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10 Best Gaming Laptops Under $400: Tested & Reviewed

Are you a gaming fanatic? If so, do you need a laptop that will quench your thirst for gaming while not cutting deep into your pockets? Well, we’ve got you covered.

With the gaming world becoming very competitive day by day, you need a laptop that will keep you updated. Besides, a laptop that has all the desirable specs for an aptitude gamer, you want it to be equally good for work.

Best Gaming Laptops Under 400 Dollars

Best Gaming Laptop Under 400
Laptop NameProcessorSizePrice
1. HP Pavilion 17 ar050wm3 GHz17.3"
2. Acer Aspire E154.4 GHz15.6"
3. Dell Inspiron 15 (3000)2.7 GHz15.6"
4. Lenovo Ideapad 330sCore I315.6”
5. Dell Inspiron 152.7 GHz15.6"
6. Dell Inspiron 15 (4000)1.9 GH15.6"
7. Lenovo Ideapad 152.5 GHz15.6"
8. Lenovo Ideapad 3102.4 GHz15.6"
9. Acer Aspire 3Core i513.3″
10. Lenovo Thinkpad 11E2.3 GHz11.6"

1. HP Pavilion 17 ar050wm

“Sleek Design”

HP Pavilion 17-ar050wm 17.3in Full HD...
  • 17.3" diagonal FHD IPS anti-glare...
  • 1TB 5400 rpm SATA Hard Drive, 8 GB...
  • Intel 802.11b/g/n/ac (1x1) Wi-Fi and...
  • HP TrueVision HD Camera with integrated...
  • Built in DVD-Writer, Windows 10 Home...

I remember the advice I got when I wanted to purchase my first laptop. I did ask a few guys the type of laptop I should consider. 60% of them told me to look for HP Pavilion 17 ar050wm review. Even though I did not buy it, HP laptops have proven to be the king in the computer game industry.

True to their mission, they have developed a gaming laptop that might try to beat others. HP 17z 17 Inch Laptop machine professes a 4 GB memory and 1 TB for HDD storage which allows you to store as many games as you want and still give you fast performance like anything.

The laptop has an outstanding 17.3 screen size with 1600 by 900 resolution display for maximum view. This is the largest screen size in the category. Plus, it runs on AMD Radeon R5 Graphics on a dual-core processor up to 3 GHz with burst frequency and timeless speed.

You have the ability to play heavy duty games that need speed and stamina and the battery timing which easily go beyond 7 hours. This is recommendable but you may want to carry your charger when going out.

Pros
  • Reliable performance available at any time.
  • Sleek design that will capture your eyes right on the first look.
  • Exceptional quality that marches the games you play.
  • Ample storage
Cons
  • A bit bulky
Specs Recap
  • Processor: Dual Core Processor 3 GHz
  • RAM: 8 GB
  • Display: 17.3″
  • Weight: 6.5 lb
  • Storage: 1TB SATA 5400-RPM
  • Graphics: AMD Radeon R5
  • Battery Life: Up to 7 hours

Bottom Line

This bad boy is not recommendable for gamers that are always on the move because of its size and weight otherwise it can be a perfect fit. However, it might be an ideal machine that you can use to horn your gaming skills. It’s pretty budget friendly.

2. Acer Aspire E15

“Powerful Under $400”

Acer Aspire E 15, 15.6" Full HD, 8th Gen...
  • 8th Generation Intel Core i3 8130U...
  • 15.6 inches Full HD (1920 x 1080)...
  • 6GB Dual Channel Memory, 1TB HDD and 8x...
  • Up to 13.5 Hours of battery life
  • Windows 10 Home. Operating System...

First on our list is Acer Aspire E15 Intel core laptop from Acer Company. It just came in a time when gamers need a laptop that provides dependable and impressive performance that can tackle heavy and fast games.

The design of the laptop is made to resonate with the game environment and allow you to play more. The skin is thick, dark with a touch of shiny metal texture that gives it a premium appearance. The battery can keep you going up to 14 hours nonstop which is the longest time in this category.

The RAM is 6 GB to play smoothly and 1TB hard disk to store multiple games. It has sharp 1080 display of 15.6 inches that offers clear and breathtaking images.

