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The VR gaming experience is a lot more affordable for consumers now than it was in the past. 

With the VR industry making so many innovative strides, it’s great to see that affordable options for VR have become more commonplace. 

That’s why in this post, we will discuss some of the cheapest VR-ready laptops that are available for you to buy on the market.

Winner

ASUS VivoBook 15

The Asus VivoBook may seem small but it packs a big punch with its 10th-gen Intel i3 processor. It comes in a sleek metallic finish that looks great as well. 

Runner Up

HP 14-FQ1025NR

If you want a reliable processor inside your gaming laptop, then this HP laptop is definitely worth considering. It boasts an AMD Ryzen 5500U processor that is powerful enough to run many current VR titles.

Also Great

Lenovo IdeaPad 3i

The Lenovo IdeaPad 3i comes in many variations of RAM and storage so you can pick and choose according to your budget. Not only that but it also has an anti-glare display so you have no trouble using it outside.

Now that you’re briefed with our top 3 picks, let’s see what they have to offer so that you can find the most suitable option for your needs. 

VR Ready Laptop Under $500 - Top 5 Reviews

#1: Best All-Around VR-Ready Laptop Under $500 - ASUS VivoBook 15 Review

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The Asus VivoBook is not only compact and portable but it also looks great with its sleek, metallic finish. 

It boasts 8 GB of RAM and a 128 GB SSD for efficiency, speed, and high performance. 

The only thing we don’t like about this laptop is the fact that it has only an SSD and no HDD to back it up. 

This means you won’t have a lot of space to store your VR titles. The best way to go with this laptop is to install one title, play it until you’re bored, and then uninstall it to make space for the next one. 

Factors to Consider Before You Decide to Buy ASUS VivoBook 15

Processor: The Asus VivoBook features a powerful Intel i3 processor that is budget-friendly but also good enough to play the majority of VR titles currently available. 

Storage: Storage is where this laptop does not shine. It has a 128 GB SSD which is fast but obviously, it won’t be able to hold too many VR titles. 

Memory: The laptop features 8 GB of RAM which is sufficient enough to play most VR titles out there. You can also choose to upgrade the RAM to something higher in the future when you can afford it.

Best All-Around VR-Ready Laptop Under $500

The best all-around VR-ready laptop under $500 is the ASUS VivoBook 15 thanks to its resourceful processor and high-performance RAM.

#2: Best AMD Ryzen VR-Ready Laptop Under $500 - HP 14-FQ1025NR Review

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If you want a laptop with an AMD Ryzen processor rather than an Intel processor, then this laptop from HP is your best bet. 

It supports VR gaming thanks to its AMD Ryzen processor and it also boasts 256 GB of storage with its SSD. You also get 8 GB of RAM which is more than enough to play most standard VR titles of the current era. 

Factors to Consider Before You Decide to Buy HP 14-FQ1025NR

Processor: It has an AMD Ryzen 5 5500U processor which is definitely powerful enough to support most VR titles in the market today. 

Storage: Instead of 128 GB, you get 256 GB of SSD storage with this laptop which is significantly higher than our top pick. This gives it an edge as you can store some VR titles and still have some space left over to use.

Memory: As mentioned earlier, you get 8 GB of RAM which is sufficient enough for you to be able to run most current-gen VR titles. If you feel the need for it, you can also upgrade it in the future.

Best AMD Ryzen VR-Ready Laptop Under $500

The best AMD Ryzen VR-ready laptop under $500 is the HP 14-FQ1025NR thanks to its fast processor, sleek design and impressive battery life.

#3: Best VR-Ready Laptop Under $500 with SSD - Lenovo IdeaPad 3i Review

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The Lenovo IdeaPad 3i is one of the newest laptops from Lenovo, a company that is known for budget-friendly laptops that pack a big punch when it comes to performance. 

It boasts an Intel i3 processor with built-in graphics. This is great for a VR gaming laptop as you want all the processing power you can get to keep up with the refresh rates in virtual reality titles. 

Not only that but it also comes with security features such as a fingerprint reader and a camera privacy shutter.

Factors to Consider Before You Decide to Buy Lenovo IdeaPad 3i

Processor: As mentioned earlier, the Lenovo IdeaPad 3i features an Intel i3 processor which is capable of handling most VR titles out there currently. 

Storage: It has a 256 GB SSD which means you have room to store some VR titles while also having room for other files you may want inside your laptop. 

Memory: The laptop has 8 GB of RAM similar to most other competitors on our list. As mentioned for them, 8 GB of RAM is enough to play most VR titles. If you want more down the line, you can upgrade it when you can afford it.

Best VR-Ready Laptop Under $500 with SSD

The best VR-ready laptop under $500 with a decent SSD is the Lenovo IdeaPad 3i thanks to its 256 GB of SSD storage, sleek design and great color options.

#4: Best Compact VR-Ready Laptop Under $500 - HP 2019 14" Laptop Review

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If you want something highly portable so that you can carry it around and have access to VR anywhere you go, this laptop is definitely worth considering. 

