You might be wondering if buying a $500 would be worth your while. You’ll be happy to know that thanks to improvements in technology, good performance can still be had at an affordable price. Gaming on a budget gets considerably cheaper as time passes, which is great for those on a budget. At this moment in time, a nice gaming laptop that can game on medium settings can be bought for around $500.
While these gaming laptops can’t run AAA titles, they can still handle light gaming easily. If you’re on a budget, laptops at the $500 price point offer a playable experience in most e-sports titles. They can run games such as Minecraft, Roblox, Valorant, Rocket League, League of Legends, Overwatch, and CSGO at low settings at around 60 fps. These are games that you don’t necessarily need fancy graphics to have a good time.
With that in mind, we’ve gone through what the market has to offer and curated the best options for your money. Our aim is to give you the best information available so you can make an informed decision on your purchase.
|ASUS VivoBook F510QA|
Best Slim Laptop
|Acer Aspire 5|
|HP 15.6″ Touch Screen Notebook|
Best for Students
|Dell Inspiron 2020|
Best Battery Life
|Asus VivoBook F705QA|
|Lenovo IdeaPad S340|
Best Slim Laptop
|Lenovo IdeaPad 15.6″ Laptop|
Best Battery Life
|Dell Latitude Gaming Laptop|
Best for Students
|ASUS 15.6″ Gaming Laptop|
|Lenovo 330 15.6″|
Best for Students
|Dell Inspiron Touch Screen|
- Top 11 Best Gaming Laptops for Less than 500 Dollars in 2022
- 1. ASUS VivoBook F510QA (The best gaming laptop for 500 dollars- You will not find better in this price range)
- 2. Acer Aspire 5 (Editor’s Second Pick- best laptop display)
- 3. HP 15.6″ Touch Screen Notebook (3rd choice is a great budget gaming laptop under $500 but falls way short in some places)
- 4. Dell Inspiron 2020
- 5. Asus VivoBook F705QA
- 6. Lenovo IdeaPad S340
- 7. Lenovo IdeaPad 15.6″ Laptop
- 8. Dell Latitude $500 Gaming Laptop
- 9. ASUS 15.6″ Gaming Laptop
- 10. Lenovo 330 15.6″
- 11. Dell Inspiron Touch Screen (best budget gaming laptop under $500 with a touch screen)
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Top 11 Best Gaming Laptops for Less than 500 Dollars in 2022
On this list, you will find gaming laptops that can play games with ease or the best value laptops that can handle the bare minimum, such as web browsing. While it can be a bit difficult to find a gaming laptop that is perfect for your purpose, this list should help a lot. Here is the GizmoFusion list of the best 11 of those laptops, and everything you need to know about them.
1. ASUS VivoBook F510QA (The best gaming laptop for 500 dollars- You will not find better in this price range)
CPU: AMD A12-9720P | GPU: AMD Radeon R7 | RAM: 16GB DDR4 Memory | Display: 15.6 inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) | Storage: 256GB SSD + 1TB HDD | Battery: Up to 6Whr | Dimensions: 14.2 x 10.1 x 0.8 in | Weight: 4.41 lbs
Enormous amounts of storage
Some problems with updates
There are many things about this gaming laptop that stand out. Good quad-core CPU? Yes. Lots of RAM? Yes. Full HD IPS display? Yes. Radeon R7 graphics? Yes! The best gaming laptop under $500 has it all.
This gaming laptop has a quad-core A12 AMD processor, which is great and glides through gaming and everyday tasks such as internet browsing.
Here is something very remarkable though. The most important thing when looking for a gaming machine is a good graphics card, as that is what will determine the frames per second (FPS) that the laptop runs the games at, and this PC has it.
For this laptop, it is the AMD Radeon R7. While other GPUs on this list are decent, this is the most highly rated choice. The R7 is designed specifically for games such as Fortnite, Minecraft, CSGO, and other similar titles. It will run them consistently at a smooth 60 fps at low settings. This is the best possible GPU at this sub-$500 gaming laptop price range that doesn’t compromise other specs.