The Intel core I3 processor is likely to give you a rocket thrust while playing those hair-raising games. The laptop is fast in processing information with the speeds reaching up to 3.4 GHz. Not to forget the Intel HD 620 graphics that increase the overall visual performance.

Pros
  • Secure and consistent wireless connection
  • Crystal clear sound system
  • Built-in DVD drive
  • Upgradable
Cons
  • It has bloatware
  • No dual channel a disadvantage for CPU graphics
  • Very bulky
Specs Recap
  • Processor: 4.4 GHz Core I3
  • RAM: 6 GB
  • Display: 15.6″
  • Weight: 5.28 lb
  • Storage: 1 TB
  • Graphics: Intel UHD graphics 620

Bottom Line

This is my best choice of value in the market in this category. The performance is impressive, has a sleek design, impressive color output, perfect battery life, and you get all this at an affordable price. This is potentially the go-to laptop for a pro gamer.

3. Dell Inspiron 15 (3000)

“Powerful Under $400”

Dell Inspiron 15.6” Touch Screen Intel...
  • Intel Core i3-7130U Dual -Core Processor...
  • 15 6" Hd 1366x768 touch screen Display/...
  • Keyboard with numeric keypad/ 802...
  • 2 x USB 3 1 1 x USB 2 0 HDMI/ 4-cell...
  • Multi-format SD media card Reader/ no...

The fast developing technology is the idea behind the development of Dell Inspiron 15 3000 series. Why? The display is a 15.6’ HD 1366 by 768 touch screen. The feature allows you to play the games you’d play on a smartphone like candy crush. The aim of this laptop is to give you the feel and ease you’d experience on a smartphone.

Now, this machine soars the skies as it boasts on Intel core I3 713OU processor with speeds up to 2.7 GHz that enables you to play hardcore games. When combined with HD graphics 620 graphics processor, you’ll be on top of the game.

The wide HD touch screen is displayed with WLED backlight that provides optimum clarity and fun even in the dark. Not to forget the sleek and beautiful design to give you an extra oomph while playing your favorite game.

It has an 8 GB RAM with 1TB flash memory solid state to store your endless games. The weight is not more than a pound.  The machine comes with an installed webcam with integrated microphone, a magnificent feature if you are playing the same game with a friend who is not around. To wrap everything up, the operating system is windows 10 with Cortana for fast browsing and gaming of course.

Pros
  • Complete connectivity
  • Touch screen
  • Top of the art and quality display
Cons
  • Occasional problems with wireless capability
  • Slow if not well taken care of in the long run
Specs Recap
  • Processor: 2.7 GHz Intel Core i3
  • RAM: 8 GB
  • Display: 15.6″
  • Weight: 5 lb
  • Storage: 128 GB
  • Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 620

Bottom Line

It is not that easy to get a machine with an HD 1366 by 768 touch screen under $400. Most of them cost over $1000. So, you might be one step closer to getting an amazing laptop at an affordable budget. No gamer will shun such an opportunity.

4. Lenovo Ideapad 330s

“Gamers’ Beast”

Lenovo - 330S-15ARR 15.6" Laptop - AMD...
  • Processor Model AMD 2nd Generation Ryzen...
  • 8GB system memory for advanced...
  • 128GB solid state drive (SSD)
  • 15.6" Full HD display The 1920 x 1080...

How can we forget this beast?  Only released four years ago, Lenovo Ideapad 330s has become one of the most sort-for laptops in the gaming industry.

The laptop may seem similar to other Lenovo laptops, but there is a difference. The DNA is specified to offer the best gaming experience that you might never forget.

To begin with, Lenovo Ideapad 330 laptop is an 8th generation Intel Core i3-8130U mobile processor machine. It has a serial ATA-600 Hard Drive interface with a screen size of 15.6 HD LED for better visibility and clarity.

If you ask a tech geek what you should probably be looking for in a gaming laptop, they’ll tell you to check graphics card or GPU. True to this, the machine brings the display alive. This is attributed to the GPU on the motherboard. This magnificent feature allows you to have lifelike stunning visuals on your game.

The laptop runs on an Intel Graphics 620 like most of the Lenovo counterparts and a processor speed between 2.2 GHz and 3.4 GHz. This is the recommended speed for any gaming computer. The machine guarantees you fast operations and on-time responses.

