Shopping for a new computer can be fun, but it can also be a headache given the wide range of options available today. The addition of newer touchscreen and 2-in-1 laptops doesn’t make it any easier to find the right laptop for you. It’s easy to get choice paralysis when shopping for a PC, even if you already have a fixed budget in mind, but our research can make your life a little bit easier. Whether you’re getting a head start on your holiday shopping or just need a new computer for work or play, we’ve got your back.
Below are the best laptop deals available for December 2018. Our picks offer something for just about everyone, from those who like the convenience of a touchscreen, to gamers and dedicated Apple fans. Best of all, since many of these PCs feature 7th-generation Intel CPUs, these laptop deals offer deep discounts that can save you a lot of cash if you’re not fussy about having (and paying hundreds of dollars more for) the newest hardware.
Like Acer, Asus has built a reputation for solid and affordable Windows laptops. Its VivoBook E203MA is about the cheapest name-brand Windows 10 PC you’re likely to find, and this laptop deal is a great alternative to a Chromebook if you’re not interested in learning Chrome OS. The VivoBook E203MA is compact and portable, too, with its 11.6-inch display. It runs on a dual-core Intel Celeron processor and 2GB of RAM, and you’ve got 32GB of flash storage for your apps and work files.
This won’t replace your desktop PC or full-sized Windows laptop, but at a super-cheap $110 from Best Buy after a nice $70 savings, the 11-inch Asus VivoBook E203MA would make a great backup computer, portable workstation, or even a Christmas gift for a techie you know.
For a basic, no-frills workstation that’s lightweight and easy on the wallet, it doesn’t get much better than a good Chromebook. Make no mistake, these little computers are heads and shoulders above those sluggish netbooks of years past (remember those?). Samsung makes some of the best on the market, and its Chromebook 3 is a great entry-level work laptop. It’s got an 11.6-inch HD display the perfect size for tucking into your bag along with an Intel Celeron N3060 processor, 2GB of RAM, and 16GB of built-in storage.
It doesn’t have the specs of our other picks (most of which cost twice as much or more), but if you came looking for one of the cheapest laptop deals on our roundup, this is it: It’s currently on sale from Amazon for $155, or $74 off.
If you want a Chrome OS laptop that’s full-sized and a bit beefier than the Samsung model (but one that’s still highly affordable), check out the larger Acer 14-inch Chromebook. Acer’s Chromebook remains one of best you can find for less than $300 thanks to its quick performance, generous battery life, great 14-inch HD display, and the excellent value that it provides.
Its dual-core Intel Celeron N3160 processor, 4GB of RAM, and 32GB of flash storage give you everything you need for your daily work, while the pre-installed Chrome OS updates automatically so it runs fast and stays fast. The Acer Chromebook 14 can be yours from Amazon for $272 ($28 off) with free shipping.
Acer makes some great Chromebooks, but this brand built its name on its affordable Windows laptops like the Aspire series. The 15-inch Acer Aspire E 15 is the perfect entry-level work computer, running on an 8th-gen Intel Core i3-8130U CPU, 6GB of RAM, and a 1-terabyte hard drive, which are solid specs for a no-frills everyday work machine.
At $355 ($25 off) from Amazon around the same price as (or even cheaper than) many of the best Chromebooks this is one of the only Windows 10 laptops you’re going to find with an 8th-gen Intel CPU for less than 400 bucks.
PC makers are increasingly offering hybrid designs that combine the functionality of a laptop and portable convenience of a tablet, and for anyone looking for a workhorse 2-in-1 Windows 10 laptop, the Dell Inspiron 15 series is a great place to start. The 5000 model sports a dual-core Intel Core i3-7130 CPU plus 4GB of DDR4 RAM for snappy performance when multitasking. The 15.6-inch IPS touch laptop display has a crisp 1080p Full HD resolution, while the Intel UHD Graphics 620 integrated GPU provides enough power for light gaming. The large 1TB hard drive also offers plenty of room for all of your files and software.
The Inspiron 15 5000 2-in-1 is already pretty budget-friendly at its usual price of $549, but a $170 discount on B&H brings this foldable tablet-like hybrid laptop down to $379. You may also want to take a look at the Dell XPS line if you’re looking for something with a little more power. Dell Small Business also offers some great choices if you’re looking to equip your growing team.
Lenovo has also been riding the 2-in-1 trend with its Lenovo Yoga and Lenovo Ideapad series, but when it comes to solid laptops built for work, it still doesn’t get much better than the classic ThinkPad. ThinkPads have been around for a long time and remain popular for a reason they’re built to last. You don’t have to spend a fortune for one, either, and the ThinkPad E580 is a great midrange Windows machine.
