Laptops

8 Best Laptops Under $1500: Reviewed, Rated & Compared

Shopping for a laptop can seem like a mammoth task. Every year, technology gets more powerful, varied, and extensive.

Not only does this mean there are more expensive and powerful components out there, but it also means that more and more budget-friendly performance parts are being invented. For $1500, you can pick up an extremely capable laptop.

What To Expect From This Price Point

If you are wondering what to expect from laptops in this bracket, we have you covered. A $1500 laptop is teetering towards the top of the middle-class bracket of laptops. You are going to get a machine that destroys common daily tasks. Surfing the internet, streaming videos, and running everyday programs will be a breeze; your laptop won't even break a sweat.

You are also going to get a laptop that can cope with what we call intensive tasks. At this price point, you will definitely be able to play video games and edit photos and videos. You may have to turn the settings down slightly and be prepared that some “very” intensive tasks may run a bit slower on your machine.


Buying Guide: What To Look For In Laptops Under $1500

Screen Size & Display

The first thing you should consider when looking at buying a laptop is the screen size and quality. Screens generally range from 11” to 17”. In most cases, 11” and 13” inch screens are ideal for those that like portability in a laptop.

17” laptops are usually used as desktop replacements, giving people the ability to move their laptop around in their house, but probably not traveling with it very often.

Next, you should look at quality. The higher quality the screen, the faster the battery will drain and the more expensive the cost. Most people will do fine with a good 1080p screen, which in our opinion, is the sweet spot.

RAM & Storage Space

RAM and Storage are your computers, memory, and filing cabinet system. Your RAM is where your computer stores functions and shortcuts that enable it to run quickly and smoothly.

Think of the RAM as your computer's short term memory. Every time your computer is turned off, it is wiped and starts again when you turn your computer on. Your RAM is the most significant "support" player in the computer, helping every other component run efficiently. Obviously, the higher the RAM, the better.

Storage comes in two shapes. HDDs are massive storage devices capable of holding lots of images, files, music, etc. They are cheap, but they run slow.

The other storage option is an SSD, and this is the new and improved version of the HDD. It runs quickly and loads fast, but it costs a lot more.

Processor

Next, we have the control room, the brain of your computer, the CPU, or Processor. This component is responsible for making the millions of calculations and decisions that your computer needs to make every second. This is the most critical component for performance, and as such, you should look at maxing this out in most situations.

Look for the newest generation of processors and aim for as high in the performance hierarchy as possible. Intel’s line goes i3, i5, i7, i9, for example, and is on the 10th generation.

In terms of clock speed and cores, again, the higher, the better.

Battery Life

Battery life is a tough one to judge. In general, the higher the battery life, the better, so we do rate laptops on their battery life. However, a high spec laptop will never have brilliant battery life, and performance comes at a cost after all.

The importance of battery life will depend on your individual needs. If you need to regularly travel with your laptop and will often use it for long periods untethered from the mains, then you should look for a longer battery life. Remember that good battery life will come at either the expense of performance or with a much higher price tag.

Design

The design of your laptop can be split into two different categories: aesthetics and practicality. 

In terms of aesthetics, laptops come in a range of different styles. Some are sleek and matte black, well suited to the office executive, and some come with RGB lighting suited to the hardcore gamers. Aesthetics come down to personal taste, and how important they are will depend on the individual.

The second aspect, the practicality, refers to different design features that may come in handy. This includes 2in1 styles that can be turned into tablets or hard shells that can withstand being used in factories or on building sites.

Portability/Weight

Again, if you travel a lot, you might want to look into getting an ultra-portable laptop, one designed to weight a lot less then the average laptop. You may also want to look at the size factor. An 11" or 13" laptop will slip into a backpack a lot easier than a 17" performance gaming rig.

Warranty

Technology is notorious for breaking at inconvenient times. When this happens, you want to be under a high-quality warranty. This can mean the difference between a free fix and purchasing a whole brand-new laptop. Every brand has a different level of customer service. Some of them are good, some of them are bad, which doesn't always corollate to the price.


