Best Laptop For College Under 300 Dollars In 2021

Today, attending online classes and researching university papers demands a potent laptop, so, the need for the best laptop for college under 300 dollars is more than ever. 

I know that after taking an education loan and with the extra expense of textbooks, transportation, and living room, not everyone has a budget to spend thousands of dollars on a laptop. 

And truly speaking, you don’t need to.  

Even $300 laptops are powerful enough to run multiple apps and entry-level games (Minecraft, etc), along with storing university material without any stress. 

The main condition is that you need to pick a laptop with the right hardware and storage. Otherwise, things get messier and your laptop purchasing journey might end up with a low-end CPU and insufficient memory and storage. 

Every budget laptop’s potential lies between its processor and memory unit. Surely, graphics cards, ports options, and the display are also important, but with a low budget, you need to compromise something. 

It’s better to bargain on other features rather than those which have a direct impact on laptop performance. 

So, getting a laptop with a processor such as Intel i3 (10 or 11th generation) and AMD Ryzen 3 along with a minimum of 4 GB RAM and 128 GB storage (SSD recommend) can run programs smoothly and give the best computing experience. Just make sure that it has options for the expansion of both RAM and storage. On the other hand, there are Chromebooks based on Chrome OS that offers limited features but come with long battery life and touch panel.

Under $300 (sometimes $400), you’ll find all of this luxury that makes your college journey much easier. So, Check it out.

Best Laptop For College Under 300 dollars In 2021

1) Acer Aspire  5

2) Lenovo Ideapad 3 

3) HP 14

4) Asus Vivobook 15

5) Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5

6) Acer Chromebook Spin 311 

7) Lenovo Chromebook C330

8) HP Chromebook 11 

9) HP 14 Touchscreen 

10) Acer Chromebook Spin 713

1) Acer Aspire  5

Acer Aspire 5
Acer Aspire 5
  • Display :- 15.6 Inch display with 1920 X 1080 pixels
  • Processor :- 10th generation Intel i3
  • Graphics :- Integrated Intel Graphics
  • RAM :- 4 GB
  • Storage :- 128 GB SSD

Acer Aspire 5 is recognized as a cheap yet powerful laptop wrapped inside a solid plastic body and has immense potential to handle tasks without any hassle. You’ll get an 11th generation i3 processor, 4 GB RAM, and 128 GB SSD to run tasks smoothly.

What makes Acer Aspire 5 special is its15.6 inch full HD display that brings lots of space and high resolution to the table. Though the panel is not bright or vivid as we’ve seen in mid-range laptops, yet for the price, you pay – it’s the best. 

The keyboard gives tactical feedback despite its low traveling keys. If you type a lot or take notes during lectures, it gives a pleasant typing feel. Further, the trackpad is large and smooth and quickly supports all windows gestures. 

This notebook comes with Windows 10 S mode designed for light work and students’ use. It won’t allow installing software from unknown sources and if you like to install any additional software you can do it from the windows store only. Though, Microsoft allows you to switch from S mode to Home mode with basic settings changes. 

Acer offers three different fan modes to work with; Silent, Normal, and Performance. It maximizes airflow and maintains fan sound. So, your fellow students won’t be disturbed when you run chrome tabs or play entry-level games. The battery juice is also good and lasts for up to 5 hours on Normal usage. 

To sum up, Acer Aspire 5 is truly the best portable notebook that comes with high performance and acceptable battery life under the hood. 

Pros
  • Value for money products
  • Long display with Full HD resolution
  • Acceptable battery life
  • Plenty of ports
Cons
  • Windows S mode needs improvements
  • Display could be better

2) Lenovo Ideapad 3 

Lenovo Ideapad 3
Lenovo Ideapad 3
  • Display :- 14 Inch display with 1920 X 1080 pixels
  • Processor :- Intel 3-1005G1
  • Graphics :- Integrated Intel Graphics
  • RAM :- 4 GB
  • Storage :- 128 GB SSD

Lenovo has formed this agile machine with a sturdy build and the latest specs that not just offers incredible performance but also comes in a portable design to make things easier. 

Running Dozens of Chrome tabs, switching between multiple apps, and playing entry-level games are just the novice features of the notebook. 

Lenovo Ideapad 3 is powered by a 10th generation Intel Core i3-1005G1 processor and pairs with Integrated Intel Graphics to deliver images with vivid and bright colors.

This is important when you are pursuing a graphics design major or want to edit your vacation clips on editing software. The Intel chip is quite powerful and extremely efficient that ensures your laptop stays cool under pressure with its intelligent thermal and airflow design.  

