What's The Best $200-500 Laptop You Know Of?

Mar 15, 2018
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jaguarskx

Champion
Moderator
I don't know about that laptop. I can't find any info regarding upgrading the RAM on it. It may only have 4GB of RAM with no way to upgrade. If that's the case, then you want to avoid that laptop. Because:

#1 - 4GB is not a lot of RAM. It's fine for doing things like surfing, emails, and general office work, but for games it is not a lot especially since the Intel HD 620 will be using that 4GB of RAM along with Windows 10 and the game.

#2 - A single stick of RAM (4GB) means that the RAM will be operating at half speed (single channel) instead of full speed (dual channel), for everyday tasks that will be fine. But for games using integrated graphics that can cause a drop of 10% to 20% in performance compared to a laptop with two sticks of RAM (dual channel).

#3 - Not enough RAM will lower game performance because Windows needs to constantly swap data between RAM and the hard drive which can lead to game stuttering. Worse, not enough RAM can cause the game or the laptop to crash.

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The Intel HD 620 can be used to play games, but only if they the graphics are not very demanding. Click following link for some game benchmarks and be aware that the laptops tested have a Core i5-7200u at least 8GB of RAM.

https://www.notebookcheck.net/Intel-HD-Graphics-620.172256.0.html

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You can buy the following 15.6" Acer laptop with the i3-7100u, 1TB hard drive, 4GB RAM and 1080p screen for $350. Buy and install a 4GB stick of RAM to increase total RAM to 8GB and allow the RAM to run in dual channel mode for $43.

https://www.amazon.com/Acer-E5-575-33BM-15-6-Inch-Notebook-Generation/dp/B01K1IO3QW/ref=sr_1_fkmr1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1521141947&sr=1-1-fkmr1&keywords=i3-7100u+mx150

https://www.amazon.com/Crucial-Single-PC4-19200-Unbuffered-260-Pin/dp/B019FRDKWI/ref=sr_1_3?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1521142055&sr=1-3&keywords=ddr4+4gb+ram+sodimm
 

jaguarskx

Champion
Moderator
I don't know about that laptop. I can't find any info regarding upgrading the RAM on it. It may only have 4GB of RAM with no way to upgrade. If that's the case, then you want to avoid that laptop. Because:

#1 - 4GB is not a lot of RAM. It's fine for doing things like surfing, emails, and general office work, but for games it is not a lot especially since the Intel HD 620 will be using that 4GB of RAM along with Windows 10 and the game.

#2 - A single stick of RAM (4GB) means that the RAM will be operating at half speed (single channel) instead of full speed (dual channel), for everyday tasks that will be fine. But for games using integrated graphics that can cause a drop of 10% to 20% in performance compared to a laptop with two sticks of RAM (dual channel).

#3 - Not enough RAM will lower game performance because Windows needs to constantly swap data between RAM and the hard drive which can lead to game stuttering. Worse, not enough RAM can cause the game or the laptop to crash.

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The Intel HD 620 can be used to play games, but only if they the graphics are not very demanding. Click following link for some game benchmarks and be aware that the laptops tested have a Core i5-7200u at least 8GB of RAM.

https://www.notebookcheck.net/Intel-HD-Graphics-620.172256.0.html

---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


You can buy the following 15.6" Acer laptop with the i3-7100u, 1TB hard drive, 4GB RAM and 1080p screen for $350. Buy and install a 4GB stick of RAM to increase total RAM to 8GB and allow the RAM to run in dual channel mode for $43.

https://www.amazon.com/Acer-E5-575-33BM-15-6-Inch-Notebook-Generation/dp/B01K1IO3QW/ref=sr_1_fkmr1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1521141947&sr=1-1-fkmr1&keywords=i3-7100u+mx150

https://www.amazon.com/Crucial-Single-PC4-19200-Unbuffered-260-Pin/dp/B019FRDKWI/ref=sr_1_3?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1521142055&sr=1-3&keywords=ddr4+4gb+ram+sodimm
 

jaguarskx

Champion
Moderator
I suppose it depends on the laptop and if he does the same things you will be doing with the laptop.

The biggest concern would be playing games since that uses the most resources. For example, a friend of mine played the Sims 3 on a laptop with only 4GB of RAM and the Intel HD 4400 graphics core in 4th gen Intel CPUs. He complained about periodic crashes so I suggested that he install another 4GB of RAM. That fixed the problem.
 

jaguarskx

Champion
Moderator
I noticed you edited your first post and provided a link to a HP laptop with the AMD AMD A9-9420 APU.

That is actually a less powerful processor with a less powerful integrated graphics core. The laptop I recommend with the i3-7100u cost less, is more powerful and purchasing the 4GB stick of RAM (to get a total of 8GB) still makes the Acer laptop slightly cheaper than the HP laptop which only has 4GB of RAM. Lastly, the Acer has a 1920x1080 resolution screen as opposed to the HP which has a 1366x768 resolution screen. That means the Acer is capable of displaying more on the screen, but things like text and images will look smaller compared to a 1366x768 resolution screen.
 
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