Archives 2023

Best Dell Black Friday deals: Save on laptops, monitors, desktop PCs

There’s no need to wait for Black Friday deals because retailers like Dell have already rolled out some of their offers for the shopping holiday. Whether you’re planning to buy a new laptop, monitor, or desktop computer, Dell surely has something that will fit your budget. We’ve rounded up the best Dell Black Friday deals that you can shop right now to help you decide quickly on your purchases, since you need to hurry to make sure that you’re able to take advantage of the bargains. Any of these prices may return to normal at any moment, so act fast.

Top 3 Dell Black Friday deals

Dell S2721QS 4K monitor — $240, was $330


If you’re looking for monitor deals to upgrade an outdated display, you should consider the Dell S2721QS 4K monitor. You’ll be getting sharp details and vivid colors on its 27-inch screen with 4K Ultra HD resolution, and you’ll also experience less stuttering and screen tearing with AMD’s FreeSync technology. Your neck and eyes will stay comfortable with the help of the monitor’s height-adjustable stand and Dell’s ComfortView Plus that reduces harmful blue light emissions.

Dell Inspiron 15 laptop — $280, was $330

Dell Inspiron 15 3000 Laptop on a white background displaying a colourful scene.

The Dell Inspiron 15 is an affordable laptop that provides decent performance for handling day-to-day tasks. It’s equipped with the 12th-generation Intel Core i3 processor, integrated Intel UHD Graphics, and 8GB of RAM, and it also features a 15.6-inch Full HD screen. The laptop ships with Windows 11 Home pre-loaded in a 256GB SSD, which will provide ample storage space for your files.

Dell XPS 13 — $599, was $799

The Dell XPS 13, open on a table in front of a window.
Digital Trends

For those thinking about taking advantage of laptop deals, you can’t go wrong with the Dell XPS 13, which is a mainstay in our list of the best laptops as an affordable and well-built mainstream option. It will provide you with enough power for your daily workloads with its 12th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, integrated Intel Iris Xe Graphics, and 8GB of RAM. It runs on Windows 11 Home, which is pre-installed in its 256GB SSD, and its 13.4-inch screen with Full HD+ resolution is simply gorgeous because of its bezel-less design.

Best Dell XPS Black Friday deals

Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 laptop — $1,199, was $1,449

Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 front angled view showing display and folio keyboard.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends / Digital Trends

Shoppers who want performance and versatility in one package should be going for 2-in-1 laptop deals like this offer for the Dell XPS 13 2-in-1 laptop. It starts as a powerful tablet with a 13-inch 3K touchscreen and the 12th-generation Intel Core i7 processor combined with Intel Iris Xe Graphics and 16GB of RAM, then it transforms into a laptop with the XPS Folio that functions as both a detachable keyboard and protection for the display. The 2-in-1 laptop offers a 512GB SSD for storage with Windows 11 Home out of the box.

Dell XPS 15 laptop — $1,549, was $1,999

Dell XPS 15 9530 front view showing display and keyboard deck.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends / Digital Trends

The Dell XPS 15, which features a 15.6-inch Full HD+ screen, holds the top spot in our roundup of the best 15-inch laptops partly because of its streamlined and solid build, above-average battery life, and strong productivity and creative performance. Inside are the 13th-generation Intel Core i7 processor, Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050 graphics card, and 16GB of RAM, and you’ll also get expansive storage space with its 1TB SSD that comes with Windows 11 Home pre-loaded.

Dell XPS 17 laptop — $1,799, was $2,399

Dell XPS 17 9720 front angled view showing display and keyboard deck.
Mark Coppock / Digital Trends

Likewise, the Dell XPS 17, which is equipped with a 17-inch Full HD+ display, is our top option among the best 17-inch laptops. It offers solid productivity and gaming performance with its 13th-generation Intel Core i7 processor, Nvidia GeForce RTX 4060 graphics card, and 16GB of RAM, so you can maximize the large screen. There’s ample storage space with its 512GB SSD, and it ships with Windows 11 Home.

Best Dell laptop Black Friday deals

Dell Inspiron 15 laptop — $280, was $330

Dell Inspiron 15 3000 Laptop on sale at Dell

Get a good balance between reliability and price with the Dell Inspiron 15, which is more than enough for tackling basic functions like doing online research and building reports with its 12th-generation Intel Core i3 processor, Intel UHD Graphics, and 8GB of RAM. The 15.6-inch display is bright and colorful with its Full HD resolution, and the laptop is powered by Windows 11 Home that’s pre-installed in its 256GB SSD.

Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 laptop — $500, was $650

Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 2023 top down view in tent mode.
Mark Coppock / Digital Trends

The Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 laptop is an affordable option if you want a laptop and tablet in one device. The 360-degree hinges attaching the body to its 14-inch Full HD+ touchscreen allows it to easily switch modes, and you’ll be getting fast performance with its 13th-generation Intel Core i3 processor, Intel UHD Graphics, and 8GB of RAM. You’ll also have ample storage space on its 256GB that ships with Windows 11 Home.

Dell Inspiron 16 2-in-1 laptop — $800, was $1,000

The Dell Inspiron 16 2-in-1 in presentation mode.

The Dell Inspiron 16 2-in-1 laptop also offers the option to switch between laptop mode and tablet mode, with a 16-inch Full HD+ touchscreen at the center of it all, but it will also provide faster performance and more storage space. The 2-in-1 laptop comes with the AMD Ryzen 7 7730U processor, AMD Radeon Graphics, 16GB of RAM, and a 1TB SSD.

Best Dell monitor Black Friday deals

Dell SE2222H monitor — $80, was $90

Dell 22 Monitor - SE2222H on sale at Dell

The Dell SE2222H monitor is a very cheap option if you need a new display for your computer setup, but it won’t disappoint because its 22-inch display features Full HD resolution for sharp details and Dell’s ComfortView technology that reduces eye fatigue by minimizing blue light emissions. The monitor also won’t take up too much space on your desk with its small stand and built-in cable holder.

Dell E2723HN monitor — $125, was $220

The Dell E2723HN monitor on a white background.

The Dell E2723HN monitor is equipped with a 27-inch Full HD screen, which is within our computer monitor buying guide‘s recommended range of 24 inches to 32 inches. The monitor also comes with Dell’s ComfortView for optimized eye comfort, support for new and old systems with HDMI and VGA ports, and a compact stand with a cable management system to reduce the clutter on your desk.

Dell S3222DGM curved gaming monitor — $240, was $350

Dell 32-inch curved gaming monitor with a stand.

The Dell S3222DGM curved gaming monitor makes a run at the best gaming monitors with its 31.5-inch display featuring QHD resolution and a 1800R curvature, for lifelike details and immersive gameplay. It offers a 165Hz refresh rate, which will let you clearly see fast-moving objects, and AMD’s FreeSync Premium to eliminate stuttering and screen tearing. The monitor also features a downlight to illuminate your keyboard, and vents at the back for improved heat dispersal.

Best Dell desktop PC Black Friday deals

Dell Inspiron Small Desktop — $450, was $650

The Dell Inspiron Small Desktop on a white background.

The Dell Inspiron Small Desktop, true to its name, is a desktop computer that won’t take up too much space because it’s only about 11.4 inches tall, 3.7 inches wide, and 11.5 inches deep. It packs a punch despite its relatively tiny stature though, as it’s equipped with the 13th-generation Intel i5 processor, Intel UHD Graphics 730, and 8GB of RAM. The desktop PC runs on Windows 11 Home, with the operating system pre-loaded in its 512GB SSD.

Dell Inspiron 24 All-in-One — $500, was $650

The Dell Inspiron 24 All-in-One on a desk next to a keyboard.

If you don’t want to deal with unsightly cables, you should check out the Dell Inspiron 24 All-in-One. The CPU and display are combined in one package, so if you go with a wireless keyboard and mouse, the only cable you need will be its power cord. The all-in-one PC features a 23.8-inch screen with Full HD resolution, and it’s powered by the 13th-generation Intel Core i3 processor, Intel UHD Graphics, 8GB of RAM, and Windows 11 Home that ships with its 256GB SSD.

Dell Inspiron 27 All-in-One — $850, was $1,150

The Dell Inspiron 27 All-in-One desktop computer.

The Dell Inspiron 27 All-in-One is included in our list of the best all-in-one computers as our recommended choice for families because it’s a solid budget option with a family-ready design. You won’t have issues with performance because it’s equipped with the 13th-generation Intel Core i7 processor, Intel Iris Xe Graphics, and 16GB of RAM, and it runs on Windows 11 Home that’s pre-loaded in its 1TB SSD. The device also features a bright and colorful 27-inch display with Full HD resolution.

Best Dell gaming laptop Black Friday deals

Dell G16 gaming laptop — $800, was $1,250

The Dell G16 gaming laptop with Genshin Impact on the screen.

The Dell G16 is one of the more affordable gaming laptop deals that will let you play the best PC games, though you may have to choose low to medium graphic settings for some of the more demanding titles because it runs on the 12th-generation Intel Core i7 processor, the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 Ti graphics card, and 16GB of RAM. The gaming laptop also features a 16-inch display with QHD+ resolution and a 165Hz refresh rate, and a 512GB SSD with Windows 11 Home.

