Question Laptop on budget of 400-600USD


Sep 1, 2016
I know nothing about laptops.

Will be used by my Mother who'll watch YouTube and FaceBook videos, have 10+ tabs open on Chrome at any given time and occasionally use it to upload a video. It must be a Windows machine and have Win10 Home/Pro etc..

Must haves:

A quality modern CPU that can handle occasional very light video editing.
8GB of RAM
Trackpad (I assume this is standard.)
At least 1080p res (I assume this is standard.)


1TB+ Storage and it would be nice to have a 128GB SSD for Windows.
17" Screen
Good cooling
Big trackpad
Strong backlight/brightness for occasional use on a porch with a roof.
Rugged build quality

Seaweed Monster

Jun 7, 2014

It is a tight budget to meet with those requirements without a few sacrifices, but believe I have found a solid laptop.
HP 15-dy1036nr laptop + Microsoft 365 12 month - $570 (LINK - AMAZON)
  • Intel Core i5-1035G1 - Quad-core, clock speed 1.0Ghz - 3.6Ghz
  • 8GB DDR4 RAM (1x8GB, 2666mhz)
  • 256GB NVMe SSD
  • 15.6inch 1080p display (220nits brightness)
  • Windows 10 Home
Personally, HP laptops are solid in terms of build quality, value for money and their keyboards and trackpads tend to be good too. I use a 2019 HP Elitebook for work so really tend to lean on the side of HP when looking for laptops.

The modern 10th gen i5-1035G1 processor with 8GB's of DDR4 RAM will comfortably handle multitasking and web browsing no problem. In terms of video editing, I have an 8th gen i7-8550u + 8GB RAM in my Elitebook and I use Adobe premiere rush occasionally and it really does handle light video editing quite well. The i5 in this laptop is slightly faster than my i7, so yes, you could do some video editing, but keep it light - and if you or your mother does edit videos, remember to plug-in the charger for maximum performance.

It is hard to find any more storage at this price point without delving into older hardware, so, unfortunately, 256GB's is the most I could find but is definitely usable. As the storage is an M.2 NVMe drive, it is certainly upgradeable via the bottom of the laptop (only a couple of screws) but will likely void your warranty (maybe wait until it expires). Nevertheless, this laptop does have x2 M.2 slots, so expanding storage if needed shouldn't be a problem.

Finally, the screen is, unfortunately, 15.6inch but is in fact a Full HD 1080p display. The slight downside is the screen brightness. Only 220nits of brightness from the display, which means inside, the screen brightness will not be an issue, but outside in direct sunlight could be an issue. I guess in a covered porch it will probably fair a bit better, but overall not brilliant for outside use. However, at this price point, it is common to see these kinds of displays being used.

There are a few videos on YouTube that review this exact laptop, so definitely worth checking out:
Hope that helps (y)