This gaming laptop also has great memory specs. It has 16GB of DDR4 RAM, meaning that multitasking will be a breeze. You will be able to, as an example; watch YouTube, write in MS Word, and listen to music on the laptop at the same time. Also, if you decide to create animations or edit photo/video content, the memory will come in very handy.
Another marvelous detail about this laptop is the storage. There is one terabyte of HDD storage and 256GB of SSD storage. This is lots of storage for all your games and files, whether it be videos or projects.
One thing to keep in mind is that the laptop is not insured by ASUS.
Overall, this laptop is a great bargain for gamers, since it has very good raw CPU and GPU power, but the laptop can also easily handle heavy amounts of productivity workloads, such as animation, and editing different content.
I placed this as the best gaming laptop under $500 because of the great CPU and Radeon graphics chip is you’re a beginner gamer, the amount of RAM at multitasking for professionals, and the great storage of both a fast SSD for the Windows 10 Operating System and games and a spacy hard drive for programs and other files.
2. Acer Aspire 5 (Editor’s Second Pick- best laptop display)
CPU: Intel Core i5-8265U | GPU: Intel UHD Graphics 620 | RAM: 8GB DDR4 Memory | Display: 15.6 inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) | Storage: 256GB PCIe NVMe SSD | Battery: Up to 9.5Whr | Dimensions: 14.31 x 9.86 x 0.71 in | Weight: 3.97 lbs
Horrible noise when at full load
This laptop “aspires” to be one of the best gaming laptops under $500. It has a superb 8th generation Core i5 with respectable integrated graphics, fantastic storage, and a brilliant IPS display. Honestly, what more could you want?
The Acer Aspire 5 is another one you can find for this price range that is powerful. It is very versatile because of its specs, making it easy to stay on top of gaming, and school/work.
It has a recent 8th generation Intel Core i5, which is a solid CPU. It is in fact considered a high-end CPU and will help both with gaming and productivity.
Integrated into it is the Intel UHD Graphics 620, which is a solid GPU. It can handle gaming almost as well as the AMD R7 in the ASUS VivoBook laptop, but it still runs simple games at low settings at a consistent 30-40 FPS.
It also has 8GB DDR4 RAM, which isn’t 16GB as in the VivoBook, but you can still be multitasking by working on different projects at the same time.
It has a great SSD memory. The laptop houses 256GB of NVMe SSD storage. NVMe means the fastest possible SSD read and write speeds. Booting up with this laptop will be fast, and copying files on the PC will be a breeze.
As with all laptops on this list, it is decent for light gaming, but this one stands out since it allows us to do productivity tasks, such as video/photo editing, and animation.
It has a 1080p IPS display which means that it outputs vivid, accurate, and bright colors when watching movies on Netflix or color editing photos.
The battery life on this Acer Aspire 5 is great, coming in at 9.5 work hours. That is a nice amount, allowing to game and work for a big chunk of the day.
Something that is important to say is that you will probably need headphones when gaming on this PC. It sounds like a jet engine when running at full load, so you better bring the noise-canceling headphones, or have a device that sounds like a leaf blower.
Overall, this Acer Aspire 5 is a great machine for someone that wants a laptop for gaming but also wants to utilize the laptop for productivity, such as editing photos and videos, and generally use it for school/work and still have the capability to game on the machine.
It is also the laptop with the best display on this list, since it is IPS, and that gives the best colors out of any display.
3. HP 15.6″ Touch Screen Notebook (3rd choice is a great budget gaming laptop under $500 but falls way short in some places)
CPU: AMD Ryzen 5 3500U | GPU: AMD Radeon Vega 8 | RAM: 8GB DDR4 Memory | Display: 15.6 inch HD (1366 x 768) Touch Screen | Storage: 128GB SSD | Battery: Up to 6Whr | Dimensions: 14.8 x 9.7 x 0.9 in | Weight: 3.88 lbs
Great CPU/GPU combo
Bad battery life
Only 128GB of storage
This laptop shows you can find good cheap gaming laptops for under $500. This budget gaming laptop that has a powerful CPU and GPU but has a couple drawbacks drawbacks that take it farther away from the number one spot on this list.