8 Best Laptops Under $1500 Reviewed

1. Microsoft Surface Laptop 3

On Sale Today
Microsoft Surface Laptop 3 – 13.5"...
  • Clean, elegant design — thin and light,...
  • Choose from rich tone-on-tone color...
  • Improved speed and performance to do what you...
  • More ways to connect, with USB-C and USB-A...

Best Laptop Under $1500

Screen Size

15 Inches

Processor

Intel i7

Resolution

1080p

Storage

256GB SSD

RAM

16GB

Battery Life

11.5 hours

The first laptop we will look at is the laptop we feel scored the highest across multiple areas. This means that this laptop is, in our opinion, the best laptop under $1500 for the majority of users. If you find yourself needing a good laptop, without particular bias towards functions like gaming or touchscreens, this is the best.

The crown falls to the Microsoft Surface Laptop 3, the third iteration of Microsofts Surface Laptop. This immensely popular range has quickly become the go-to for quality and performance at a price that is hard to believe for the quality.

The Surface Laptop 3 comes packed with high-end components, from the 256GB m.2 SSD to the extremely powerful i7 Processor. With 16GB of RAM, this laptop is lightning quick and runs smoothly in every task. You also get some very powerful graphics, powered by AMD and their RX Vega.

Then you have the design, with Alcantara leather and thin 2.79-pound case, this laptop is portable and beautiful. You also get a very capable 11.5 hours of battery life and a multitude of ports, from USB C to HDMI, connectivity is never going to be an issue.

In terms of additional features, you get rapid fast charging, which can re-juice the battery from 0-80% in only a single hour of charging, which is insane. You also get a studio-quality mic and wake on voice capability.

The keyboard is nice to type on, making this an excellent choice for those that spend a lot of time punching keys while working. This is a massive improvement on the Surface Laptop 2, which fell just short of the mark, in our opinion.

Finally, you are buying a Microsoft product, which means you get Microsoft's incredible customer support and warranties. If anything goes wrong, from set-up to hardware, they will help you quickly and efficiently.

There isn't much we can fault with the Surface Laptop 3. It ticks every box and looks incredible while doing it, with a range of colors and a multitude of accessories, it is easy to see why this laptop is our top pick.

Good
  • Microsoft quality
  • Refined high-quality design
  • Rapid charge technology
  • Perfect keyboard
Bad
  • Poor trackpad

2. MSI GL65 Leopard 10SFK-062

MSI GL65 Leopard 10SFK-062 15.6" FHD 144Hz...
  • 15.6" FHD IPS-Level 144Hz 72%NTSC Thin Bezel...
  • Intel Core i7-10750H 2.6-5.0GHz Intel Wi-Fi 6...
  • 512GB NVMe SSD 16GB (8G*2)DDR4 2666MHz 2...
  • USB 3.1 Gen2 Type C *1 USB 3.2 Gen1 *3 Steel...

Best Gaming Laptop Under $1500

Screen Size

15 Inches

Processor

Intel i7

Resolution

1080p

Storage

512 GB SSD

RAM

16GB RAM

Battery Life

7 Hours

For the gamers amongst you, who spend longer capturing flags and tossing flash-bangs, this is the laptop you should pick. Gamers require different specs from their laptops to the regular user, with a focus on graphics performance and cooling technology compared to sleek designs and fancy features.

Our top gaming laptop under $1500 falls to a brand that has a prestige for gaming laptops and technology. If you are a gamer, you will have already most likely heard of MSI.

Their approach to gaming laptops is to spend the money on performance and cut away the costly extras. The result is a range of  laptops that perform well above their price-tag, making them an excellent choice for any gamer.

The winner here is the MSI GL65 Leopard. The Leopard comes packed with a 10th  generation i7, supported with 16 GB of top of the range RAM. Storage-wise you get a whopping 512GB SSD too.

Then you have the icing on the cake, the RTX 2070 graphics card under the hood. This card allows for the newest generation of raytracing capable graphics and is almost overkill in a laptop. These components are at the cutting edge of gaming tech and enable the Leopard to run AAA+ games on high settings without breaking a sweat.

You get an insane frame rate at high settings while keeping the graphics high and showcasing every stunning detail. There is a full functionality RGB keyboard to add to that beauty, which allows you to program individual keys. You can even script different keys to different games.