Further, it has a 14 inch Full HD panel that gives enough room to do your tasks without missing details. Apart from this, Lenovo also provides 4  GB RAM and 128 GB SSD to store plenty of data and install various apps. 

The battery is also powerful and offers up to 10 hours of backup right out of the box. Lenovo Ideapad is arguably the best laptop for college under 300 dollars.

Pros
  • Affordable yet powerful
  • Incredible performance from Ryzen CPU
  • Long battery life
  • Thin bezels
  • Portable and easy to carry
Cons
  • Display could be better

3) HP 14

HP 14
HP 14
  • Display :- 14 Inch display with HD Display
  • Processor :- AMD Ryzen 3 3200
  • Graphics :- AMD Radeon Graphics
  • RAM :- 4 GB
  • Storage :- 128 GB SSD

With its stunning 14 inch display and marvelous design, HP 14 is hands down one of the best laptop for college under 300 dollars. It comes with Ryzen 3 3200 processor and delivers immersive performance during some of the heavy-duty computing tasks. 

The Ryzen processor couples with integrated Radeon Graphics to produce immersive images with vivid colors. The 14-inch display panel gives this notebook a gorgeous and sleek design. Weighing at 3.20lbs, it makes it extremely easy to carry it on your campus for a whole day. 

Other highlights of the laptop are plenty of ports options, an amazing trackpad, and a decent webcam for attending online classes. As for memory and storage, you’ll get 4 GB RAM and 128 GB blazing fast SSD to boot the laptop in seconds and run multiple apps at once. 

Moving to the keyboard, it has a full-sized keyboard with Numpad excluded. If you like to play with numeric keys then this might not be the right choice(a 13-14 inch laptop doesn’t have Numpad). The keys feel snappy and give instant feedback while you browse the internet or edit college assignments. 

To sum up, HP  14 is a portable notebook that won’t cost much and offers amazing performance for your college major needs. 

Pros
  • Lightweight design with elegant look
  • No heating issue
  • Fast SSD drive
  • Room for the future expands
  • Bright and colorful display
Cons
  • Low battery life
  • Not for maths major students

4) Asus Vivobook 15

Asus Vivobook 15
Asus Vivobook 15
  • Display :- 15.6 Inch display with 1920 X 1080 pixels
  • Processor :- 10th generation Intel i3
  • Graphics :- Integrated Intel Graphics
  • RAM :- 4 GB
  • Storage :- 128 GB SSD

Asus Vivobook 15 is a powerful combination of power and portability which you can get without burning a hole in your pocket. If a thin and light design is your priority then Asus Vivobook 15 is the right product for you. 

It is powered by a 10th generation Intel i3 processor and gives tremendous power to run some of the heavy tasks without a hiccup. The CPU also features 2  cores, 4 threads, and 4 MB Intel Smart Cache.  Asus wrapped it with 4 GB RAM and 128 GB SSD to install and run office apps without any stress. 

The display has a 15.6-inch display with full HD resolution and 178-degree viewing angle that makes your graphics editing task much easier. The battery life is quite good and can last for up to 6 hours so you don’t need to carry an adapter every time you go outside.  

Apart from it, Asus has also equipped Multiple ports options and crystal clear sound to make it easy to hear purified voice during online classes. 

Overall, If budget is an object for you and looking for a powerful laptop to run multiple apps then Asus Vivobook 15 is the right choice for you.

Pros
  • Thin and light design
  • Crystal Clear communications
  • Features plenty of ports
  • Long battery life
  • Backlit keyboard with 1.4 mm key travel
Cons
  • Dim display

5) Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5

Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5
Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5
  • Display :- 13 Inch Touch display with 1920 X 1080 pixels
  • Processor :- Intel 3-1005G1
  • RAM :- 4 GB
  • Storage :- 64 GB eMMC Flash Drive

Chromebook might be not for everyone because it runs on Chrome OS, unlike Windows OS that comes with numerous software and features. That’s what makes Chromebooks great for Students. Chrome OS can run Chrome Browser, supports Android apps and other important Google services, and truly packs a punch for regular students’ usage. 

Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5 is by far the best laptop for College under 300 dollars. Thanks to its Intel Core i3 processor and 4 GB of RAM, Flex 5 is a premium notebook with less price. 