This HP gaming laptop houses an AMD Ryzen 5 3500U processor. It is an immensely powerful CPU with integrated AMD Radeon Vega 8 graphics. Vega 8 graphics are more powerful than the Radeon 7 found in the VivoBook, allowing light gaming at low settings at 60 FPS.
It also has 8GB DDR4 RAM for multitasking. Being able to browse the web and, for instance, edit videos at the same time is very helpful.
By pure performance, this gaming laptop is the best on this list, however, there are several things that take away from the experience. For instance, the laptop has 128GB of storage.
While this might seem like enough, it’s surprising how fast it fills up. Nowadays, games can be anywhere from 20GB to 80GB. Fortnite as an example is a 25GB game. Games are not the only thing on computers though. The operating system Windows 10, programs, and personal files will use up the 128GB space quickly.
Another thing to note is the battery life. It’s not that great on this laptop. The battery life is 4-6 work hours and will be less if you spend time gaming on it.
Lastly, the laptop has a 768p display. These days, 1080p displays are the standard of laptop and monitor screens, and 768p is needlessly low and belongs on cheaper laptops. It especially hurts with the great GPU the laptop has compared to its competition of other gaming laptops under $500.
Overall, this $500 laptop is great for raw gaming power, it just has some drawbacks, such as bad battery life, not a lot of storage, and the 768p display, but if those are not deal breakers, this is a great laptop for you.
4. Dell Inspiron 2020
CPU: Intel Core i5-1035G4 | GPU: Intel UHD Graphics | RAM: 16GB DDR4 Memory | Display: 14 inch HD (1366 x 768) | Storage: 256GB SSD | Battery: Up to 3Whr | Dimensions: 14 x 10.2 x 0.8 inches | Weight: 4.6 lbs
Tons of RAM
Amazing battery life
This cheap gaming laptop under 500 dollars Dell Inspiron has some decent specs, and a great battery life. It also has good storage, and lots of RAM.
It has an Intel Core i5-1035G4 CPU which is a great, high-end CPU. It has Intel UHD Graphics built-in. To be honest, it isn’t the best graphics chip out there, it is pretty average. Still, it can run games at low settings at around 30-40 FPS.
It has a huge amount of RAM, clocking in at 16GB of DDR4 memory. Again, it is enough for multitasking, and editing photo/video content.
It also has 256GB of SSD storage. That’s enough for all of your games, programs, and files. Being an SSD, makes the boot times on the gaming laptop feel incredibly fast and fluid.
With a fantastic CPU, lots of RAM, and tons of SSD storage, this laptop would be better suited for productivity tasks, such as animation, video editing, photoshop, etc., but it can still be utilized for light gaming.
The only thing to complain about with the Dell Inspiron 2020 is the 768p display. Again, in this day and age, 1080p displays are pretty much a must nowadays.
Overall, this is a great laptop for productivity. While it can do some light gaming, it is most suited towards creativity/productivity type tasks because of its 16GB of memory, great CPU, and SSD storage. However, it can still handle some light gaming, such as CSGO at the lowest settings at around 30-40 FPS.
If you’re looking for a slightly higher-priced budget gaming laptop check out these awesome gaming laptops under 700 bucks.
5. Asus VivoBook F705QA
CPU: AMD A12-9720P | GPU: Radeon R7 Graphics | RAM: 8GB DDR4 Memory | Display: 17.3 inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) | Storage: 1TB HDD | Battery: Up to 6Whr | Dimensions: 16.2 x 10.6 x 0.9 in | Weight: 4.6 lbs
Great CPU and GPU
1TB of storage
Nice amount of RAM
Runs hot at full load
Battery life is short
This is the second Vivobook on this list, and it is also one of the best gaming laptops under 500 dollars. With a great CPU and GPU combo, good RAM, a nice display, and tons of storage, this laptop is sure to catch your eye.
The main stars of the show are the AMD A12 quad-core processor, and the Radeon R7 integrated graphics processor. That combo will smoothly run games at 30-60 FPS at low settings and glide through tasks that require CPU/GPU processing.
It has 8GB DDR4 RAM for advanced multitasking, allowing for both web browsing and using programs for productivity simultaneously.
