Intel Core processors are enjoying its heydays. True enough, a majority of laptops nowadays run on this CPU. From generation to generation, Intel never fails to surprise us with its speed and overall performance. One of its most popular versions is the i7 processor. It’s one of the most powerful in the tech industry taking the rounds of gaming, businesses, and schools. But since not all of us have the money to splurge on top-dollar options, we’re going to look for the best i7 laptop under 700.
|i7 LAPTOP||LAPTOP NAME||EXPERT|
|HP Jaguar 15-|
|Acer Aspire E15 |
|HP 8G256G-001416 |
If you’re searching for your new laptop this coming year, you’ll never run out of options even if you’re on a budget. Aside from the processors, you’ll also find tons of options to suit your needs. Gone are the days when budget laptops are nothing but Pentium and Celeron-run machines.
Remember, though, that Intel Core has different generations. The latest is 7th and 8th generations that both offer i7 processors.
7th vs. 8th generation Intel
The 8th generation is the latest release from the tech giant. This new version proved that there’s more to Intel than what meets the eye. The 8th generation processors nowadays are lauded for speed. It’s actually about 90% faster than its predecessor as experts tested. So if you have a Core i7 from the 7th gen, upgrading to Core i7 8th gen would make a massive difference.
When it comes to running basic software like MS Excel, the 8th generation is definitely the fastest horse in the stable. It’s 70% faster than the 7th gen in this aspect.
If you’re transcoding video files, you’ll definitely enjoy the glory of 8th generation Intel. If we are to transcode a 4k movie to 1080p, it will take about half an hour using an i7 from the 7th gen. This could be slashed by 10 minutes if you use an 8th gen Core i7.
As for graphics performance, I can say that both the 7th and 8th gen Core i7 are impressive. Although the 8th gen version is faster, its predecessor is just a few notches away. If you’re looking for an i7 gaming laptop under 700, both generations will serve you well.
Overall, as much as the 8th generation is the best pick, the 7th generation Intel is still a good choice. Besides, it’s way cheaper but still fast enough to handle multiple tasks at a time.
How about the 9th generation Intel?
Late in 2018, Intel teased us with the Intel Core 9th generation. The processor chip is being sold individually and we’re yet to see laptops running with it. But regardless of the release of these powerful laptops, it will surely cost a fortune. The processor chip for Intel Core i7 from the 9th generation costs about $500. That’s the chip alone. Imagine a high-end laptop with the chip in it. That will cost us an arm and a leg to purchase. Right now, the 9th generation Intel is exclusively a desktop socketable processor chip.
Why buy i7 laptops
Generally, i3 is for web browsing, i5 is for casual gaming, and i7 is for a professional and heavy workload.
Let’s go back to our budget: $700. At this price range, I’m confident that you can find a decent Core i7 laptop for general use. Although it’s not as lightning speed as 8th and 9th generation, i7 is still a long shot from Celeron and Pentium. If you’ve used a netbook before, you’ll know that the 7th gen Core i7 is already a speedboat compared to the former that rows like a canoe.
So why should you buy a Core i7 laptop? Well, for the most part, this is a champ in speed. Whatever generation it is, i7 has been the top option. Right now, there are i9 processors, mostly used on MacBooks. Still, i7 is the best bargain you can get for a mid-priced laptop with a solid performance.
The i7 processor is also great when it comes to general use. Be it for school, gaming, and businesses, this is unbeatable.
What you should buy
Sure thing, you can grab the first i7 laptop you can see in the market. But as much as we are focusing on the processor, it’s also important to get added features. If you want a speedy laptop, consider having the following:
At least 8 MB of cache memory. This will increase the thrust power of your laptop to handle day to day tasks. This cache capacity will also work for casual gaming and heavy multitasking. Going a little bit below this benchmark should still work well given that you don’t perform very taxing processes.
Optimal 3D Mark score. This CPU scoring method is used to identify the specific performance level of a processor. The higher the 3D Mark Score the better for you. Usually, i7 processors are between high and mid levels. Not bad for most tasks.
What’s with the numbers and letters on Intel CPU
So you’re scouting for the best i7 laptop under 700 when you saw these two options:
Intel Core i7-7500U and Intel Core i7-7Y75
It seems like the same thing, right? But not if we dissect this alphanumeric combination.
Intel Core is the brand of the processor, while the i7, i5, and i3 are the brand modifiers which state the version of the processor. The succeeding number states the generation of the processor. So in the case of Intel Core i7-7500U, the ‘7’ in the 7500U sequence means it’s a 7th gen Intel. The succeeding numbers namely ‘500’ are called SKU or stock keeping unit. This doesn’t have any performance denotation. It’s just Intel’s way of keeping track of the processor’s stock.
Lastly, we have the letter (the ‘U’ on 7500U). This product line suffix dictates a specific description of the performance of the laptop. Here are some according to Intel:
HQ-high performance graphics + quad-core
HK-high performance graphics + unlocked
Y-Extremely low power
If we are to choose between our two examples above based on these, we can tell that Intel Core i7-7500U is better than the Intel Core i7-7Y75. That’s the case even if they both have the same generation and processor version.