Performance of this level requires intense cooling solutions, and the dedicated thermal tech in the Leopard is nothing short of brilliant. With seven heat pipes and adaptive free flow air innovation, your laptop stays cool under pressure, just like you.

Good
  • Gaming excellence
  • RTX 2070 with raytracing
  • Gaming keyboard switches
Bad
  • Small battery life

3. Acer Predator Helios 300

Acer Predator Helios 300 Gaming Laptop, Intel...
  • 9th Generation Intel Core i7-9750H 6-Core...
  • NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1660 Ti Graphics with 6 GB...
  • 15. 6" Full HD (1920 x 1080) Widescreen...
  • World's first dual Omron switch design

Best 15-inch Laptop Under $1500

Screen Size

15 Inches

Processor

Intel i7

Resolution

1080p

Storage

256GB

RAM

32GB

Battery Life

8+

The best 15" laptop under $1500 category goes to the Predator Helios by Acer. Those of you who follow our reviews will already know that the Predator has shown its face on a huge number of different review lists, and for good reason.

The Helios has a ridiculously good screen. The 240hz refresh rate display is nothing other than stunning and makes use of the Helios’s immense component power to provide one of the best looking displays we have ever seen.

Speaking of components, the Helios comes with the latest generation i7 from intel and 32GB of RAM, which gives it perhaps the highest pure processing power on this list. Paired with an RTX 2070 Max-Q, it only falls slightly short of the  MSI Leopard, which has a full size RTX2070 at its heart.

One of the best parts about the Helios is the small button located at the top of the keyboard, simply named “Turbo.” This button, which is almost impossible not to want to press, turns this sleeping beast into a monster, overclocking the settings, boosting the fan speed, and essentially shooting the Helios full of adrenaline.

To keep up with this overclock and the normal high-level of performance the Helios provides, Acer has added its 4th generation of Aeroblade fan technology. This tech adapts to the heat and pumps up the cooling capabilities depending on what you are doing, and with the bladed razor Aeroblades, the noise is kept to the minimum.

Now gamers love their keyboards, and the 4-zone RGB Predator typeface has beautiful concave keys that are programmable and are immensely satisfying to type on.

Finally, you have the Killer E2600 wifi card to keep your internet stable and latency-free. This makes gaming and streaming lag and buffer-free.

All in all, this is a fantastic laptop, one that has impressed us on several occasions in different lists. If it wasn't for the hardcore gamer design, this could have easily snuck into our top spot.

Good
  • Gaming performance
  • Looks amazing
  • Powerful graphics
Bad
  • Small storage space

4. LG Gram 2-in-1 Convertible

LG Gram 2-in-1 Convertible Laptop: 14" Full...
  • 14” Full HD (1920 x 1080) IPS LCD...
  • Windows 10 Home (64bit)
  • Converts to 14” Tablet - includes Stylus...
  • 16GB DDR4 RAM and 1TB (512GB x 2) NVMe SSD

Best 2 in 1 Laptop Under $1500

Screen Size

14 Inches

Processor

Intel i7

Resolution

1080p

Storage

1TB

RAM

16GB

Battery Life

20.5 Hours

2 in 1 laptops are a bit of an oddity and can be hard to review. What makes it even harder is when an unusual offering like the LG Gram is announced. The Gram looks like every other 2 in  1 system on the surface. Underneath, however, is a whole different story.

LG has outdone themselves here because packed into one of the lightest laptops on the market, are some of the freshest high-end parts available. 

Let's start with the battery life. The LG Gram is rated for up to 20.5 hours… that’s right over 20 hours of battery. That isn’t just good, and it is perhaps the highest we have ever seen here at Techgearoid.

Then you have the newest 10th gen i7 processor at the core, backed by 16Gb of the latest DDR4 RAM. On top of that, you have a gigantic 1TB m.2 SSD. How they managed to fit these leading components into a chassis that weighs just 2.5 LBS is beyond us.

