The last few years have been relatively out of date in the Windows laptop space. We’ve mostly seen incremental slowdowns in performance and minimal upgrades. However, the laptop processors of the Ryzen 4000 series from AMD announced in March bring the competition to the Intel monopoly. The HP Omen 15 is one of the first in the company’s portfolio to be equipped with the powerful new chips.
The company is based on a 7nm process and promises that the Ryzen 7-based HP Omen 15 offers more performance per watt as well as a fantastic price-performance ratio. But does the entire package keep the promise? Let’s find out in the Android Authority Checking the HP Omen 15.
About this review: I wrote this HP Omen 15 review after spending two weeks with the laptop as the primary device. The device was supplied by HP India.
HP OMEN Gaming 15.6 inch laptop
An AMD Ryzen 7 processor and 8 GB of RAM improve performance for gaming, while the Nvidia GeForce 1650 Ti graphics card offers lag-free streaming.
HP Omen 15 review: stealthy, restrained design
- Polycarbonate construction
- 2.35 kg, 0.89 inches thick
- 3 x USB 3.0, 1 x USB-C port
- HDMI 2.0, mini display port output
- Ethernet, headphone jack
- Full size SD card slot
Gaming laptop designs lean in two directions – – You can either upgrade the game aesthetics with RGB lights and over-the-top flair all-in, or have something like the HP Omen.
I like that the darkened look is discreet enough to wear into a classroom or a meeting. The overall aesthetic is different from the gradient logo on the lid.
This minimalist look extends to the inside of the laptop as well. The darkened Omen 15 logo on the right side of the touchpad isn’t really noticeable, and the design of the speaker grille isn’t particularly noticeable either.
That doesn’t mean everything is perfect. The choice of the polycarbonate soft-touch material makes the laptop particularly prone to fingerprints and stains. In addition, it’s surprisingly difficult to clean.
The soft-touch material attracts scratches and fingerprints.
I’m not overly convinced of the choice of material and it might not hold up too well over months of intense gaming sessions.
The display wobbles a lot elsewhere. While the base of the laptop is particularly solid, opening the lid reveals some flexibility.
As a slot machine, the HP Omen 15 is a chunky boy. The maximum thickness is just under an inch, but that doesn’t take into account the protruding ventilation grilles on the floor. We also found it a bit awkward to carry around, weighing around 2.5 kg.
However, HP made good use of all of the physical storage space, and the port selection here is pretty good. On the right side there is a mini display port, two USB 3.0 ports and a USB-C port with a speed of 5 Gbit / s.
On the left there is another USB 3.0 port, a full-size SD card reader, an HDMI 2.0 port and a fold-out Ethernet port. This is accompanied by a headphone jack and a barrel connector for the charger.
Overall, HP has developed a fairly comprehensive kit that doesn’t skimp on ports. Other than that, the construction is generally decent, although a different choice of materials would have worked a little better.
Does the HP Omen 15 have a good display?
- 15.6-inch full HD display
- 250 nits of brightness
- 45% NTSC coverage
- Matt finish
While the Omen 15 can be configured up to a 4K AMOLED display, the AMD configuration we received includes a low-profile Full HD panel with a refresh rate of 60 Hz.
The panel has fairly small bezels around three corners, but it’s difficult to remove the massive lip along the bottom edge.
The matte display is great for cutting out glare, but the display in this configuration is average at best.
The matte display is a good sign for reducing glare and visibility in sunlight, although I don’t expect many users to wear this laptop outdoors that often.
The panel itself can at best be serviced in this configuration. The color accuracy is not very good and there is a slight color shift once you slide the display back. I measured the maximum brightness just before 250 nits, which isn’t exceptional but is fine indoors. Unfortunately, the lighting isn’t even across the panel and the edges look a bit dull, so it’s a long way from the best laptop display.
How is the typing experience?
When I got off a MacBook it took a little getting used to the HP Omen 15’s offset keyboard design. The typing experience was quite good, although I did notice a bit of springiness while typing quickly. Laptop gamers will like the key removal offered here. Yes, there is backlighting support too, and in higher configurations you can even use zone-based RGB lighting to match the game’s aesthetic.
