Best budget laptops

Updated April 14, 2014 1:47 PM PDT

The era of the $300 Netbook maybe long gone, but you can still find basic Atom-powered hybrids or Core i3 touch screen laptops for between $500-$600, and step-up versions for a little more.

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Toshiba Satellite U845t

While it's not going to dazzle anyone, the Toshiba Satellite U845T is a great example of exactly how much laptop $799 should buy in 2013.

4 stars Excellent

Sony Vaio Fit 14

The Sony Vaio Fit 14 is an all-around excellent laptop for the money that will satisfy the basic demands of everyday use for many people and look good doing it.

Price: $958.98 - $958.98 Check prices

3.5 stars Very good

Asus Transformer Book T100

The Asus Transformer Book T100 revives the Netbook value proposition (and Netbook usability issues) in a budget-price 10-inch laptop that doubles as a tablet. You won’t love it, but for sheer bang for the buck, it’s hard to beat.

Price: $364.76 - $422.40 Check prices

3.5 stars Very good

HP Pavilion Chromebook 14

The HP Pavilion Chromebook 14 advances the argument for Chrome as a low-cost mainstream computing environment, but the laptop's most noteworthy feature is a slightly bigger screen.

Price: $289.99 - $289.99 Check prices

3 stars Good

Lenovo Essential G500 - 59372004 - Black - 3rd Generation Intel Core i5-3230M (2.60GHz 1600MHz 3MB)

For basics on a budget, the Lenovo G580 gets the job done. Just don't skimp on the configuration.

3 stars Good
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