This $640 Ryzen 7 ThinkPad is the cheapest 8-core laptop with 16GB RAM right now

Lenovo ThinkPad E15 Gen 3
(Image credit: Lenovo)

What is it? The Lenovo ThinkPad E15 Gen 3 is the most affordable laptop on the market right now with an 8-core processor and 16GB of memory. It has been discontinued, which is why it is being heavily discounted. It is also one of the best value for money business laptops right now.

What makes it special and why should I buy it? Other than the fact that it comes with the ThinkPad sticker - and the expected high level of craftsmanship -  the E15 Gen 3 brings together three other things that you almost never find at such a low price: 16GB of RAM, Windows 11 Pro and eight real high-performance cores. The AMD Ryzen 7 5700U CPU is still one of the fastest true mobile processors (i.e. with a low TDP) on the market.

How much does it cost? The Lenovo ThinkPad E15 Gen 3 (20YG0031US) costs only $636.35 at with free delivery. That is a saving of more than $340 (about 35%) off the sticker price, which makes it a great deal in our books.

What else should we know? Since it has a 15.6-inch display, there is space for a full numeric keypad. The screen itself is a 300-nit full HD model, which is the ideal screen resolution. At under 19mm thick and weighing only 1.7Kg, it still manages to be MIL-STD-810G compliant, so should be able to take its fair share of knocks and bumps.  Its 256GB PCIe NVMe SSD is big enough for most users and its Trackpoint input peripheral provides a compelling alternative to the traditional touchpad.

Any cons? There’s no fingerprint reader, which is a bit of a let down given the audience it is targeting, and the lack of a backlit keyboard is also a shame. Wireless connectivity is limited to Wi-Fi 5 only, there’s 8GB of RAM that’s soldered (and therefore not upgradable) and the battery is a puny 45WHr model.

Also consider

The MSI Laptop Modern 15 A5M288 ($549, Newegg) has twice the storage (and costs almost $100 less) but half the memory and comes with Windows 11 Home rather than Windows 11 Pro.

The HP Pavillion 13-be0075cl ($789.49, Amazon) sells for just under $790 but has a faster Ryzen 7 5800U and twice the storage capacity but no Windows 11 Pro and its screen is smaller (13.3-inch). If you’re after a super lightweight laptop then this is it as it weighs just under 1Kg.

Desire Athow
Managing Editor, TechRadar Pro

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website builders and web hosting when DHTML and frames were in vogue and started narrating about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium.