Large displays present a number of benefits for gamers and those who constantly multitask. 17-inch laptops offer the best viewing experience among all laptops and stand as the weapon of choice for multimedia artists, video editors, photographers and businessmen.
As they are, 17-inch laptops are a great replacement for the traditional desktop computer, especially if you’re always on the go. The best 17-inch laptop under 500 should be able to save you a decent amount of space while being perfect for multitasking and mobile productivity.
Things To Remember When Buying A 17 Inch Laptop
Features & Functionality First Before Design
Laptop design can draw you in, but it shouldn’t be the sole reason for clicking the “Buy Now” button. What’s more important is the hardware under the hood. The laptop’s specs should be able to handle what you need to do easily and with extra power, to boot.
If given a choice between a higher-specced, aesthetically unpleasant machine and a sleek, modern laptop that’s underpowered, you should always pick the one that will prove to be more useful in the long run.
Bigger Size Comes With Added Weight
17-inch laptops aren’t known for their portability, or for being great companions on the road. Rather, they shine best in office, school and work environments where a measure of portability and hefty computing power is needed.
|Lenovo Ideapad 330||6.61 lbs||1 TB||Intel Core i5|
|HP 17 X020NR||5.84 lbs||1 TB||Intel Pentium N3710|
|HP Business Flagship||5.62 lbs||1 TB||Intel Core i3|
|ASUS High Performance||6.17 lbs||1 TB||Intel Core i5|
|Lenovo IdeaPad 17||6.60 lbs||500 GB||Intel Core i3|
1. Lenovo Ideapad 330 High Performance 17.3″
Lenovo is a brand that provides consistently great value for their laptops, and their 17-inch offering, the Ideapad 330 High Performance is no exception. The outer chassis with its exquisite lines will draw you in. As soon as you see the sub-500 price tag, you’ll know that it’s a good buy.
The Ideapad 330’s material is made of onyx plastic that offers premium look and feel. Open the lid and you’ll be treated to a wide, 17.3-inch screen that borders more on the glossy type rather than matte. Details are displayed in full glory due to the crisp and clear 1600 x 900 resolution on an energy-efficient LED backlight.
You get the latest 8th generation i5-8250U Intel processor clocked in at 1.6 GHz, 8 GB of RAM and 1 TB of storage space. For graphical needs, a capable Intel UHD 620 handles the pixels quite well. With a setup like this, you’ll be able to run a dozen browsers at a time or power-hungry applications such as Photoshop and other video editing software without experiencing stuttering or lag. In games, you’ll be able to run the latest titles at Medium settings and still get a respectable 30 to 50 fps. The 1 TB drive should handle all your storage needs, from documents, files and downloads to software and game installations.
The Lenovo Ideapad High-Performance laptop offers various connectivity options such as a wireless 802.11 ac adapter that’s compatible for all WiFi standards. Connecting to an AC router will give you a significant boost as compared to Wireless N routers. The laptop also has a built-in media reader for quick file transfers, two USB 3.0 and a USB Type-C port, an HDMI out and a mic and headphone jack.
Video and photo editors will have plenty to like in the Ideapad 330. It has a large, detailed display, a built-in card reader that supports SDHC, Multi Media Card, SD, and SDXC memory formats and the hardware to run the best editing software around. The Ideapad 330 weighs in at 6.61 lbs and provides up to 5 hours of battery life before needing a charge.
- Has a quad-core i5 CPU
- Huge, detailed screen display
- Easily upgradable
- GPU and HDMI can connect to a 4K display
- Decent audio speakers
- Has USB-C port
- Great tactile keyboard
- HDD is slower than SSD
- Battery life isn’t that great
- Trackpad is inaccurate
2. HP 17 X020NR 17.3 Inch Notebook
The HP 17 X020NR features space-agey textured linear lines with horizontal brush finishes of turbo silver. Inside the machine is a quad-core N3710 Intel processor clocked at 1.6 GHz, 4 GB of DDR3 RAM and 1 TB of serial ATA HDD.
It will give you plenty of freedom on what you can do. Play games at mid settings, open up several spreadsheets, do some basic editing tasks or browse a dozen tabs while listening to your favorite music or watching videos. The 1 TB of storage space means you’ll be able to download games, music, and video to your heart’s content without worrying about the “low storage space” prompt. What’s more, the HP 17 Notebook has an RW-DVD drive you can use to write media on a CD or DVD.
The 17.3 inch HD SVA WLED screen touts a 1600 x 900 display with BrightView technology. You’ll be able to see all your documents, web content, pictures and video in full detail. The generous screen size allows for several windows to be put up side by side to increase efficiency and work productivity.
HP doesn’t skimp out on their hardware, and this time they put special attention to the HP 17’s built-in webcam. The HP TrueVision HD Webcam comes with an integrated microphone, producing exceptional video call quality and audio clarity. This means you’ll be able to participate in online class sessions and do video conferences better than most laptops in the same price range. The speakers are given the DTS Studio treatment which enhances media content, making it a more immersive experience.
