(Last updated June 2019)- You love gaming. Your friend has an Alienware and you wish he would adopt you. But alas! How impossible is that? Probably as impossible as you buying an Alienware of your own right now. Some 5-10 years down the line but right now, Nah. I understand your pain buddy. What can I say? I got no Alienware to spare. But I got a solution for you. Till the time you can develop your own gaming haven, you will have to make do with something that fits your budget. And that is where I and my team come in. we have searched every laptop on the planet to satisfy our gaming cravings. So we know which laptop to buy within which corresponding budget.
Now, if your budget is $200, don’t worry. We have options for the cheapest gaming laptop under 200 for you too!
The Asus C202SA is a durable one. More durable than you expect a laptop under $200 to be. So much so that you can hand it to a kid and expect him to drop it. When he actually does, you will just brush the dirt off the laptop and take it in your stride. Yes, it’s that durable.
• Screen Size – 11.6 inches • Resolution – 1366 x 768 pixels • CPU – 1.6 GHz Intel Celeron • RAM – 4 GB DDR3L • HDD – 16 GB eMMC • GPU – Intel HD Graphics • Wireless – 802.11.ac • Average Battery Life – 8 hours • Weight – 2.2 pounds • OS – Chrome OS
Design Asus Chromebook C202 is essentially build to last. It is a student or a school laptop which can handle spillages, bumps, and random drops. It is made to withstand any punishment for school children can give. But considering all that, it looks really small. The body is made of plastic which has a protective ring of rubber surrounding it. This ring serves as an armor against drops. The rubber is dark blue against the grey silver body which makes it look like an official laptop of the New York Yankees. But unfortunately, the only logos on top are Chrome and Asus.
The laptop is impossible to miss. Only if you can miss the blue rubber border. The laptop can withstand a drop from almost 4 feet. Trust me, I did drop the laptop to test. For you! It is also spill proof. The keyboard can take spills of up to 66cc at a time. There is a solid plate lined with Mylar under the keys which keep it protected. Perfect for school kids. At the bottom of the laptop, there is a thick rubber foot which runs all along the width. It provides solid stability and comfort. It is basically provided so that it becomes easy to handle the laptop without dropping. Just in case the protective gear is not enough. It is very easy to repair the Chromebook C202. There are 12 screws which can give you access to the insides on opening. Very laptops could be opened these days, so this makes it a distinctive feature.
Keyboard and Trackpad The keyboard is the best. The keys need 2.1 mm travel and 60 grams of weight for typing. It is extremely comfortable to type on this keyboard. As a matter of fact, in a typing test, I achieved a number of words than my usual. The trackpad is also great. It requires just the right amount of force to click. The default settings are too smooth. I found it hard to control the pointer. But after reducing its speed, the touchpad became extremely accurate.
Display According to the resolution, the display is quite crisp. But don’t expect a whole range of colors. There is not much accuracy in colors. I watched a 1080p trailer of the Ghostbusters and found that red looked like pink (only slightly) and green looked pale.
The display has a brightness of 250 nits on average which is not bad. The 11.6-inch display has an anti-glare coating which works perfectly. While using laptop outdoor, I was able to see things without frustration. The screen is not touchable so that can be a downside. But considering everything else this Chromebook offers, it is not a deal breaker. The hinges allow 180 degrees for collaborative viewing. But the reality is different. The rubber grip at the bottom of the laptop prevents the laptop from lying flat and straight on the surface. Because of that, the viewing angles are not great.
Ports There are only a few ports on the laptop but they are all essential. Majority of them are all on the left side. You will find an HDMI port, a USB 3.0, a headphone jack and an SD card slot. On the right side, you will find another USB 3.0, security lock and the power jack.
Webcam and Speaker The webcam is 720p but it has a lot of noise. I mean visual noise. The colors are pretty accurate, though the background did seem blown out. So it’s not perfect. But the speakers are a different story. Looking at the small laptop, I did not expect the audio to be so loud. And the quality is also quite good. The bass is alright, mid and lower notes are clear. On max volume, the sound distorts. So keep it at 60% and you will find it to be quite good.
Performance The Asus C202 is not a powerhouse. But that I evident in its 1.6-GHz Intel Celeron N3060 processor and 4GB of RAM. It’s a student laptop. So it can handle report writing and spreadsheet making finely. Just don’t expect a lot of multitasking. With 6 tabs open, the Chrome browser started to lag.
