A sub-$400 price range doesn’t allow you to be expressive with the laptop purchases. Instead, you need to prioritize your requirements and get hold of laptops that offer the most value for money. Going under 400 dollars means that you would be concentrating on budget laptops, which is a keenly contested arena, comprising ultraportable, Chromebooks, and durable gadgets.
What to Look for in the Best Laptop under $400?
#1 Our Topmost Pick - Acer Aspire 5
In case you want to jump right to the crux of the discussion, it is the Aspire 5 that qualifies as the best laptop that can be purchased for less than 400 dollars. Besides a full HD IPS display and an AMD Ryzen 3 3200U processor, this laptop is also known for the fast 128GB PCIe NVMe SSD, illuminated keyboard, the latest wireless standards for establishing the fastest possible connections.
Before We dive into the actual laptop recommendations, let me give you the minimum and ideal specifications you should be shooting for in this budget range.
Intel Core i3
Intel Core i5/AMD Ryzen 3
Intel HD graphics
Intel UHD graphics
13-inch HD LED
15.6-inch Full HD IPS
Close to 4 Hours
Close to 8 Hours
10 Best Laptops under $400: Detailed Explanation
1. Acer Aspire 5 - 15.6 inch Full HD
- Processor- AMD Ryzen 3 3200U
- Graphics- AMD Radeon Vega 3
- RAM-4GB DDR4
- Display-15 6-inch Full HD IPS
- Storage-128GB SSD
- Battery Life- Close to 8 Hours
- Backlit keyboard
- IPS Display
- Wi-Fi 6 support
As mentioned, the Acer Aspire 5 is easily the most competent laptop under 400 dollars. While this laptop doesn’t actually flaunt a sub-$400 price point, you can ditch Intel and opt for the AMD-powered variant for lowering the price point, further. To start with, the Acer Aspire 5 is one of the more portable laptops under 400 dollars that weighs less than 4 pounds.
Acer features a brilliant 15.6-inch screen, bolstered further by 1920 x 1080 pixels as the cumulative resolution. While the $400 price range doesn’t justify the inclusion of IPS technology, you get access to a TN display, boasting of an inherent faster screen refresh rate. The Twisted Nematic panel also brings Acer’s Color Intelligence technology into the mix, followed by the glare-minimizing, BlueLightShield support.
As far as the processing performances are concerned, Acer persists with an AMD Ryzen 3 3200U CPU. The existing processor readily justifies the price range and is capable of reaching turbo clock speeds of up to 3.4GHz. The excellent single-core processing firepower, clubbed with HyperThreading technology makes this 10th gen Intel core processor capable enough to manage accounting and academic tasks sans lags. Besides, the integrated UHD graphics allows you to indulge in casual games and online editing processes.
Acer Aspire 5 boasts of 4GB RAM, which is capable of handling basic multitasking, at least 10 simultaneous chrome tabs, and other CPU-intensive processes, without any lag. Storage-wise, there is a 128GB solid state drive with NVMe-support in play for storing files, data, and Windows 10 S OS, for facilitating quicker boot-ups. Furthermore, Acer also makes room for a smooth, durable, and backlit keyboard followed by innovative speakers with TrueHarmony support, HD webcam, and dual microphones.
Therefore, if you are in the market for an efficient, productive, and resourceful laptop under 400 dollars, the Aspire 5 is the perfect option to consider. While the Intel-powered version is already selling like hotcakes, the AMD-centric variant is also up for grabs at a far cheaper rate and that too with an upgradable hard drive bay at the helm.
- AMD Ryzen fast processor
- Wi-Fi 6 support
- Ultrafast storage space
- Long-lasting battery
- A lower chunk of RAM
- TN display isn’t as bright
2. Asus VivoBook 15
- Processor-Intel Core i3-1005G1
- Graphics-Intel UHD graphics
- Display-15 6-inch Full HD LED
- Storage-128GB SSD
- Battery Life- Close to 7 Hours
- Comes equipped with a fingerprint scanner
- Supports fast charging
- Speakers with Asus SonicMaster support
The new and improved, budget-friendly Asus VivoBook 15 comes bearing gifts, boasting of several security-enhancing specifications and a decent-enough specs sheet. While this is easily the best laptop for the given price point, it is the aesthetic brilliance that makes it even more special. The Asus VivoBook 15 weighs a mere 3.75 pounds and ensures that you get the best typing experience on a budget, considering the slightly lifted hinge.
However, it is the display that deserves a special mention, courtesy of the 15.6-inch panel and the overall display resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. While a 15-inch screen might be a bit contradictory considering the smallish chassis, this is where the NanoEdge bezels come into play, thereby increasing the screen-to-chassis ratio, almost significantly to up to 88 percent.