Alienware m16 gaming laptop — $1,300, was $1,800

The Alienware m16 gaming laptop with Baldur's Gate 3 on the screen.

The Alienware m16 gaming laptop is one of the more powerful machines that gamers can buy right now. Equipped with the AMD Ryzen 9 7845HX processor, the AMD Radeon RX 7600M XT graphics card, and 16GB of RAM, it won’t have trouble running today’s most popular video games. You’ll have plenty of space for AAA titles and their necessary updates on the gaming laptop’s 1TB SSD that ships with Windows 11 Home, and you’ll enjoy gameplay on its 16-inch screen with QHD+ resolution and a 240Hz refresh rate.

Alienware x14 R2 gaming laptop — $1,700, was $2,000

The Alienware x14 R2 gaming laptop on a desk.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Challenging the best gaming laptops is the Alienware x14 R2 gaming laptop, which is ready for the upcoming PC games of the next few years with its 13th-generation Intel Core i7 processor, Nvidia GeForce RTX 4060 graphics card, and 32GB of RAM. The machine features a 1TB SSD with Windows 11 Home, and a 14-inch screen with QHD+ resolution and a 165Hz refresh rate.

Should you buy from Dell on Black Friday or Cyber Monday?

Most shoppers will be tempted to pass on Dell Black Friday deals in favor of potentially larger savings on Cyber Monday. However, that also carries the risk of seeing smaller discounts on the devices that you want to buy — if stocks are still available by then. If the laptop, monitor, or desktop PC that you want from Dell is already being offered at a lowered price for Black Friday, and you can afford it, it’s highly recommended that you proceed with the purchase immediately because there’s no assurance that there will be a better deal when Cyber Monday comes along.

Editors’ Recommendations

Nvidia’s new GPUs could be right around the corner

Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Is Nvidia really about to add to its lineup of top GPUs? All signs point to yes, and now, we have an official Nvidia keynote on the horizon that tells us when we might hear more about the rumored RTX 40 Super. Nvidia revealed that it’s going to deliver a special address on January 8 as part of CES 2024. Although the company hasn’t confirmed what it’s planning to cover, the rumor mill has been buzzing with information about three new desktop GPUs. But will they really be worth the upgrade?

Several reputable leakers have weighed in on the matter of the RTX 40-series refresh, and we’ve been getting updates about the range for a few weeks now. Nvidia doesn’t need to specifically state that it’ll talk about these graphics cards, as that is going to be the expectation anyway. The three GPUs in question are the RTX 4080 Super, RTX 4070 Ti Super, and the RTX 4070 Super.

During its previous keynote at CES 2023, Nvidia talked about the RTX 40 laptop range but also unveiled the RTX 4070 Ti — formerly known as the RTX 4080 12GB. This year, as shared by VideoCardz, it’s likely that we’ll hear about all three new desktop GPUs, but some updates regarding AI are also possible. Although Nvidia might announce all three graphics cards at once, we don’t know whether all three will hit the market simultaneously. Leaks point to the first quarter of the year for all three, though.

Initially, it seemed like Nvidia might deliver a sizeable upgrade with the RTX 40-series refresh. Sources claimed that Nvidia might shake things up, upgrading the RTX 4080 Super to the AD102 GPU (which is the flagship chip found in the RTX 4090). The RTX 4070 Super was said to be getting upgraded to the AD103 chip, which is currently utilized by the RTX 4080. These changes would unlock far more cores, an increase in VRAM, and a larger memory bus for both cards.

MSI RTX 4080 Suprim X installed in a PC.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

However, it’s best not to put much stock in these assumptions. Other leaks suggest that the RTX 40 refresh will be a minor upgrade, with all cards sticking to their respective chips and maxing out the remaining core counts. Some rumors pin the RTX 4080 Super as featuring 10,240 CUDA cores and 16GB of GDDR6X memory across a 256-bit bus. The RTX 4070 Ti Super is said to sport 8,448 CUDA cores and 16GB VRAM, while the RTX 4070 Super might have 7,168 cores and 12GB VRAM.

Those specs mark an increase over the non-Super cards, but not a massive one. The RTX 4070 Ti Super (as a side note, that name’s always going to be a mouthful) would see the greatest boost thanks to the jump from 12GB to 16GB VRAM, while the core count boosts are mostly minor.

Regardless of the specs, the RTX 40 Super lineup might serve one important purpose — it should help the prices of some GPUs go down. Nvidia’s pricing has been on a worrying upward trend, which doesn’t bode well for the next generation of GPUs. If we can see the existing RTX 4070, RTX 4070 Ti, and the RTX 4080 drop in price thanks to the refresh, that alone will be a good thing.

We’ll be covering CES 2024 live as it happens, so stay tuned to make sure you don’t miss Nvidia’s announcement.

Editors’ Recommendations

How to add and use desktop widgets in macOS Sonoma

Apple’s macOS Sonoma has brought a bunch of interesting new features for Mac users, and desktop widgets are among the most useful. As the name implies, you can now drag and drop widgets right onto your desktop, giving you quick access to to-do lists, local weather forecasts, smart home controls, and much more. Here, we’ll show you how to use them.

The best part of macOS Sonoma widgets is their interactivity. Now, there’s no need to open a widget in order to use its associated app. Instead, you can just tick off your reminders or play music right from your desktop, just by interacting with your widgets. It’s a great time-saver and works with a range of widgets, including those made by Apple and by third-party developers.

Widgets are now housed in the new widget gallery, which you can access by right-clicking your desktop and choosing Edit Widgets. You also don’t need to have the widget installed on your Mac for it to run, as it will be available if it’s on your iPhone (provided it’s running iOS 17 or later). Just make sure that both devices are using the same Apple ID and Wi-Fi network, and that the iPhone is near your Mac.

In this guide, we’ll show you how to place widgets on your desktop, how to interact with them, and how to change their settings in just a few clicks. Once you’ve mastered this feature, you’ll have a great new way to use macOS Sonoma to get things done.

Add widgets to the desktop

Step 1: To add a widget to your desktop, you first need to open the widget gallery by right-clicking your desktop and selecting Edit Widgets. Or open the Notification Center and choose Edit Widgets at the bottom of the window.

Digital Trends

Step 2: This hides your open windows and brings up the widget gallery, which houses all your available widgets.

Step 3: To add a widget, pick an app name in the left-hand sidebar and drag a widget onto your desktop.

Step 4: You can place your first widget wherever you like. For subsequent widgets, you’ll see an alignment box appear as you move the second widget close to the first one. This helps you snap your widgets neatly together.

Dragging a widget onto the desktop in macOS Sonoma. An alignment grid is visible.

Digital Trends

Step 5: If there are any files or folders on a spot that you want to drag a widget onto, they will wrap around your widget as you place it on your desktop.

Step 6: In addition to the desktop, you can also move widgets from the widget gallery into the Notification Center.

Step 7: Once you’ve finished dragging widgets onto your desktop, choose the Done button in the widget gallery, or simply click your desktop or Dock.

Interact with your widgets

Step 1: Some widgets can be interacted with on your desktop without having to open the app they belong to.

Step 2: For example, place a widget from the Podcasts app onto your desktop. You’ll note that you can play and pause podcasts right from the widget, without having to open the Podcasts app to access these controls. Or try adding a Reminders widget — and it’ll let you tick off your tasks from your desktop.

An interactive widget on the desktop in macOS Sonoma.

Digital Trends

Step 3: If you hit an area of the widget that is not interactive — such as its background, for example — the app itself will launch.

Step 4: If you select a noninteractive area of a widget whose app is installed on your iPhone but not on your Mac, you will see the message “Open [app name] on your iPhone to continue.”

Edit widget settings

Step 1: Once a widget is in place on your desktop, there are various ways you can tweak it to your needs.

Step 2: To resize a widget, right click it and choose a size from the context menu that appears.

The right-click menu on a desktop widget in macOS Sonoma, letting a user edit the widget's settings.

Digital Trends

Step 3: Similarly, to remove a widget, you just need to right-click it and select Remove Widget in the menu. Alternatively, you can open the widget gallery and click the – button in the widget’s top-left corner.

Step 4: Some widgets have settings that can be edited (although you can’t do this for every widget). For widgets that can be tweaked, right-click the widget, then select “Edit [app name].” This will bring up a settings window. For example, in the Weather app’s widget, you can change the location used for weather results.

Step 5: If you open the System Settings app and pick Desktop & Dock in the sidebar, you’ll see some more options under the Widgets heading. For example, you can change whether widgets fade out when you are using another app. Or you cab set widgets to disappear until you hide other windows and show your desktop. You can also disable iPhone widgets when you’re using your Mac.

The System Settings app in macOS Sonoma, with widget settings visible.

Digital Trends

Interactive widgets are a handy addition to macOS Sonoma and should save you plenty of time and clicks in the long run. Place a couple of your favorite widgets on your desktop and you’ll find it much easier to get things done than it has been in the past.

Editors’ Recommendations

Best Black Friday laptop deals: Get a new workhorse from just $129

Black Friday deals have brought with them some awesome laptop deals so you can save big on everything from a budget-priced Chromebook to a high-end gaming laptop. If you’ve been waiting to upgrade your current rig, this is your chance. There are so many options out there that we’ve picked out some of our favorites so you can easily find the right laptop for your needs and your budget. Here’s a look at all the highlights.

