with a reliable 8th Gen Core performance. Its impressive 12GB DDR4 RAM makes it a great deal and one that is hard to find best gaming laptops under 500 dollars.
2. HP Envy 17.3 i5
“Best For Pro Gamers”
- 7th Gen Intel Dual Core i5-7200U...
- 17.3" diagonal HD+ SVA BrightView...
- 8 GB DDR4 SDRAM 2133 MHz, 1TB 5400 rpm...
- 802.11b/g/n WLAN, 1 x USB 3.1, 2 x USB...
- Windows 10 Home 64 Bit, 3-cell 31 WHr...
This gaming laptop from HP is a high-performance notebook which features a remarkable set of specifications at a budget-friendly price. It is a 17.3-inch notebook which makes it even more prominent with several technological advancements in the gaming industry.
Looks and Design
The covering of this laptop is a black colored chassis that gives it an attractive look and an excellent grip to be carried around. Moreover, the display is powered by HP’s BrightView technology, which works to enhance brightness and clear visuals. Generally, this laptop is an excellent choice if you are interested in productivity and entertainment on a bigger scale.
The laptop is powered by an Intel 7th Generation Dual Core i5-7200U processor, with a turbo boost of up to 3.1 GHz with super fascinating Intel HD Graphics 620 and 8GB DDR4 SDRAM. Although it has a 2.5 GHz processor, it also comes in an amazingly max turbo speed of 3.1 GHz which causes an increase of the efficiency of its performance and makes it a decent all-around machine in terms of value.
Considering display, it has 17.3” diagonal HD + SVA Brightview WLED-backlit screen with a 1600 X 900 resolution which is one of its most expensive features. Although it does not look like a gaming laptop, you can use it to enjoy games because of its powerful internal system.
Its structure is also worth going over as it is from scratch resistant material capable enough to prevent deterioration that might want to occur as a result of constant usage. Besides the sturdy exterior, this laptop has a lot of other features worth appreciating such as a full-sized keyboard that comes with a number pad and smooth, spacious touchpad.
For its battery life, which is one feature I admire, it had an excellent runtime of 7 hours when I tested it. Under maximum load and intense gaming conditions, it worked for up to 4 hours
Interestingly, the laptop has been installed with the latest Microsoft operating software, Windows 10 by the manufacturer. This step ensures that it can be practically compatible with any PC game you decide to play on it. Also, its intel 620 integrated graphics offer you excellent gaming experience.
On the other hand, its sound and quality is quite sick with its stereo speaker projecting out of the bottom side of the keyboard
This HP 17.3 inches’ laptop is a well-designed model that comes with great usability and efficiency. It is an excellent choice for gaming and affords an adequate balance of features at a budget-friendly price. Its display ensures you have unique gaming experience and maximum productivity.
3. Acer Aspire 5
“Best For Mid-Level Gaming”
- 8th Generation Intel Core i5-8265U...
- 15.6 Inches Full HD (1920 x 1080)...
- 1 - USB 3.1 Type C Gen 1 port, 2 - USB...
- 802.11ac WiFi | Backlit Keyboard |...
This powerful and portable Aspire 5 from Acer delivers on every aspect of everyday computing and gaming. It is Acer’s middle-of-the-road range of laptop. It is a 15.6-inch laptop and comes with a sizable footprint of 382 X 263mm. It weighs just 2.66 pounds which is the lightest on our list and so it is easy to be carried around. On the other hand, these numbers are typical for a laptop of this range but worth acknowledging.
Looks and Design
Even though it does not come with any premium feature, the Acer Aspire 5 stands as an attractive machine. Its exterior comes in aluminum top cover with a subtle rigid pattern with just the right number of silver-colored highlights. It has a smart look but not substantial.
Regarding the interior, you get a 256 GB SSD to store all your files, and the latest Intel Core i5-8250U CPU and 8GB of RAM. This feature gives the computer fast start-up time; however, the laptop might experience a slowdown when multiple apps are running, and when you are in an intense gaming session.
Also, there is no traditional hard drive with only a 256 GB Solid state drive for data storage, and this makes it quite inconvenient if you have an extensive data library. However, this device does come with a means to upgrade the drive kit.
For connectivity, it comes with a sizable chassis which allows for different connectivity of ports. It has along the right edge two USB 3.0 and a headphone jack which comes along with the power unit. It has an SD card reader on the left side, a third USB 309 port, an HDMI, a USB Type-C, an Ethernet socket, and a Kensington lock slot.