Also, the laptop has 8GB RAM and 1TB storage for your library of games and smooth flow while playing. Not to forget it’s Lithium Polymer battery that can take you up to five hours with a screen size of 15.6’ HD LED for better visibility

Pros
  • The keyboard does not flex making it steady
  • Very light for easy portability
  • The machine has a slim and sleek look.
  • Impressive quality that does not seem to resonate with the budget/li>
Cons
  • The display is not full HD
  • The battery is not the perfect fit for a gamer
Specs Recap
  • Processor: 8th gen Intel Core I3
  • RAM: 8 GB
  • Display: 15.6” HD LED Display
  • Weight: 4.12 lb
  • Storage: 1 TB SATA 5400-RPM
  • Graphics: MD Radeon R7

Bottom Line

For this laptop, quality is not quantity. The service offered clearly does not resonate with the price. It may have been a little bit more but it can withstand a load of intense gaming for less.

It’s not a perfect machine if you like to play for a long time. You need it when you are a “part-time player” maybe in the evenings or when you are bored. However, it’ll still be there to quench your gaming thirst.

5. Dell Inspiron 15

“Latest Graphics Card”

2018 Newest Dell Inspiron High...
  • Intel Dual Core i3-7130U 2.7 GHz...
  • 15.6" (1366 x 768) HD Display, Intel HD...
  • 2 x USB 3.0, 1 x USB 2.0, 1 x...
  • Wireless-B/G/N; Media Card Reader,...
  • Windows 10 Home, Weighs 5.07 lbs, 0.9"...

Do you need quality that is accompanied by speed and reliability?  Well, you might consider putting this upgraded version of Dell Inspiron 15 3000 on your purchasing list.

Dell Company for years has been known to keep its brand trustworthiness. Well, this gaming laptop has proven to be on par with the companies’ image.

This is a 7th generation Intel Core i5-7100U mobile processor. The machine has MaxxAudo that will provide you with a great voice on games. It brings the whole experience to life. It also has a perfect HDMI output to extend viewing options. For instance, if you love big screens, you can extend the game to a 72 inch smart TV.

This machine operates on windows 10 which most gamers find easy to cruise on and the graphics are Intel HD 610. This will provide you with top-notch visuals and prolific images of the game.

The Hard drive rotational speed is 5400 RPM, processor speed 2.4 GHz. The feature allows you to play intense high-end games that need speed and power.

Pros
  • Very fast in gaming
  • Comfortable in starting up and connecting
  • Has a reliable processor that does not hang
  • Professes custom graphic designs
Cons
  • The hard drive may take time when starting out
  • A little bit heavy
  • Lack of SSD
Specs Recap
  • Processor: 2.7 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
  • RAM: 4 GB
  • Display: 15.6″ (1366 BY 768) HD
  • Weight: 5.07 lb
  • Storage: 1TB SATA 5400-RPM
  • Graphics: Intel HD graphics 620

Bottom Line

2018 Dell Inspiron laptop has top-notch features including wide storage space that gives you ample space for your library of games. It acts as one of the formidable gaming laptops in the industry today.

The design is attractive to gamers either on the move or indoors. It’s not the lightest nor the heaviest laptop in the market making it fit the two groups.

6. Dell Inspiron 15 (4000)

“High Sound Quality”

Dell Inspiron 15 i15RV-953BLK 15.6 -...
  • Intel Pentium Dual Core 2127U Processor...
  • 4 GB DDR3
  • 500 GB 5400 rpm Hard Drive
  • 15.6-Inch Screen

A little bit less than 2018 Dell Inspiron but still has more to offer. Dell Inspiron 15 (i15RV-953BLK) can multitask making it one of the favorite laptops for students. The 500 GB internal storage gives you the chance to store a few games with other mandatory files and movies etc.

4GB RAM is enough to provide a newbie and mid-level gamer the right speed to learn before they stand up on their feet.

The machine has an ample 15.6’ screen size with a display resolution of 1366 by 768, just enough for optimum vision and clarity. Unlike many of the gamer laptops, this machine operates on Windows 8 OS. Don’t let this fool you, though. It is still spectacular.

The Intel HD graphics have good visuals and colorful images to keep you entertained.  Lastly, the laptop runs on a 1.9 GHz Pentium processor which is a good speed if you are not playing heavy duty games. It can work on Lithium-ion batteries that can take you up to eight hours of GTA.

