Laptops come in all shapes and sizes, with high end models sitting alongside affordable alternatives which give you most of the same features at a much more agreeable price point.
Here are a few entry level laptops that will not burn a hole in your pocket but will still meet your portable computing needs.
Asus VivoBook S200
The arrival of Microsoft’s Windows 8 operating system, with its touch-optimized user interface, has made it sensible to invest in a laptop with a touchscreen display.
While this technology can be costly, the VivoBook S200 from Asus makes it available without breaking the bank when you buy laptops online.
The 11.6 inch display lets you interact with your computer using your fingers, while you also get a full physical keyboard and an optical trackpad for traditional input purposes.
This is a good buy if you were thinking about getting a touchscreen tablet but were worried that the lack of a keyboard might slow you down while you work. With a 1.5GHz processor, 4GB of RAM and 500GB of hard drive space, the VivoBook S200 is a well rounded hardware package with the latest software to boot.
Samsung XE303C12-A01 Chromebook
This Chromebook is not only very affordable, but also offers an alternative operating system experience which is not based around Windows.
Using Google’s Chrome OS, this laptop is largely powered by cloud computing, which means most of the software and services are hosted remotely and can be accessed from anywhere as long as you have a web connection. This makes it a flexible, fast and future-proof device, with an 11.6 inch high-def display ensuring that it is portable and easy on the eyes.
Toshiba Satellite C855-2LK
For those who want a bit more oomph from their laptop but still want to keep an eye on cost, this Satellite model from Toshiba is a good choice. It has a large 15.6 inch display with a high-def resolution, as well as an HDMI output which will let you hook it up to a compatible TV.
Inside it features a Core i3 processor from Intel clocked at 2.3GHz, with 8GB of RAM ensuring that you can run multiple programs smoothly. There is also a capacious 640GB hard drive inside, letting you store loads of music, videos and other files without filling it up.
Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 11
The Yoga from Lenovo offers the best of both worlds to those who want a laptop and a tablet in one device. It has a full physical keyboard and trackpad, but the screen is hinged in such a way that it can be folded right back on itself, creating the tablet form factor with which many people will be familiar.
With Windows RT onboard and 64GB of flash storage, it is a fast, fluid and fully featured device that will potentially appeal to those who are not satisfied by the capabilities of tablets powered by iOS or Android. And with a thickness of just over 1.5 centimetres, it is also a very portable machine.