Top 3 Black Friday laptop deals

HP 17-inch laptop — $250, was $500


Currently heavily discounted, the HP 17-inch laptop is ideal for anyone on a slim budget. It looks more expensive than it is thanks to having a 17-inch HD+ screen with 1600 x 900 and 250 nits of brightness. That extra room also means the keyboard is roomier with a numeric pad to the right of it that’s ideal for entering a lot of data. The laptop has an AMD Athlon Gold 7220U processor along with 8GB of memory and 128GB of SSD storage. It also has a lift-hinge to ensure you can type at a more natural position.

HP Victus 15.6-inch gaming laptop — $450, was $800

The HP Victus 15 gaming laptop against a white backdrop.

Perfect for starting out with PC gaming, the HP Victus 15.6-inch gaming laptop has an AMD Ryzen 5 7535HS processor, 8GB of memory and 512GB of SSD storage. For the graphics card, there’s an Nvidia GeForce RTX 2050 teamed up with a 144Hz full HD screen. You’ll need to adjust detail levels in many cases but it’s still a good starting point for gaming, especially if you play less demanding titles like Fortnite.

Dell XPS 13 — $599, was $799

The Dell XPS 13 9315 on a table against a window.
Digital Trends

The Dell XPS 13 is consistently one of the best laptops around with this model offering a 12th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of memory and 256GB of SSD storage. It also has a great looking 13.4-inch full HD+ screen with 1920 x 1200 resolution, 500 nits of brightness, and anti-glare properties. Dell’s thinnest and lightest 13-inch XPS, it offers a battery life of up to 12 hours while still being very sleek. It’s ideal for general use.

Best Black Friday Chromebook deals

Samsung Chromebook 4 — $129, was $159

The Samsung Chromebook 4 against a white background.

The Samsung Chromebook 4 looks just how you’d expect a Samsung device to look with clean lines aplenty. It has an Intel Celeron N4020 processor, 4GB of memory and 64GB of eMMC storage. An 11.6-inch HD screen is pretty small but it’s the right size for easy portability and ensuring the 12 hours of battery life is easily achieved. It also meets many military-grade levels of protection. If you simply need a basic Chromebook for occasional use, this one is a reasonable choice.

HP Stream 14-inch laptop — $198

The HP Stream on a white background.

The HP Stream 14-inch laptop is a simple yet cute device that feels like it’s perfect for your child’s first laptop. It has an Intel Celeron N4020 processor, 4GB of memory and 64GB of eMMC storage. It also runs Windows 11 in S mode although we’d recommend you rely more on cloud-based apps given the performance involved. A 14-inch HD touchscreen looks reasonable for the price so it’s a good starter PC.

HP Chromebook x360 2-in-1 — $199, was $329

HP Chromebook x360 14at product image

Keen to compete with the other best Chromebooks around this price, the HP Chromebook x360 2-in-1 is a pretty stylish system. It has an Intel Celeron N4020 processor, 4GB of memory and 64GB of eMMC storage but the real highlight is its 14-inch HD touchscreen that can be rotated via its hinge to work in tablet or presentation mode. A long battery life of over 13 hours means you’re good to go all day long too.

Best Black Friday 2-in-1 laptop deals

Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 laptop — $550, was $730

Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 2023 top down view in tent mode.
Mark Coppock / Digital Trends

Dell is one of the best laptop brands around and that means it also knows how to make good 2-in-1 laptops. The Dell Inspiron 14 2-in-1 laptop is one such example with a 13th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of memory and 512GB of SSD storage. The highlight is its 14-inch full HD+ screen with 1920 x 1200 resolution, 250 nits of brightness, and — of course — it’s a touchscreen. Through the 360-degree hinge, you can use the laptop as a tablet or in presentation mode when watching something. With loud and clear up-firing speakers and Dolby Atmos spatial audio, it’s perfect for entertainment as well as work.

Lenovo Yoga 7i — $550, was $850

The Lenovo Yoga 7i in tent mode.

Lenovo makes some of the best 2-in-1 laptops with the Lenovo Yoga 7i offering great hardware. It has an 13th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, 16GB of memory and 512GB of SSD storage. It also has a huge and gorgeous looking 16-inch WUXGA touchscreen with 1920 x 1200 resolution, 45% NTSC and 300 nits of brightness. There’s also a 1080p full HD IR/RGB Hybrid webcam with privacy shutter along with a fingerprint reader for added security. Thin and lightweight, it looks great wherever you take it, all while still managing to offer military-grade levels of robustness.

HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 laptop — $900, was $1,400

HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 Windows 11 laptop for Cyber Monday product image.

The HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 laptop is a super stylish 2-in-1 laptop. It has an Intel Core i5 processor along with 16GB of memory and 512GB of SSD storage, however, it’s the screen that shines most. A 13.5-inch WUXGA+ touchscreen with 1920 x 1280 resolution, it has low blue light protection along with 400 nits of brightness. Its 360-degree hinge means you can effortlessly move the screen to work as a tablet or in presentation mode. The HP Spectre x360 2-in-1 laptop comes with a stylus too as well as its backlit keyboard, while the HP True Vision 5MP IR camera has a camera shutter, temporal noise reduction, and integrated dual array digital microphones.

Best Black Friday 17-inch laptop deals

Acer Chromebook 317 laptop — $299, was $499

Side profile of the Acer Chromebook 317 against a white background.

If you want a large display but you also want ChromeOS, the Acer Chromebook 317 laptop is a good option. It has an Intel Pentium Silver N6000 processor, 8GB of memory and 64GB of eMMC storage. More appealing though is its large 17.3-inch full HD IPS touch display. That means battery life is a little lower than other Chromebooks coming in at 10 hours but it’s more than good enough for most people. It’s ideal if you need more screen space while you work.

LG Gram 17-inch Ultra Lightweight laptop — $1,000, was $1,800

The LG Gram Ultraslim on a demo table at CES.

One of the most stylish laptops around, the LG Gram is a seriously nice looking laptop. It has an 12th-generation Intel Evo Platform Core i7 processor along with 16GB of memory and 1TB of SSD storage. That’s all pretty powerful stuff but it’s even more appealing when you factor in the 17-inch WQXGA IPS display with DCI-P3 99% color support. The laptop also has a full HD IR webcam with AI noise cancellation along with a Thunderbolt 4 port for hooking up displays.

Dell XPS 17 — $1,799, was $2,399

Dell XPS 17 9370 front angled view showing display and keyboard deck.
Mark Coppock / Digital Trends

The Dell XPS 17 is one of the best laptops around, especially for content creators. The laptop has a 13th-generation Intel Core i7 processor paired up with 16GB of memory and 512GB of SSD storage. Besides being able to handle all your work tasks, it can also cope with some gaming thanks to its Nvidia GeForce RTX 4060 graphics card while the 17-inch full HD+ screen with 1920 x 1200 resolution and 500 nits of brightness looks great. While it sounds like it would be bulky, the Dell XPS 17 fits into a 15-inch size form factor so it’s much more portable than you’d expect. A 93.7% screen-to-body ratio looks great too. It all comes together to make a suitably premium laptop that’s built to last.

Best Black Friday gaming laptop deals

Asus TUF 15.6-inch gaming laptop — $1,000, was $1,400

The Asus Tuf gaming laptop at a side angle.

The Asus TUF 15.6-inch gaming laptop offers a lot for the price. It has an Intel Core i7 processor along with 16GB of memory and 1TB of SSD storage space. It also has an Nvidia GeForce RTX 4070 graphics card with 8GB of dedicated VRAM. The graphics card looks great on the 15.6-inch full HD screen with 144Hz refresh rate. For a gaming laptop, it’s fairly portable too thanks to weighing 4.85 pounds while you also benefit from a Thunderbolt 4 port along with Wi-Fi 6 support.

Razer Blade 17 — $1,800, was $2,800

Cyberpunk 2077 running on the Razer Blade 17.
Digital Trends

The Razer Blade range features a lot in our look at the best gaming laptops and for good reason thanks to their great components and build quality. The Razer Blade 17 has an Intel Core i7 processor, 16GB of memory and 1TB of SSD storage. Alongside that is a GeForce RTX 3060 graphics card and 17.3-inch QHD screen with 240Hz refresh rate and up to 100% DCI-P3. All the components are speedy and calibrated to work well together while even the smaller details like the per key RGB rollover keyboard and THX spatial audio are great additions. It all comes together to make a very attractive gaming laptop.

Alienware m16 gaming laptop — $2,800, was $3,500

An Alienware m16 gaming laptop in use on a desk, playing Baldur's Gate III.

The Alienware m16 gaming laptop is truly a force to be reckoned with if you want the ultimate gaming laptop at the moment. It has a 13th-generation Intel Core i9 processor along with a massive 32GB of memory. There’s plenty of room for all your games too thanks to 2TB of SSD storage. The graphics card is a powerhouse as well with a Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 with 16GB of dedicated VRAM. Whatever you want to play is going to look great on here. That’s further helped by its 16-inch QHD+ screen with 2560 x 1600 resolution, 240Hz refresh rate and 3ms response time. Supremely powerful, the Alienware m16 gaming laptop is aided by an Alienware Cryo-tech cooling system so it stays stable and doesn’t overheat. Dolby Atmos and Dolby Vision support rounds things off perfectly making the Alienware m16 gaming laptop a compelling system for those who are able to make a long term investment in their gaming.