The E580 packs a 7th-gen Intel Core i5-7200 processor, 4GB of DDR4 RAM, and a 500GB 7,200rpm hard drive that offers faster performance than the 5,400rpm HDDs of yesteryear. It’s also on sale right now: A $370 savings brings it down to $529 from Amazon, or you could pick up an Ideapad for even less.
Although it used to be the case that gaming laptops lagged far behind desktop PCs in the hardware department, in recent years we have seen this gap shrink considerably thanks to models like the MSI GL63, which has a very impressive price-to-performance ratio. An 8th-generation Intel Core i5-8300H processor, Nvidia GTX 1050 GPU, and 8GB of RAM easily tackle most games, while the 126GB SSD and 1TB HDD offer plenty of storage.
You’d normally expect to pay around $200 more for a gaming laptop with hardware similar to a desktop PC. Considering that laptops already have displays and keyboards, the MSI GL63 is a great value at $549 ($350 off after a $150 rebate) from Newegg, and is a solid laptop deal for anyone looking for a machine that can handle both work and play.
For another great gaming laptop that has a little more juice than the MSI GL63 (while still ringing in at well under a grand), check out the GV62, which packs an Nvidia GTX 1060 arguably the best “bang for buck” GPU around right now. This graphics card, together with a 8th-generation i5-8300H CPU and 8GB of RAM, delivers plenty of power for running modern games at high settings with a good deal more future-proofing than you’ll get with the GTX 1050. You also get a large and fast 256GB SSD, which offers much snappier performance than standard hard drives.
Gaming laptops with a GTX 1060 can run for as much as $1,200, but the MSI GV62 is currently available for just $699 from Walmart. You also get a nice little Fortnite bundle which includes 2,000 V-bucks ($20 worth), the Rare Street Ops Pack (a $25 value), and some Street Ops cosmetic items. This is one the best prices we’ve ever seen for a laptop with this GPU.
Pretty much all of the major PC manufacturers are offering 2-in-1 hybrid models today, but HP has remained at the forefront of this trend with its excellent Spectre series. The Spectre x360 13t is the smaller member of this HP PC family, hitting the Goldilocks zone in size with its 13.3-inch Full HD touch display. The lid’s hinge rotates so you can turn the display around and fold it flat, effectively turning the laptop into a tablet when you don’t need the keyboard and touchpad.
Under the hood, the Spectre x360 13t runs on an 8th-generation Intel Core i5 processor and Intel UHD 620 integrated GPU, along with 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD, which are excellent specs for a laptop of this size. The HP Spectre x360 13t touchscreen laptop can be yours for $870 from HP after a $280 discount.
MacBook deals can be fleeting, so holiday sales are the perfect opportunities to find Apple hardware at a discount. Although laptops keep getting slimmer and lighter and Apple is no longer the only game in town, the MacBook Air is still a great choice if you’re looking for a lightweight computer and aren’t a big fan of Windows. This 2017 MacBook Air offers plenty of performance despite its size, with a 1.8 GHz Intel Core i5 CPU, a snappy 8GB of DDR3 RAM, and 128GB SSD of speedy flash storage.
The 13.3-inch display boasts a 1,400 x 900 HD resolution and the internal battery offers up to 12 hours of juice plenty for a full day’s work before needing to be replenished. A $160 discount knocks the MacBook Air down to $940 from Amazon, making this the best Apple laptop deal in our roundup.
A laptop with the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1070 will deliver even greater performance than the previous two gaming PCs we’ve listed, but most laptops with this GPU will bring you close to the $2,000 threshold. Enter the MSI GP63, which can now be yours for $1,299. Along with the GTX 1070 graphics card with 8GB of VRAM, this laptop features an Intel i7-8750H CPU, 16GB of RAM, both a 128GB SSD and 1TB HDD, and a 15.6-inch Full HD display. These specs easily propel the GP63 into the “gaming desktop replacement” laptop category.
The MSI GP63 is already marked down to $1,379 on Newegg ($320 off of its usual price), but a limited-time $80 mail-in rebate means you can score it for an even cheaper $1,299. This is close to the price of many laptops running the GTX 1060, and is about the cheapest you’re likely to find for a new one with the beefier GTX 1070.
If the MacBook Air didn’t draw your interest but you still want some Apple hardware, then we’ve got another pick for you. This 13-inch MacBook Pro is the mid-2017 model, featuring a 2.3GHz Intel Core i5 processor and 8GB RAM, which combine to provide snappy performance for work, entertainment, and multitasking. Apple touches like a 128GB SSD, a super-crisp 2,560 x 1,600 resolution Retina display, and a backlit keyboard complete the package.
This 13-inch MacBook Pro is typically priced at $1,299, but you can score one from B&H for a more reasonable $1,129 and save $170.