It’s been some time since I have the chance to play with a large laptop, and the HP Omen 16 2021 gaming laptop is one large beast.
And it is not only in size – which is considerable seeing it measures 37 cm by 24 cm, and weighs 2.4 kg.
The review unit has a 16.1-inch screen with 1920 x 1080 pixels, 144 Hz IPS with a 3 ms response time and 100% sRGB colour coverage. Unfortunately, it doesn’t support HDR.
Powering this beast is an Intel Core i7 11800H with 8 cores running at 2.3 GHz. It comes with 32 GB RAM (two slots, 16 GB each) and a 1 TB Intel Optane SSD + 32 GB Intel Optane Memory H10, which speeds up access to the already fast solid-state storage.
The OS of choice here is Windows 10 Home 64, which is ok for your gaming needs but if you want that Bitlocker storage encryption then you might have to consider an upgrade to Pro. Fortunately, the machine does come with a TPM which means it can also be upgraded to Windows 11.
In addition to the integrated Intel UHD GPU, this HP Omen came with an NVIDIA RTX 3070 Laptop 8 GB GPU – it wouldn’t be much of a gaming machine without a worthy GPU and this one delivers.
Obviously with all these specs, the question lingering question is “Is it fast?” and I can tell you the HP Omen 16 I fast. It feels very responsive and can run everything you want to load. It is also very quiet and even when gaming you can barely notice any noise coming out it. The interesting bit here is that running Passmark PerformanceTest tells me the HP Omen 16 configuration I have here hits a score of 7365, placing it on the 86% (the world score average when I tested this configuration was 4210).
The same benchmark also shows the RTX 3070 scores a 15817 3D MARK, placing it miles ahead of my desktop running an older NVIDIA GTX 1050 TI, which scores only 6237 on the same test.
The keyboard is backlit with a 4-zone RGB LED, which you can control from an app called Light Studio. This app not only controls the keyboard backlight but can also be used to control other devices such as Razer and Logitech keyboards and Philips Hue and Twinkly lights, coordinating colours across different devices and layers. Also worth noting is the numeric keypad, a rarity these days.
There’s no shortage of ports on this HP Omen 16. You start with one Thunderbolt with USB4 Type-C, three SuperSpeed USB-A ports, one headphone/microphone combo port, one Mini DisplayPort, one HDMI and an SD card reader. There’s also an RJ-45 port for a good old Ethernet connection.
In addition to the Ethernet connection, the HP Omen brings an Intel WiFi 6 AX 201 wireless adapter, which means you can get faster wireless connections on compatible networks running WiFi 6 access points.
The HP Omen 16 has a huge 83,000 mWh battery, which can see you going for hours before you need a full charge again. Lucky because the power brick is a chunky, heavy (650 g) piece of hardware that you don’t want to carry around, believe me.
The whole platform works to give you some very smooth, fast-moving graphics when playing games or videos. It is even a great laptop for work too, with plenty of power to run development, build and testing tasks.