Staples is selling a pretty tempting budget laptop right now: the HP Notebook 15-ay163nr. It's on sale for $500, and it's about $150 cheaper than the suggested retail price and about $60 to $100 less than what you can get elsewhere.
This 15.6-inch PC is packed with a dual-core 2.7GHz Intel "Kaby Lake" Core i7-7500U processor, 8GB of RAM and a 1 terabyte hard drive spinning at 5,400 RPM. It also has a DVD drive and Intel HD 620 integrated graphics. The overall system weighs over four pounds, which puts it at the upper limit of what we'd call portable for an everyday grab-and-go laptop.
The screen is the most obvious area where HP cut corners to hit this low price point: it's only 1366 x 768, which isn't especially crisp for a laptop this size. We'd prefer to see at least 1920 x 1080 on a 15.6-inch panel, but it's not a deal-breaker for this price range.
Like most HP computers, this one comes loaded with a hefty amount of bloatware. We timed how long it took to uninstall the stuff we didn't want or need, and it ended up being about 15 minutes. That's not out of the ordinary for most OEMs, but it does add to the initial setup process and can slow down performance a little over time. It can be removed easily by following our guide here.