Once we reviewed HP’s 17-inch Omen gaming laptop last year, we discovered it to be somewhat boring, however full of a ton of highly effective at a really engaging worth. HP’s again this 12 months with a brand new Omen design, however that basic description nonetheless holds true. This isn’t the fanciest high-end gaming laptop computer we’ve seen. Neither is it absolutely the quickest. Nonetheless, different manufacturers cost lots of extra for a similar fundamental specs, typically with little or no efficiency benefit. I hesitate to name the $2,000+ Omen 17 a “cut price,” however you positively get plenty of bang in your buck.
The brand new design
HP has improved upon the pedestrian design of final 12 months’s Omen with a glance that brings to thoughts the form of a contemporary Lamborghini. It’s all angled air vents and carbon fiber-like texturing (no, it’s not really carbon fiber).
The brand new design permits for higher cooling and will increase most potential airflow by about 20 %, but it surely doesn’t come free. At 33mm, it is nonetheless thinner than plenty of different 17-inch gaming laptops, however the base weight with out the facility brick creeps as much as eight kilos, Three ounces—a full pound heavier than final 12 months’s model.
The brand new Omen 17 is full of ports, most of them on the left. You get Mini DisplayPort, HDMI, ethernet, USB Three.1 (Gen 1) Kind A, USB Three.1 (Gen 1) Kind C, headset, microphone, and an SD card reader. Excellent news! That Kind-C port additionally helps Thunderbolt Three, a characteristic sorely lacking from the 2016 mannequin.
Not sufficient USB for you? The precise facet has one other pair of Kind-A connectors, supporting USB Three.1 (Gen 1), together with the facility plug (a regular barrel connector).
We made particular word of the 2016 Omen’s poor serviceability relative to different huge gaming laptops. There was just one small door providing you with entry to the RAM, and another upgrades (like a brand new onerous drive) would require extra intensive disassembly. HP has moved backward within the 2017 design. You’ll be able to’t get inside in any respect with out eradicating at the very least 10 screws and pulling off the entire backside.
The total-size keyboard is similar as final 12 months’s, full with crimson LED backlighting, a full ten-key keypad, and a row of macro keys on the left. The touchpad hasn’t modified, both: It really works effectively sufficient, however falls far wanting the very best Home windows touchpads like these on the Floor Guide or Floor Laptop computer.
Bang for the buck
The 17-inch Omen we reviewed final 12 months was notable for providing you with a number of high-end at a really affordable worth. That also holds true, and it’s nonetheless the best energy of HP’s gaming pocket book line.
Our assessment system got here full of a Core i7-7700HQ processor, a GeForce GTX 1070 graphics card, 32GB of DDR4/2400 RAM, a 256GB M.2 NVMe drive, and a 1TB 7,200rpm SATA drive. The optical drive is once more lacking (and this time, there’s no USB optical drive included within the field), however who actually wants an optical drive anymore?
There are two show choices: Our assessment unit has the 60Hz 4K IPS panel, however a 120Hz 1080p panel can also be obtainable (and given the 17.Three-inch dimension, it is perhaps a more sensible choice for severe players). Each are G-Sync appropriate.
Our assessment unit additionally comes geared up with a wide-angle 1080p webcam with an array mic. Its low-light efficiency is simply so-so, but it surely does have an IR sensor so it helps Home windows Good day. When you get used to split-second logins utilizing solely your face, it’s onerous to return.
All that is powered by an 86 watt-hour battery, which lasted about Three hours, 41 minutes in our battery rundown check (during which we calibrate the show to 250-260 nits and play a 4K video file within the TV and Films app on infinite repeat). That’s fairly first rate battery life for a 17-inch gaming laptop computer, however in fact you’ll drain it quicker when enjoying video games. Most gaming laptops are higher described as “simply transportable all-in-one computer systems” reasonably than one thing actually meant for use on the go, and this one isn’t any exception.
