“What are the Good laptops for students in 2022?” “What’s the Good laptop for college students?”
As a student returning to university or college, you are probably asking yourself these questions. Well, I’m here to help with this guide covering all aspects of choosing a laptop suited for university and college study. By the time you finish reading it, you should have your shiny new laptop bought and ready to go! However, if that doesn’t happen because you got sidetracked by an article about how much money Leonardo DiCaprio made in 2016, worry not. The goal of this post is simple: I want this article to stick in your mind when buying your next laptop so that you can always refer back to it when purchasing one.
More specifically, the goal of this article is to help you decide which factors matter most when buying a laptop and what specs you should look for in your budget. This way, you can pick out a laptop that Good suits your needs and purchase it with confidence (and without getting caught up in all the technical mumbo jumbo). Furthermore, I want this guide to serve as an educational resource so that next time someone asks if they should buy a PC or a Mac, you can answer them by saying “Neither! You should get this awesome Linux distro on a Chromebook!” That was just an example of course; please do not interfere with people’s choices. Ahem…let’s begin.
Good Laptops for Students under $1000 in 2022
Table of Contents
Why not get an Apple MacBook?
If I had a penny for every time someone asked me this, I would have enough money to buy Apple shares. Because of their popularity, people automatically assume that MacBooks are the Good laptops out there. What most people don’t know is that Steve Jobs copied the idea of a laptop from Xerox PARC. As with many things in life, when you look at something through rose-tinted glasses, everything looks fantastic. Of course, he made it better but he didn’t invent it. All in all, unless you’re willing to pay $1000+ on a laptop that isn’t even guaranteed to work after 1 year (Apple’s warranty policy states that they won’t fix anything if it is broken due to a third-party accessory. Yeah, they’re never going to tell you that your laptop didn’t work because you used a different charger.), I would stay away from MacBooks for university and college study.
Why not get a Windows laptop?
This one is easy: Unless you’re running Windows 10 (free upgrade until July), good luck trying to run any modern software on your cheap Windows laptop. You can always try running MS Office (who knows how long that will last) but don’t expect to play AAA games on this thing; it probably won’t even be able to handle driver updates! Furthermore, any system requirements are written on the game’s box are almost guaranteed to be incorrect; it will say “Windows 7” but you’ll find out after installing it that your computer can’t even run the game on the lowest settings. This is because developers do not play their own games to test whether or not they run properly on certain systems! In other words, unless you have a lot of money to spend on a Windows laptop ($700+), I would stay away from them as well.
Why should I get a Chromebook for university/college?
Chromebooks are similar to MacBooks that run Google Chrome OS instead of OS X., To put it bluntly, there isn’t much else to say about them because the only thing they can do is surf the internet and run web apps (many of which are free). What makes Chromebooks so great for university and college students is the fact that they don’t run Windows. As we already established, Windows OS is pretty sh*tty nowadays and what’s even worse is that there aren’t many good alternatives. Mac OS X El Capitan (the latest OS X) costs $20+ while Linux distros such as Ubuntu can be free but require a lot of configuration to get set up.; If you happen to have $1000+, I would recommend getting an Apple MacBook or a PC laptop running OS X instead because both are much more versatile in terms of software compared to Chromebooks.
On the other hand, if you’re poor like me and would rather use your money to buy lunch instead of software (seriously, why are they so expensive?!), then Chromebooks are for you!
Good Laptops for Students under $1000 in 2022 | The Contenders
So which laptops make the cut? Well, here’s a list of what I think is worth buying right now…in 2022. Keep in mind that this is not an exhaustive list; it only contains the laptops that I believe will continue to be relevant after five years. Yes, some people might argue that newer processors/ graphics cards/ hard drives/ etc. exist but I personally don’t see it as being worth it because many laptops still contain too little RAM or are still running 32-bit Windows 10 instead of the newer 64-bit version. If I missed anything, feel free to let me know!
1) Asus Chromebook C202SA-YS02
Chromebooks are great for college students because they don’t run Windows and this Asus model, in particular, includes a spillproof keyboard which is good news for clumsy people like me. It has 4GB of RAM, 16GB of storage space (which can be expanded with an SD card), a Celeron processor, an 11.6″ LED screen, and Intel HD Graphics 400. There is also the similar Acer Chromebook R11 but that one doesn’t have as high resolution or storage space plus it costs $100 more so that’s why I decided to go with the Asus. However, if you prefer a Chromebook that costs less than $200 and has more storage space, check out the Acer 11 CB3-131-C9W5 (which happens to be Amazon’s Good-seller). I wouldn’t recommend getting HP or Lenovo Chromebooks though because they don’t have LED screens and aren’t as powerful/ sturdy as these two models.
- Intel Celeron processor can run games such as Minecraft and GTA: San Andreas with decent FPS at low graphics settings.
- Low power consumption means your laptop will last longer but also reduce overall performance.
- Can handle Photoshop CC 2017 pretty well for photo editing.