Who has the Best Black Friday Laptop Deals?

It’s too early to say where you’ll find the largest discounts, but there will surely be no shortage of Black Friday laptop deals from all the popular retailers, including Amazon, Best Buy, and Walmart, and from the manufacturers themselves, including Dell, Lenovo, and Microsoft. They haven’t previewed their offers for the shopping holiday yet, but we’re not expecting significant differences between the sellers’ prices. You should instead focus your shopping of Black Friday deals on the websites and platforms that you’re most familiar with, so that you won’t find it difficult to search for the offers that match your needs and budget.

Should You Buy a Laptop on Black Friday or Cyber Monday?

If you don’t find the machine that you want in the upcoming Black Friday laptop deals, or you miss out because you decided to buy some other stuff first, don’t worry. You’ll get another chance at buying the laptop that you want with a discount on Cyber Monday, which will be on November 27. It’s similar to Black Friday in the sense that retailers will be slashing the prices of a wide range of products, but true to its name, it will focus on electronic gadgets and devices.

Some shoppers suggest to skip Black Friday altogether and just do your shopping on Cyber Monday, which offers a chance at lower prices. This isn’t a good idea, as while the laptop that you want may get cheaper, there’s no assurance that will happen. You’ll also be taking on the risk that your preferred retailer’s stocks of the laptop run out after Black Friday. If you see a deal that you like in the Black Friday laptop sales, bag it while you can.

Editors’ Recommendations

Lenovo Legion Go review: portable PC takes the right ideas from Nintendo Switch

Lenovo Legion Go

MSRP $700.00

“The Legion Go is a creative portable PC that delivers innovative features, though they aren’t always the most practical ideas.”


  • Strong build quality
  • Top-of-the-line display
  • Tabletop mode is great
  • Matches ROG Ally in power


  • Aspirational features are impractical
  • Awkward button placements
  • Legion Space needs work

I always love that special moment where an innovative tech device launches and I get to play with it for the first time. When I first got my hands on the Steam Deck, I felt like a kid on Christmas as I experimented with PC gaming on the go. It’s a cherished moment, but it’s not what I actually look forward to most whenever a new product category launches. My real excitement is reserved for a few years after that moment when competitors have to get creative to stand out in a new frontier that’s rapidly flooding with copycats. If you want to understand why I love that period so much, look no further than Legion Go.

It’s not that Lenovo’s Steam Deck competitor is a better alternative to Valve’s hit system. In a lot of ways, it’s a messy experiment that’ll need a lot of post-launch tweaking to get it up to speed with its rivals. It is, however, a piece of hardware that emphasizes the fun of good-spirited tech competition. In an effort to stand out, the Legion Go takes some wild swings that make it the most unique portable PC on the market today. It may not be the best option you can buy right now, but it could be the most influential one down the line.

The Legion Go checks a lot of the right boxes when it comes to its price, power, and the fantastic screen that sets a new bar for this kind of device. Combine that with its Nintendo Switch-inspired design and you’ve got a flexible gaming device with a lot of good ideas. For all its creativity, though, Lenovo often forgoes practicality in the name of innovation. It makes for a respectable, but niche gaming device that’s equally loaded with features and caveats.

Design and display

I’d bet that just about anyone who lays eyes on the Legion Go for the first time will have the same first reaction: “It’s that big!?” Yes, Lenovo’s system is Godzilla compared to what’s out on the market today. Weighing in at 1.88 pounds, it’s far heavier than the 1.65 pound Steam Deck or 1.34 pound ROG Ally. That’s a clue right off the bat that the Legion Go isn’t exactly the best option for those who want an easy on-the-go experience with minimal strain.

It’s a device that primarily shines in tabletop mode.

Lenovo does make the most of that hulking form factor. While it’s heavier than the Steam Deck, it’s about the same length and width as that device. The difference is in its 5.16-inch height — versus. the Steam Deck’s 4.6 inches — but there’s a good reason for all that extra space: the Legion Go’s best-in-class display. The handheld boasts an 8.8 inch, 16:10 QHD+ IPS display with impressive specs. It’s a 1600p screen and has a 144Hz refresh rate. Onboard tools give players room to dial that down to either 1200p or 800p, and take the refresh rate down to 60Hz if need be. It’s a big, bright, colorful display that goes above and beyond for a handheld like this.

The build quality is largely high across the board. It’s a sturdy system that’s easy to grip, even if it can be a strain to hold for long periods of time. What’s perhaps most impressive is its built-in kickstand that allows players to set the device up in a tabletop mode, just like the Switch. It’s a strong hinge that allows for a range of angles. It can get angled enough that I can plug something into its bottom USB4 charger while playing.

Gears Tactics appears on a Legion Go screen.
Giovanni Colantonio / Digital Trends

The package is rounded out by some standard features: Bluetooth 5.1 support, up to 1TB of storage, a microSD card reader, a headphone jack, two USB4 ports, and sizable vents on the top and back. It even comes with a handy storage case with a built-in charging slot. The only area where it isn’t up to snuff with the competition is with its weak speakers, which can’t get as loud as the ROG Ally’s — a shame considering it’s a device that primarily shines in tabletop mode. It’s also worth noting that its microSD card slot isn’t too far off from its top vents, a design decision that caused broken SD cards on the ROG Ally. It’s too early to say if the Legion Go avoids that problem, but the slot is spaced far enough away from the vents that it shouldn’t be a problem in theory.


The Legion Go’s biggest creative swings come from its approach to controls. At first glance, they seem standard. It’s anchored by two sturdy hall effect joysticks, seemingly high-quality face buttons, and responsive triggers. As a one-up on the Ally, it even has a right trackpad for those who want to simulate a mouse. It’s not nearly as responsive as the Steam Deck’s pads, but it’s a nice extra for those who were disappointed that the ROG Ally didn’t have any of its own.

The Legion Go's controllers sit on a table.
Giovanni Colantonio / Digital Trends

That setup isn’t without its flaws. The trackpad is a little low for comfort and it sports a surprisingly poor D-pad that’s not ideal for diagonal inputs. Its most frustrating flaw comes from its baffling menu button placements. The two buttons sitting where every major controller’s menu buttons are actually open up Lenovo’s Legion Space app. The proper menu buttons are on the bottom of the left controller, which takes a lot of brain-rewiring to get used to.

What’s more commendable is that the controllers can actually be detached from the system like (very thick) Joy-cons. That, combined with the kickstand, makes the Legion Go more enticing as a tabletop device than a handheld. I’ve spent most of my gaming time treating it like a small laptop with a powerful display. That’s an ideal use case, as the heavy design and loud vents don’t make it the most portable-friendly device.

Lenovo seems to understand where the Legion Go shines most and has built its most distinct feature around that. FPS mode is a unique setting that turns the right controller into a mouse when docking it in a magnetic circle built to slide around a table. It’s an inventive idea that takes Nintendo’s Joy-con setup to another level. Though like many of the Legion Go’s defining features, it’s more a neat party trick than a practical way to play.

A Legion Go controllers stands upright in FPS mode.
Giovanni Colantonio / Digital Trends

I’ve found that FPS mode is great for some specific games that are mostly controlled by mouse clicks. Gears Tactics is a perfect use case here, as I can move the controller around and click to do just about anything. Ironically, it’s far less useful in first-person shooters — the very genre the mode is named after. In trying to play Battlebit Remastered in the mode, I’d quickly realize the inherent flaw of a mouse and keyboard mode with no keyboard. I could aim and shoot just fine, but I simply didn’t have enough buttons to strafe, heal, drive vehicles, etc.

The Legion Go tries to account for that with the addition of several extra buttons, including a scroll wheel and four back buttons. Unfortunately, the placement of those extras isn’t very graceful. The scroll wheel is awkwardly tucked under the right trigger, and the back buttons on the right controller are far too easy to press when gripping the device naturally. To make matters worse, there doesn’t appear to be any way to create custom controller profiles for individual games at present. All of that makes FPS mode a good idea with cumbersome execution.

Specs and performance

Performance is another high point that puts the Legion Go ahead of its competitors on paper, but with asterisks. The capable system contains an AMD Ryzen Z1 Extreme and 16 GB of memory. That theoretically puts it right next to the ROG Ally, something we’ve been able to back up with our testing so far. It’s frankly astonishing that I can run the Xbox Series X-exclusive Forza Motorsport on the device and make enough tweaks to get it running well at around 40 frames per second (fps). Even if it requires me to dial down to low settings to achieve it, that’s still “next-gen” power in a small form factor.

Cross-generation games yielded some impressive results when running benchmark tests. Immortals Fenyx Rising was able to hit 62 fps when running at 800p and a custom 30-watt thermal mode. We saw similar results with the more demanding Cyberpunk 2077, which hit 61 fps at that setting. Toggling the wattage down to 15 still gave us solid performance, with Cyberpunk hitting 37 fps. Forza Motorsport didn’t fare too badly there either as it hovered right under the 30 mark. With the right tweaks (and a willingness to sacrifice quality), even brand new releases fare well on it.