The battery is good. You don’t have to be stuck to a table all day. The laptop goes on for a good 8 hours and 23 minutes on a single full charge. The laptop is also able to keep it cool. Even after 15 minutes of HD streaming, the touchpad was frosty. The laptop always remained within the comfort zone.
Using Asus Chromebook C202SA is an honor. It is comfortable to use, has a spill-resistant keyboard, good battery life, durable and fixable. It may be a tad heavier than the wafer-thin Chromebooks available in the market. But it is nothing when compared to the other superb features.
The Samsung Chromebook is a cute little laptop for travelers. It comes with a fantastic display, long battery life, light in weight and solid performance. Also, it’s got plenty of storage capacity. For Chrome OS fans, this one is a great choice.
• Screen Size – 11.6 inches • Resolution – 1366 x 768 pixels • CPU – 1.6 GHz Intel Celeron • RAM – 4 GB DDR3 • HDD – 16 GB SSD • GPU – Intel HD Graphics 400 • Wireless – Bluetooth • Average Battery Life – 10 hours • Weight – 2.54 pounds • OS – Chrome OS
Design For less than 200, Samsung Chromebook 3 has a solid build and design. It is made of plastic but it is surprisingly strong. The palm rest is silky smooth and the gently rounded design is very soothing. The bezel is glossy but there is a soft texture to avoid reflections. Good thinking. The screen can be tilted to 180 degrees and the hinge is strong too. The size is so good it is easy to slip under your arm or a travel bag and carry it around. The laptop is practically lightest in its category.
Keyboard and Trackpad The Samsung Chromebook’s keyboard is spill resistant. And for big fingered people out there, I have a piece of good news for you. The laptop is small but the keyboard utilizes the space very smartly. It takes full advantage of the width. The keys are well-sized and curved at the edges. The keys have a travel of 1.2 mm and take the actuation force of 63 grams to respond. Which is perfectly within range. The only problem with the layout is the power button. It is placed exactly above the Backspace key. So there are 100% chances of you shutting down the laptop accidentally while typing. The trackpad is also generously big for an 11-inch laptop. It is cool, smooth and highly sensitive to touch. Navigating the pointer and tapping is, in fact, fun.
Display The display is exceptional. The LED screen with a resolution of 1366 x 768 is brighter than its competitors. The brightness of the Chromebook was tested to be at 259 nits. Amazing, isn’t it? The screen is not just bright. It is also realistic. All the colors look as they should. The colors are all authentic and detailed. In fact, the accurate and deep colors of Samsung Chromebook puts its competitors to shame. And it is not just about straight viewing. The viewing angles are great for this machine.
Ports The Samsung Chromebook 3 has all the ports needed on a normal laptop. There is a battery indicator on the left side of the laptop and besides it, you will find power jack, a USB 2.0, a micro SD card slot and an HDMI port. On the other side, there is a USB 3.0 and a headphone jack.
Webcam and Speakers Of all the $200 laptops, this one has the best webcam features. The camera is HD, first of all. And on top of that, you get live filters like Vignette and Big Eyes for video calls. For still photos, you get multi-shot mode. It is so much fun. When I took a selfie, it seemed a little noisy. But on the other hand, the details were impressive. So much so that I could even see the miniature flowers printed on the back of my sofa.
The speakers are down-firing which muffles the sound a bit. But they are still loud enough to fill a small room with a clear voice. But you cannot expect it to be versatile and of stereo quality.
Performance The laptop has 1.6-GHz Intel Celeron N3060 processor, 4GB of RAM, Intel HD Graphics 400, and 32GB of eMMc flash storage. This means it has enough to do multitasking. You can work on the word processor, surf on the web and watch a video online. I did all that simultaneously and the machine did not faze even a little bit.
Just a second more to load the page cannot be considered as a lag. I did all this work on a single full charge and the laptop was with me for the entire day. I clocked 9 hours and 44 minutes which is quite respectable.
The Chromebook has a minor heating problem. That is after streaming HD video the bottom heats up to 105 degrees but it does not feel on the skin when you put it on the lap. The insulating plastic chassis saves from skin burning. And the top also remains relatively cool. The keyboard and trackpad did not cross 90 degrees.
