If you’re a big-time gamer, you’ve probably got a gaming console or two. There are some games, though, that are better played on a computer, which means you need a top-notch gaming computer for some titles. HP’s Omen line of gaming laptops is an excellent option for serious gamers because they feature technology that works well with all the newest games and allow you to customize and upgrade the system to suit your needs. But there are several different HP Omen configurations, so you need to choose a model that offers the features and power that your favorite games require.
Fortunately, our buying guide has all the information you need to find the best HP Omen laptop for your next gaming session. We’ve also included several specific product recommendations, including our top choice, the HP Omen 15.6-Inch 2019 Laptop, which features a ninth-generation Intel processor for fast, responsive gaming.
Gaming software usually has strong CPU (central processing unit) and GPU (graphics process unit) processing power requirements. HP Omen laptops can meet those needs because they feature the latest graphics cards, including the NVIDIA GeForce RTX and GTX. They also incorporate CPU and GPU chips like Intel Core i5, i7, and i9 for increased processing power. That allows the laptops to run software that utilizes large databases or processes video.
HP Omen laptops with the most up-to-date components are the most expensive, though. So if you mainly plan to use your laptop for basic computer tasks like word processing and web browsing rather than gaming, save money by choosing a different HP model.
For the best gaming experience, HP Omen laptops have large screens with diagonal measurements between 15.6 and 17.3 inches. The screens usually offer a full HD resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 pixels, but some higher-end models actually provide 4K resolution of 3,840 x 2,160 pixels. You’ll certainly appreciate this higher resolution for gaming and watching videos, but you’ll definitely pay more for it.
If you prefer a laptop with a smaller-sized chassis, though, opt for an HP Omen laptop with a smaller screen to keep the overall size more manageable.
When it comes to a gaming laptop, the graphics card is the most essential hardware component. The graphics card contains the GPU, so if it isn’t powerful enough, you can experience game lag. Omen laptops offer NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060, 2070, and 2080 graphics cards, which can handle nearly any game. Lower-priced Omen models may have GeForce GTX 1660Ti and 1650 cards, though.
A graphics card’s RAM is used solely by the GPU. You want a model that offers at least 4GB of graphics RAM, but you’ll see better performance with an Omen laptop that offers 8GB or more.
A laptop’s CPU is its main processor. The CPU is responsible for running gaming software, so you want an Omen laptop that offers significant processing power. A more powerful CPU is better equipped to handle the fast inputting required for serious gameplay. Omen laptops feature ninth-generation Intel Core i5, i7, and i9 CPUs.
In addition to graphics RAM, a laptop also requires system RAM. It’s used by the computer for all functions other than graphics processing. It’s also where data that the CPU requires quick access to is temporarily stored. The more RAM a laptop has, the faster and more smoothly it can operate. Omen laptops typically have between 8GB and 32GB of RAM.
HP Omen laptops offer storage in three configurations. Solid-state drive (SSD) storage is extremely quick, but you’ll pay more per GB. Hard disk drive (HDD) storage isn’t as fast, but it’s not as expensive as SSD storage. You can also find some HP Omen laptops with hybrid storage, which uses both SSD and HDD storage. Most Omen laptops offer between 1 and 2TB HDD storage or 256GB to 1TB of SSD storage.
When you’re gaming, you want a keyboard that responds quickly and easily since you’ll need to make rapid inputs to control gameplay. You may also want a model with a backlit keyboard, so you’re able to see the keys even if you’re playing in low-light situations. Omen laptops feature zone backlighting to allow for precise keystrokes. They also offer a 26-key rollover feature that prevents ghosting, so keystrokes or several keystrokes aren’t lost.
Models in the Omen 17 line have keyboards that allow you to use macro key settings, too.
You’ll usually pay between $800 and $3,000 for an HP Omen laptop. Smaller models with less power and storage can go for $800 to $1,100, while slightly larger laptops with more power and storage typically cost between $1,100 and $1,500. For the most powerful Omen laptops with the largest screen, you can expect to spend $1,500 and $3,000.
A. Due to their large screens and powerful processing units, an HP Omen laptop usually only offers four to six hours of battery life.
A. You can usually expect to get 1 1/2 to 3 years of high-quality performance from an Omen laptop. If you upgrade the RAM and other components, though, it may last longer.
Our take: An excellent gaming laptop that has plenty of impressive features and comes in at an attractive price point.
What we like: Screen is 15.6 inches and offers full HD resolution. Features a ninth-generation Intel processor for fast operation. Comes with just 8GB of RAM but can easily be upgraded. Keyboard has zone backlighting.
Our take: An affordable gaming laptop that offers better battery life than other models and a slim, compact design.
What we like: Works well for streaming video thanks to its six-hour battery life. Features a 15.6-inch full HD display. Boasts a hybrid hard drive with both SSD and HDD storage. Includes 12GB of RAM but can be upgraded.
Our take: A standout for its 4K resolution that really brings high-end games and streaming video to life.
What we like: Its excellent graphics card pairs well with the 4K resolution. Features a quick quad-core CPU processor. Includes a 2TB hard drive, as well as 512GB SSD. Provides 16GB RAM for high-end performance.
What we dislike: Pretty pricey for a gaming laptop. Storage may be too much for some people.
Jennifer Blair is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.
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