How many cores should you buy?
It all depends on what you prefer and which one will suit your budget. Dual cores are decent but quad-cores are way better. You can find the best i7 laptop under 700 with quad-core i7 processors. There are U-series and H-series here but the prices will vary wildly.
If you’re saving up and planning to purchase a more badass machine in the future, hexa-cores are unbeatable. Always consider the process that you’ll do on your laptop.
Anyway, if you want to skip the fuss, we’ve reviewed some the best i7 laptops here for different purposes:
For casual gaming and browsing: HP Jaguar 15-BS080WM 15.6″
If you’re a casual gamer who browses the web often, the HP Jaguar laptop would be a great choice. This runs in a dual-core Intel i7-7500U processor with 8 GB of DDR4 RAM. It also has an integrated Intel Graphics 620 GPU and 1 TB of HDD storage.
This unit also has great connectivity including a DVD writer, Bluetooth, USB ports, webcam, HMDI, and a multi-format card reader slot. With a 15.6-inch display, this is relatively light at 4.4 pounds. The screen is humble enough for less picky users with its 1366 x 768p resolution.
This HP Jaguar laptop also sports a touchscreen feature that adds functionality for typical use. This is encased in a polished plastic silver chassis and a black interior. It’s sleek and thin enough to be transported around without being bulky.
This laptop has an island-style keyboard that’s comfy enough for fast typing together with its typical touchpad. Overall, this is a decent i7 gaming laptop under 700.
When it comes to battery life, the HP Jaguar stands in the middle of the line. It uses a 3-cell Li-ion battery. Still, it delivers solid performance.
The HP Jaguar 15.6” laptop is a great i7 gaming laptop under 700. Still, don’t put your expectations too high. This is a bit far from premium gaming laptops that cost around $2,000.
For heavy schoolwork: Acer Aspire E15 2018 Edition
For those looking for a trusty laptop at school, the Acer Aspire E15 won’t disappoint. It runs in an Intel Core i7-7500U with 8 GB of DDR4 RAM, 4MB cache, and 1 TB of HDD storage. Unlike the HP Jaguar, this Acer unit uses a 4-cell battery. It can run for 6 hours while continuously browsing the web. It’s the best i7 laptop under 700 for general use.
The Acer Aspire E15 is perfect for heavy schoolwork as you can transfer files in a breeze, thanks to its multiple ports. It has 1 USB 3.0, 2 USB 2.0, 1 Type-C, 1 HDMI port, 1 headphone/microphone jack, card reader, and a DVD writer. You can also connect via Bluetooth or the wireless LAN.
Like the HP Jaguar, this has a 15.6-inch display but with a far better resolution of 1920 x 1080p. The colors are crisp and popping which is great in editing videos, photos, and viewing multimedia files.
It uses a standard keyboard that’s well-spaced for easy typing. There are also built-in stereo speakers that are impressive for its price range. As for the touchpad, I’d like to give Acer 5 stars because it’s very easy to use.
You can also do casual gaming here, but it’s not as powerful as most as a dedicated i7 gaming laptop under 700 in the market. Still, it would be a fun machine both for studying and entertainment. As you see, you don’t need to blow a ton of money just to get a decent computer.
For business and office use: HP 8G256G-001416 HD Touchscreen Notebook
Are you looking for more power on your laptop? The HP Touchscreen Notebook is what I recommend. This runs in an Intel Core i7-8550U 8th generation processor with 8 GB of RAM and 256 GB of SSD storage. It’s a powerhouse option with 8 MB of cache capacity and up to 4 GHz of frequency.
Data transfer wouldn’t be a problem here as well. This HP laptop has 2 USB 3.0, 1 USB 2.0, 1 HMDI, 1 earphone/microphone jack, RJ45, and a DVD writer. If you want to amp the storage, this laptop has a spare space for an additional hard drive.
Its 15.6” display has a resolution of 1366 x 768 plus a WLED-backlit touchscreen feature. But like the first HP laptop, this doesn’t have a 360-degree hinge. Still, you’ll enjoy using its multi-gesture touchpad and an island-style keyboard.
When it comes to appearance, the HP Touchscreen Notebook looks clean on its textured black chassis. It has a basic look but better performance than the first two models we’ve reviewed.
Remember that this laptop is only priced below $700 when used. Don’t fret because many of these used items are still in brand new condition. Most likely, it’s just used for advertisements or product reviews before.
Overall, this laptop is great for CPU-intensive tasks like heavy video editing, multi-tasking, and even gaming. Still, its graphics card isn’t as powerful as the top-dollar models.
Have you found the best i7 laptop under 700? These options here are just some of the great finds in the market. Be it for gaming, schoolwork, and work purposes, your $700 budget can go places. You just have to know the right specs to get the best value.