It also houses a whole terabyte of hard disk storage. While it isn’t SSD storage, meaning it won’t be as fast, it is a considerable amount of storage for games, and other files. A whole terabyte will last a very long time.
The laptop uses a beautiful 1080p full-HD display, which is the standard nowadays and looks great on the huge 17.3-inch panel.
One thing to complain about is that the laptop gets very hot, and funnily, when it runs at full power it is hard to keep on your lap. Another thing is that the battery runs out very fast, especially when gaming.
Overall, this machine is great for gaming because of its CPU and graphics card. It will handle easy games such as Minecraft, CSGO, Terraria, and Fortnite and can run them at the lowest settings at 40-60 FPS.
It can also handle light productivity workloads with the nice amount of RAM it has. It also has a huge amount of storage, so if you plan to store a lot of files on your PC, this inexpensive laptop is for you.
6. Lenovo IdeaPad S340
CPU: Intel Core i5-8265U | GPU: Intel UHD 620 Graphics | RAM: 12GB DDR4 Memory | Display: 15.6 inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) | Storage: 512GB SSD | Battery: Up to 8Whr | Dimensions: 14.1 x 9.6 x 0.7 in | Weight: 3.96 lbs
512GB of SSD storage
Great amount of RAM
Runs hot at full load
This is the Lenovo Ideapad S340, it has a nice quad-core CPU, a decent integrated graphics, lots of memory, a nice display, and half a terabyte of fast SSD storage all the while with its beautiful thin and light design- the thinnest of this list in fact.
The laptop houses a powerful, high-end Core i5 8th generation processor with average Intel UHD 620 graphics.
It is complemented by the 12 GB of DDR4 RAM which is enough for lots of multitasking and can handle many programs at once.
It also has massive amounts of storage. With a 512GB SSD, it has all the storage you need at a great speed. It can fit games, programs, and files, and will last for a long time.
It uses a 1920 x 1080 15.6-inch full-HD display, which is always great and will produce high-quality images. Also, it has a nice battery that runs for 8 hours.
In our opinion, this is among the best gaming laptops under $500 in terms of design. It’s not overly gamer, the design isn’t plastered with logos and it’s just a very subtle, professional design.
The only thing to complain about in this laptop is that based on the reviews it runs hot at full load. Overall, there isn’t much to say about this laptop, other than that it has a good CPU, and lots of memory, and massive amounts of SSD storage.
This is great for productivity, as the CPU will make your processes faster and the RAM will let you multitask easier. The SSD storage will allow you to save/copy/write files faster than an HDD.
7. Lenovo IdeaPad 15.6″ Laptop
CPU: AMD A9-9425 | GPU: AMD Radeon R5 Graphics | RAM: 16GB DDR4 Memory | Display: 15.6 inch HD (1366 x 768) | Storage: 1TB SSD | Battery: Up to 5Whr | Dimensions: 14.96 x 9.99 x 0.94 in | Weight: 4.63 lbs
16GB of RAM
1TB of SSD storage
Bad battery life
This basic Lenovo Ideapad has a lower than average CPU and GPU combo, and a 768p display, but it has a great amount of RAM and a whopping 1 terabyte of SSD storage.
The AMD A9-9425 CPU is only a dual-core, meaning that you won’t be able to do anything highly demanding on this laptop, and it has a below-average integrated GPU, the Radeon R5 graphics. For gaming, this laptop is not ideal, it can run games like CSGO at low settings at around 30-40 FPS.
It has a 768p monitor, which of course is not good. It is low resolution and produces blurry images.
The good things about the laptop are the memory and the storage. It has 16GB of DDR4 memory, meaning you can do multitasking, such as photo editing and browsing the web, although the CPU will limit the speed of your productivity.
The best thing about this laptop is the 1TB SSD storage. SSDs are fast, and 1TB is a lot. This is one area where the laptop shines. It makes the boot-up times fast and allows you to store endless files on the drive, without worrying about storage for a long time. The battery life is also pretty bad on this computer, reaching only 5 work hours.
