The base model on the manufacturer's website may have only an entry-level Intel Celeron processor, but a limited number of Lenovo G500 reviews from consumers praise versions with speedier CPUs. A G500 with an Intel Pentium processor is available for about the same price and we've also seen a model (59374891) with a more desirable Intel Core i3-3120M processor for as little as $360 (list price $480). Opt for one of those configurations if possible. Regardless, the performance should be more than good enough to run a web browser and productivity software effortlessly and handle all manner of other basic PC tasks.
Lenovo G500 reviews on Amazon mention that the trackpad doesn't work very well and the widescreen display's 1366x768 resolution is unimpressive, although it renders video in 720p high definition. An Office Depot shopper counters that the touchpad works well and also admires the battery life and keyboard. Users and experts alike vouch for the dependability of the Lenovo brand as a whole. Laptop Mag named it second only to Apple as the best notebook brand overall, although a couple of buyers report trouble getting service.
The Lenovo G500 (starting at $330, Amazon), like so many budget laptops, is a Windows 8 system with a 15.6-inch screen. The included 4GB of RAM, 500GB hard drive, DVD recorder, and support for 802.11n wireless connections are pretty standard fare as well. This system includes two USB 3.0 ports, one USB 2.0 port, an HDMI connection, and a memory card reader. The six-cell battery should keep the laptop running for more than five hours, according to the manufacturer, although we couldn't find any independent tests.
The Intel Celeron CPU may seem like a strike against this machine, but look for a Lenovo G500 with a Pentium or Core i3 processor, which represents a step up in performance. That said, we still see quite a few cheap machines with the latest Celeron processors, and they may not be the best cheap laptops, but they manage to fulfill many users' needs while keeping the price point low. Any G500 should be a good, cheap, reliable performer.