The battery life is one area I admire in this laptop, even with a powerful CPU and a large 15.6-inch screen; it just slips a little amount of power. With our battery test, with the brightness set to about 150 nits and watching some minutes of video and browsing on the web at the same time, it lasted for a surprising 9 and a half hours. With intense gaming, it lasted for up to 4 hours.
The high-end laptops can go over 10 hours, but with a laptop of this caliber, this is an impressive result.
This laptop is a classy piece of equipment that goes against its low price, and in my opinion, it is a great buy. You can’t determine it is a budget-priced laptop or its general performance from just merely taking a look at it. It is built to run several games, but during an intense session of gaming, you might experience a bit of slow down.
4. Asus Vivobok F510UA
“Best For VR Gaming”
- Powerful 8th Generation Intel Core i5...
- 15.6 Inches Full HD WideView display...
- 14.2 inches wide, 0.8 inches thin and...
- 8GB DDR4 RAM and 128GB SSD + 1TB HDD...
- Comprehensive connections including USB...
With Asus releasing a set of top of the line notebooks to surpass the competition. These laptops come with the best components, features, and pricing that cannot be leveraged by competitors in the same category. One of such laptops is the Asus VivoBook F510UA-AH55, a system that can get the attention of gamers.
Asus did impressively with the 1920 X 1080 screen resolution that comes with the VivoBook F510UA- AH51. It features an IPS NanoEdge display with a surprising 80 percent screen-to-body ratio. While the screen looks beautiful and can give you a great gaming experience, it has downside with the hinge that doesn’t bend to the back enough.
Beneath its hood is an Intel’s kaby Lake-R (e-fresh) chip, that generates a new twist in the world of gaming laptops. It also comes with storage that you might not be able to get anywhere with that price. You get a 128 GB SSD for loading games and apps and an additional 1 TB hard drive for storage. Although the SD card does not offer much for storage, it is quite helpful for quicker boot times and smooth and sharp overall gaming performance.
The VivoBook AH51 boasts as one of the first to release the latest Kaby Lake-R processors. The system features a quad-core 1.6 GHz with a Max turbo boost of up to 3.5 GHz, Intel Core i5-8250U processor and 8GB of RAM plus an additional intel graphics. The 8th generation processor is the latest release, and it does function well with a strong performance.
Included on the VivoBook is the integrated UHD 620 graphics, which is common amongst low-range gaming laptops. Its Kaby-Lake R processor is relatively new and coupled with a dual channel RAM; its performance is almost equal to most dedicated lower mid-range graphics card which is okay for gaming. Although its gaming capacities come with a limit with small to medium quality settings and at low resolution, you will be able to run games smoothly.
The material used for the body of the Asus VivoBook F510UA-AH55 is the same with the deck of the keyboard and the touchpad. Nonetheless, it offers a decent amount of essential travel and a comfortable feel, though the keys themselves are not specifically splendid.
The Asus VivoBook F510UA-AH55 comes with features that make it look like a good value for a low budget. Games and applications load quickly, even the more intensive ones. Its fast boot up time is also made faster with the fingerprint sensor that comes with it.
5. Lenovo Ideapad 330S 15.6
- HIGH PERFORMANCE LAPTOP: The IdeaPad 330...
- SLEEK DESIGN: This powerful everyday...
- MAXIMUM PRODUCTIVITY: With the latest...
- HIGH-PERFORMANCE STORAGE: With 1 TB HDD...
- LIFE-LIKE CLARITY: Featuring FHD...
Gaming laptops are readily available these days, but it might be quite challenging to get a decent rig under $500. For this price, the Lenovo IdeaPad 330 is a great option. With an impressive spec to price ratio, the 330 is a good option if you are in search of a budget-friendly gaming laptop.
Looks and Design
The IdeaPad comes in a classy and straight forward design with chassis made of polished aluminum, which gives it a premium look than the price suggests. It has a small black grey Lenovo tag that adorns the side of the lid and a fitting keyboard which serves as the only bit of contrast to the light-grey color scheme. An excellent addition is the bezels which surround the display which is unexpected for a budget model
Weight and Display
At 4.84 pounds and 14.9 X 10.2 X 0.9 inches, the 15-inch IdeaPad 330s is quite small and can be easily carried around. Its 15.6-inch display comes with a 1366 X 768 screen resolution which does not compete well with other models having 1080p.