This Lenovo Ideapad is not the best for gaming, the CPU and GPU are not great for even the least demanding of games, but it is great for productivity tasks because of 16GB of memory and 1TB SSD. Being able to store files without worrying about not having enough storage is great, and if you plan on doing that, this low-cost laptop is for you.
8. Dell Latitude $500 Gaming Laptop
CPU: Intel Core i5-4310U | GPU: NVIDIA GeForce GT 720M | RAM: 16GB DDR3 Memory | Display: 14 inch HD (1366 x 768) | Storage: 512GB SSD | Battery: Up to 4Whr | Dimensions: 9.3 x 13.3 x 1.1 in | Weight: 4.3 lbs
512GB SSD storage
Super battery life
Older generation CPU
Can only be bought refurbished
Overall, the specs on this laptop make it one of the best gaming laptops under $500 with its great Intel Core i5 processor, dedicated graphics NVIDIA GeForce 720M chip, and insanely good battery life.
It isn’t perfect, that is for sure. The processor is not the latest gen, and the RAM is only DDR3. The pros outweigh the cons by a lot, though. This pro is the NVIDIA GeForce GT 720M. The discrete 720M is designed with gaming in mind and will be able to run titles like Fortnite and Minecraft with low settings at 60 FPS.
Now, more about the other specs. The Core i5 is only the 4th generation, but it still works nicely, and will not interfere with the GPU by bottlenecking it.
The memory is not the greatest, but it is decent. There are 16GB of DDR3 RAM. Yes, it is the older generation, it’s only DDR3 RAM, but at this price range, it’s a compromise that must be made.
What is not a compromise, however, is the storage. 512GB of SSD storage is great. It is nice to see an older laptop with an SSD. 512GB is enough for hundreds of games and files and will have blazingly fast boot-up times.
It has a 768p display, which is another thing that is not good about this laptop. It produces blurry images and overall, 768p is very outdated.
Another remarkable thing about this laptop is the battery life. 67 hours is a sizeable number, don’t be fooled by it just yet. If you start gaming on this computer non-stop, the battery life will be much shorter, around 20 hours. Granted, it has to do with the low-end display on this laptop, nevertheless, being able to game for 20 hours without recharging is terrific.
Overall, this is a great laptop for gaming because of its processor and graphics card. The dedicated NVidia GPU really adds a lot of gaming performance to this laptop and will allow you to play games at low settings at around 60FPS, but there are many things that take away from the experience, such as the bad display, and the older generation DDR3 RAM.
9. ASUS 15.6″ Gaming Laptop
CPU: AMD A12-9720p | GPU: AMD R7 Radeon Graphics | RAM: 4GB DDR4 Memory | Display: 15.6 inch Full HD (1920 x 1080) | Storage: 128GB SSD | Battery: Up to 3Whr | Dimensions: 14.2 x 9.6 x 0.8 in | Weight: 3.69 lbs
Good CPU/GPU combo
Great battery life
Very little RAM
Only 128GB of storage
As with other gaming laptops on this list, this ASUS gaming laptop has a nice array of specs although with lackluster RAM and storage.
Here is the good about this machine. The specs are an AMD A12 quad-core CPU, which is not bad at all, and smoothly goes through multiple tasks at once.
Integrated into it are the AMD R7 Radeon graphics, which is a decent chip for light gaming. Those two will be good for light low-setting gaming at 60 FPS.
The laptop also has a great 1080p full-HD display, which is always nice to see. It produces quality images at a high resolution.
Onto the bad now. Firstly, the small amount of storage. The 128GB SSD is barely enough for the Windows 10 operating system and maybe a couple of games, programs, and files. It won’t be enough for lots of games and programs, and the storage will run out very quickly.
Another con with the gaming laptop is that it only has 4GB DDR4 RAM. This works fine if you’re just gaming, but when multitasking, you might notice slowdowns, and loading times longer than satisfactory when using multiple applications.
The good news about these drawbacks and why it makes it onto our list of best gaming laptops under $500 is that both the two biggest issues, the RAM and the storage, are user-replaceable which means you can upgrade if you’re willing to watch some general laptop teardowns and a screwdriver and you’ll be ready to go.