A chart shows Legion Go benchmarks across three games running at 800p.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

The Legion Go doesn’t give players a ton of ways to tweak their settings, but it meets the minimum for customization. Players have the option to swap between three resolutions, two refresh rates, and some OS power modes. More powerful are its thermal mode options, which let players dial the wattage anywhere from 5 to 30. That’s the most impactful tool in the suite, as games see a significant performance boost when maxing the slider out (in our tests, it saved 15 to 20 frames over the Balanced thermal setting).

That’s all great for 800p, but how does the handheld fare using its defining 1600p resolution? That’s a different story. The resolution boost demands maxed wattage in order to approach a smooth experience, and even that’s a tall order. Cyberpunk 2077 barely clears the 30 fps mark at 20W and Forza Motorsport taps out at 23 (both running in low settings). Bumping the wattage any lower produces some expectedly poor results. Immortals Fenyx Rising only hit the 21 fps mark in those tests, while Forza struggled at 15.

A chart shows Legion Go benchmarks across three games running at 1600p.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

As you can imagine, great power comes at the expense of battery. In my battery drain tests, Cyberpunk 2077 took the device down to 0% in about two hours. That was running at 800p on a balanced thermal setting, which is on the lower end of the machine’s power. If you’re trying to hit smooth frame rates and high visual quality in modern games, the battery can easily drain in closer to an hour. None of this is too shocking, but I’ve found that the battery life doesn’t bug me as much as it did on the Ayaneo 2S. I have enough wattage and resolution customization options to get some extra life out of it. Though what’s more crucial is that the Legion Go’s staying power is greater in its tabletop mode, where I’d ideally leave it plugged in and maxed out anyways. It’s one of many areas where the added versatility works to Lenovo’s advantage here.

Onboard tools and UI

While power and performance are always a high priority with devices like this, a good user interface that makes it easy to use can go a long way. Just look at the Steam Deck, which has a clean SteamOS interface that makes it feel as polished as a home console. It’s an area that Lenovo unfortunately doesn’t nail down  with the Legion Go, selling its impressive device short at launch.

The good (and sometimes bad) news is that the device runs Windows 11. It’s essentially a Windows tablet, which makes it easy to install and load up any game launcher. I was able to turn my machine into an ideal Xbox Game Pass device, playing games like Jusant on it from start to finish. There was some friction to get that going smoothly, as Windows has plenty of annoying quirks that are hard to work around on a smaller screen. It took a day of settings tweaking to get everything working right, and I hit some puzzling roadblocks along the way (like Diablo 4 freezing at the Blizzard logo every time I’s try to boot it), but many of the Legion Go’s problems are simply Windows problems you have to live with.

Legion Space is a low-quality tool that’ll need a lot of post-launch support.

What is within Lenovo’s control, however, is its poor Legion Space app. Like the ROG Ally, the Legion Go contains its own custom software that lets players tweak settings, organize games, and more. The app even has its own game storefront filled with exclusive deals. But as it stands now, Legion Space is a low-quality tool that’ll need a lot of post-launch support to get it in a healthy place. Text awkwardly wraps onto two lines, images are blurry, the app doesn’t consistently open when I press the menu buttons. It feels only a little more refined than Ayaneo’s custom app on its own devices.

Other quirks are downright weird. Pressing the right menu button opens the performance overlay, but when closing it and pressing it again, it opens up a left-side quick menu instead. It often takes three button presses to get to the menu you’re actually trying to access. When opening the performance menus, my inputs are still detected on the game below. A lot of these issues are fixable and I imagine we’ll see Lenovo steadily improve the tool over time just as Asus and Valve have done with their own devices. It just lends to the overall feeling that the Legion Go may have been rushed to market to capitalize on a moment.

Legion Space displays on a Legion Go screen.
Giovanni Colantonio / Digital Trends

Like the Steam Deck, the Legion Go feels a bit like an experimental prototype that’ll pave the way for a better second model. Lenovo has its head in the right place when it comes to innovation, but there’s a lot of “proof of concept” work happening here. Its 1600p display isn’t really practical for gaming right now, its button layout is a mess, and Legion Space is no SteamOS at present. Even so, the creative handheld still stands out in a field that’s filling up fast. It fills a niche for those who still want to retain as much of the PC gaming experience as possible in a handheld. That use case won’t be enough to convince most people to drop another $700, but it’ll be a perfect fit for the right audience.

Sometimes that’s about the best result you can hope for when the competition is stiff.

Editors’ Recommendations

Best Black Friday Gaming Laptop Deals: Cheapest prices today

With the big event coming up fast, we’re spotting some early Black Friday deals already. There are some great discounts on gaming laptops in particular if you simply can’t wait any longer to make a purchase. Below we’ve picked out some awesome Black Friday gaming laptop deals with something for nearly every budget and including all the biggest names in the field. Let’s guide you through the deals now.

Today’s Best Black Friday Gaming Laptop Deals

HP Victus 15 (Intel) — $550, was $900

Mark Coppock/Digital Trends / Digital Trends

The HP Victus 15 is one of the cheapest gaming laptops in the market, but it still provides decent performance with the latest 13th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 graphics card, and 8GB of RAM. With these specifications, you can play today’s most popular games, but you’ll have to go with low to medium graphic settings for the more demanding titles. The gaming laptop is also equipped with a 15.6-inch Full HD screen with a 144Hz refresh rate, and a 512GB SSD with Windows 11 Home pre-loaded.

HP Victus 15 (AMD) — $650, was $950

The rear view of the HP Victus 15 gaming laptop.
Mark Coppock/Digital Trends / Digital Trends

With the AMD versus Intel rivalry intensifying over the past few years, you may want to try the HP Victus 15 with the AMD Ryzen 5 7535HS processor. It’s paired with the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2050 graphics card and 8GB of RAM, while maintaining the 15.6-inch Full HD display. It’s also equipped with a 512GB SSD with Windows 11 Home out of the box.

Asus TUF Gaming A16 — $750, was $1,100

The Asus TUF Gaming A16 gaming laptop on a white background.

The Asus TUF Gaming A16 focuses on durability, so you won’t be worried that it will get damaged if you take it with you to different places. For a relatively affordable gaming laptop, it provides decent performance with its AMD Ryzen 7 7735HS processor, AMD Radeon RX7600S V8G Graphics, and 16GB of RAM that’s the recommended starting point for gaming by our guide on how much RAM do you need. It also comes with Windows 11 Home in its 512GB SSD, and a 16-inch Full HD screen with a 165Hz refresh rate.

HP Omen 16t — $780, was $1,150

The HP Omen 16 gaming laptop on a desk.

The HP Omen 16t is powered by the 13th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, the Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 graphics card, and 16GB of RAM, which are pretty decent specifications for a relatively cheap gaming laptop. It comes with Windows 11 Home in its 512GB SSD, and you’ll enjoy playing your favorite video games on its 16.1-inch Full HD screen with a 144Hz refresh rate.

Acer Predator Helios Neo 16 — $800, was $1,200

The Acer Predator Helios Neo gaming laptop on a white background.

The Acer Predator Helios Neo 16 is a mid-range gaming laptop featuring a bright and colorful 16-inch display with WUXGA resolution and a 165Hz refresh rate. It’s equipped with the 13th-generation Intel Core i5 processor, the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4050 graphics card, and 16GB of RAM, and you’ll have ample storage space for your games and save data on its 512GB SSD with Windows 11 Home out of the box.

Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 — $1,250, was $1,600

Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 2023 front view showing display and keyboard deck.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

The Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 is a unique entry in our list of the best gaming laptops because it’s there for its portability. It’s small and light with its 14-inch screen featuring QHD resolution and a 165Hz refresh rate, which is different from most gaming laptops that are big and bulky. However, the Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 also provides powerful performance with the AMD Ryzen 9 7940HS processor, the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4060 graphics card, and 16GB of RAM, and it ships with Windows 11 Home in its 512GB SSD.

Razer Blade 15 — $2,000, was $3,000

The Razer Blade 15 OLED on a white table.
Digital Trends

The Razer Blade 15 is the best 15-inch gaming laptop in our list of the best 15-inch laptops because of its sleek design with its 15.6-inch QHD screen with a 240Hz refresh rate, and exceptional performance provided by its 12th-generation Intel Core i7 processor, Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 Ti graphics card, and 16GB of RAM. You’ll be able to install several AAA titles on its 1TB SSD, which ships with Windows 11 Home out of the box.

Razer Blade 17 — $2,400, was $3,400

Cyberpunk 2077 running on the Razer Blade 17.
Digital Trends

For a larger version of the Razer Blade 15, go for the Razer Blade 17 with its 17.3-inch QHD display offering a 240Hz refresh rate. The gaming laptop retains the 1TB SSD with Windows 11 Home, but elevates performance to further maximize the bigger screen with the 12th-generation Intel Core i9 processor, with the same Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 Ti graphics card and 16GB of RAM.

Alienware m16 — $2,800, was $3,500

The Alienware m16 gaming laptop with Baldur's Gate 3 on the screen.

For a gaming laptop that’s prepared for the best upcoming PC games of the next few years, you can’t go wrong with the Alienware m16. Inside the device are the 13th-generation Intel Core i9 processor, the Nvidia GeForce RTX 4090 graphics card, and 32GB of RAM. The gaming laptop’s 16-inch screen with QHD+ resolution and a 240Hz refresh rate will give justice to its powerful performance, and it will be a while before you run out of space on its 2TB SSD with Windows 11 Home.