Samsung Chromebook 3 is an exceptional laptop at an exceptional price. Who does not like superb features in a budget laptop. I am still surprised; how did Samsung manage to put it all in a $200 laptop. It is amazing.
Convertible laptops are becoming increasingly popular. Acer Chromebook is quite superior to its competitors as the 360-degree hinge is still unexplored in this category. And the touch-enabled display is a cherry on top.
• Screen Size – 11.6 inches • Resolution – HD 1366 x 768 pixels • CPU – Intel Celeron N3150 Quad-Core Processor • RAM – 4 GB DDR3L • HDD – 32 GB SSD • GPU – Intel HD Graphics • Wireless – 802.11ac Wi-Fi • Average Battery Life – 10 hours • Weight – 2.76 pounds • OS – Chrome OS
The Acer Chromebook R 11 is made of thin, white, plastic chassis. The top and bottom of the casing have a textured diamond pattern and the overall look is a matte finish. Though Acer claims the lid is made of aluminum, it pushed out air when I flexed it. The build quality could have been better.
Look-wise, the laptop is sleek and elegant. When you open the lid you will find a black island-style keyboard. The stark contrast of black and white looks amazing. And the textured bottom makes for a firm grip. It is a huge plus point. The 360-degree hinges flip in 4 different modes. It is quite a novelty. You can select from laptop, display, tent and tablet modes. Display and tent modes are perfect for media activities like streaming shows or presentations. The switching between the modes is also quite seamless.
Keyboard and Trackpad
The keys on the R 11 keyboard are nicely placed and have a generous amount of key travel at 1.7 mm. the actuation required for typing is 55 grams. This made it possible to surpass my average typing speed and achieve my personal best. Even below the keyboard, there is ample space for palm rest and even the trackpad is huge. It has plenty of room, is smooth and responsive. It also recognizes clicks pretty fast. Just a small tap is enough. As a matter of fact, it can be a cause of a lot of accidental clicks.
The touch-screen display of Chromebook R 11 is 1366 x 768 pixels but it could have been brighter. I measured its average brightness at 224 nits which is kind of dim. When I watched the Star Trek trailer, the red, blue and yellow of the uniform stood out starkly. But the landscapes were not as sharp as they should have been.
The colors are not a problem for this IPS technology display but the contrast levels are. They are not bad but they aren’t perfect either. The viewing angles are also normal. Things look great till 45 degrees. But beyond that, the colors get washed out and the screen becomes dim.
On the left side, there is an HDMI port with HDPC support, a USB 3.0 port and an SD card slot for data transfer. There is also a DC-in port for the power cable. On the right side, there is a USB 2.0, a headphone jack, a security lock slot, and the power button.
Webcam and Speakers
The webcam is a 720p but the photos are not that good. It takes noisy stills which lack details. The colors also appear washed out. For occasional usage, it will suffice but you cannot expect very good quality from it.
As for the speakers, the audio quality is quite good. The music I played had average bass, clear vocals and mid and high notes were crisp. The speakers are also loud. I played rather blasted a conference room with music on the laptop and the people sitting outside said they could hear the music faintly. The audio can get muffled if it is placed on your lap or folded in tablet mode because the speakers are at the bottom. As usual!
The Intel Celeron N3150 processor makes switching between tasks very fast and easy. So to test the limits I started opening up more tabs while a video was already streaming. After 11 tabs, the laptop started to show some lag. The browser action and fps are also average. Nothing great there.
One of the biggest drawbacks of this Chromebook is the touch. It is not built for the touch-enabled screen. Using a single finger to play games or browse works fine. But as soon as I started using two fingers for zoom, my attempts failed. The laptop responded less than 50% of times.
The on-screen keyboard has no handwriting recognition. On the bottom-right of the screen, you will see a tab switching button while on tablet mode. On tablet mode, many necessary functions are missing like the maximize button or moving the windows around the screen. They just disappear. Poking the icons is also a task. They don’t get larger when not in laptop mode.
The Chromebook is meant to be ultra-portable and that is why the battery lasts all day. At 100 nits of brightness, the battery lasts for 9 hours and 38 minutes.
The Chromebook offers a colorful display, comfortable keyboard, and good battery life. The build quality is not up to my mark. But it is not flimsy too. The touchscreen has a long way to go. In spite of all this, the laptop is recommended by me. Why? The performance makes up for all the flaws.