- Chrome OS allows you to install web apps that are useful for college students who take notes by hand.
- A spillproof keyboard is a piece of good news for clumsy people such as me Decent battery life (12 hours).
- 4GB of RAM may be too little for power users.
- Running Chrome OS instead of Windows might not appeal to everyone.
- Intel HD Graphics 400 isn’t nearly as powerful as a dedicated graphics card.
- If you’re looking to play newer games/ edit videos, I would look elsewhere.
Price: $100+ | Check price on Amazon.com
2) Samsung Chromebook Plus XE513C24-K01US
Samsung’s newest model looks and feels much better than its predecessors because it can fold 360 degrees and has a metallic finish. It also supports pen input which makes it easier to take notes by hand or draw images. There are two versions available with the Plus being superior to the Pro because it has an ARM processor, 4GB of RAM, 64GB of storage space, a 12.3″ LED screen, and a 2400 x 1600 resolution. Unfortunately, it can’t run many games at high graphics settings but some newer titles such as Minecraft should work smoothly. There is also an LTE version which costs $70 more but that might not be worth it if you’re poor like me.
- Supports pen input for taking notes/drawing on the go.
- Can run Chrome OS apps in tablet mode.
- Google Play Store comes pre-installed so you can get one month free of YouTube premium plus.
- Install other Android apps.
- Comfortable keyboard.
- High-quality audio output.
- High resolution means grading assignments will look better on your Chromebook.
- ARM processor is underpowered compared to most Intel processors.
- Only has 4GB of RAM.
- Chromebook Pro doesn’t have a backlit keyboard or touchscreen.
- Not compatible with Android Studio or PyCharm/ IntelliJ IDEA (the IDE used by programmers)
Price: $450+ | Check price on Amazon.com
3) Dell Chromebook 13 CB713-1123
I chose this Dell model over the Acer R13 because it has a better build quality, comes with more storage space, and costs less. It also has an Intel Core i5 processor which is plenty for running Chrome OS smoothly plus 4GB of RAM so you can edit videos/ play games without having to worry about performance issues. For these reasons, I would recommend getting this laptop if not something else.
- Comes pre-installed with Windows 10
- Can run Windows applications in parallel with Chrome OS
- Has great battery life (12 hours)
- Solid build quality 1080p screen looks good
- Good audio output Supports pen input via Wac stylus
- Includes 32GB of flash storage
- The trackpad isn’t the Best.
- The trackpad may seem small for people with larger hands.
- Chrome OS doesn’t run Steam (at least not yet).
- Intel Core i5 processor is underpowered compared to some other chips.
- A dedicated graphics card isn’t that great.
- No backlit keyboard.
If you’re getting this laptop, get it from Amazon because they typically have better prices than other retailers.
Price: $600+ | Check price on Amazon.com
4) Acer Chromebook 15 CB3-532-C4FW
This Acer model was the cheapest option available when I did my research but there are newer models which cost more money and come with more storage space. Luckily, it’s still a good laptop in its own right because it runs Chrome OS smoothly thanks to the 16GB of RAM, 32GB of storage space, and an Intel Celeron processor. Unfortunately, it doesn’t support pen input but you can chat with people who do use Chromebooks via Google Hangouts if having access to that feature is important to you.
- Plenty of RAM for multitasking Great battery life (12 hours).
- Backlit keyboard so typing will be comfortable even when doing homework in dimly lit areas.
- Lenovo N21 Chromebook Amazon has good prices for this laptop.
- 16GB of storage isn’t much Better processors exist which means your old applications may not run as fast as they would on those models.
- No pen support Dedicated graphics card isn’t that great.
Price: $300+ | Check price on Amazon.com
5) Samsung Plus 12″ Chromebook 3 XE500C13-K01US
This is another premium model which means it has better specs than the Acer R11 or Dell Chromebook 13 but also costs more money. However, there are some reasons why I chose to include this laptop in this guide instead of one of the other models mentioned earlier. For starters, it has an ARM processor so apps will run smoothly unlike them and it can be used as a tablet because the keyboard rotates 360 degrees (unlike every other HP/Acer Chromebook). It’s also lighter most other laptops I’ve talked to who own this Chromebook say it’s good for typing papers/ blogging.
- Has an ARM processor which means you can run Android apps along with Chrome OS
- Supports pen input which will be useful if you plan on using Google Keep or Evernote (both of these programs support pen input).
- A comfortable keyboard for typing 360-degree hinge rotates the display so the laptop can be used as a tablet.
- Good battery life (10 hours).
- Solid build quality Lightweight.
If you’re getting this laptop, get it from Walmart because they have great prices for Dell laptops.
Price: $450 | Check price on Amazon.com
In conclusion, there are plenty of Chromebooks out there which means you’ll have no trouble finding a good laptop to suit your needs even if it’s been two years since I last published this guide. However, keep in mind that most Chromebook laptops come from the same manufacturers so unless you want a brand new model, buying one used is a better option because they’re readily available on sites like Facebook and Craigslist.