Question College Student-Need help choosing Laptop!

May 17, 2020
Hi everyone,

My laptop was stolen and I need to get a new one quickly but I’m on a super tight budget. I live in Australia and I’ll be using it mainly for school so chrome, word, office, PowerPoint are all essential. An HDMI port is also a plus :) I won’t be using it for much else. (Occasional steaming and music)

The two that I have found on Letgo that seem decent for under $500 AUD are the Acer Swift 1 SF114-32 (N5000, SSD, FHD) and the HP Elite x2 1013 G3 - 13" - Core i5 8250U - 8 GB RAM - 256 GB SSD.

Now, because I know just about nothing about what any of that means. I thought I would ask you all in hopes that you can lead me in the right direction.

Which one is better? Is there a better laptop out there for a similar price that I should be considering?
Also, the Acer Swift says it runs Microsoft 10s- can I download chrome with this OS?

1. What is your budget?

2. What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?

3. What screen resolution do you want?
Decent enough for occasional streaming.

4. Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop?

5. How much battery life do you need?

6. Do you want to play games with your laptop? If so then please list the games that you want to with the settings that you want for these games. (Low,Medium or High)?

7. What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo/Video editing, Etc.)
General use for school.

8. How much storage (Hard Drive capacity) do you need?
General use.

9. If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post their links.

10. How long do you want to keep your laptop?
1-2yrs until I can save for a better one.

11. What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ?

12. Please tell us about the brands that you prefer to buy from them and the brands that you don't like and explain the reasons.

13. What country do you live in?

14. Please tell us any additional information if needed.

That’s it! Thanks for any help y’all can provide


Sep 2, 2013
Hi mate,

It's been a good few years since I've been on this board, but fortunately, in that time, and presently, I've faced a similar laptop choosing dilemma.

You say that you only plan on keeping your laptop for 1-2 years and that is fairly reasonable, especially at the price point which you're looking at. Since you state you're a student, I would highly encourage you to look at offerings from HP via UniDays as students are eligible for up to 40% off, you most likely will be able to get a quite capable machine for sub-$500AUD.

Out of the two options above, I would lean towards the HP. Since the Acer model you have specified runs 10S, you will be unable to install software such as Google Chrome.


Jun 3, 2020
I personally buy a preowned SAMSUNG Galaxy Tab Pro S LTE having 4GB/128 GB a year ago. Price in the range up to $500.

Things to look in second-hand laptops

  1. Check the device screen
  2. Keyboards and trackpad
  3. Reasonable Price (S$499.00)
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Aug 16, 2016
There are plenty of affordable laptops at this price. Personally I suggest you do not get a chromebook. I suggest the HP 14 inch
  • CPU: AMD A9-9425 Processor
  • Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics
  • RAM: 4GB
  • Screen: 14 inch (1366 x 768)
  • Storage: 128GB SSD
If you can go to 15 inch, then the Acer Aspire 5 is a great one, better processor:

  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 3 3200U Dual Core
  • Graphics: AMD Radeon Vega 3 Mobile Graphics
  • RAM: 4GB DDR4
  • Screen: 15.6 inch Full HD IPS
  • Storage: 128GB SSD
May 27, 2020
AspenOli, I would try Acer Chromebook 14 on your place... I think that Acer produces the most reliable and productive laptops than any other manufacturer. Well, honestly I also love ASUS for their gaming-series laptops, bu Acer is more about universal ones and that's why I prefer them. I've recently purchased Acer Chromebook for my brother ( found here: ), and he is completely satisfied by every single detail of it. He says it works so quite, that you cannot even say when it's working if you will not look at it.
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