Daily productivity, lightweight, stylish looks, and affordability. If you want it all then the Acer Aspire 1 A114-32-C1YA is the one for you. The USP of this piece? It has the flexibility of Windows 10. I know very few other Chromebook with that flexibility.
The design is stylish and slim. Though at 3.64 pounds it is heavier than the 3 I have mentioned above, it is easily portable. If you hold it both hands you will hardly notice the difference. Just like other Chromebooks, it lacks a DVD drive which keeps it on the slim side. The design is a complete monochrome except for the silver Acer logo. So if you are a multi-color lover, you will not like the design. to elevate the aesthetic there is a textured pattern on the lid and deck. One more stark contrast is offered by the white fonts on the keyboard.
The laptop hinges are foldable to 180 degrees which means you can make it flat for better viewing. When you want to huddle around and watch something, this is the best option. It is a nice design option for collaboration but it lacks a touchscreen. Had it been touch-enabled, the 180-degree rotation would have been much more important.
Keyboard and Trackpad
The build of the keyboard is not extraordinary but it is in tune with the price tag. It is a case of you get what you pay for. There is a springiness in the keys when you touch it. Overall the keyboard is comfortable and laid out nicely. The key travel is less but it does not take much time to get used to it. The touchpad is wide and roomy. It is responsive and has a sensitivity to the multi-finger gestures of Windows 10.
The screen size is 14 inches and the resolution is 1920 x 1080. For a Chromebook under $200, it is a good bargain chip. The display is perfectly adequate for YouTube or web surfing but when you play HD movie on it, it gives up. It becomes plain that the brightness and clarity are both lacking. The screen can produce good colors, though not realistic. But the main problem lies in black. The black is dull and faded which is hurtful to my black-loving eye.
The laptop has a good port selection. There is an HDMI port, an SD card reader, and a USB 3.0 on the left. While on the right there are two USB 2.0 ports, a power jack, and a headphone jack.
Webcam and Speakers
The Acer Aspire 1 A114-32-C1YA has a VGA front camera which shoots in 640 x 480 pixels. It works well for capturing images and making video calls but don’t expect too much from it. The images all turn out to be underwhelming and grainy. The video calls are also of basic quality. All-in-all it does not do anything worth praising but does not lack basic at the same time. The same goes for audio quality. It is not groundbreaking but does a decent job. The pair of built-in stereo speakers are bottom facing and has enough volume output to fill a small room. The voice quality is clear and absent of distortion.
The Acer Aspire 1 A114-32-C1YA will let you do most of your productivity tasks by its 1.1GHz Intel Celeron N4000 CPU and Intel UHD 600 graphics cards. It is not thrilling. You cannot expect it to fulfill the heavy, action-packed tasks. But for a desktop replacement, it works perfectly.
You need to give it a minute or two before it can load up a dozen Chrome tabs, but once it all loaded things will move smoothly. It can handle office projects smoothly, but that is all. Even for media consumption, the laptop can do well while streaming movies and videos. But the capacity of gaming for this laptop (Related: cheapest gaming laptop under $500) is in single digit. So don’t even think about playing high spec games. On a single charge, the laptop provided a continuous screen time of 6 hours and 30 minutes. Though it is not that impressive, it is still quite good.
For those who have a strict budget and Windows is a must, this Chromebook is the best option. With this machine, you get a nicely designed laptop, good specs, and dual operating system flexibility. Though Acer’s plastic chassis flexes a little, it does not really require TLC. Just some normal maintenance from you.
If you are a student, this Vivobook is all you need. It has everything you may want. it is perfect for all the basic home and office work. It is a Chromebook with Windows flexibility and lets you play games on highest settings.
• Screen Size – 14 inches • Resolution – 1366 x 768 pixels • CPU – 1.5 GHz E2-6110 • RAM – 4 GB DDR3 • HDD – 32 GB SSD • GPU – AMD Radeon R2 • Wireless – 802.11.n • Average Battery Life – 6.5 hours • Weight – 3.6 pounds • OS – Chrome OS/Windows 10 S
Though it is a budget laptop, the ASUS L402WA-EH21looks like a premium one. And after looking at all the boxy designs that are like a trademark of budget laptops, this one feels even sleeker.