Entirely made out of plastic makes it light and reduces the overall weight. It has a full-size HDMI, USB-A, an Ethernet port, but the USB-C port only allows data transfer and not charging which is quite surprising to me as the reverse is usually the case.
This laptop has a high price-performance ratio as you can get quite a several features, its competitors outside its budget range have. Although it does have slow storage, you can replace it with another SSD, and the display isn’t up to par. However, it is quite an inexpensive way to get excellent performance.
With a battery life measured as lowly as 5 hours, you might want to keep the IdeaPad 330s near an outlet, particularly when you are involved in activities that might likely drain the battery.
Overall, the Lenovo IdeaPad is a reliable laptop which comes in a Premium design and a strong performance. If you are on the lookout for an affordable gaming machine and you are not worried about battery life and quality of the webcam, then the IdeaPad 330 should be on your wish list.
6. Asus Chromebook Flip C302
“Economy Gaming Laptop”
- The flexible 360 Degree hinge and 12.5"...
- Intel Core Processor with 64GB storage...
- Extremely lightweight at 2.65 pounds...
- Unlock the power of Chromebooks with...
It is a fact that many gaming laptops that come in a bulky design should have a lot of great features because there is enough capacity to hold them. However, the Asus Chromebook Flip C302CA is a beautiful exception. It comes in small size and at the same time, features high-end components and performance.
Looks and Design
Its aluminum chassis makes it one of the best-looking laptops around, and this also gives it a sturdy look and a bit of luxury. It has a 360-degree hinge provides the ChromeBook with its Clamshell-to-tablet flexibility, which should generally prove to be a handy feature when Android App support comes online.
Display and Connectivity
Asus Chromebook Flip c302 has an incredible display, featuring vivid colors at a small size of 12.5 inches and a super comfortable backlit keyboard, so you should give it a shot. With the two USB Type-C Ports, the Chromebook is well ahead of its competitors as the transfer speeds are double the speed of ordinary USB ports.
Also, I want to point out its full-size chiclet keyboard, which is very comfortable to type on. This laptop makes use of a scissor cut mechanism and gives 1.4 mm of travel. The keys themselves are plastic and flat with a slightly soft finish. In actual terms, what I mean is that it doesn’t feel like I’m typing on a hard surface as I have experienced with the keyboard of many other lower-end Chromebooks.
The exquisite Chromebook 4GB RAM and Intel HD Graphics make streaming videos a seamless effort and Running of android app games are a bonus.
The Asus Chromebook Flip C302C stands as a reliable all-around option. It is suitably compact and offers a relatively satisfying gaming experience with its bright and colorful display, perfect design, and compact nature. The greatest strength of the Chromebook is its portability, also with its light chassis and healthy battery life which combines to a grand effect.
7. HP Pavilion 15-CS0053CL (2018)
“Lightweight But Powerful”
- 15.6-Inch IPS Touchscreen FHD...
- 8th Generation Intel Quad Core i5-8250U
- 8 GB DDR4-2400 SDRAM
- 1 TB 5400 rpm SATA HDD
- Windows 10 Home 64-bit
If you want power and performance for your games without having to empty your bank account, then the Pavilion 15 Notebook PC from HP is one laptop you should consider. It comes with a lot of features, and in spite of this, it is lightweight and easy to move around.
Looks and Design:
Although the HP Pavilion occupies a blocky footprint, it has sculpted edges that taper to some extent. This feature makes the notebook look slimmer than it is. The design feels quite robust, and it comes with one solid piece of plastic for the lids, another for the sides and undercarriage and a keyboard deck.
With its 8th gen Intel Core-i5 CPU, you are ensured of high performance in gaming. Your applications and games are launched quickly with its 8GB RAM. You are also allowed the opportunity of opening multiple browsers,
Commonly, most laptops in this range will offer subpar displays coupled with a low resolution. This option from HP breaks the trend as it comes with an HP IPS panel at the full 1920 X 1080 pixels’ resolution. For gamers in search of crystal clear images, that is an enormous bonus over the competition.
In addition to housing a full-sized keyboard, the HP Pavilion also includes a number pad which allows you to carry out number entry easily. However, I will prefer having a centered keyboard and trackpad rather than a number pad. Also, with its low entry price, the backlighting on the keyboard is not standard.
