We’ve been on the lookout for good but seriously cheap laptops for a while now. Acer’s $650 Swift 3 is an excellent choice for budget laptops in the under-$700 range, but we’ve been really itching to find one in the almost nonexistent sub-$400 category. To that end, today we’re looking at two of Walmart’s finest—a $378 Acer Swift 1 and a $350 Gateway GWTN141-2.
Both of these are serviceable if cheap laptops, but the Gateway, despite being the less expensive model, will be the clear winner for most people. It’s more powerful, more repairable, more upgrade-able, and in our testing, a bit more reliable as well.
|Specs at a glance: as reviewed|
|Acer Swift 1 SF114-32||Gateway GWTN141-2|
|OS||Windows 10 Home (S mode)||Windows 10 Home (S mode)|
|Screen||14 inch IPS FHD (1920×1080, 250nits)||14.1 inch IPS FHD (1920×1080, 190nits)|
|CPU||Pentium Silver N5000||Ryzen 3 3200U|
|GPU||Intel UHD 605||AMD Vega 3|
|RAM||4GiB DDR4 (soldered, non expandable)||4GiB DDR4 (soldered, with one empty DIMM slot)|
|128GB NVMe M.2
2×2 Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 5.0
1×1 Wi-Fi 5, Bluetooth 4.2
|Size||12.7″ x 9″ x 0.6″
(323 x 229 x 15mm)
|13.1″ x 8.9″ x 0.8″
(333 x 226 x 21mm)
|Weight||2.9 pounds (1.3kg)||3.5 pounds (1.6kg)|
|Warranty||1 year limited||1 year limited|
|Fingerprint reader (in touchpad),
|Price as tested||$378 at Amazon and Walmart||$350 at Walmart|
Acer Swift 1 SF114-32
Thankfully, the off-putting dingy yellow POST logo isn’t in your face for long—the Swift 1 cold boots to the desktop in about 11 seconds. [credit:
Jim Salter ]
We didn’t actually intend to test or review the Swift 1—we ordered a Walmart Motile 14, with a Ryzen 5 processor for only $350. But Walmart has an unfortunate tendency to just throw in any similar product when it runs low on stock, and the Swift 1 is what got sent in its place—with no notification, either by email or in our account at Walmart.com, and no paperwork in the box either.