The smooth grey lid and blue keyboard deck are easy on the eyes. The body is entirely made of plastic and there are no gaps or sharp edges. In fact, it convincingly looks like a metal laptop. It is just 0.9 mm thick and has a strong build quality. Even with the slim and light body, the laptop provides everything that is necessarily needed.
Keyboard and Trackpad
The keyboard does not have a numeric pad so there is ample place for the other keys. It looks shallow, but the keyboard is surprisingly deep. The key travel is 1.7 mm and it requires 68 grams of pressure to press the keys. The palm rest is enough for typing with two hands. The touchpad is 4.1 x 2.4 inches in measurement and feels cheap and flimsy. It does come preinstalled with Windows 10 S gestures and is responsive. It does all its work correctly. But the build quality is disappointing.
Usually, while buying a budget laptop, the first compromise you have to do is on display. This laptop is no exception. With a max resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels, the 14-inch Chromebook is dim and dull. As you watch movies, the night scenes are barely visible. And Black Panther’s uniform becomes a disappointment. It looks like a black object flying. No detailing. The screen captures on 45% of the sRGB color gamut which is horribly low.
Even with a thin body, the ASUS L402WA-EH21 manages to fit in a lot of ports and connectivity options. The left side is full of connectivity options. Starting from the top, you will first find the DC-in port for the power cable. Then there is an Ethernet port, a USB Type-C port, an HDMI port, a USB 3.0, and an SD card reader slot. On the other side, you will find a headphone jack too.
Webcam and Speakers
The front-facing camera is nothing exceptional. It is alright for occasional Skype calls and video chats. But you will not be able to do anything more. The speakers are situated right below the palm rest and face towards you while you are using the laptop.
That is actually good thinking. They are decent with mediocre audio quality. But here it is a case is something is better than nothing. It’s definitely budget.
While buying ASUS L402WA-EH21 you should know that it’s is not the most powerful Vivobook in the world. The processor speed of 1.5 GHz is passive and sufficient for only office work or student project making. If your tasks are simple, the system runs smoothly. But as soon as you push open more than 6 Chrome tabs, the system starts lagging.
Data transfer is also on the slower side, thanks to its 4 GB RAM. 32 GB is not much of storage, so you have to go for an external HDD or SD slot usage. The battery is not the kind that would last an entire day. If you are taking the Vivobook out, be sure to carry the charger. I got 6.5 hours of battery life with continuous web searching and streaming a video in full HD. I kept the laptop at full brightness.
This machine is crafted for mundane office work, so don’t expect much of gaming on this. But if you are tight on budget, don’t mind the plastic body and Windows is a must for you then this one is a good choice.
Chromebooks are infamous because most of the time you end up with a cheap, plastic-made, flimsy laptop. But not with Acer Chromebook CB3-431-C5FM. It has a great build quality, brushed metal chassis, aluminum construction and the luxurious feel to it. Of course, it isn’t the best around. It has its shortcomings, but the look and feel are great. I mean, at least that’s something.
• Screen Size – 14 inches • Resolution – 1920 x 1080 pixels • CPU – Intel Celeron N3160 Quad-Core • RAM – 4 GB DDR3 • HDD – 32 GB eMMC • GPU – Intel HD Graphics • Wireless – 802.11 ac, Bluetooth 4.2 • Average Battery Life – 9 hours • Weight – 3.42 pounds • OS – Chrome OS
Not all Chromebooks can be called beautiful. This one is stylish. The Acer CB3-431-C5FM is sturdy, made of metal and sleek. It looks way more expensive than it really is. You generally don’t expect to find a cheap gaming Laptop under 200 to look like a Macbook. Everything on this laptop is well-balanced – design wise of course. The hinges are strong. The bottom of the body is a little sharp so you have to be careful while lifting it. And you cannot be too rough with the screen. It will flex. But then it’s a laptop, not a toy. Considering the slim budget this laptop was built on, these are minor knick-knacks.
Keyboard and Trackpad
The black keys look great in contrast with the silver body. but they are really shallow. At key travel of just 1.14 mm, it feels like the keys are bottoming out as soon as you touch them. The typing speed takes a huge dip because of that. I was too scared to type fast as it increases pressure on the keys. The button-less touchpad is 4.1 x 3 inches in size and feels really smooth. It is accurate and tracks the navigation perfectly. The clicks also give a solid feel. The surface is smooth and sensitive. That I like.