The Asus VivoBook 15 stacks in a 10th generation Intel Core i3 processor to carry out the more demanding tasks with seamless ease. Not just that, the existing processor can still support Turbo Clock speeds of up to 3.4GHz, which is still a resourceful attribute considering the existing price point. Supporting the CPU is the UHD graphics coprocessor and 4MB of cache memory.
As far as memory allocation is concerned, you get access to 8GB of RAM followed by a speedy, 128GB SSD unit, boasting of NVMe-support. The existing solid-state drive is more than capable of storing and retrieving files in a heartbeat while speeding up the Windows 10 operating system S Mode boot-ups, considerably enough.
A good thing about the Asus VivoBook 15 is that it is loaded with highly functional attributes, including the one-touch, fingerprint scanner with Windows Hello support, innovative and full-sized backlit keyboard with an excellent key travel of 1.4mm, innovative acoustic setup, ErgoLift hinge for realizing the best-possible typing and heat-dissipating experience, and a smooth trackpad.
The connectivity suite deserves a special mention with the Asus VivoBook 15 making way for USB 3.2 Type-C, USB 2.0, Type-A, HDMI, Wi-Fi 5, and Gig Ethernet support. The beefed-up battery module offers 7 hours’ worth of battery life whilst being capable of getting 60 percent charged in less than 50 minutes.
Overall, the Asus VivoBook 15 is one of the best-looking budget laptops under 400 bucks, known for an entire gamut of productivity-enhancing attributes. Besides, there is also an AMD Ryzen powered variant to purchase, in case you want to ditch Intel.
- 10th generation Intel core i3 processor
- Long-lasting battery support
- Nifty fingerprint scanner
- Full-sized keyboard
- Lacks Wi-Fi 6 support
3. Lenovo IdeaPad 3
- Processor-AMD Ryzen 5 3500U
- Graphics-AMD Radeon Vega 8 Graphics
- Display-14-inch Full HD LED
- Storage-256GB SSD
- Battery Life- Close to 6 Hours
- Dedicated Q-Control
- Weighs a mere 3.30 pounds
- Two-way narrow bezels
The Lenovo IdeaPad 3 is one of the best laptops under 400 dollars, provided you are inclined towards AMD Ryzen processors. From a structural perspective, this is quite a sleek laptop, weighing close to 3.30 pounds. However, you still get access to a 14-inch screen, exhibiting 1920 x 1080 pixels, in terms of resolution. While the LED display comes with several heartening features, it is the slimmer two-ways paneling that steals the show.
At the core, the Lenovo IdeaPad 3 houses the AMD Ryzen 5 3500U APU, featuring quad core architecture, SMT technology, and a maximum boosted clock speed of up to 3.8GHz. Most importantly, this is a mid-range processor that finds its place inside a budget laptop, clubbed with an integrated AMD Radeon Vega GPU.
The mid-range quad-core, mobile processor is ably assisted by 8GB RAM and the 256GB SSD, with the latter being capable of loading the Windows 10 OS at lightning speeds. Besides, Lenovo IdeaPad 3 also comes equipped with a standard keyboard, shutter-backed webcam, decent set of speakers, 3 USB ports, and a dedicated HDMI slot.
This sleek notebook also makes way for the 2x2 Wi-Fi AC standard that is more than capable of setting up fast and stable connections. The battery on this gadget is capable of churning out close to 6 hours, which readily qualifies the same as one of the best budget laptops in the retail space.
- Offers Value for Money
- Dopoundsy acoustic setup
- Laptop with a dedicated battery life-saving mode
- Powerful integrated graphics
- Lacks Wi-Fi 6
- Lacks an illuminated keyboard
4. Dell Inspiron 14 5000
- Processor-Intel Core i3-1115G4
- Graphics-Intel UHD Graphics
- RAM-8 GB
- Display-14-inch HD LED
- Storage-128GB SSD
- Battery Life- Close to 8 Hours
- Responsive touchscreen
- 10th gen processor
- Weighs less than 3.5 pounds
The new Dell Inspiron 14 5000 is one of the few 2-in-1 laptop choices for the given price range. While the aesthetics are in line with some of the more premium laptops, the 3.42-pound heft readily qualifies the Dell Inspiron 14 as one of the more portable options in the retail space. As far as the display is concerned, the 14-inch HD screen, with a resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels, is worth investing in.
The touchscreen also flaunts the power-saving, LED-backlit technology which is moderately bright and quite sufficient for basic tasks and media consumption. The 10th gen Intel core i3 processor is no pushover and performs better than the 8th gen Intel core i3 processor. Moreover, this graphics optimized chipset is ably assisted by the UHD integrated graphics co-processor that allows you to manage casual games with seamless ease.