When switching to the trackpad, the HP Omen 15 includes Windows precision drivers and is big enough. I didn’t have any problems with accuracy or gestures. In short, it works as advertised.
How is the performance on the HP Omen 15?
- AMD Ryzen 7 4800H
- 8 GB DDR4 RAM
- 512 GB NVMe SSD
- Nvidia GeForce 1650 Ti
The Omen 15 is available in a variety of configurations. This starts with a relatively affordable AMD Ryzen 7-based configuration and extends all the way through to 10th generation Core i7 processors. Our tested configuration was based on the Ryzen 7 4800H, paired with 8 GB DDR4 RAM and an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 Ti.
The Ryzen 7 4800H beats its weight class well and is able to do everyday tasks flawlessly. But that’s not what you’re here for, is it? In combination with the dedicated graphics card, popular games can be processed without any problems. Games like Fortnite and Rocket League run well on Full HD and the graphics are high.
To really test the setup, I decided to run the latest Microsoft Flight Simulator on it. The game is known for its high system requirements and puts a strain on both the CPU and the GPU.
Microsoft Flight Simulator was chugging at 24 frames per second, but you should be able to push games like Fortnite and Rocket League.
As expected, the performance was pretty mixed. With a resolution of 1280 x 720 and medium graphics, the game delivered almost playable 24 frames per second. The game constantly fluctuated between 20 and 24 frames per second when it was pushed higher.
Suffice it to say that you are not going to take full advantage of the settings of the latest and greatest games. Certainly not in this particular configuration.
The fans in the HP Omen get quite loud under strong pressure. Plus, the base of the laptop is way too hot to rest on your lap without getting burned. The keyboard stayed pretty cool, however, and I was able to continue my favorite game without ending up with sweaty palms.
Is the battery life good?
- 52.5 Wh battery
- 150W charging stone with barrel connection
- USB-C charging is supported
The HP Omen 15 comes with a fairly small 3-cell, 52.5 Wh cell, which understandably results in fairly poor battery life. With a normal workload, including Slack, Spotify, and browsing, I was able to get a battery life of 2.5-3 hours.
If you play hard, you will barely get an hour of autonomy. Finally, you’ll need to take the large 150W component with you everywhere you go.
What I like about the HP Omen 15
During my time with the HP Omen 15, I learned to appreciate the restrained design and the price-performance ratio. The AMD configuration in combination with the GeForce 1650 Ti offers a good entry into the midrange gaming rig, which is sufficient for popular multiplayer games.
The integrated Bang & Olufsen speakers emit rich-sounding music, although the volume is not particularly high.
What I don’t like about the HP Omen 15
While I like the darkened look, I would have preferred hard plastics over the soft-touch material used here. I understand HP tried to get a premium feel, but the material attracts way too many scratches and you will Every time you use it, you get a fingerprint-coated machine.
Given the size of the HP Omen 15, a larger battery wouldn’t have hurt either. If you were hoping to get the job done in a coffee shop, have the charger handy.
Should You Buy the HP Omen 15?
Look, you’re definitely paying a premium for the omen branding here. However, HP did a pretty good job with the configuration, and the value is very good when it comes to gaming portables.
$ 1149 .99
HP OMEN Gaming 15.6 inch laptop
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The AMD Ryzen 7 offers performance that doesn’t live up to the price, while the graphics card is good enough to provide a decent gaming experience. Priced at Rs. 85,990 (~ $ 1150) in India, the HP Omen 15 strikes a great balance between price and performance despite its problems.
Other options include the ASUS TUF gaming laptop, which includes a slightly lower spec processor but has similar storage space and graphics card. Priced at Rs. 60,990, you will end up saving a whole lot of money without a significant drop in performance.
Meanwhile, the Lenovo Legion 5i has more RAM, similar performance, and a 10th Gen Core i7 processor for a slight premium.
Considering the competition, the HP Omen 15 is inexpensive and delivers the goods. The performance here is satisfactory and the few mistakes such as the choice of materials are not a deal breaker. Overall, the issues like the lackluster display tend to be compromises between laptops in the category in order to match the price. Still, the HP Omen 15 is a surefire choice if you’re looking for a new affordable gaming laptop in the market.