Pros
  • A fantastic keyboard that is soft on touch
  • Setting up is easy
  • Sleek and appealing design
  • Professes custom graphic designs
Cons
  • Windows 8 which may not switch to Windows 10
  • Slow for heavy games
Specs Recap
  • Processor: 1.9 GHz Pentium
  • RAM: 4 GB DDR3
  • Display: 15.6″
  • Weight: 7.5 lb
  • Storage: 500 GB
  • Graphics: Intel HD graphics 620

Bottom Line

As a pro gamer, this might be a perfect choice, according to me. Space is not enough to store heavy duty games but you can upgrade later.

To prevent it from slowing down, it is advisable that you look for games that can keep up with the RAM. However, you have nothing to lose as the budget perfectly fits the specifications.

7. Lenovo Ideapad 15

“Professional Gamers Choice”

Lenovo Premium Built High Performance...
  • Powerful AMD processor The quad-core AMD...
  • 8GB memory/1TB HDD, Sleek and slender...
  • 15.6" LED-Backlit HD+ (1366x768)...
  • Wireless-AC WLAN + Bluetooth 4.0...
  • 2x 1.5W Stereo Speakers with Dolby...

Lenovo Ideapad 15 also known as Lenovo Z50, it is one of the latest gifts from ThinkPad Company. The manufacturers opted to create it with the modern slim and sleek design.

This machine hosts a powerful AMD processor that provides high speed for multitasking. It is created with R7 seven graphics that are qualified to run games and playbacks.

Lenovo Z5O professes RAM of 8GB for speed and smooth gaming. Also, it proudly boasts on 1TB HDD for maximum game storage and joins the club of the high-end laptops. Besides, it has Bluetooth 4.0 100/1000M Ethernet (RJ-45 Connector) Integrated Webcam.

Like most laptops, the screen size is 15.6 inches with HD+ backlight display. In addition, they have Dolby stereos Speakers with headphone access.  You are at liberty of using the headphones when you are tired of speakers.

Pros
  • Has a sleek design
  • High-speed performance
  • Fast updates
Cons
  • Average screen and display
  • Gets very hot quickly
Specs Recap
  • Processor: 3.3 GHz AMD A Series
  • RAM: 8 GB SDRAM DDR3
  • Display: 15.6″ – 1366×768
  • Weight: 5.6 lb
  • Storage: 1 TB
  • Graphics: AMD Radeon R7 graphics

Bottom Line

If you think speed, think Lenovo Z50. It gives you the ability to fast track all your game progress and keep playing. Just be careful not to go past the five hours battery charge before you plug it in the charger.

8. Lenovo Ideapad 310

“Reliable For High End Gaming”

Lenovo Ideapad 310 - 15.6" HD Display...
  • HIGH PERFORMANCE NOTEBOOK: DDR4 RAM...
  • LATEST WIFI TECHNOLOGY: This laptop's...
  • STUNNING HIGH DEFINITION LAPTOP: The...
  • INTEGRATED DVD/CD-RW DRIVE: Ditch your...
  • AFFORDABLE GRAPHICS AND PERFORMANCE...

To be online and connect with other gamers, you need a good laptop that has a good Wi-Fi connection. Now, the manufacturers of Lenovo Ideapad 310 have used the latest Wi-Fi Technology that is fast, reliable and has no down times. With the fast 2.5 GHz AMD A series, you can download a large-sized game in minutes

The laptop has a whopping 12 GB RAM one of the highest on this category and hence making it the fastest in performing functions.

It is also equipped with the fantastic AMD processors for playing that provides an excellent viewing power. The Crisp and visuals offer good clarity. All thanks to the AMD Radeon graphics with amazing viewing power.

It runs on the Windows 10 operating system and has a 1 TB storage just enough to store all your games and other files.

Pros
  • An exciting sound and display
  • Intensive Wi-Fi connection speed for faster web browsing.
  • Nice optical drive
Cons
  • The battery does not last the recommended time.
Specs Recap
  • Processor: 2.5 GHz AMD A Series
  • RAM: 12 GB
  • Display: 15.6″ – 1366×768
  • Weight: 4.84 lb
  • Storage: 1 TB
  • Graphics: AMD Radeon R7

Bottom Line

Some few recent users have complained that they don’t get the full speed they expected from a 12 GB RAM laptop.