All in all, the laptop has a nice CPU and graphics card for gaming, and if you’re just planning to do that, then you should be fine, but when it comes to productivity, both the RAM and storage greatly slow down the laptop when doing work.
10. Lenovo 330 15.6″
CPU: Intel Celeron N4100 | GPU: Intel UHD 600 Graphics | RAM: 8GB DDR4 Memory | Display: 15.6 inch HD (1366 x 768) | Storage: 1TB HDD | Battery: Up to 5Whr | Dimensions: 14.1 x 10.2 x 0.9 in | Weight: 4.85 lbs
1TB of HDD storage
Below average CPU/GPU combo
5-hour battery life
The laptop has a below-average CPU and GPU combo, with 1TB of storage and 8GB of RAM.
This laptop honestly is not much of a good gaming laptop under 500 dollars, unless you don’t mind running the lightest of games at the lowest settings. Intel Celeron CPUs are known to be low-performing and have bad integrated graphics, in this case, it’s the Intel UHD 600.
It will only allow you to play very low-demand games, such as browser flash games since the laptop just won’t be able to handle modern 3D games such as CSGO.
It also has a 768p display, which is always a bad thing, producing blurry images, and only a 5-hour battery life, which gets shorter when playing games on it.
The only good things about the laptop are the RAM and the storage. It has 8GB DDR4 RAM, allowing for more multitasking, such as typing in Word and browsing the internet, and 1TB of HDD storage, for all files, such as photos, videos, and programs.
Overall, this is not that good of a laptop for gaming, the specs are not great, but it is decent for basic workloads, such as browsing the web, using programs such as Microsoft Office, and web games.
11. Dell Inspiron Touch Screen (best budget gaming laptop under $500 with a touch screen)
CPU: Intel Core i5-7200U | GPU: Intel HD Graphics 620 | RAM: 8GB DDR4 Memory | Screen: 15.6 inch HD (1336 x 768) Touch screen | Storage: 256GB SSD | Battery: Around 2-3 hours | Dimensions: 19.5 x 13.7 x 3 inches | Weight: 4.85 lbs
Good amount of RAM
Short battery life
The last gaming laptop on the list is a Dell Inspiron. It has an Intel Core i5-7200U laptop CPU. It is a powerful CPU for tasks that require heavy processing power. It is a great laptop CPU with an integrated Intel HD Graphics 620 GPU, it is definitely one of the better-integrated GPUs in gaming laptops and can handle low-end games such as Minecraft, CSGO, and a range of casual games.
As for the RAM, its 8GB DDR4 RAM is always enough for advanced multitasking and switching between apps.
It has 256GB of SSD storage which is a decent amount considering the fact that it is SSD storage, allowing for much faster transfer speeds and very quick boot times (compared to traditional hard disk drives).
The display is lackluster, however, coming in at only 768p resolution. The standard for laptop screens is 1080p, but this is a compromise to be made with the specs that this gaming laptop has. While it is a touch screen and that’s quite rare on gaming laptops in this price range, it’s still a low resolution and drawing.
The battery on this laptop is also not the best, at only 2-3 hours. It really isn’t much and is another compromise.
If you would like to search some more for a new laptop, visit www.gizmofusion.com/computing/gaming-laptops as we have hundreds of more gaming laptops reviewed.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Can you get a good gaming laptop under $500?
$500 is a little on the budget side of things when it comes to looking for a gaming laptop, but you can still find acceptable performance if you look around. While you won’t necessarily get a premium experience, you can still get a capable laptop for under $500.
Do I need a gaming laptop to play steam games?
Not at all, there are some Steam games that are extremely lightweight and require very little in the way of performance. That being said, the most popular games on Steam will need a decent gaming laptop to be playable.
What is the best gaming laptop for 600 dollars?
If you would like to spend a little bit more on a gaming laptop, you should read my guide on the top $600 gaming laptops. All of the best models are reviewed at this price point.
James Cosgrove has been the lead writer at GizmoFusion since 2019. He has a huge passion for the latest technology and gadgets. He loves to talk and write about this interest. He hopes that visitors to the website will find his reports informative and helpful when it comes to making the best choices for their needs.