An illustration showing laptop computers on sale

The two best times of the year to find deals on laptops are Black Friday and the late summer back-to-school period. But sales also crop up throughout the year, loosely tied to events such as school graduations and Father's Day.

Right now, some retailers are offering deals on laptops ranging from inexpensive workhorses to higher-end models capable of playing new games like Sekiro at high settings and rendering hi-res video in no time.

Some of these models have scored well in CR’s ratings.

Consumer Reports rates dozens of laptops every year, evaluating them based on criteria, including how well they perform routine tasks involving productivity apps and web browsing, how long the battery lasts, and how comfortable the keyboard is to use. We also factor in predicted brand reliability and owner satisfaction ratings derived from surveys of CR members.

Here’s a look at some of the best laptop deals you’ll find right now.

Dell Chromebook

The deal: $180 from Dell.com, a savings of about $120

You can find plenty of inexpensive Windows laptops nowadays, but to get the absolute lowest price you ought to consider a Chromebook. Instead of Windows, these laptops use Chrome OS, a Google-developed operating system that should be familiar to anyone who’s used the Chrome browser before. (And according to the latest stats, that describes most PC users.)

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You won’t be able to use Windows applications on a Chromebook, but you can use apps from the Google Play store—and there are options there for everything from editing text and photos to killing time by lining up virtual pieces of candy.

You can also tap into a wide array of web-based software, including Gmail and Google Docs.

This Dell model, which we tested recently, earned only so-so marks—but that may be expected from a laptop that doesn’t even crack the $200 mark. Our testers found the overall performance to be on the slow side but the machine was easily up to everyday tasks such as browsing the web and word processing. It's a relatively light 3.2 pounds and the battery lasts more than 9 hours in Consumer Reports testing.

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Dell Chromebook 3189

Price: $365

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Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga

The deal: $720 from Lenovo.com, a savings of about $180

Lenovo’s ThinkPad Yoga line of laptops are what’s known as two-in-one convertibles. That means you can bend the display all the way behind the keyboard so it can be used like a tablet or digital clipboard, or propped up in an inverted V (like a tent) to easily share videos or presentation slides with a coworker or buddy. This particularly model has a 13.3-inch display and scored well in our ratings.

You won't need to make many compromises with this laptop. It has a fast Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of memory, and 256GB of storage—all in line with our experts’ recommendations for most people. That means you’ll be able to do everything from browsing the web to balancing your monthly budget in Excel without any performance hiccups. The Lenovo doesn’t have a dedicated graphics card, but only serious video game players should consider that a deal-breaker.

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Lenovo ThinkPad L380 Yoga

Price: $900

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Apple MacBook Pro

The deal: $1,800 from Best Buy, a savings of about $200

Apple’s MacBooks consistently rank among the best laptops in our ratings, with generally strong marks across the board, including for overall performance, ergonomics, and portability.

This model, now on sale at Best Buy, is a 13-inch MacBook Pro with an Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of memory, and 256GB of storage that has topped our ratings for its size category since it was released last fall.

By most metrics this is an excellent laptop, with enough power to handle everything from editing text to browsing the web to editing video—and with a battery that lasts nearly 18 hours in CR's testing.

Unlike many Windows laptops, the display is not a touch screen—that's long been a knock against Apple’s laptops. Some people may be annoyed by the lack of a built-in memory card reader and the laptop's shallow keyboard. But if those aren't deal-breakers, and you want an Apple machine, this is a great choice at a good price.

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Apple MacBook Pro 13-inch (2018, MR9Q2LL/A)

Price: $1,800

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Asus ZenBook

The deal: $700 on Amazon, a savings of $150

This 13-inch laptop from Asus is a strong performer that ranks quite high in its size category. It’s got the basics covered, including an Intel Core i5 processor, 8GB of memory, and 256GB of storage. There’s no dedicated graphics card.

Our testers mostly had good things to say about the ZenBook, noting strong overall performance, battery life (at nearly 14 hours), and a vibrant, accurate display that handles glare well.

Unlike so many Windows laptops these days, it’s not a two-in-one. But if you're looking for a good deal on a conventional laptop that turns in solid performance, this could be it.

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Asus ZenBook UX331UA-AS51

Price: $800

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HP Pavilion Gaming

The deal: $780 at Walmart, a savings of about $120

This laptop is unique among the models featured here in that it’s aimed at people who intend to play their fair share of video games. That should turn off everyone else, however, because gaming laptops are ultimately just powerful laptops that have unique design cues like built-in flashing lights.

As far as raw specs go, this laptop is similar to other laptops mentioned thus far. You get an Intel Core i5 processor and 8GB of memory. But you also get 1TB of hard drive space. More important, the laptop includes a powerful, dedicated graphics card from Nvidia. This means you can play the latest games, like Resident Evil 2 or Mortal Kombat 11, at very high settings without seeing performance dips. These graphics cards are also used by certain apps, including several in Adobe’s creative suite, to speed the processing of tasks such as rendering hi-res video.

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