As much as the claims may be true, it is still a reasonable laptop that’s good for an experienced gamer. It’s not easy to get such a laptop with on such a price. You have to dig deeper into your pockets.

9. Acer Aspire 3

“Next Level Performance”

The manufacturer termed it as the perfect laptop for every need. This feature allows you to perform your office tasks, watch the video, school tasks and then get back to your game. The flamboyant dark shiny colour gives you a hint of what to expect inside.

The manufacturers have used top of the art graphic technology, Radeon Vega 3 Mobile Graphics. This provides you with more clarity and perfect vision on the

It professes 8GB RAM and ITB Hard drive to store your numerous games. The Screen size is the average 15.6 inch with explicit LED backlights. Also, it operates on the coveted Windows 10 Home Operating System.

It has a 3.0 Webcam and an additional SD card slot for more storage. The extra support High audio definition and two inbuilt digital microphones give you the ability to communicate with your opponent on the other end.

Pros
  • Faster performance
  • It holds power efficiently
  • Sleek design
Cons
  • Delicate screen
Specs Recap
  • Processor: 2.4 GHz AMD Radeon Vega 3
  • RAM: 8 GB
  • Display: 15.6″ – 1366 x 768
  • Weight: 5.07 lb
  • Storage: 1 TB
  • Graphics: AMD R Series

Bottom Line

Taking your eyes off this bad boy might be a battle against yourself. The sleek design is not only appealing to the eyes but gives it a perfect shape to easily fit inside your backpack. The laptop has all the requirements to browse the web and download games promptly and play as you go.

10. Lenovo Thinkpad 11E

“Best Of The Best”

Lenovo ThinkPad 11e 11.6" Business...
  • 11. 6" Hd Display and Intel HD 520...
  • Intel Dual-Core i3-6100U 2. 30GHz
  • 8GB RAM/ 256GB Solid State Drive
  • Microsoft Windows 10 Professional 64 Bit

The ThinkPad revolution began some few years back, and they have created quite magnificent laptops. This is one of the smallest laptop yet can still keep up with the big boys.

It offers a screen size 11.6 inches with a screen resolution of 1366 by 768. However, don’t let the small screen size fool you. It has more to offer as it also operates on Windows 10 professional OS and Intel HD graphics for clarity in the visual output.

The RAM is 8GB and a 256 GB Solid state hard drive. This is a functional feature for newbie gamers as they don’t have too many games to store. The body is 360 degrees convertible hence can be also used as a tablet.

This heavy and fast performance best holds a 7th generation Cor i3 processor. This is slightly lower in performance than its counterparts but you can still keep up with the hardcore games. Plus, it has the newest Wi-Fi 802.11ac with Bluetooth 4.1 to ensure you stay connected with fast internet.

Pros
  • Very light due to small size nature
  • The most portable gaming computer
  • User-friendly keyboard and controls
  • Perfect and long lasting battery
Cons
  • Minor design faults
  • Not ideal for pro gamers but ideal for beginner and mediocre
Specs Recap
  • Processor: 2.3 GHz Intel Core i3
  • RAM: 8 GB
  • Display: 11.6″ – 1366 x 768
  • Weight: 3 lb
  • Storage: 256 GB
  • Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 520

Bottom Line

This laptop marks the end of our countdown. The smallest laptop in the category and can perform multiple tasks. It is the best for your kids who love gaming as it is not heavy and they can easily get along with it.

Final Verdict

Getting the best gaming laptops under $400 is not easy. There are specific differentiators that you have to put in place which is already discussed above. You have to do proper research and get feedback from recent users. This is what we did to provide you with concrete information before you begin or continue your gaming experience.

Now, which laptop do you think will carry the day? When we put different factors like quality, service, performance, and graphical output while still watching the budget, Lenovo Ideapad 310 carries the day.

Recent users have recorded that Lenovo has powerful AMD 10 processors and graphics that relays your game in an exciting vision that will remain in your mind. Don’t let our choice deter your take; you can still pick your best but be sure it is from this list.

Share your valuable thoughts in the comment section.

Last update on 2020-10-24 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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Jeff Finder
Jeff Finder

Jeff Finder is a Digital Nomad who travel around the world and love to blog about technology and gadgets specifically laptops.