The resolution of the Chromebook is 1920 x 1080 which should be sharp, but unfortunately, it looks dull. The reds don’t pop, blue looks black and there was also pixelation sometimes. The color accuracy and sharpness is not all bad but it’s not praise-worthy too. The panel emits 215 nits of brightness which is also average. The viewing angles are not that great. The colors will start to darken as soon as you reach near 45 degrees.
On the left, you will find a pair of USB 3.0, a security lock, and an HDMI port. The headphone jack and power jack are on the right side. I prefer one more USB slot on the right, specifically for the mouse. And the Chromebook is also missing an SD card reader.
Webcam and Speakers
The Acer Chromebook has a front camera of 0.9 megapixel which takes pixelated photos. They appear grainy and lack detail. Though the color reproduction is great and almost accurate, the detailing is awful. The audio is great. If you need your laptop to behave like a stereo, this one ought to do it. The speakers are loud without distortion. The bass and high notes are awesome and vocals are crystal clear. The overall voice quality is excellent.
The laptop is good at multitasking. I opened a dozen tabs on Chrome, started streaming a 1080p video and then started a file transfer simultaneously. All this and the system still remained speedy. I saw no lag even when I type in Google Doc and Keep.
The graphics on this laptop are decent and good for casual gaming. Playing Cut the Rope was really fun. It did not slow down the game or the system, even at high settings. But for high spec gaming, the laptop gave up. The best part of this laptop is its coolness. You play games, stream HD videos and make it do a lot of multitasking, the laptop stays below 80 degrees.
You can take the laptop out for work and keep the charger at home. No problem at all. On a full single charge, the laptop lasted a good 9.5 hours. For a thin laptop, that is better than average. Not all Chromebooks can deliver such a battery life.
The Acer Chromebook is solid and sturdy. It has a sleek finish. The overall performance, audio and battery life all are strong. Unfortunately, the full HD does not pop. But then which budget laptop is known for its display? If style and looks are important to you, then this is a considerable option.
If you have been searching for a long time, then you must have come across HP Stream 14. More than ultra-affordability, the candy-colored body is eye-catching. HP has been making inexpensive laptops for a long time now but the budget laptop which acts as a competitor to Windows is their latest feat. And they are good at everything they do.
• Screen Size – 14 inches • Resolution – 1366 x 768 pixels • CPU – Intel Celeron N4000 Processor • RAM – 4 GB • HDD – 32 GB eMMC • GPU – Intel HD Graphics 400 • Wireless – 802.11 ac, Bluetooth 4.2 • Average Battery Life – 7 hours • Weight – 3.11 pounds • OS – Chrome OS/ Windows 10
It is candy-colored. The laptop is very hard to miss. It is lightweight and made of plastic chassis. The construction is not very sturdy and feels hollow. The body flexes upon every stroke of the key or even tapping on the trackpad. That is an indication of the very loose build. The keyboard is white which again gives a stark contrast and makes the palm rest two-toned. There is also light texture on the palm rest. While the competitors stick to sleek black to make the budget laptop look like a high-end one, Stream sticks to blue and purple.
Keyboard and Trackpad
The smooth white keys with black fonts are light and flimsy. The key travel is less at 1.32 mm and the shallow feel is definitely there. The keys require a pressure of 72 grams to press it so that the text is registered. Because of the shallowness and the flimsy feels, it becomes scary to type for me. I was afraid they would come off. That makes typing speed too less. The trackpad carries the same bright blue/purple color as the chassis and has a matte finish. Though it may not look luxurious, it recognizes every gesture and clicks correctly. The mouse buttons are not distinctly made. The trackpad uses the bottom portion for mouse clicks. The touchpad also supports multi-touch gestures.
The resolution is the same as every other laptop in this price range. But the quality is better than quite a lot. The display is as expected. When you watch the video content in HD, it looks really good. The skin of Hulk looks the right shade of green, explosions look proper red and orange where they should and even the lightning from Thor’s hammer looks crackling white. The color accuracy is not 100% perfect, of course, but it is very near to the original colors. It is as I expected it to perform. The brightness is another story though. I found the display to be dim at only 186 nits of brightness. It is better than many competitors but not enough to give a nice and bright display.