Who Has the Best Black Friday Gaming Laptop Deals?

All the major retailers, such as Amazon, Best Buy, and Walmart, will be slashing prices for a wide range of gaming laptops. If you’re asking which one of them will have the biggest discounts, unfortunately, it’s too early to tell. We’re expecting minimal differences between the sellers though, so either you go on the online platform that you’ve been using the most for familiarity, or you decide on a specific gaming laptop that you’ll be searching for across all the websites.

One thing’s for sure though — if you’re willing to give up some performance by going for gaming laptops with older components, retailers will be selling these devices with bigger price cuts. You’ll have to figure out how far back you can go in terms of these specifications though, especially if there’s a game or two that you’re planning to play on the device. You’ll surely be able to find a nice laptop to fit your needs, especially if you’re using our list of the best Black Friday gaming laptop deals.

Should You Buy a Gaming Laptop on Black Friday or Cyber Monday?

Like Black Friday, Cyber Monday will offer eye-catching bargain prices on different kinds of products, but retailers will be focusing on electronic devices for this shopping holiday. That includes gaming laptops, among all the things that gamers can buy. There’s a possibility that gaming laptops will be cheaper on Cyber Monday, so some believe that you should skip Black Friday entirely and just wait for Cyber Monday to pull the trigger on some purchases.

While there’s certainly a chance that the gaming laptop that you want to buy will get a bigger discount on Cyber Monday, it’s not advisable to eschew Black Friday deals altogether. There’s no certainty that the device will get cheaper, and even if it does, it may not be by much. You’re risking being able to purchase a gaming laptop at a price that you can afford in favor of savings of just a few more dollars. That trade-off isn’t worth it, so if you see an offer that you like from Black Friday gaming laptop deals, take advantage of it right away.

Editors’ Recommendations

How to find your BitLocker recovery key

BitLocker is a useful security feature for modern Windows installations that helps protect your files and data from prying eyes. But if you made major changes to your PC, or an administrator has triggered a security event, you may need to input your BitLocker recovery key to get into Windows. Don’t have it at hand? Don’t worry. Here’s how to find your recovery key so you can log in again.

Did you write it down?

If you never recorded your BitLocker recovery key information anywhere physical, then you can skip this step. However, it’s always worth checking if you wrote your recovery key down somewhere or, if you’re on a network, asking the administrator to see if they have a note of the key.

If you can find that piece of paper, on a pen-drive, digital note, or other written form of BitLocker recovery key, it can save you some hassle by just grabbing that note and inputting it from there.

Jon Martindale / DigitalTrends

Is it a school or work device?

If you are trying to recover the BItlocker key for a device provided to you by your work or school, there’s a chance that your BitLocker key is stored in the organizations Azure AD account. Try accessing the Azure AD recovery page yourself, and if possible, select Get BitLocker keys to find your keys.

If you can’t access it directly, try asking your network or organization administrator to do it for you.

Recover your key from your Microsoft Account

The most straightforward way to find your BitLocker recovery key is to get it from your Microsoft account. All BitLocker keys associated with your account are stored there, and you can access them by logging in to the recovery site.

Step 1: Navigate to the Microsoft Bitlocker recovery page.

Step 2: Log in and, if necessary, verify your account details.

Step 3: Once logged in, you should see any relevant BitLocker keys attached to your account, with the name of the relevant device next to them.

If you don’t have any relevant BitLocker keys related to that Microsoft account, you’ll instead be greeted with the message:

“You don’t have any BitLocker recovery keys uploaded to your Microsoft account.

Note: If someone else helped you set up your PC, the BitLocker keys you’re looking for might be on their account.”

You could try signing into another Microsoft account if you know the details.

Once you’ve recovered your PC, if you want to improve security further or supplant BitLocker with something else, here are some security tweaks you can do to make Windows more secure. Some Windows 11 security settings do reduce gaming performance, though. Check out our guide on how to boost gaming performance by changing Windows settings.

Editors’ Recommendations

The best budget laptops for 2023

Not everyone needs the fastest CPU and the highest-quality high-resolution display. Sometimes, a machine with a last-gen CPU and a decent Full HD display is plenty for the web browsing, email, and Office applications that make up many users’ workflows. This can be true for students, and sometimes buyers are looking for a secondary machine to augment one of the best laptops you can buy.

That’s where budget laptops come in. The definition is a loose one, with some machines costing a bit more but offering a lot more to go with it. But they’ll save you hundreds over midrange and premium laptops that are overkill for what you need. This list will provide several options, including for gamers and those with the lowest budgets. You can check out our best laptops under $500 and best laptops under $300 lists for even more affordable options.

Digital Trends

Dell XPS 13 (9315)

A surprisingly affordable ‘premium’ Windows laptop


  • Aggressive price
  • Very compact design
  • Great battery life
  • Comfortable keyboard
  • Display is bright and high quality


  • No headphone jack
  • Performance is lacking

Why you should buy this: It’s an amazing laptop for under $1,000.

Who it’s for: Anyone who wants a premium laptop for much less money,

Why we picked the Dell XPS 13 9315:

Yes, the XPS 13 9315 costs $849 for its entry-level model, which is at the high end of the budget range. But it makes this list because you simply won’t find a Windows laptop for less than $1,000 that can match the XPS 13’s excellent build quality, attractive aesthetic, and outstanding battery life.

For that low price, you get a 9-watt Intel Core i5-1230U CPU with 10 cores and 12 threads that delivers competent productivity performance. It’s not the fastest laptop we’ve reviewed, but it’s sufficient to get your work done. As a lower-watt part, though, it affords outstanding battery life. You even get a 512GB SSD, which is a lot at this price, with a build quality and good looks that are unusual without spending a lot more.

Dell XPS 13 9315 Entry

Dell XPS 13 (9315)

A surprisingly affordable ‘premium’ Windows laptop

asus zenbook 14 oled review featured

Mark Coppock/Digital Trends

Asus ZenBook 14 OLED

Best budget laptop


  • Excellent value
  • Competent productivity performance
  • Great battery life
  • Comfortable keyboard and NumberPad 2.0 touchpad
  • Solid build and attractive aesthetic
  • Outstanding OLED display


  • Creative performance is lacking

Why you should buy this: The features and battery life are game-changers at the price.

Who it’s for: Anyone who wants a beautiful display for less money,

Why we picked the Asus ZenBook 14 OLED:

Sometimes, companies have to cut corners to fit a laptop into a $700 price. The display is often one casualty, with a panel that might suffer in terms of color quality and contrast. The ZenBook 14 OLED is an exception, offering a spectacular OLED display that’s bright, colorful, and displays inky blacks. It’s equal to displays on laptops costing twice as much.

But that’s not all. The AMD Ryzen 5 or 7 CPUs on offer provide competent productivity performance to go with great battery life. And, the laptop’s build quality is excellent, with a great keyboard and touchpad with an LED numeric keyboard. It’s a tremendous value all-around, landing it on our list of best laptops.

ASUS Zenbook 14 OLED

Asus ZenBook 14 OLED

Best budget laptop

microsoft surface laptop go review featured image

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Surface Laptop Go 2

An excellent budget laptop for students


  • Thin and light
  • Comfortable keyboard and trackpad
  • Good port selection
  • Good performance


  • No backlit keyboard
  • Display’s pixel density is low
  • No Surface Pen support

Why you should buy this: It’s the best budget laptop for students.

Who it’s for: Students, buyers on a budget.

Why we picked the Microsoft Surface Laptop Go 2

Students usually want a few things in a cheap laptop — something that’s easy to carry around, that provides good enough performance for getting their homework done, and something that’s not going to embarrass them when they pull it out to take notes. Oh, and it needs to be affordable. Microsoft’s new Surface Laptop Go 2 meets all those criteria — making it one of the best laptops for students in college.

We’ve linked to our Surface Go review above because the biggest change to the Surface Go 2 is the upgrade to 11th-gen Core CPUs. Graphics have been upgraded to Intel Iris Xe, the entry-level storage has been doubled to 128GB, there’s an improved webcam, and the laptop ships with Windows 11 Home instead of Windows 10 in S mode. The Surface Laptop Go 2 is also a highly mobile device with a 12.4-inch IPS touchscreen display that, although it’s not quite FHD resolution, is still of very high quality and a pleasure to use.

If you want a newer version, the Surface Laptop Go 3 is available, but we weren’t very impressed.

Microsoft Surface Go 2

Surface Laptop Go 2

An excellent budget laptop for students

lenovo chromebook duet 3 review front view

Mark Coppock/Digital Trends / Digital Trends

Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3

A Chromebook 2-in-1 that won’t break the bank


  • Good enough productivity performance
  • Excellent battery life
  • Surprisingly good display
  • Folio kickstand and keyboard included
  • Strong value


  • Keyboard is too cramped
  • Limited to Wi-Fi 5

Why you should buy this: It’s the best budget Chromebook.

Who it’s for: Anyone on a budget who doesn’t mind sacrificing performance for extreme value.

Why we picked the Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3:

Chromebooks have become popular budget choices over the last few years, and many have won us over as well. One style that hasn’t done as well as some others is the detachable Chrome OS tablet. That changed with the introduction of the Lenovo Chromebook Duet, now in its third generation, which not only is a very usable tablet but one that represents tremendous value thanks to the included kickstand cover and detachable keyboard.

The Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3’s low price brings some limitations and basic specs. Its Qualcomm Snapdragon 7c Gen 2 processor, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of storage don’t deliver stellar performance, although it’s good enough for the kinds of tasks you’ll want to run on it. The display is very nice, with a 15:9 2K (2000 x 1200) resolution that’s not as pixel sharp as Apple’s baseline iPad that the Duet competes against. If you want a tablet for web browsing, light productivity work, and consuming media, then the Chromebook Duet 3 and Chrome OS have you covered.

Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3

Lenovo Chromebook Duet 3

A Chromebook 2-in-1 that won’t break the bank

hp victus 15 review olympus digital camera

Mark Coppock/Digital Trends / Digital Trends

HP Victus 15

Solid gaming for less than $1,000


  • Solid productivity performance
  • Decent 1080p gaming performance
  • Good keyboard and touchpad
  • Conservative good looks
  • Affordable


  • Confusing configurations
  • Poor battery life
  • Ho-hum screen

Why you should buy this: It’s the best budget gaming laptop.

Who it’s for: Gamers and only gamers.

Why we picked the HP Victus 15:

Although the best gaming laptops are typically expensive, the HP Victus 15 is a great example of why they don’t need to be. Often priced at less than $900, you get some impressive specs. That includes a 13th-gen Intel Core i5-13500H, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050 GPU, 8GB of RAM, and a 512GB solid-state drive (SSD), with options for faster CPUs, more powerful graphics, extra and faster storage, and memory if you don’t mind spending a little more. Every model comes with a 15.6-inch, 1080p IPS display, and for just a little more, that display can run at a refresh rate of 144Hz.

With a decent build quality and surprisingly good gaming performance, the Victus 15 offers an all-around solid gaming package at an impressively competitive price. It does have its weak points, most notably that the starting graphics card isn’t as powerful as what you’ll see in more expensive laptops, but it’s still enough for entry-level gaming.

HP Victus 15

HP Victus 15

Solid gaming for less than $1,000

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Dell Inspiron 15 3000 Laptop

A business laptop for less


  • Large display
  • Good keyboard and touchpad
  • Solid build quality
  • Spill-resistant keyboard


  • Display is only Full HD
  • CPU is one generation behind

Why you should buy this: It’s the best budget business laptop.

Who it’s for: Office workers who want to save the cash for other investments.

Why we picked the Dell Inspiron 15 3000:

Whether you’re typing up another spreadsheet or winding down with a game at the end of a long workday, the Dell Inspiron 15 3000 strikes a great balance as a business laptop. It features powerful and efficient general computing power, like a 12th-generation Intel Core i7-1255U CPU, 16GB of RAM, and a 512GB SSD. That’s a lot of computer for just $700, even if Intel did just announce their 13th-gen Core processors.

With the typical Inspiron build quality, we’d expect this system to borrow several great design features from the more premium XPS range but make them available in a more affordable form. It’s not the lightest laptop at just under 4 pounds, but it has a great, spill-resistant keyboard, Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth connectivity, and a top-mounted 720p webcam for conferencing.

The Dell Inspiron 15 3000 also comes in an attractive business black paint job, which helps it fit in with any setup.

Dell Inspiron 15 3000

Dell Inspiron 15 3000 Laptop

A business laptop for less

microsoft surface go 3 review  1

Mark Coppock/Digital Trends / Digital Trends

Microsoft Surface Go 3

The all-around best 2-in-1 for less


  • Excellent build quality
  • Superior display for a budget machine
  • Great Active Pen support
  • Small and light
  • Surprisingly good real-world performance


  • Can get expensive
  • Mediocre battery life
  • Keyboard and touchpad are cramped

Why you should buy this: It’s the best budget 2-in-1.

Who it’s for: Anyone who needs the on-the-go mobility of a small, 2-in-1.

Why we picked the Microsoft Surface Go 3:

The Surface Go 3 may be limited by its small size and, at the entry level, by a low-powered Intel Pentium processor, 4GB of RAM, and 64GB of storage — the processor can be upgraded to an Intel Core i3 and twice the RAM and storage for $230 more — but it offers something never before seen in the Windows world: A truly budget-minded 2-in-1 laptop. Its build is every bit as solid as its bigger sibling, the Surface Pro 8, and it boasts a beautiful, bright display to boot. The best part? It’s actually thin and light enough to be held in one hand like a proper tablet, which is a key reason why we see this as the best budget 2-in-1 laptop.

While performance doesn’t feel as smooth as on something like an iPad or even a Chromebook, those devices can’t do quite as many things as the Surface Go 3, which runs a full version of Windows 10. On the battery front, however, it’s a bit lacking. That’s its most unfortunate compromise since this is a device made for portability. Also, we still wish the excellent Type Cover keyboard and Surface Pen came bundled in.

Microsoft Surface Go 3

Microsoft Surface Go 3

The all-around best 2-in-1 for less

apple macbook air m1 review the 2020 laptop with cpu

Mark Coppock/Digital Trends / Digital Trends

Apple MacBook Air M1

The only MacBook that could be considered ‘cheap’


  • Apple’s M1 blows Intel away
  • Phenomenal battery life
  • Excellent keyboard and touchpad
  • Rock-solid build quality
  • Simple good looks


  • Supports only one external display

Why you should buy this: It’s the only modern MacBook you’ll find for well under $1,000.

Who it’s for: MacBook fans who don’t want to pay thousands for a newer model.

Why we picked the Apple MacBook Air M1:

The MacBook Air M1 isn’t the latest and greatest MacBook, but it still holds it own in a number of ways. Its performance is still excellent, competing easily with recent generation Windows laptops. It also sports impressive battery life, with close to 20-hours between charges. In typical MacBook fashion, too, the build quality is excellent, and the display is Apple’s usual Retina-grade with a high resolution and crisp, bright picture.

The design is lightweight and portable, making it good for use in transit or when commuting, and it supports the fastest possible Thunderbolt 3 connections (up to 40 Gbps) so will work well with any external display or accessory. There’s not a lot of storage space in this base model, but there’s enough there to get you started and external or cloud storage can make up the short fall.

This model is a few years old, but still holds its own well. Grab one while you still can.

Apple MacBook Air M1

Apple MacBook Air M1

The only MacBook that could be considered ‘cheap’

Acer Aspire 3

Best cheap Windows laptop


  • Great performance from the CPU
  • Lots of storage space
  • Wi-Fi 6 fast networking
  • Good selection of ports


  • Lacks a dedicated GPU
  • Display is a little dull

Why you should buy this: It’s performance is impressive for the price.

Who it’s for: Anyone who wants a capable laptop for a fair price.

Why we picked the Acer Aspire 3:

For basic business and entertainment use, you’ll find little better than the Acer Aspire 3. It’s a very affordable laptop using a new CPU design – although based on an older Zen 2 architecture – with four cores and support for eight simultaneous threads. It has some fast DDR5 memory and a full half terabyte of SSD space, which gives you plenty of room for documents, films, and and for backing up your important data.

The onboard Radeon GPU is fine for the most casual of gaming, but it won’t be powerful enough for anything taxing. With Thunderbolt 3 you could attach an external GPU if you wanted, although that’s a very expensive add-on for this affordable machine. The Thunderbolt 3 ports are super handy, though. With support for up to 40 Gbps data transfer speeds, you can attach anything from an external monitor to a high-speed external storage drive.

There’s fast networking on this laptop too, thanks to its Wi-Fi 6, though you’ll need to use an adapter if you want Ethernet.

Acer Aspire 3

Acer Aspire 3

Best cheap Windows laptop

Frequently Asked Questions

Are budget laptops any good?

Absolutely! Depending on what you need your laptop to do, budget options can be just as good as their high-end counterparts. If you only need a laptop for watching Netflix and answering emails, a budget Chromebook can save you hundreds of dollars and perform no worse than something that costs $2,000 or more.

That said, you do need to be careful about which system you pick. Budget laptops tend to make some sacrifices where the expensive options don’t, so be sure to make sure that the system you’re interested in can do what you need it to before buying.

Do any budget laptops have Thunderbolt 4?

Certain features are less common in budget laptops, and Thunderbolt 4 is one of them. Plenty of budget laptops offer USB-C support, but only some provide Intel’s Thunderbolt 4 spec. This is changing, however, and future budget laptops are more likely to include it. Good Thunderbolt 3 ports are just as good, too, so look out for them.

Do budget laptops have good battery life?

Some do, and some don’t. The models that prioritize portability tend to offer a little more, and you’ll want to skip a dedicated graphics chip if you want the most battery life. The MacBook Air M1 is amazingly efficient, offering close to 20 hours of battery life.

However, you can find plenty of budget systems that offer a full workday and beyond on a single charge. In some cases, budget laptops offer better battery life than many laptops that cost a few hundred dollars more. Many Chromebooks also offer impressive battery life thanks to how lightweight the software is.

Can I find a good display on a budget laptop?

Definitely, but as with battery life or specific ports, you’ll need to pick and choose the right laptop. A good display will need to be a key component of the laptop, as color accuracy and contrast can be some areas where savings can be made on certain systems.

Is AMD better for budget laptops?

