Product Reviews

5 Best Low Budget Linux Laptops and Computers to Buy Today

Best Cheap Linux Laptops
Written by Martins D. Okoi

Linux Operating Systems are undoubtedly the best choice of OS to run on old hardware while maintaining an efficient-enough workflow and productivity rank – look at the Raspberry Pi, for example.

If you’re reading this article then you probably already know that if your budget is relatively low to purchase a high-end Windows or Mac laptop, below is our compilation of the best Linux computers that you can purchase without selling any hardware parts.

1. Pinebook 64

The Pinebook 64 also supports other Linux-based operating systems, as well as Android-based operating systems. So if you don’t like Ubuntu MATE, you have other options.

Pinebook 64 Laptop

Pinebook 64 Laptop

The Pinebook is a portable Linux machine that ships running Ubuntu MATE. It has a beautiful, white, almost weight-less build that encourages its users to carry it around and it is perfect for browsing, word procession, and multimedia playback tasks.

Running games on this machine is not ideal and you might need to get a different listed machine below. And did I mention? You can run the Android OS on it!

Pinebook Specifications

  • Price: $99
  • Operating System: Ubuntu 16.05 MATE
  • CPU: 1.2GHz ARM Cortex A53 processor
  • RAM: 2GB
  • Storage: 16GB internal storage (with microSD slot up to 256GB)
  • Screen Size & Resolution: 14-inch Full HD (1920×1080) IPS screen
  • WiFi: 802.11bgn Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth: 4.0
  • Battery: 10,000mAh lithium-polymer battery

2. ZaReason Limbo 6330a

The ZaReason Limbo 6330a is by default, powered by Ubuntu 18.04 LTS and is completely open to customization. Being just a CPU with top-notch features, expect it to be a lot more pricey than the less powerful computers.

Limbo 6330a CPU

Limbo 6330a CPU

At the store, you can customize everything about it from the Linux distro that it ships with to the inclusion of WiFi, Bluetooth, and other features that you may want to include.

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This is the machine that you can use to play games like no man’s business.

Limbo Specifications

  • Starting Price: $499
  • OS: Ubuntu 18.04 LTS
  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 3 1200 3.1GHz quad-core
  • RAM: 4GB of DDR4
  • Storage: 7200 RPM 1TB
  • Network: Ethernet port
  • USB Ports: USB 3.0 (2) and USB 2.0 (4)

3. Compulab MintBox Mini 2 Pro (MBM2 Pro)

The Compulab MintBox Mini 2 Pro comes with Linux Mint 19 with two USB 2.0 ports and two USB 3.0 ports coupled with a slot for microSD cards.

MintBox Mini 2 Pro

MintBox Mini 2 Pro

This mini PC, like all others, is suitable for programming and multimedia playback.

MintBox Mini 2 Pro Specifications

  • Starting Price: $349
  • OS: Linux Mint 19
  • CPU: Intel Celeron J3455 quad-core
  • RAM: 8GB RAM
  • Storage: 120GB SSD
  • WiFi: PCIe 802.11ac
  • Bluetooth: 4.0
  • Battery: 4-cell lithium-ion battery

4. System76 Lemur – Galago Pro

The System76 Lemur – Galago Pro is one of the beautiful computers in the product line of laptops made by System76.

System76 Lemur – Galago Pro

System76 Lemur – Galago Pro

It ships with either Ubuntu or its fork of the Linux that goes by the name of Pop OS depending on your choice. It also comes with a variety of specifications which you can have a field day customising before clicking to make your purchase.

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System76 Lemur Specifications

  • Starting Price: $899
  • OS: Pop!_OS 17.10 (64-bit) or Ubuntu 16.04.3 LTS (64-bit) pre-installed
  • CPU: 2.1GHz Intel Celeron N3150 processor
  • RAM: 4GB RAM
  • Storage: 120GB M.2 SSD, 2.5″ 7mm height drive. Up to 6 TB total
  • Screen Size & Resolution: 13.3″ 3200 × 1800 HiDPI Display
  • WiFi: 802.11bgn Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth: 4.0
  • Battery: Li-Ion – 35.3 Wh

5. Endless Desktop Linux Mini PC

Endless Desktop Linux Mini PC is developed by the developers behind the free and open-source Endless OS which comes with a curated list of bundled applications that you can start using without even connecting to the internet.

Endless Linux Mini PC

Endless Linux Mini PC

For all those looking for a beautiful and stylish Mini PC, Endless Desktop Mini PC is a good pick. See the minimum specs below.

Endless Linux Mini Specifications

  • Starting Price: $189
  • OS: Endless OS
  • CPU: 1.58GHz Intel Celeron N2807 dual-core
  • RAM: 2GB RAM
  • Storage: 500GB HDD
  • Screen Size & Resolution: 14-inch Full HD (1920×1080) screen
  • WiFi: 802.11bgn Wi-Fi
  • Bluetooth: 4.0

These machines are capable of getting work done and the learning curve is little to nothing depending on your familiarity with computers and the Linux OSes.

Remember to follow to the product store to view their complete feature lists if you want further details on any of them.

What other cheap Linux machine should have been listed or is worthy of a mention? Pen down your thoughts in the comments section below.

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About the author

Martins D. Okoi

Martins Divine Okoi is a graduate of Computer Science with a passion for Linux and the Open Source community. He works as a Graphic Designer, Web Developer, and programmer.