- Full keyboard functionality
- Has a DVD-RW drive
- Reasonable price tag
- Only 4 hours of battery life
- No WLAN 802.11 ac
3. HP Business Flagship Laptop
HP’s flagship laptop of 2017 has a bright and gorgeous 17-inch display that’s very responsive. Resolution can be maxed at 1600 x 900 HD with the added help of BrightView technology. You also get a 7th generation i3-7100U Intel processor, 8 GB of DDR4 RAM and a terabyte of 5400 rpm ATA hard disk drive in a Windows 10 Home platform.
The HP Business Flagship Laptop was created for the dream of multi-taskers everywhere. Open up the lid, power on the machine and lay out a few spreadsheets along with your email client. You can create presentations and have dozens of browser windows open without experiencing any slowdowns, thanks to the 8GB of DD4 memory. All those open apps may prove to be counter-intuitive for smaller screens, but in this case, the 17-inch real estate is a blessing!
The ports are a bit sparse, so you’ll need to put in some forethought for the most important peripherals. With the HP Business Flagship Laptop, you get 2 USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports, a USB 2.0 port, an ethernet port, and the standard mic and headphone combo jack. There’s also the HDMI port for when you need to cast your screen to a bigger display or for boosting productivity even further with two monitors.
The battery is rated to last for 9 hours of mixed usage and 7 hours during continuous video playback. All in all, you get a well-balanced machine that puts out respectable specs at a good value!
- Long battery life at 7 hours
- Has a DVD-Writer
- Bright, vivid display
- Has the latest 802.11 ac wireless adapter
- No USB C
- Hard disk drive slows the system down
4. ASUS High Performance 17.3 Inch
An all-rounder with the hardware to show for it, the ASUS Pavilion 17.3 laptop will serve a wide variety of purposes.
The thing you’ll notice about the High Performance 17.3 is the HD, LED-backlight screen that puts out an amazing 1600 x 900 resolution. The innards are surprisingly better than what you’d expect from a laptop within the $500 price range, making it a good value buy that you won’t regret.
ASUS has broken the mold of what 17 inchers should look and feel like. Their High Performance model only weighs at 6.1 lbs. and is just about over an inch thick. The design accentuates the thin shell and makes it something that you can carry around without experiencing back-breaking problems. It’s light, durable and the quality is what you’d expect from a world-class manufacturer.
A quick look at the hardware should give you the impression of what this machine can do. First, you get a 5th generation i5 processor that’s energy efficient yet speedy. Then, a 8 GB of RAM (upgradable to 12 GB) makes it possible for you to multitask to your heart’s content. Aside from the huge storage space, ASUS has fit in a DVD burner for when you need to store files on a disc. Plus, you’ll find that you can work comfortably on the laptop without having to attach peripherals such as a mouse or keyboard because the ones it has is good enough for accomplishing daily tasks!
The touchpad is accurate and allows you to navigate through the Windows menu easily. The chiclet keyboard is full-sized and provides exceptional tactile feedback. Most of the heat passes out to the vents so the palm rest stays cool and comfortable. There’s also a numpad for doing quick calculations.
You can rely on it to do everyday tasks in the office or in school, but in terms of gaming, you can’t expect it to run titles at High settings. Still, if you’re looking for a stylish 17-inch laptop that performs well and produces a great display for watching content, then the High Performance 17.3 inch is for you.
- 6 GB of RAM upgradable to 12 GB
- Has excellent touchpad and keyboard
- Doesn’t work well as a gaming laptop
5. Lenovo Ideapad 17″ Widescreen
The 2016 iteration laptop stands up to today’s 17 inchers surprisingly well, thanks to the hardware that it possesses. While the screen is excellent for entertainment purposes, i.e., watching movies and videos, or browsing on social media or your favorite site, the Ideapad 17’s true strength lies in its ability to do multitasking like a boss.
The 2016 model touts a 6th generation i3 Intel processor, 4 GB of usable RAM and 500 GB worth of storage space. Casual gamers will be delighted to find that this machine can handle light gaming without any sacrifice in performance. Students will appreciate the large real estate that allows them to take notes and do some research at the same time. The laptop works extremely well in business environments, allowing you to come up with presentations and create documents with ease.
The machine’s Intel HD GPU works with the display, showing off vibrant details. In terms of connectivity options, the 2016 Ideapad has it in full force. You get a USB 3.0 port, two USB 2.0 ports, a standard mic and headphone jack, a VGA port, a card reader that supports MMC, SDHC, SDXC and SD and an HDMI port for connecting to larger displays. Lastly, the full-sized keyboard works well and provides good tactile feedback, but you’ll want to invest in a mouse for improved accuracy over the touchpad.
- Clear, widescreen LED
- Has plenty of connectivity options
- Speedy processor
- Full keyboard functionality
- Battery only lasts 4 hours
- Has only 500 GB of hard drive space
You may notice that there’s a slight hardware variation between these machines- some of the best 17-inch laptops under $500 might offer more RAM in lieu of processor speed, while others have less storage but better keyboard and trackpad. Your overall choice should be in line with what you intend to use the laptop for. So if you’re in the market for a machine that can handle a dozen tabs or so, then you should get more memory. A brighter, more colorful display should be your top priority if you’re planning on watching videos or doing light editing during the day. If you’ll be doing typing work and assignments, then opt for a full-sized keyboard for maximum comfort even during extended sessions.
What you can be sure of is that all of the laptops in this list provide maximum value on a budget. These machines can handle any type of workload you can throw at it and will be your constant companion for a long, long time!
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