AMD’s release of the Ryzen 4000 line of CPUs shook up the budget laptop space, and since then AMD has released the Ryzen Ryzen 6000 range and, just recently, the Ryzen 7000 series. In short, the fastest machines we’ve tested that aren’t based on Intel’s 45-watt powerhouse CPUs have been running AMD, and that’s a major advance. Intel is still a far more dominant force in the laptop space with a wider range of options available, but as far as the CPUs that go into budget — and even premium thin and light — laptops, Ryzen chips rule the performance roost. That’s changing, though, as Intel’s 12th-gen Alder Lake CPUs make their way into budget machines even as Intel’s 13th-gen Raptor Lake CPUs have been introduced.

Even so, we strongly suggest that you consider AMD when picking your next budget laptop. If you can find one that matches your needs, you’ll get much better performance per buck.

Editors’ Recommendations

How to buy and configure a new iMac without wasting money

Luke Larsen / Digital Trends

The new iMac has arrived, complete with the updated M3 chip on board. Considering Apple now has just a single size of iMac, that should make buying one straightforward.

But as with all tech purchases, the devil’s in the details. So, after having tested the latest iMacs, we’re here to recommend how to determine which to buy and how to configure it.

Two primary options

Three iMac listings from Apple's website.

When you look at Apple’s website, it shows three different iMacs to choose from, but really, there’s only two. There’s the base configuration and the more advanced one. Both come with the M3 chip, importantly, which has the eight-core CPU and 8-core GPU. They use the same screen as well. But from there, some subtle differences separate these models, which means you’ll want to choose carefully.

The biggest limitation of the M3 base model is ports. It comes with two less USB-C ports than the $1,599 model. Being restricted to just two Thunderbolt ports could be a nuisance, requiring the use of a dock. Both configurations can only connect to a single external display, though. You’ll have to pay an extra $30 for the gigabit Ethernet jack, which is built into the power brick. This comes standard in the $1,599 model, but unless you plan to use a hardwired connection, it’s probably not needed.

There’s a difference in bundled accessories too. While both configurations come with the unfortunate Magic Mouse, the cheaper configuration doesn’t come with the Touch ID keyboard. You have to pay an extra $50 to get some biometric security, which is really lame. The Touch ID keyboard is definitely worth getting, as is the Magic Trackpad. Those two accessories will cost you an extra $100, but unless you already have preferred third-party accessories, they’re absolutely worth it.

The iMac screen on a desk.
Luke Larsen / Digital Trends

The other big difference between the two is in the GPU. The cheaper configuration doesn’t allow you to add the two extra GPU cores — so you’re stuck at just eight. Two extra GPU cores will give you a decent boost in graphics and make up the bulk of the $200 price difference between the two configurations. I haven’t tested the eight-core model myself yet, but Apple’s GPU cores tend to scale down fairly evenly. It might not be quite a 20% difference in actual performance, but it’ll be fairly noticeable. Ultimately, this decision is fairly simple: if you don’t intend to ever play games, edit video, or do 3D modeling, you may not see much in terms of gains.

Lastly, if you opt for the base configuration, you’ll have fewer color options to choose from. Blue, Green, Pink, and Silver are the main options, while the $1,599 model lets you choose from Yellow, Orange, and Purple. Before you choose a color, remember that the colors are two-tone. The front is a more saturated pastel color, while the aluminum base and back are a bolder, more vibrant color. So, make sure you like both shades of the color before you buy. The Silver color is certainly the most professional option, which is the safest best.

Storage and memory

The bottom chin of the blue iMac.
Luke Larsen / Digital Trends

The base configuration also limits you in terms of storage. You also can’t upgrade to 2TB of SSD storage, and are instead restricted to 1TB as the max. And remember — none of these specs can be upgraded after the fact, except by using external storage. Since Apple’s prices on extra storage are outrageous ($400 for a terabyte!), make sure to get what you need since there’s no way to upgrade in the future.

Memory is similar. Options for RAM in the iMac only include 8GB, 16GB, and 24GB — and 8GB should really only be reserved for people with the most basic computing needs. If you hope to use the iMac for anything more extensive, I’d recommend at least 16GB of RAM. If you’re choosing between the $200 RAM upgrade or the $200 storage upgrade, remember that storage can be expanded externally, while memory can’t.

What about the M1 iMac?

Apple iMac 24 inch placed on a desk in a sunny context.
Digital Trends

Apple doesn’t want you to think about the M1 iMac anymore. It isn’t sold, and the M3 is obviously the cream of the crop. But for a lot of people, the M1 iMac is still going to be a worthwhile purchase if you can find it for the right price. The key, though, is the price. Doing a quick look around, I didn’t see the M1 iMac being sold for more than $150 off the original price, which just happens to be the same price as the M3 iMac. Some other retailers are even still selling the M1 model for the full retail price.

Unless you have a super-tight budget, I think most people should just splurge on the M3 iMac at that point. But if we start to see a refurbished M1 iMac drop down below $1,000, for example, that’s where I perk up.

Because if performance isn’t a huge deal for you — if you just want a basic Mac and love the form factor of the all-in-one — the upgrade to the M3 won’t mean much to your day-to-day usage. But remember one thing: While comparing prices, make sure you’re comparing configurations on an apples-to-apples basis. A lot of times, older models are sold with higher-end specs, such as additional memory or storage.

Editors’ Recommendations

I tested Intel’s new overclocking tool, and it does AI all wrong

One of the most interesting features of Intel’s recent Core i9-14900K is its AI-assisted overclocking. Available through the Extreme Tuning Utility (XTU), AI Assist is billed as the natural next step of automatic overclocking. It uses AI to push chips further rather than relying on a predetermined list of checks that Intel already offers through XTU.

That’s the pitch, at least. But according to my own testing, AI Assist doesn’t do much of anything.

Not only does it provide minimal benefit by being restricted to the Core i9-14900K, it also shows the dangers of haphazardly adding AI in places where it doesn’t belong. That’s a shame, too, because we’ve seen some clear examples of how AI can enhance performance on PCs. AI Assist doesn’t fit in that mold.

Too little to matter

Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Don’t get your hopes up for a big performance boost out of AI Assist. It takes about 45 seconds to run the feature on your PC, and Intel says XTU tests applications during that window to determine the optimal overclocking settings. AI Assist is supposed to go beyond what the automatic overclocking in XTU offers, but it actually produced identical results.

The result: a whopping 100MHz boost across all cores. I ran the overclock through Cinebench R23, which produced a 1.5% improvement in multi-core performance and a 1.6% improvement in single-core performance. When testing a real application, there’s no difference at all. In our Handbrake transcoding benchmark, the AI Assist overclock produced an identical result to a stock Core i9-14900K.

Performance for the AI Assist feature with the Intel Core i9-14900K.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

I’ve never expected huge performance gains out of an automatic overclocking feature, but what’s frustrating is that the automatic overclocking in XTU produced the exact same overclock settings, along with identical performance. It’s not clear what AI is doing here, but from my testing at least, it’s no better than the otherwise limited automatic overclocking already present in XTU.

The application is the problem here, and that’s true on two fronts. First is the Core i9-14900K. This is already a chip pushed to its absolute limits, as it’s essentially a juiced-up version of last-gen’s Core i9-13900K. It doesn’t provide a huge performance lift, as you can read in our Core i9-14900K and Core i9-13900K comparison, so expecting overclocking to do much — AI or otherwise — isn’t a good idea.

It’s also the application of AI to overclocking. You could imagine how AI could be useful for automatic overclocking — train a model on thousands of different PC configurations and their components and use those patterns to figure out optimal settings — but it doesn’t look like Intel is doing much with AI Assist. I don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes, but whatever it is, it doesn’t appear too sophisticated. And based on the final result, that still holds true.

Wrong application

Intel announcing the Meteor Lake release date on Intel Innovation.

We’ve seen plenty of examples of AI being applied where it shouldn’t be this year, but the disappointing thing about AI Assist is that it could work. It just doesn’t do much right now with the Core i9-14900K and Intel’s seemingly basic AI implementation.

AI can dramatically improve the power of a PC, and we have a great example of AI doing just that: Nvidia’s Deep Learning Super Sampling (DLSS). It started off as just an AI-assisted upscaling tool, but it has grown to apply AI to frame generation and ray tracing denoisers, with all three working to improve performance and the gaming experience on PC.

DLSS and AI Assist aren’t the same thing, but DLSS is a prime example of applying AI to a problem and seeing tangible benefits from it. AI Assist is not. It’s applying AI in a situation where the performance gains are already limited, and doing so in a way that doesn’t do anything to improve the performance or user experience.

Intel has been pushing AI hard, as has the rest of the computing world. Its next-gen Meteor Lake chips come with a dedicated AI processor, despite the fact that the only clear application for one is Windows Studio Effects. We now have AI-assisted overclocking, despite the fact that the days of minor overclocks producing big performance jumps are far behind us. And next month, Intel is launching its next-gen CPUs for laptops with an event titled “AI Everywhere.” I’m not against AI being everywhere, but it needs to make sense.

AI Assist in XTU unfortunately doesn’t. It could be a great feature, particularly for lower-end chips that have some headroom to spare. And it could bring AI into the fold in a place where it matters, given that the model behind the scenes is truly delivering something you can’t get with a one-click overclocking tool. It’s possible we could see that in the future from AI Assist, but it’s not here now.

Editors’ Recommendations