The value for all this ? Solely $2,140 at this writing. Given the calls for of 4K gaming and the minuscule dimension of the pixels on a 17-inch show, I feel most players could be happier with the 120Hz 1080p model. If you happen to take that show possibility, and cut back the RAM from 32GB to 16GB, you could have a really highly effective gaming laptop computer for $1,690. Any approach you narrow it, HP’s providing you with plenty of horsepower in your greenback.
3DMark Fireplace Strike Excessive efficiency
In fact, recreation efficiency is the number-one concern of these shopping for a gaming laptop computer, and the brand new HP Omen doesn’t disappoint, performs proper consistent with what you’d count on from these specs. Let’s check out the efficiency in 3DMark’s strenuous Fireplace Strike Excessive check.
That is precisely what we count on from a GTX 1070 in a gaming laptop computer. It’s noticeably behind the GTX 1080, however effectively forward of the GTX 1060. Be aware that the GTX 1070-equipped HP Omen from final 12 months is only a contact quicker, about Three %, which is correct across the margin of error.
That hole closes after we have a look at the general Fireplace Strike rating, which is correct in line (simply over a one-percent distinction). For some motive, the 15-inch Alienware with the identical CPU and graphics chip performs a bit higher in Fireplace Strike, however that might be attributable to cooling or clock speeds—simply because it’s bought the identical GPU doesn’t imply the producer runs it on the similar increase and turbo speeds, or has the cooling to maintain these clocks up excessive throughout benchmarking.
Rise of the Tomb Raider efficiency
At a decision of 1080p, this factor cranks out over 100 fps in Rise of the Tomb Raider. In contrast to the artificial 3DMark check, this actual recreation check does present the anticipated minor enchancment in efficiency from the ever-so-slightly quicker CPU and RAM.
That is additionally a superb instance of why the 120Hz, 1080p show possibility would be the more sensible choice. With G-Sync, you get all the advantage of operating at these excessive body charges. After I cranked the sport as much as 3840×2160, nevertheless, efficiency dropped to 37 fps. With a show this dimension, excessive body charge goes to do extra for you than these additional pixels.
Center-earth: Shadow of Mordor efficiency
Once we crank the pleasant Shadow of Mordor as much as its max settings and run at 1080p, we’re in a position to obtain common body charges in extra of 120 fps. Once more, it’s only a tiny bit quicker than final 12 months’s mannequin, however not so that you’d discover.
At 4K, we’re again down below 60 fps once more. Particularly, the typical body charge is 47 fps. That’s not unhealthy in any respect. In actual fact, it’s fairly spectacular for a pocket book. However that’s the common, not minimal. I do know I’d reasonably run at 1080p with a a lot larger body charge!
Handbrake encoding efficiency
What about non-gaming? A fast have a look at Handbrake video encoding exhibits us what we count on to see from a Core i7-7700HQ and 32GB of DDR4-2400 RAM. HP’s system matches different 7700HQ-based laptops, and is only a tad quicker than the Core i7-6700HQ present in final 12 months’s mannequin.
If you really want to do some video modifying, this quad-core laptop computer can actually get the job finished. If you wish to do workplace work and net shopping, effectively, that is overkill. Candy, candy overkill.
The 2017 model of the HP Omen 17-inch gaming laptop computer is a small however welcome replace from last year’s model. It nonetheless has some room to develop, with “simply okay” audio and a “simply okay” touchpad, together with a reasonably pedestrian aesthetic. However at the very least it’s not almost as plain-looking as final 12 months’s boring black slab, and a few of the annoyances, like the dearth of Thunderbolt Three, have been corrected. The newer Intel processors come customary, however these don’t actually make an enormous distinction in efficiency.
Once we have a look at the large image, we see a laptop computer that shares the identical aggressive qualities as final 12 months’s mannequin, regardless of the brand new design. It’s handsome sufficient, feature-rich sufficient, and quick sufficient to make you assume twice about spending lots of extra for one among its opponents. HP gives unbelievable worth right here, should you can discuss significantly about “worth” in a high-end gaming laptop computer.