It features a portable and sleek design, making it a go-to pick for traveling or carrying around campus. The 13-inch touch panel is a big plus point of this notebook, It features Full HD resolution and allows you to play or scroll documents with the tip of your finger. Best of all, it features a 360-degree design which means you can use it as a tablet or notebook whichever find you convenient. Along with 4 GB memory, Lenovo offers 64 GB eMMC SSD storage for saving notes, installing multiple apps, and streaming multimedia content. 

What I love about Chromebook is its battery life, Chrome OS takes very low resources and it has a direct impact on battery health. Typically, a good Chromebook will give you up to 12 hours of battery backup and Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5 is no exception. 

With its stylish design, long battery life, and touch display features, Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5 is the best bet for your college needs. 

Pros
  • Long battery life
  • Smooth and responsive touch panel
  • Convertible design
  • Good webcam and trackpad
  • Plenty of ports options
Cons
  • Limited service from Chrome OS

6) Acer Chromebook Spin 311 

Acer Chromebook Spin 311
Acer Chromebook Spin 311
  • Display :- 11.6 Inch Touch display with 1280 X 720 Pixels
  • Processor :- Intel Celeron N4020
  • RAM :- 4 GB
  • Storage :- 32 GB eMMC Flash Drive

Acer Chromebook Spin 311 is for those folks who have an extremely tight budget and needs a notebook for basic use and attending online classes. The Spin 311 is powered by an Intel Celeron N4020 processor and runs 3 or 4 apps simultaneously. We don’t recommend it for Multitasking because Celeron CPUs are basic and design for light usage. However, you can run video conferencing apps such as Zoom, Google Classroom, or others without any hiccups. 

The display features an 11.6 Inch HD touch panel with vivid colors and bright images. You can binge-watch Netflix, Stream University lectures, or play games and it produces stunning pictures with the finest details. 

Similar to Lenovo Chromebook Flex 5, this Chromebook also features a 360-degree hinge and allows you to rotate to any angle. With multiple modes, you can take notes or draw charts, watch movies, and surf the internet. 

At last, you’ll get up to 8 hours of battery juice during normal use and up to 5 hours with heavy usage.  If portability is your thing then Acer Chromebook Spin 311 is probably the best notebook for you. 

Pros
  • Portable yet strong build
  • Acceptable battery life
  • Snappy keys
Cons
  • Low sound
  • Not for multitasking

7) Lenovo Chromebook C330

Lenovo Chromebook C330
Lenovo Chromebook C330
  • Display :- 11.6 Inch Touch display with 1280 X 720 Pixels
  • Processor :- MediaTek MT8173C
  • RAM :- 4 GB
  • Storage :- 64 GB eMMC Flash Drive

If you don’t like 13 inch model of Lenovo Chromebook and need a small yet solid display panel then Lenovo Chromebook C330 is arguably the best laptop for college under 300 dollars. 

It has an 11.6-inch HD display that supports touch and Stylus for taking notes, drawing charts, or highlighting important data from documents or PDFs. The design of laptops looks classy and premium with its sleek chassis. 

It is powered by Mobile CPU MediaTek MT8173C which is great for normal usage and streaming multimedia. Lenovo packs it with 4 GB RAM and 64 GB eMMC drive that boots up the notebook in seconds and also gives the ability to run multiple apps at once. 

There are multiple ports for connecting extra accessories and transferring your trip photos or other data with ease. The 64 GB storage is not enough for all of this, but Google gives 100 GB of cloud storage with google inbuilt security. 

Other highlights of this Chromebook are a spacious trackpad, a nice webcam, 8 hours of battery life, and good speakers.

With this Chromebook, you can manage all your tasks from a Google account, and with Cloud storage, you can access it anytime, anywhere. On a closing note, Lenovo Chromebook C330 is great for online classes and normal college use, if you have more urge then Flex 5 is the best bet.

Pros
  • Small but powerful notebook
  • Great choice for zoom classes
  • Numerous ports options
  • In-built virus protection
Cons
  • Not for heavy usage

8) HP Chromebook 11 

HP Chromebook 11 
HP Chromebook 11 
  • Display :- 11.6 Inch Touch display with 1280 X 720 Pixels
  • Processor :- MediaTek MT8183
  • RAM :- 4 GB
  • Storage :- 32 GB eMMC Flash Drive

HP Chromebook 11 is an ideal choice for those who spend their whole day on a college campus and need a laptop with the longest battery life. With this Chromebook, HP offers up to 16 hours of battery backup (Longest we’ve ever seen in any budget Chromebook) on normal usage and up to 10 hours during multitasking. 

