12 Best Laptops Under $100 in 2017
Laptops have fallen in price drastically over the past several years as tablets and smartphones have slowly taken over. That’s a great thing for consumers, but they still aren’t exactly cheap so it’s tough to find one when you dive under $100 bucks.
Well, it took a while but we have compiled a quick list of the 12 best laptops under 100 dollars. Most of these will be considered “minis” or are in the netbook class, but they will all perform admirably with light duty use and are more portable than a full-fledged laptop with all the bells & whistles.
Table of Contents
- Top 12 Laptops Under $100 Comparison Table
- Buying Laptop Buying Guide
- What Can You Live Without?
- Top 5 Best Laptops Under $100 Reviews
Top 12 Laptops Under $100 Comparison Table
|Design||Name||Operating System||Size||Rating (1-5)|
|1. Macoku 7″ Mini Notebook Laptop Netbook||Android 4.4||7-inch||4.9|
|2. 2016 Premium High Performance RCA Galileo Pro 11.5″ 32GB Touchscreen Tablet Computer||Android 6.0||11.5-inches||4.1|
|3. RCA Maven Pro11.6-inch 32GB Tablet with Detachable Keyboard||Android 6.0||11.6-inches||4.0|
|4. RCA RCT6303W87DK 10-Inch 32GB Tablet||Android 5.0||10-inch||3.9|
|5. Dell Latitude Black 2100 Atom||Windows 7||10.1-inches||3.6|
|6. Dell Latitude 2110 Netbook||Windows 7||10.1-inches||3.5|
|7. iRULU eXpro X1 Plus 10.1″ Quad Core Android 5.1 Lollipop Tablet PC||Android 5.1||10-inches||3.4|
|8. Proscan PLT1065 (K-512-8GB) 10″ Tablet||Android 5.1||10-inches||3.4|
|9. iRULU eXpro X1 7 Inch Quad Core Google Android Tablet PC||Android 4.4||7-inches||3.1|
|10. eForprice 7″ Mini Notebook Laptop Netbook Android||Android 4.2||7-inches||3.0|
|11. Goldengulf 10 Inch Mini Laptop Netbook Android Computer Notebook||Android 4.1||10-inch||2.8|
|12. Goldengulf 7-Inch Laptop Notebook PC||Android 4.1||7-inch||2.0|
Buying Laptop Buying Guide
Just because you are on a budget doesn’t mean you can find a nice laptop on the cheap. The best laptops under 100 bucks won’t break the bank, but there are several things you will need to keep in mind.
What Can You Live Without?
When you are no a budget, corners are going to have to be cut. When you’re dealing with budget-friendly tech, things can get downright brutal. While components have dropped considerably over the years, laptops are still technical marvels and are priced as such. That means you need to sit down and think about what you need and what you can live without.
In dealing with the best laptops under 100 dollars, the display is always going to take a hit and that’s okay. The power is what you’ll need to be concerned about however as it’s just a little slab of plastic if it can’t run your favorite app or game.
We aren’t going to dig too deep here as the specifications for this range can vary wildly and bigger is always better. With Android or other mobile operating systems found on slates, you need to look at the processor, RAM, and storage. This can run from a dual or quad-core processor and 1GB to 2GB of RAM. Storage varies across the board although it can always be expanded through a USB port.
If you opt to go with Windows, things are tougher. In place of the Core i7 chips, you will probably encounter AMD and Celeron processors. The memory can run between 2GB and 4GB and storage is usually 250GB or better. While none of these are too exciting, some features considered exotic on modern models may be available including those long lost optical drives.
All the laptops to make the cut will run one of two operating systems with Windows and Android. Mac’s did not make our list due to price as their vintage models can actually cost thousands as they have become collectible over the years. That means you will want to carefully consider any programs you are thinking about running before making your final decision.
When it comes to Android, the version of the operating system matters as many modern devices run at least Android 6.0 if not 7.0. In other words, some newer apps or games may not work. With Windows, you won’t have to worry about compatibility but will need to check the laptop’s specs against the minimum requirements.
Top 5 Best Laptops Under $100 Reviews
Unless you are well-versed in the tech brands from the Far East, you have probably never heard of Macoku. They have produced our top choice however as the Macoku Mini Notebook is a little machine that walks that fine line between tablet and slate. This one crossed over into laptop territory as the screen doesn’t detach so you’re actually getting a miniature laptop.