It’s a small little 14-inch laptop but doesn’t be fooled by its small size. It has an Intel Core i3 processor along with 8 GB of RAM. 

The laptop features a sleek, ash silver finish which makes it extremely aesthetically pleasing. 

Factors to Consider Before You Decide to Buy HP 2019 14″ Laptop

Processor: As mentioned above, this HP laptop boasts an Intel Core i3 processor with integrated Intel graphics. That means it’s more than capable of supporting most major VR titles that are out right now. 

Storage: The storage is where this laptop suffers the most as it only has a 128 GB SSD. This is fast but it’s not capable of holding a ton of data. Hence, you may find yourself installing and uninstalling VR titles to get the most out of them. 

Memory: As mentioned above, the laptop features 8 GB of RAM which makes it capable to run most AAA VR titles in the market currently.

Best Compact VR-Ready Laptop Under $500

The best compact VR-ready laptop under $500 is the HP 2019 14″ Laptop thanks to its small 14-inch screen and sleek design. You don’t need to worry about the screen being small as you’ll experience VR through your VR headset, not the laptop screen itself.



#5: Best Affordable VR-Ready Laptop Under $500 - Acer Aspire 5 A515-46-R3UB Review

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This laptop from Asus is the cheapest laptop on our list that already consists of some of the cheapest VR-ready gaming laptops available in the market.

It has an AMD Ryzen 3 processor along with 4 GB of RAM and a 128 GB NVME SSD. 

If you want security for your laptop, then this laptop is definitely worth considering as it features a biometric reader to ensure only you can unlock it. 

Factors to Consider Before You Decide to Buy Acer Aspire 5 A515-46-R3UB

Processor: The laptop has an AMD Ryzen 3 processor. It’s not the fastest processor in the market but it can get the job done when it comes to most major VR titles in the market. 

Storage: The storage on the laptop is fast but it definitely is quite small as you get only 128 GB of storage. 

Memory: Memory is another area where this laptop suffers. It was extremely cheap but that’s because it only has 4 GB of RAM. You can, however, upgrade it in the future once you can afford it. 

Best Affordable VR-Ready Laptop Under $500

The best affordable VR-ready laptop under $500 is the Acer Aspire 5 A515-46-R3UB thanks to its extremely cheap price and high-quality components.

VR-Ready Laptops - Buyers’ Guide

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It can be extremely confusing to choose a laptop for yourself that can support a frustration-free VR experience. 

There are a ton of factors to take into account and if you don’t know a lot about computers, it can get really overwhelming really fast. 

A good idea is to make a list of all the factors you must consider before you decide to buy a certain laptop. 

The important factors you should take into consideration are: 

Price

If you want a VR-ready laptop under $500, obviously, you’re looking for a budget gaming laptop. That being said, you have to be very careful with how low you go. 

This is because as the prices go low, the specifications of the laptops go down as well. You don’t want to go so low that the laptop you get is not powerful enough to run VR games and apps. 

At the same time, you also have to ensure that the laptop that you get is constructed from reliable, high-quality components. 

The rule of thumb is that if a laptop has components that are too good for the price, it’s most likely not worth it. 

This is because while it may seem like a good deal with high specifications and a low price, you have to assume that there’s some catch. Typically, the catch with these types of gaming laptops is the fact that the components are low-quality and not up to industry standards. 

In this case, what will most likely happen is that you’ll enjoy a great VR experience for a few weeks and then the laptop will start falling back in terms of performance. 

After a few months, it may even break down entirely. 

Hence, when you opt for a budget-friendly gaming laptop, make sure that you buy it from a reputable and established brand. Avoid knockoffs and brands that you have never heard of at all costs. 

They might have low prices with high specifications but they will not last you a very long time.

Build Quality 

This is extremely important because a gaming laptop that is also VR-ready is a fairly large investment. You don’t want the laptop breaking down on you in a short amount of time. 

Hence, it’s a good idea to inspect that VR-ready laptop you intend to buy in person before you actually buy it. If you intend to buy it online and can’t inspect it in person, then it’s a good idea to look through customer reviews for the laptop. 

Some users provide user review updates a year or two after they bought the laptop to let people know what their experience with it has been like. 

If you find many reviews saying that the laptop has lost performance over time or has physically broken down, etc., then that’s a red flag. Avoid gaming laptops like that at all costs. 

Battery Life 

The one thing that laptops have over desktops is the fact that they’re extremely portable. 

If you’re a person that travels a lot or has to be away from a power outlet for extended periods of time, then the battery life of your gaming laptop is extremely important. 

Make sure to consider what apps and games you will be running as well as what tasks you will perform when you’re away from a power outlet. Remember that different applications and tasks take up different amounts of battery from the laptop. 

Hence, you have to make an informed decision based on the tasks that you will perform. 

You must also consider how long you’re typically away from a power laptop since, obviously, different laptops have different battery lives. Some can last for 9 to 12 hours whereas others can only last for about 3 to 6 hours. 

Your decision depends on what your daily routine looks like. 