The port selection is not good. It is lesser than needed for basic use. It cannot be considered adequate even. On the left of the chassis, you will find an HDMI port, an SD card slot, two USB 3.0 and one USB 2.0, a Kensington lock and a headphone jack. The power connector is on the right and the laptop lacks an Ethernet port.
Webcam and Speakers
In budget laptops, I don’t keep very high expectations form the webcam. And as usual, the photos were grainy and had a lot of noise. Though the colors were captured quite accurately, the details got mixed up. It was too hazy. The laptop has a downward firing speaker and the audio quality is bad. You may want to use your headphones for this one. The vocals are clear and loud enough to move around the room but the bass lines are absent. HP does give some pre-installed settings for music but none of them improve the audio quality.
The performance of HP Stream 14 is very similar to Samsung Chromebook 3. Windows 10 gives a familiar working environment and all the apps are there but the performance is not good. Multiple browser tabs slow down the system. And by multiple, I only mean 5! The HDD performs as it should and file transfers are speedy. So no problems there. The Intel HD Graphics 400 on the laptop will let you stream good quality videos from Netflix and so but gaming needs to be kept simple. Do not expect a play session of anything more than Candy Crush Saga. The battery held up really well on a full charge. The laptop stayed with me for 7 hours and 4 minutes. That was after a continuous 7-hour session of web searching, gaming, and video streaming. And it does not even heat up.
It is fun to look at but it could have been built better. It is definitely budget-friendly but does not offer anything special. With basic ports and underwhelming performance, you can only use it for mundane tasks and watching movies. But as Chromebooks go, it is not a bad option.
Very fewer budget Chromebooks are convertible. And if they are, very few of them are usable. Don’t worry XIDU PhilBook comes in the former category. The 360-degree hinge, touchscreen, and slim design may be just what you need.
• Screen Size – 11.6 inches • Resolution – 1920 x 1080 pixels • CPU – 1.4 GHz Intel AtomZ8350 Quad Core • RAM – 4 GB DDR3 • HDD – 64 GB eMMC • GPU – Intel HD Graphics • Wireless – 802.11 bgn • Average Battery Life – 7 hours • Weight – 2.42 pounds • OS – Chrome OS/ Windows 10
The XIDUPhilBook is stylish and thin with a silver body made of plastic finish but made to look like metal. And it does a good job. The plastic keeps it light and the finish gives it a luxurious look. The hinges are 360-degree and can be converted into 4 different modes. For normal use, there is Notebook mode, for enjoying media content there is the Display mode, for ease of use there is Tablet mode and then there is Tent mode for space utilization. The laptop is compact and can be slipped in and out of bag easily.
Keyboard and Trackpad
The keyboard, as well as the touchpad, are stark black against the metal grey. The island keyboard looks really well offsetting the colors. Though the keys and the trackpad even take some time getting used to, they are not bad to use. Though one problem I noticed was while on tablet mode, the keyboard and touchpad don’t switch off automatically. That is very annoying.
XIDU boasts full HD display with IPS technology which is supposed to create sharp and vivid images on the screen. The screen is touch-enabled. The touch is recognized pretty fast and accurately by the laptop. The screen is quick and responsive. The colors are very near to accurate and the brightness is also average. It is not dim at least. HD content looked really impressive. The bezel is thin and viewing angles are also great. The colors will not go dark to 45 degrees. Kind of a necessity for a convertible laptop.
There are two USB 3.0 ports, a micro SD card reader, a headphone jack and a micro HDMI port. Personally, these are too less for everyday usage. But for the thin design, this is the compromise we have to make.
The laptop has stereo speakers which are loud. The voice was clear to watch an entire movie on the laptop without missing any dialogue. Music quality is not that great but vocals are crystal clear.
XIDUPhilBook is a rugged machine with an awesome display, good battery life, and a nice display. Connectivity options are limited but that is going to be a lifestyle if you go for slim and thin laptops. Otherwise, this machine has nothing to fail the user.
So these are the cheapest gaming Laptop under 200 which will not give you nightmares. These are pretty good for usage normally, but you also know in this budget you cannot expect to play high spec games. But your wish of gameplay will not go unfulfilled. These have graphics to give you a small portion of gaming sessions on a regular basis.