Also read: Best Laptops for Writers
The 4 GB DDR4 RAM is pretty basic but more than effective for a budget 2-in-1. Complementing the RAM and overall gadget sleekness is the 128GB SSD, which is fast and boot-ups the Windows 10 Home OS, in a heartbeat. Not just that, this convertible also accommodates a classy keyboard, smooth trackpad, and a decent collection of ports, including Type-A, USB 3.2 Type-C, HDMI, and more.
Moreover, this value for money laptop also makes room for the WVA panel which is an asset for the streamers. Clubbed with the concept of multi-mode operability, this laptop is one of the best options for productivity seekers. Last but not least, the 8-hour battery backup is one of the better features associated with this convertible, making the Dell Inspiron 14 5000 one of the best budget options to put your money in.
- Stylus-compatible display
- Can be used in the tent, tablet, and other modes
- Aluminum-clad cover
- Future-proof processor
- Optional backlit keyboard
- The display isn’t as bright
5. HP 15-ef0021nr
- Processor-AMD Ryzen 3 3200U
- Graphics-AMD Radeon Vega 3
- Display-15 6-inch HD LED
- Storage-256GB SSD
- Battery Life- Close to 11 Hours
- Polycarbonate chassis
- Micro-edge paneling
- RAM isn’t upgradeable
If you are interested in a sleek and portable laptop under 400 dollars, which doesn’t compromise on the processing conglomerate, the HP 15-ef0021nr is the perfect option to invest in. While the gadget might come across as plastic-made, the polycarbonate chassis further validates the credibility of the laptop and even exceeds aesthetic expectations. Besides, the laptop weighs a mere 3.75 pounds which readily furthers the portability quotient.
HP’s 15.6-inch HD display is bright enough for the given price segment. However, it is the BrightView display technology that steals the show and assumes an overall resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels. Besides, the micro-edge paneling accentuates the screen-to-chassis ratio to up to 82 percent, making the display sizable enough for your streaming and creative indulgences.
Besides, it is the AMD Ryzen 3 3200U processor that takes care of the processing firepower with its highest possible boosted speeds of up to 3.5GHz. This is one dual-core APU featuring the AMD Radeon Vega 3 as the integrated graphics coprocessor. Next in line is the 8GB RAM module which is still fast enough for efficient multitasking.
Storage-wise, the 256GB SSD is more than sufficient if you are mainly into MS-Office-backed content creation and media consumption. As far as the operating system is concerned, this laptop features a Windows 10 Home edition. Other productivity-centric specs include a standard keyboard with decent key travel and dedicated numeric keypad, integrated webcam, powerful speakers, and a diverse set of ports, including HDMI, Type-C, Type-A, and more.
In terms of autonomy, the existing battery module is more than capable of lasting for up to 11 hours. Therefore, if you are interested in an aesthetic yet budget laptop, the HP 15-ef0021nr is the one to consider.
- Performance-oriented APU
- A sizable chunk of RAM
- Wide-angle LED-backlit display
- Long-lasting battery
- Light and portable
- Heats up more than usual
- 1366 x 768 pixels is underwhelming for a 15.6-inch screen
6. Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5
- Processor-Intel Core i3-10110U
- Graphics-Intel UHD graphics
- Display- 13-Inch Full HD IPS
- Storage-64GB SSD
- Battery Life-Close to 10 Hours
- Chrome OS
- 360-degree convertible
- 1.4mm key travel
The Chromebook Flex 3 from Lenovo comes across as one of the best 2-in-1 laptops on the list, exhibiting brilliant aesthetics and an ultraportable form factor. At 2.97 pounds, this gadget is enviably sleek, and light whilst deftly incorporating the 360-degree hinge for multi-mode usage. As far as screen presence is concerned, the 13-inch panel is exceedingly sharp and flaunts the best brightness level for laptops under 400 dollars.
What stands out is the overall resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels followed by sharper viewing angles and a responsive and color accurate touch screen display. Processing firepower is rendered by the 10th gen Intel core processor which is best known for the lower TDP levels. While the base clock speed of 2.1GHz is pretty average, the UHD graphics co-processor readily pushes the processor to the limit and allows you to indulge in moderately-demanding academic and graphics-centric tasks.
In terms of memory allocation, the 4GB RAM is a middling yet adequate resource followed by the 64GB solid-state module. Lenovo also houses the Chrome operating system, which empowers you to connect better with the online domain.
This Chromebook laptop also features an innovative UI, best characterized by the feature-packed Google Suite and a setup-free platform. Besides, you also get access to a standard keyboard, front-facing dual speakers, a smooth touchpad, and an entire professional suite. What stands out is the excellent collection of ports, including Type-C, Type-A, and more. Besides, you also get access to Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity standards.
In terms of autonomy, the featured battery is more than capable of lasting for close to 10 hours, on a single charge.