You get enhanced security, too, with a fingerprint scanner that boots up your laptop from sleep to online in under a second. That isn’t the only feature we love either, and the enhanced visibility keyboard is one of the nicest backlit keyboards we have typed on. It makes low light work a whole lot easier, which should appeal to those who travel a lot.

Then you have the 2 in 1 functionality, allowing you to swap the Gram from laptop to tablet to tent mode instantly.  This gives you a whole range of different ways to use the Gram. Watch films on the plane, utilize the tablet functionality to draw and take notes, or stand the Gram up in the middle of a presentation.

The Gram has DTS:X Ultra speaker technology onboard, too, allowing for 3D audio immersion without headphones.

The Gram is an impressive piece of equipment. It is, however, a little bit niche. There is nothing else as good out there just yet for those that need an ultraportable, long battery life, 2 in 1 laptop. That's what makes it so unique, and why it takes our top spot for 2 in 1 laptop under $1500.

Good
  • Ridiculously light
  • Immense battery life
  • Powerful components
  • 2 in 1 capability
Bad
  • Flimsy

5. Apple MacBook Pro

New Apple MacBook Pro (13-inch, 8GB RAM,...
  • Eighth-generation quad-core Intel Core i5...
  • Brilliant Retina display with True Tone...
  • Backlit Magic Keyboard
  • Touch Bar and Touch ID

Best Apple Laptop Under $1500

Screen Size

13 Inches

Processor

Intel i7

Resolution

Retina Display

Storage

Up to 4TB

RAM

Up to 32GB RAM

Battery Life

13+

For those that like to run with the Apple crowd, there is only one contender for the best Apple laptop crown, but what a contender it is. The MacBook Pro is Apple's flagship model.

This portable powerhouse uses a 4-core 10th gen intel processor and gives you the choice of up to 32GB of RAM and up to 4TB of SSD storage. This ability to fine-tune your spec makes the MacBook Pro a robust offering. At the top end, fully decked out, it is extremely powerful, and there isn’t much that can contend.

The newest edition has done away with the old style of keyboard and installed a new Magic Keyboard, which comes with a new scissor mechanism. This gives the keys a travel of 1mm and makes typing a very comfortable affair.

Apple has always done displays well, and the Retina display on the MacBook Pro is no different. This is the most beautiful screen of any laptop and is definitely one of the top-selling points for swapping over to the Apple side.

In terms of connectivity, Apple has done away with legacy ports, opting to push into the future utilizing the new Thunderbolt 3 connection type, which has ultra-high bandwidth to give sizzling download and upload speeds.

You get Apple's usual sleek offering, with the unusual touch bar at the top of the keyboard that people will either love or hate. Weighing in at only 2.9 lbs too, the MacBook Pro is easy to throw into a backpack or to a meeting.

Apple hasn't broken the mold here, but why would they? This is an exceedingly powerful laptop that can be specced up to a ridiculously high level. As with all Apple products, though, there comes a cost, and that is, unfortunately,  the cost. To spec up your MacBook Pro, you will have to spend an awful lot of money.

That being said, even the basic model MacBook is still more than enough for most users, and if you love Apple anyway, there isn’t anything else that competes.

Good
  • Retina display is beautiful
  • New keyboard design
  • Apple audio quality
Bad
  • Expensive

6. Dell XPS 13 9380

On Sale Today
Dell XPS 13 9380, XPS9380-7011SLV-PUS, 8th...
  • 8th Generation Intel Core i7-8565u Processor...
  • 13. 3" 4K Ultra HD (3840x2160) InfinityEdge...
  • 8GB 2133MHz on-board memory
  • 512GB M. 2 PCIe NVMe solid state Drive

Best Laptop Under $1500 for Photo Editing

Screen Size

13 Inches

Processor

Intel i7

Resolution

4K

Storage

512GB SSD

RAM

8GB

Battery Life

10 Hours

Dell's XPS range has been one of the most popular ranges of a high-end laptop for a while now. The thin bezels and beautiful displays powered by high-powered parts and placed into a sleek carbon black shell make it the perfect laptop for those that like a little class.