The display on the Macoku Mini is 7-inches and of the LCD variety with a resolution of 800 x 480. It’s small but will get the job done. The processor is listed as a Mononuclear ARM Cortex-A9 aka a VIA 8880 which is clocked at 1.2GHz. Get used to that chip, you will see a lot of it in this class. Other specs you’ll need to pay attention to include 1GB of DDR3 RAM, 8GB of storage, and a front-facing camera. Connectivity options include a 3.5mm jack, Ethernet 10/100Mbps, Wi-Fi, and USB ports.
You aren’t going to find many extras on this little laptop, but it is solid if you want to browse the web or play some mobile games. We say mobile as the OS is Android 4.4, which is low but upgradable if you have a little technical knowledge. On the downside, we hope you like Pink.
RCA isn’t quite as large as they used to be when it comes to consumer products, but they stayed busy cranking out little netbooks and tablet combos. The RCA Galileo Pro is a convertible netbook, and while it is definitely small, it has a few more features than you’ll find on other machines in this range.
The Galileo Pro has an 11.5-inch display with a resolution of 1,080 x 600 which is a little under 720p. It should still be sharp however due to the size and is of the touchscreen variety. Whether you decide to use it as a tablet or a little laptop is up to you as the keyboard and its built-in trackpad will detach in an instant. The power comes from a 1.3GHz quad-core processor combined with 1GB of RAM. Things are a bit better in the storage department with 32GB of storage and thankfully, there is a USB port and microSD card slot on the side for expansion.
Another feature that should be standard but usually isn’t in this range is Bluetooth. Well, as this one is half tablet, you will get Bluetooth connectivity along with a webcam, mini HDMI out and a headphone jack. In a nutshell, this tablet combo won’t break any records when it comes to speed but it has great battery life and certainly won’t break the bank.
The RCA Maven Pro is another convertible machine and its display is a hair bigger at 11.6-inches. The resolution has been bumped up as well to 1,366 x 768 so you’ll get full HD resolution this time around. Unfortunately, the innards appear to stay the same on this model so while the display is better, it is going to be lacking in the horsepower department.
The Maven Pro has a quad-core MediaTek MT8127 clocked at 1.5GHz, so it is slightly faster than the Galileo. The RAM is still listed at 1GB and the storage at 32GB although the latter allows you to expand through the microSD slot or USB port. It does have Wi-Fi and Bluetooth as well, and Bluetooth will come in handy in one key area. We found the speaker to be rather weak on this model, so you will be able to hook up a Bluetooth unit if you want something with more depth than the included single speaker.
As mentioned, this one is convertible so you can use it as a tablet, laptop or even in “tent” mode if you so choose. It’s only available in Black but runs Android 6.0 out of the box so you will be able to handle most games and apps as long as the RAM holds up.
Our last entry from RCA is arguably their best although it’s rated lower for a few key reasons. The main feature to keep in mind with this model is the processor. You won’t get a mobile-based MediaTek chip or even a Snapdragon from Qualcomm as this little baby has an ARM Cortex-A9 which is a quad-core chip clocked at 1.5GHz.
You probably won’t notice a major difference in the processor as the RAM is still pretty weak at 1GB. The same connectivity options are included although the storage capacity has been slashed in half down to 16GB. Again, you can expand but now you see why this one took a dip compared to the other models. Other features to note for the RCA TCT6303 include a 10.1-inch touchscreen display with a resolution of 1,024 x 600, a 2MP webcam on the back, and a 0.3MP camera on the front.
This model runs Android 4.4 out of the box as well, a bit of a downer compared to Android 6.0 Marshmallow. We are unsure if you can update it through “official” means but you can always turn to XDA when in doubt if you have a little bit of technical knowledge.
If you don’t necessarily dig convertible laptops and want something “solid” you will be hard-pressed to beat the Dell Latitude 2100. This is a true laptop so the screen is attached even if it’s surrounded by some very large bezels. If you can get past that, you will find more horsepower under the hood and 2GB of SO-DIMM DDR2 RAM.
The hard drive on the Latitude 2100 is not impressive with 16GB of flash storage although you can expand it like the rest of our picks. As for that processor, it is an Intel Atom N270 which has a clock speed of 1.6GHz. You will also get more USB ports, and while they are only 2.0, there are three of them on the laptop. Throw in an output for the monitor and a couple of 3.5mm jacks and you’ve just met the Latitude 2100.
While the specifications will limit what you can run on this laptop, the software won’t hold you back. It comes with Windows 7 and is a certified Windows machine which means you will be able to update it do a degree out of the box.