- Sharp IPS display
- Easy to use
- Powerful stereo speakers
- Wi-Fi 6 standard
- 10th gen processor
- Lacks the functionality of the Windows 10 operating system
- Not meant for power users
7. HP 15.6 Inch Touchscreen Intel core i3
The HP 15.6 Inch Touchscreen Intel core i3 is an entire touch screen that gets what you exactly need.
It's susceptible to be prone to viruses. Therefore you have to be attentive about what you watch on this laptop. The techniques are simple enough, and in case you don't understand, it just takes some trifling to know what you are doing. It's not the best, but it is a good gaming laptop.
Here you get two USB 2.0 ports, one USB 3.0 port, an HDMI-out port, and a DVD burner, which is a plus since most manufacturers are ignoring them. Talking of the Internet, you'll be able to connect through an RJ-45 port, while wireless connectivity comes via an 802.
Battery life is suitable for a 15-inch desktop laptop. The HP 15's 3-cell 31Whr battery lasted upto 3 hours 27 minutes on our battery rundown test, staying behind last year's Dell Inspiron 15 (4:16) by more than an hour and the larger Dell Inspiron 17 5000 Series (5:26) by almost two hours.
8. Lenovo Ideapad 310-15.6" HD
This Lenovo Ideapad 310-15.6" HD is another gaming laptop in our list. Fast, responsive processing, enhanced audio, and excellent display and graphics make this a great multimedia PC. Stereo speakers with Dolby technology and a 15.6" HD screen combine to offer clear, crisp visuals and quality sound. With plenty of hard drive space, you won't have to worry about where to put all your data, videos, music, or photos. A 4-in-1 card reader (SD, SDHC, SDXC, MMC) lets you add storage to save and transfer files.
The new standard for PC performance has Intel® 7th Gen Core™ processors. This amazingly fast, feature-packed Processor, combined with built-in security, is ready to take your creativity, productivity, and 3D gaming to the next level. Additionally, after enabling the exciting Windows 10 features, the 7th Gen Intel Core processor empowers you to enhance your imagination and explore the more possibilities.
Lightning-Fast Web Browsing
802.11 a/c wifi connectivity comes standard on the Ideapad 310, making it perfect for blazing-fast streaming, browsing, and downloading. 802.11 a/c wifi delivers up to 3 times the connection speeds of 802.11 b/g/n.
A lot of storage
It up to 1TB HDD storage, just don't worry about where to put all your files, data, videos, music, or photos.
9. HP 14 INCH A9 9425 PROCESSOR
This slim, ultra-portable laptop delivers reliable performance with long-lasting battery life. Stay social, productive, and connected to what matters wherever you go. You can stream videos and music on the micro-edge display. It provides more screen in a smaller frame, enhanced by discrete AMD Radeon R5 Graphics.
Slim and stylish design
You can stay social, productive, and connected every day with this easily portable PC featuring a micro-edge Display with ultra-narrow bezel for a smaller frame
Excellent battery life
HP 14q-cy0006au (7QG88PA) Laptop (AMD Dual Core A9/4 GB/256 GB SSD/Windows 10) has a 14 Inches (35.56 cm) display for your daily needs. This laptop power is by the AMD Dual-Core A9-9425 processor, coupled with 4 GB of RAM, and has 256 GB SSD storage at this price point.
It is assessed with Windows 10 Home Basic operating system. This notebook has an AMD Radeon R5 graphics card, which helps to manage the graphical functions. To keep it running, it has a 3 Cell Li-Ion battery and weighs 1.47 Kg.
10. Lenovo Ideapad 15.6" HD High Performance
If you are looking for a top-notch laptop in the budget, then go for this one. The features of this laptop are Intel UHD 605 graphics card, 4 GB of RAM, and an Intel Core 330 CPU. It has a 15.6-inch screen laptop, in which the gaming setup is middle-sized. The weight of this PC is 6.05 lb (2.74 kg). As we can see from the price, this is a cheap, budget laptop under $400. But that will affect how many games you can play. Sadly, this laptop won't run games like PUBG, Apex Legends, Minecraft, Fortnite, and GTA V. This laptop can play only 87 of the top 1000 games.
Wifi & Bluetooth
Wifi ac and Bluetooth expands your viewing options. Built-in media reader for simple photo transfer, Headphone/microphone combo jack makes things easier for you.
As stated, here are our 10 best laptops under $400, led by the Aspire 5 and followed by brands like Dell, HP, Asus, and more.
Related Read: Best gaming laptop under $300
Keep in mind that some models are not compatible with certain games like we mentioned before. Hence, choose your pick accordingly.
While you do need to make certain compromises, each of these laptops caters to a specific clientele and allows you to be more expressive with the choices, which include 2-in-1 laptops, Chromebooks, and standard clamshells.