The XPS 13 is the smallest of the range and comes with a 4K ultra-HD touchscreen with some of the smallest bezels we have seen before. This makes the laptop appear smaller than it is profile-wise, without losing any screen real estate. This makes the XPS 13 one of the most portable laptops on this list, as it is essentially an 11” laptop with a 13” screen.

In terms of horsepower, you get an intel i7 core and a 512 GB m.2 SSD as well as intel UHD graphics and 8GB of RAM. This is a mighty combo and allows quick photo loading and enables the user to run photo editing programs with ease.

You get CinemaSound MaxxAudio, too, which boosts every sound and enhances clarity to give you unparalleled listening experience. The XPS 13 is cut from one block of aluminum, making it more durable than a machine pieced together in separate parts.

Carbon fiber palm rest inspired by the aerospace industry, allowing for maximum strength and minimal weight. The screen is made of Gorilla Glass 4, which is twice as damage resistant than a standard laptop screen.

This is a laptop that leaks class and would make the perfect companion to anyone who spends a lot of time editing photos.

Good
  • 4K Display
  • 13” screen in 11” profile
  • Carbon matte black looks
  • Dell quality
Bad
  • Would prefer 16GB of RAM

7. Lenovo ThinkPad T480s

OEM Lenovo ThinkPad T480s Laptop 14” FHD...
  • Processor: Intel i7-8650U Quad Core (1.9GHz -...
  • Features: 16GB RAM, 1TB NVMe, Fingerprint...
  • Display: 14" FHD (1920x1080) IPS; OS: Windows...
  • Warranty: 3 Year Lenovo Warranty / 3 Year...

Best Business Laptop under $1500

Screen Size

14 Inches

Processor

Intel i7

Resolution

1080p

Storage

1TB SSD

RAM

16GB

Battery Life

12+ Hours

Lenovo is the number one choice for vast numbers of businesses around the world. Their no-nonsense approach to work laptop design has set them apart for those that need a laptop purely for their day to day jobs.

The ThinkPad range is the range that has helped them elevate themselves in that field. Coming in at 14”, the Thinkpad T480 won't win any beauty contests, its rugged and feels a bit plasticky but under the hood, it has some serious firepower.

You get a 1TB storage, 16GB of RAM, and a Quad-core intel i7. The screen is an FHD IPS display panel that does its job perfectly. You get a fingerprint scanner to keep your laptop and documents secure and a battery life that lasts all day, with fast charging capability that can boost your battery to full in under an hour.

Every ThinkPad laptop even undergoes rigorous 21 MIL-SPEC testing that tests reliability and durability, even in the most hazardous physical and environmental conditions.

Finally, you get a 3-year warranty from Lenovo, one of the best warranties to come packaged with any laptop. This is just one reason why it is such a popular laptop when it comes to buying laptops for their employees.

If you need a laptop that won't let you down at work, one that performs well in every form of work-task, you can't go wrong with a Lenovo Thinkpad.

Good
  • Lenovo 3 year warranty
  • Very durable
  • Powerful
Bad
  • Slightly boring looking

8. HP Pavilion 17.3

2020 Newest HP Pavilion 17.3 Inch Laptop...
  • 【Upgrade】Seal is opened for upgrade only,...
  • 【Quad Core i5-8265U】Intel Core i5-8265U...
  • 【High Speed】RAM is upgraded to 32GB DDR4...
  • 【Enormous Space】Hard Drive is upgraded to...

Best 17 inch Laptop Under $1500

Screen Size

17 Inches

Processor

Intel i5

Resolution

1080p

Storage

2TB SSD 1TB HDD

RAM

32GB

Battery Life

12 Hours

If you have decided you want a bigger laptop, perhaps to replace a desktop computer in your home, you have probably decided you want a 17” screen. The winner of our best 17-inch laptop under $1500 is the HP Pavilion.

HP is another big brand in the computing world, one that we have come to expect a certain level of quality from, and the Pavillion is no different.

With an incredible 2TB SSD and 1TB HDD, this is a laptop with almost bottomless storage. With 32GB of RAM and an Intel i5 processor, you can expect instantaneous boot-up times and file transfers and a silky-smooth experience.

Two speakers are installed, and like many HP laptops, the speakers have been tuned by the awesome high-end Danish audio brand Bang & Olufsen.

