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).

IDG/Jason Cross

The brand new Omen continues to be very plastic, but it surely at the very least seems to be type of like a carbon-fiber unique automotive.

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.

hp omen vents IDG/Jason Cross

No, it’s not a Lamborghini Aventador, however the angled vents attempt to mission that form of picture.

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.

hp omen ports left IDG/Jason Cross

HP lastly added a Kind-C connector with Thunderbolt Three help.

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).

hp omen ports right IDG/Jason Cross

With out an abundance of USB ports, how are you going to plug in that VR rig?

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.

hp omen bottom IDG/Jason Cross

If you wish to make upgrades, you’re going to should take away a bunch of screws.

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.

hp omen lights IDG/Jason Cross

You’ll be able to choose any keyboard shade you need, so long as it’s crimson.

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.

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