Run by Mediatek MT8183 processor and paired with 4 GB of RAM, HP Chromebook brings a whole new level of performance to the table. You can run multiple Chrome tabs, create presentations and play android games in your spare time. It delivers smooth performance throughout all these tasks. As for storage, you’ll get a 32 GB eMMC drive which is not enough for collecting plenty of data, but you can use an external drive for extra storage. 

The 11.6 Inch display looks stunning and produces gorgeous pictures whether your watch TV series, stream anime, or just browse the internet. However, it won’t feature a touch panel, so we don’t recommend it for taking notes or any other works that require a touchscreen. 

Leaving this tradeoff behind, at $200, you’ll get a high-quality display, long battery life, fast traveling keys, and multiple ports selection. To sum up, if a touch panel is not your thing and needs the cheapest laptop then HP Chromebook 11 is a top-notch choice when it comes to the best laptop for college under 300 dollars. 

Pros
  • Long battery life
  • Beautiful display
  • Elegant design
  • HP True Vision camera
Cons
  • Low storage

9) HP 14 Touchscreen 

HP 14 Touchscreen 
HP 14 Touchscreen 
  • Display :- 14 Inch Touch Display
  • Processor :- AMD 3200e
  • Graphics :- AMD Radeon Graphics
  • RAM :- 4 GB
  • Storage :- 64 GB eMMC

With its stunning touch display and unmatched performance, HP 14 Touchscreen is probably the best laptop for College Under 300 dollars. HP has crafted this agile machine mainly for college and light office use.  

It pairs with an AMD 3020e CPU and handles everything you throw at it. Out of the box, you’ll get 4 GB RAM and 64 GB eMMC storage to boot your notebook faster and run apps flawlessly. 

Best of all,  you’ll get an AMD Graphics card that performs really well during graphics intense work and produces better and brighter images. 

As for the battery, it gives 5 hours of battery juice and can charge 0 to 50% in just 45 minutes. Despite being a business laptop, it can handle games with acceptable FPS. The inbuilt HP Wide Vision HD camera produces detailed images with crystal clear audio. 

Similar to any 14-inch laptop, this notebook doesn’t have a full-Size keyboard and a number pad. Finally, you’ll get snappy keys, Immersive speakers, and plenty of ports for seamless connectivity throughout your zoom meeting or video conferencing.

Pros
  • Sturdy build
  • Excellent performance
  • Good webcam
  • Designed for business purposes
Cons
  • Audio could be better

10) Acer Chromebook Spin 713

Acer Chromebook Spin 713
Acer Chromebook Spin 713
  • Display :- 13.5 Inch Touch display with 2256 X 1504 Pixels (2K)
  • Processor :- Intel i3-10110U
  • RAM :- 4 GB
  • Storage :- 64 GB eMMC Flash Drive

This Chromebook is one of my favorite Chromebooks and not just for college, but also for work from home and heavy internet usage. Shipped with mighty Intel-Core i3-10110U, Acer Chromebook Spin 713 gives undefined performance for your daily needs. 

It has a 13.5 Inch display with a 2256 X 1504 Touchscreen panel and produces gorgeous images and crisp text. The 2K display is good for Netflix, basic photo editing, and clear zoom meetings. Besides this, Acer equipped it with 4 GB RAM and 64 GB eMMC flash drive that run multiple apps and run all computing tasks flawlessly.

Coming to the battery, you can expect up to 8 hours of battery backup with this machine and it also supports fast charging. It has an elegant and lightweight design, ideal for traveling. You can use this Chromebook for writing assignments, taking handwritten notes, and opening dozens of tabs at once. 

As for ports, it features 2 USB C ports and one USB 3.0 port. With a Type C port, you can connect the external display as well. 

Apart from this, it features a backlit keyboard, Trackpad with multi-gesture supports, the latest Wi-Fi (latency-free connectivity), and Bluetooth 5.0. Acer Chromebook Spin 713 can go toe to toe with expensive Windows OS-based laptops and sometimes outperform them in terms of features it offers under $300.

Pros
  • 2K display is just awesome
  • Amazing performance
  • Big and beautiful display
  • Long battery life
  • Great for multitasking and office usage
Cons
  • Limited ports options

Final Thought 

In this list of best laptop for college under 300 dollars, we’ve curated both Windows and Chrome OS-based laptops. If your task and usage can Run on Chrome OS then we recommend going for that rather than Windows laptops that are short on battery and sometimes quite expensive. 

If you pursue a major that requires a dedicated windows based laptop then an i3 laptop is the best bet. They are powerful and offer decent performance, but with a small compromise on battery life.

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