The HP Pavilion 17 is a fairly big laptop with a full-sized keyboard, and in terms of ports, the right-hand side has two Type-A USB 3.1 Gen 1 ports, a lock slot, and a full-sized SD card reader, while the left-hand side has HDMI 1.4, Ethernet, and Type-C USB 3.1 ports, along with a 3.5mm headphone jack.

The keyboard is lovely to type on two, with just the right amount of bounce for our liking and a throw that feels well thought out.

If you are looking for a 17-inch laptop with a roaring heart of performance, this is the laptop that we would choose to replace that clunky desktop tower.

Good
  • 17” Screen
  • Huge Storage
  • Massive RAM (32GB)
  • Rapid-Charge
Bad
  • Heavy
  • Poor Graphics

Extra Laptop Features/Specs To Factor In

Operating System

Most people already have a preferred operating system. The majority of users will choose either windows or mac, depending on what they have used previously. It is often hard for users to swap from one to the other due to the different shortcuts and commands.

Our recommendation is to stick to what you know, especially when you are forking out this kind of cash.

USB Type Ports

Depending on what you need to plug into your laptop, you will need to consider the ports. Many laptops remove the legacy ports that we have used for years to replace them with the new USB-C port. If you want to plug in old peripherals, you should bear that in mind when researching.

Graphics Chip

The graphics card controls the display of your computer, the better the graphics card, the easier it is to manage intense graphical tasks such as gaming or photo editing.

The best brands are NVIDIA and AMD, and they produce 90% of the discrete graphics card we use in laptops today. Unless you are a gamer or a photo/video editor, graphics cards are not a priority for most users,

Connectivity

The ports and wifi capabilities of your laptop are significant. If you have a lot of peripherals plugged in, you will want to make sure your new laptop has all of the right ports for them. You also want to ensure you have the highest quality wifi connection available, too, so look for a high-end wifi card where possible.

Keyboard

Keyboard preference is extremely personal. Some people like big click high resistance keys, and some people like subtle low-profile switches.

We recommend that you try your keyboard out quickly, and if you don’t like it in the first instance, you should look at swapping your laptop. If you find it uncomfortable to type on now, it will only get more annoying the longer you have the machine.


Laptop Care, Maintenance & Troubleshooting

Some simple tips for caring for your laptop are:

  • Keep your laptop away from heat sources. The easiest way to ruin a laptop is to overheat it and destroy the inner components.
  • Try not to overcharge your laptop; once it reaches 100%, take it off charge. This will ensure the battery life.
  • Keep your vents dust-free, buy an air duster, they cost a dollar and can help you keep your laptop cool and running smoothly.
  • Always register your warranties and buy the extension where possible, we have lost count of the times we have seen users report their laptops breaking within a couple of days of their warranty expires.

People Also Ask (FAQs)

What brand of laptop is most reliable for this price range?

Every laptop on this list comes from a reliable brand. In particular, Dell and Apple make very reliable laptops,

Is Dell or HP better for laptops under $1500?

If you want a 13” laptop, then definitely the Dell XPS 13, if you want a 17” laptop, we love the Pavillion.

What’s a good processor speed for a laptop under $1500?

An intel i7 core provides ample amounts of speed, being one of the fastest CPUs on the market.

How long do laptops in this price range typically last?

In our experience, laptops in this price range will last between 3-4 years before they start slowing down and five years before they need replacing.

Is it okay to buy refurbished or renewed laptops?

Laptops are like cars; the higher the mileage, the more chance of a problem. When buying refurbished or renewed laptops, you do not know what the previous user has been doing, and so we highly recommend you buy new.

Where is the best place to start browsing for top laptops under $1500?

Amazon is by far the best place to purchase electronics. They have the best returns policy and delivery options, and they always have competitive prices.


Conclusion

After reading this article, I hope that we have helped you in your choice for a good laptop under $1500. We spend the time examining the market and looking at all of the current offerings so we can impart our advice to you.

If you are still unsure which laptop to choose, our top pick, the Surface Laptop 3, is by far the most well balanced and well suited to the majority of users.