With a budget of under $500, you might not be able to get high-end graphics. However, the HP laptop features an Integrated Intel UHD graphics card which is relatively decent when compared to other low-cost gaming laptops. It also has 8GB RAM to ensure you play games smoothly
Although its battery capacity has a low rate of just 41Wh, it has a decent battery life that can give you 8 hours of non-stop WLAN use. Charging time from near empty to full capacity takes about 2 hours.
If you are considering immersing yourself into hours of gaming and entertainment, the HP Pavilion 15 is a great option bearing in mind its price. Although it might not look like an ultimate gaming laptop, the powerful configuration embedded inside is what matters. The fact that you can use this laptop for gaming proves it has a great value to price ratio
8. HP 15-DA0002DX
- Display: 15.6 inches 1366 x 768 (HD)
- Cpu: i5-8250U 1.6 gigahertz
- Storage: 128G SSD/SD card reader card...
- Graphic: Intel UHD Graphics 620/DVDRW...
- Os: W10/color: Natural silver
HP is one famous laptop brand that is known for the quality of its products, and the company has been on their toes to ensure the right and best solutions the various needs of users. With the HP 15-DA0002DX which is their 2019 Newest 15.6″ touchscreen laptop, the brand has given its customers a powerful device that features the latest technology.
This new model touchscreen laptop from HP comes with a basic two-tone design with a silver finish on its exterior and finished with a classy black inside which gives the laptop a sleek and decent look. However, the design looks simple and essential for a low range laptop and this. I would have preferred some tweaks done to give it a sophisticated look.
HP 15-DA002DX is a decent laptop for gamers as well as home users. It features an intel core i5-8250u processor which has four cores and operates at operates with 1.6 GHz of a base frequency. On system demand, the frequency has a max turbo boost of up to 3.4 GHz. The i5-8250 processor is quick enough to enable you to carry out day to day computing. However, it is not a high-end processor, and it is mainly designed to save battery life.
This 15.6 inch HP laptop has a screen resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels. This implies that you can only get an HD display and not a full HD, which limits your gaming experience to a considerable level. The display also features a WLED backlit, and even though the widescreen is capable of delivering adequate visuals, the touchscreen which is considered to be perhaps the most impressive feature of this laptop is just simple and basic.
In addition to its 8th generation processor, which makes the device sturdy and allows you carry out gaming quickly and efficiently, it also comes with 8GB RAM and 128GB SSD which are excellent and adequate storage solutions. Also, the inclusion of an SSD instead of an HDD is even a better choice.
HP 15-DA0002DX comes with a typical set of ports and connectivity options. It has a USB 3.1 gen one ports, 1 USB 2.0, one HDMI 1.4 b, Ethernet port, one headphone, and microphone combo and an SD card reader. It features an integrated webcam as well. Gigabit Ethernet LAN supports its wired network connection, and its wireless network connectivity is supported by 802.11 b/g/n.
This laptop offers a three cell 41-watt-hour lithium battery which can impressively last up 10 hours for intense gaming and mixed computer usage if charged fully.
The HP 15-DA0002DX is a competent and fast laptop. It comes with a lot of features that make it handy and a good value for its price. Its quad-core processor and SSD drive make it a little future proof, and it is also quite superfast. If you are not satisfied with this specs, that will not be a problem as it comes with an option to upgrade.
9. Dell Inspiron 15 5570
- Intel Core i7-8550U 1.8GHz; 1000GB SATA...
- 15.6in LED display; 1920 x 1080; Intel...
- 802.11AC; Bluetooth 4.2; Microsoft...
- Non-Backlit Keyboard; SuperMulti-DVD...
Dell has been a significant brand in the gaming laptop industry, and they are amongst the few that genuinely understands user’s preference considering their vast experience with users over the years. The Dell Inspiron 5570 15 is one laptop they introduced to users. It has a lot of great features.
Looks and Design:
Dell Inspiron 5570 15 comes with a premium appearance with a smooth white color, which gives it a sophisticated look. Although it is white, it has a high resistance to paint and stain as a result of its smoothness, which makes it never gets dirty nor need cleaning. Also, this laptop features a metal building process which makes it resistant to corrosion and abrasion; thus, its body cannot undergo rusting.