Display Size

Since you want a VR-ready laptop, the display size won’t matter too much since the screen you will use will be inside your VR headset. 

However, if you want to use your laptop for other things as well such as watching movies, playing regular games, etc., then you may want a bigger screen size. 

On the other hand, if you want your laptop to be more compact and portable, then you may want a smaller screen size. 

It’s up to you to decide whether you want a larger screen for luxury or a smaller screen for portability. It won’t affect your virtual reality experience since, of course, the screen you will use will be inside your VR headset. 

Manufacturers measure the display size of laptops as a diagonal measurement of the screen. 

Typically, the laptops that are available in the market have display sizes that range from 12 inches to 17 inches. 

Processor 

Your laptop’s processor is also known as the “brain”. How powerful the processor inside your laptop is will determine how quickly and efficiently it will be able to perform certain tasks. 

If you plan to multi-task and use several resource-intensive programs at the same time, it’s a good idea to invest in a laptop with a powerful processor. 

It also depends on the types of VR titles that you intend to run on your VR-ready laptop. Obviously, some titles will require a more powerful processor than others. 

Storage

Storage is important if you intend to install and store a ton of different VR titles on your VR-ready laptop. 

If you’re the type of gamer that installs a game, ends it, and then uninstalls it, then you won’t have too much trouble with storage. 

However, if you want to have tons of different VR titles installed and ready to go on your laptop at all times, then you may want to go for something with more storage. 

Storage within laptops comes in two variants: You can have a hard disk drive (HDD) or a solid-state drive (SSD). 

The former is less expensive because of the fact that they have moving parts and are generally slower. The latter is more expensive since they have no moving parts and are much faster. 

Your best bet would be to go for a VR-ready laptop that has a small amount of SSD storage and a large amount of HDD storage. Then, you can use the SSD to house your operating system and the HDD to house everything else on your VR-ready laptop. 

Memory 

Your laptop’s memory, also known as random access memory (RAM), is another component that affects its speed and performance. 

It handles all of the programs that are currently running at any given time on your laptop. Obviously, the more memory you have, the more efficiently all of those programs will run. 

When you go for a budget-friendly gaming laptop, it most likely will not have a lot of memory. This is an issue since you do need a decent amount of RAM to properly run VR titles. 

We recommend that you opt for a VR-ready laptop that has at least 8 GB of RAM. 

If you cannot afford to spend that much money on RAM, then the best way to go is to get a cheaper laptop that has a lower amount of RAM.

Then, once you have a little more money to spend in the future, you can upgrade your laptop’s RAM to something higher. 

That’s the great thing about RAM inside laptops: It can be upgraded, unlike most of the other components inside it. 

VR-Ready Gaming Laptops - Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the Advantage of a VR-Ready Laptop over a VR-Ready Desktop? 

The most obvious advantage that VR-ready laptops have over VR-ready desktops is the fact that they’re compact and portable. 

If you’re somebody that moves around a lot, a desktop might not be a viable choice since you can’t carry them around with you. 

On the other hand, you can have your VR headset and your laptop inside a backpack and take them with you anywhere you want. 

How Often Should I Take Breaks Between VR Sessions? 

It’s very important that you take care of your eyes and ensure you don’t develop motion sickness issues while playing VR. To ensure this, it’s important to take regular breaks when you immerse yourself in the virtual world. 

We recommend that you take a 15-minute break after every 30 minutes that you’re in virtual reality. 

What Are Some Great Virtual Reality Headsets to Buy with My VR-Ready Laptop? 

Some great VR headsets that you can opt for that will go well with VR-ready laptops include: 

Which Operating System is Best for Virtual Reality? 

You can get away with playing VR titles on most operating systems that are widely available. 

Although, it is true that some VR titles don’t have support for certain operating systems such as Linux and Mac OS. 

Your best bet would be to install Windows 10 or Windows 11 on your laptop as those are definitely the operating systems of choice for most VR developers.

Do I Need a Graphics Card in My VR-Ready Laptop to Play VR Titles?

You don’t need a graphics card inside your VR-ready laptop to play VR titles. However, it certainly can help you out a lot if your laptop does have it. 

If you can’t afford to buy a laptop with a graphics card, it’s a good idea to go for one that has a processor with built-in graphics. Many of the laptop processors by AMD and Intel have built-in graphics.

Final Verdict

That’s it for our top picks for the best VR-ready laptops under $500. 

When it comes to budget-friendly laptops, you definitely have to make some compromises in terms of storage space and the amount of RAM that you have. 

Luckily, these problems have solutions as you can upgrade your laptop’s RAM in the future once you have the money. As for storage issues, you can get an external hard drive in the future to fix those issues as well once you have the budget for it. 

As for our top pick, we feel that the ASUS VivoBook 15 definitely gives you the best value for your money when it comes to the price. It’s extremely cheap but the components inside it are something that you’d find in a laptop that’s much more expensive. 

Do you have other suggestions for the cheapest VR-ready laptops? Do you agree with our pick? Let us know in the comments section below.