Feeds

Ten 15in notebooks for under 400 quid

Back to school, boys and girls

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

Product Round-up As much as Intel would like us all to rush out and buy an expensive new Ultrabook, the fact remains that the top-selling laptops for most manufacturers are still low-cost 15.6in models. Laptops for £400 or less have back-to-school appeal written all over them, but the mix of components varies enormously to appeal to different needs.

There are some basic similarities of course – a resolution of 1366 x 768 seems pretty much standard on these 15.6in models, and battery life rarely edges past the 3-4 hour mark. Yet the devil is in the detail and you'll need to check the processor, memory and storage options to get your money's worth at this end of the scale. With a keen eye on the specs, we've been shopping around to find 10 budget laptops that merit pride of place in the backpack this autumn or, if needs must, doing the business for undemanding office work.

Acer Aspire 5733

RH Numbers

If Acer can manage an Ultrabook for £500 then it should have no trouble producing something worthwhile for less than £400. The Aspire 5733 certainly gets off to a good start, with a 2.53GHz Core i3 processor – albeit the 2010 Arrandale model – and respectable four-hour battery life. However, the 3GB memory and 320GB hard disk are a little disappointing – even at this price we’d expect any Windows 7 machine to have 4GB of RAM.

The screen and keyboard are perfectly adequate, but the machine is a bit hefty and won’t be very backpack-friendly at a full 2.6kg.

Acer Aspire 5733 15in notebook

Reg Rating 70%
Price £350
More info Acer

Advent Monza S200

RH Numbers

Advent is the in-house brand of laptops produced by the Dixons group, so you’ll find these low-cost laptops in most high-street branches of PC World and Currys. Available in smart red and blue colours, the S200 feels quite solid for such an inexpensive machine, and has a bright, attractive 1366 x 768 screen. My only complaint is that the trackpad is rather small and felt a bit fiddly.

The AMD-E450 processor only runs at a modest 1.65GHz, but it’s backed up by integrated Radeon HD6320 graphics, so should be perfectly adequate for running MS Office and other routine computing tasks, such as playing video or a spot of photo-editing. Battery life isn’t great, though, only rated at a maximum of three hours.

Advent Monza S200 15in notebook

Reg Rating 70%
Price £360
More info Advent

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

Next page: Asus A54C

More from The Register

next story
NOKIA - Not FINNished yet! BEHOLD the somewhat DULL MYSTERY DEVICE!
N1 mini-'slab to plop into crowded pond next year
Heyyy! NICE e-bracelet you've got there ... SHAME if someone were to SUBPOENA it
Court pops open cans of worms and whup-ass in Fitbit case
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
SLURP! Flick your TONGUE around our LOLLIPOP – Google
Android 5 is coming – IF you're lucky enough to have the right gadget
Space Commanders rebel as Elite:Dangerous kills offline mode
Frontier cops an epic kicking in its own forums ahead of December revival
VINYL is BACK and you can thank Sonos for that
The format that wouldn’t die is officially in remission
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.