By Louis DeNicola, Cheapism.com
Related: Cheap android tablet reviews
Related: Best smartphones for a penny or less
A consumer looking for a new laptop on a budget is blessed with many choices these days. But with so many configurations out there and expert reviewers focused mostly on pricier machines, it's hard to zero in on a single computer as a good value. The three budget laptops below have garnered enough positive feedback to be featured on Cheapism.com as top picks for $400 or less. They may not have the chops for things like 3D gaming, but they're well-equipped for word processing, web surfing, and other everyday tasks.
Related: Top inexpensive desktop computers
In addition to the features mentioned, a laptop's weight and battery life are important to consider if you plan to carry it in a backpack or briefcase regularly. The Dell Inspiron 15 weighs 4.96 pounds and Lenovo's G500 totals 5.73 pounds. The Samsung Chromebook takes the cake in this regard, at only 2.5 pounds. This has a lot to do with its screen size: 11.6 inches compared with 15.6 inches on
Related: Best cheap computer monitors
the traditional laptops. (If you favor screen size over portability, the 17-inch model in Dell's Inspiron line has picked up multiple editors' choice awards and starts at $400.) Battery life depends on a variety of factors, but users can expect the six-cell battery in the Lenovo G500 to last longer than the four-cell battery in a Dell Inspiron 15 with similar hardware. The Chromebook gets the best battery life of the three: at least six hours and change.
More from Cheapism:
Reviews and recommendations for budget gaming computers
For more ways to save, follow Cheapism on Pinterest, Twitter and Facebook.
To stay on top of the latest posts, read the Cheapism Blog.