This laptop comes with Intel’s latest eight-generation processor Core i5-8250U coupled and a 1 TB HDD. It comes with a four-core, eight-thread design clocking 1.6GHz ad a Max turbo boost core frequency of up to 3.4 GHz.
It has a quite decent keyboard design with an impressive keycap gap which is appropriate and ensures you don’t make the mistake of pressing two keys at a time while typing. I’m particularly impressed by the position of the power button located at the far right above the keyboard to prevent the power button embedded in the keyboard which is not so suitable. Unfortunately, the keyboard does not have backlit which makes usage in low-lighted areas ineffective
For connectivity, it has an SD card slot on the right and a USB 2.0 port. Its left side houses ports for the power connector, USB 2.1 Type-C, HDMI, network, USB 3.1 Type A, and headset/microphone. All these ports are standard fare, and it is impressive to know that the notebook is not missing lagging on connectivity. The laptop also features an integrated webcam that you can use for conference calls.
The Dell Inspiron 5570 15 uses a 42Wh built-in lithium polymer battery, and this ensures it has low power consumption and allows you to run gaming and other activities for up to 8 hours if fully charged.
The Dell Inspiron 5570 15 has several great features. It can deliver a smooth gaming experience with an 8th generation processor. Also, the ability to multitask is made easy. However, the absence of backlighting on the keyboard is a hindrance to its effective operation.
10. Lenovo IdeaPad 320
- 15.6 inch 1366 x 768 LED Backlight, HD...
- AMD A9-9420 Dual-Core Processor, 2.9 Ghz...
- 10/100Base-T Fast Ethernet, Bluetooth...
- 1 X HDMI Port, 1 X DC-In Port, 1 X...
- Color: Red, Windows 10 Home, 0.9" Thin,...
With several laptop brands available in the market, it is no longer difficult to find one that is affordable within one’s budget. The Lenovo IdeaPad 320 is one of the latest low-range notebooks in the market, and it is a suitable one for those who are in search for computing power and gaming efficiency at a lower cost.
Looks and Design:
The chassis of the IdeaPad 320 comes with a few differences when compared to other IdeaPad series. It comes in plastic instead of aluminum commonly used for the lid. However, this is not a surprise as a result of its significantly lower price tag. Nonetheless, the bottom piece is at least quite stable, rigid, and features a few vent openings for extra airflow.
This laptop comes with the powerful latest generation AMD processing, plus plenty of memory which guarantees lightning-fast responsiveness. It has an AMD A9-9420 dual-core processor clocked at 2.90GHz with a Max Turbo speed of 3.50 GHz.
The IdeaPad 320 offers High-Definition resolution on a brilliant 15.6-inch display coupled with anti-glare technology which ensures you have adequate visual clarity and great experience while you play games or watch movies
In terms of connectivity, this laptop is unique for the fact that it does not come with any connectors on its right side but only the optical drive. It has all the ports concentrated on the left side. It has the RJ-45 LAN port, HDMI, two USB 2.0, a 3.5 mm audio jack and the SD card reader.
The Lenovo IdeaPad keyboard, on the other hand, is quite impressive. It has no LED backlight but offers good tactile feedback, clicky feel, and decent travel distance. For its touchpad, the surface is a bit unstable, and precision is sometimes missing, but it is still fair enough to get the work done.
For battery life and power consumption, its 30Whr battery is entirely under impressive for this notebook. This implies that with the battery capacity being insufficient, it reduces the effect of the TN-panel and energy-efficient Core i5-7200U. It can only last for up to 5 hours at the highest.
The Lenovo IdeaPad 320 features a robust design to prevent wear and tear and also withstand whatever life throws at it. Powerful latest AMD processing plus a lot of memory enables you to play games smoothly and run multiple programs simultaneously.
From this detailed review, choosing a gaming laptop to suit your needs now should be a lot easier. The above laptops were carefully selected based on their specifications and reviews from present users all in a bid to help you in your step to purchase a low-budget gaming laptop. However, don’t forget to be on the lookout for good battery life, suitable graphics card, excellent display, and an overall fantastic performance
Judging from the six laptops reviewed, Dell Inspiron 15 5000 Flagship Premium easily tops our list with its well-built and sleek appearance; it’s hard drive that sets a fantastic speed record, great display to enable you to have a good gaming experience, maximum connectivity, and adaptability, etc.
Last update on 2020-02-22 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API