HP OMEN 15 2020 REVIEW

HP OMEN 15 2020 REVIEW: Gaming notebook computer.

VERDICT

The HP Omen 15 2020 is a rock-solid competition for your next gaming laptop you buy.  It packs the ideal hardware configuration, only thrown off from the option of the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650Ti in an otherwise high-end spec.

Regardless, it done really well in both creative and gaming workload evaluations we put it through.  The screen is bright and very color true, right from the box, something content creators are likely to definitely enjoy.

Perhaps the most striking are the thermals, which HP has done a really good job of keeping in check so that your notebook doesn’t feel as a toaster and of course, doesn’t cause your CPU to throttle.

There’s also user-upgradeable RAM alternative, with an additional, empty NVMe slot to add more high-speed storage.

The only factor that dampens my souls concerning the HP Omen 15 is the lid, which wobbles, flexes and sometimes does not even remain straight.  If you can live with a bad Excellent lid, then there’s really no reason that you not consider the

HP Omen 15 as your next 

HP has experimented a long time with its Omen series of laptops and this year is the same.  While the usual slew of generational updates are still current, the new Omen 15 is really quite another device compared to what’s come before it.

Is the new Omen simply a gimmick or is it really a system worthy of your focus?  We have responses in the paragraphs below.

We ended up our standard package of games for benchmarking the HP Omen 15’s hardware and there were definitely some rather interesting findings.

We tested all our usual gaming titles at 1920×1080 resolution, utilizing each match’s built-in, default and Moderate graphic settings.  For sake of clarity, High signifies the picture placing one lower than the highest, Medium being the one under that.

Games such as Metro Exodus and Doom Eternal offer even higher picture tiers, but for exactly the same of simplicity, we’re treating High and Moderate as the baseline here.

As you can see in the graph above, most games remain well below the 100 fps mark, not really having the ability to take whole advantage of this 144Hz panel.

But most games do run well above the 60 fps mark, meaning having that quick refresh rate panel is definitely likely to boost your gambling experience.

What is intriguing is that the Omen 15 using its Nvidia GeForce 1650Ti outperforms the Asus ROG Zephyrus G GA502 (Inspection ) which housed the Nvidia GeForce GTX 1660Ti, as examined by us annually.

For the founders out there, we have got render times from both Adobe Lightroom Classic and Premiere Pro.  We’re using 500 RAW files out of a Nikon D850 and exporting them into JPG files in batches of 50,100 and 500.

During this time period, we notice the time required for the machine to finish the task along with recording the thermals and CPU core countries to see if there is any throttling occurring.

For video creators, we export a typical 4K timeline loaded with tons of effects, alterations and LUTs into 4K H.264 files.  Our export documents have a duration of 5 minutes and 20 minutes and once more, we capture all applicable data points around the parts and thermals.

We noticed some interesting behavior.   While there was still thermal headroom during these operations, the energy draw appears to suggest that the CPU was hitting the 45W TDP, particularly during gaming.

Premiere tends to change exit load between the CPU and GPU  quite aggressively, preventing a strain on both of those elements.  No matter the Omen 15 finishes the leave tasks assigned to it at a surprisingly quick pace, as noted in our chart below.

The HP Omen 15 2020 powered by the Intel Core i7-10750H and Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650Ti does well on the 3DMark and PCMark package of tests.

Unigine’s Heaven, Valley Superposition benchmarks also see the machine score especially fantastic scores, especially when we put it in context of old machines in the entry level gaming segment.  You can see this year’s Omen 15’s benchmarks below.

Perhaps the single biggest change to the brand new Omen 15 laptop is the thermals.  HP is traditionally known for not having the best thermal solutions in its laptops, but the Omen certainly changes this narrative.

Our testing was conducted in 24-28 degree ambient temperature and not once did the HP Omen 15 feel as though it could double up as a toaster.  Shockingly, the keyboard remains cool during its whole length and breadth, unlike most other gaming laptops whose keyboard island can be used to heat up food from the fridge.

The WASD keys recorded a temperature of 38-degrees, while the middle of the keyboard was at 44-degrees.  The hottest part happens to be the speaker grill which hit 50+ levels.  At length, the vents in the back were recorded to be exhausting air as sexy as 60-degrees.  All readings were carrying during our game-testing which tends to last 6-8 hours in a stretch.

The foundation is still too hot to place in your lap, however, the fact that the remainder of the machine doesn’t have you reaching an ice pack is definitely as delight.  Further getting the Omen 15 commendation is that the fact that we ran all of our testing with the enthusiast profile set to Auto in the Omen Command Center.

Typically, we have to manually place buff curves to handle thermals, but the command center does it on its own and does it well.

Though the program might be all well and good, there are two layout options which definitely help the Omen 15 keep its cool.  The first is that the big perforations on the bottom lid which assist the 2 fans suck in air with as little obstruction as possible.

The second happens to be the fin stack that runs all of the way from the left to the right.  Normally, you’d have a little fin stack attached to the heat pipes to be able to dissipate heat.  This fin arrangement is usually only a few inches in length and is put on both sides of the laptop’s heat pipes.

HP has instead chosen to run this fin all along the length of the back, effectively raising the heat dissipation region significantly.  This is why the Omen 15 is able to run quieter and cooler.

As we could see from all this performance testing, the Omen does pack decent hardware to make short work of the majority of mild to moderately heavy gaming and can definitely take on full scale 4K video jobs.

HP OMEN 15 2020 DISPLAY PERFORMANCE

The panel supports 8-bit colour per station, allowing for accurate and wholesome sRGB coverage.  The panel is also pretty glowing, registering 310 lux of brightness at the middle, however, the corners were a bit darker.

Though this might appear to be a problem in theory, in practice, you just don’t notice this small shift in brightness whether you’re gaming or viewing a really dark film.

The matte coating on the display handles reflections really nicely and in case you’re searching for a machine to use often while on the go, the Omen 15’s screen will not disappoint.

Another area in which the Omen 15 left us feeling like that was a high end gaming laptop was its selection of storage.  Our variant homes a 1TB Samsung MZVLB1T0HBLR OEM drive that uses Samsung’s Phoenix controller.

The specification page lists the drive as having 3500MB/s and 3000MB/s sequential read-write speeds respectively.  Using CrystalDisk Mark 7, we could confirm that the driveway indeed does practically reach those theoretical levels.

But where it really shone was while we were setting the laptop with games and benchmarks.  Call of Duty Modern Warfare now weighs in at roughly 180GB, and transferring it out of our Sandisk Extreme Pro SSD on the Omen’s internal drive saw steady draft rates 400MB/s for the duration of the entire transfer, not falling speeds even once.

Normally, SSDs have a tendency to exhaust their faster SLC cache, causing substantial but momentary fall in write rates, which doesn’t have been the situation .  This signifies is that while Windows will continue to boot up super fast and games and their corresponding amounts will load fast, if you’re editing videos off of their inner drive, you won’t detect any slowdown as a result of drive.

HP OMEN 15 2020 KEYBOARD, TRACKPAD AND I/O

The HO Omen 15 we are reviewing includes a four-zone RGB keyboard.  The keyboard is actually divided into three different RGB zones whereas the WASD keys get their own light profile, making them the fourth largest zone.

The lighting may be controlled by the Omen Control Center software, but unfortunately, it does not offer you any effects.  You can only set the color of the LEDs, but nothing else.  It would have been nice to have the ability to add light effects as well, but alas, you can not have everything.

 HP is notorious for not utilizing Microsoft’s precision drivers because of its trackpads on most of its notebooks, which makes navigating the OS a little bit of a wreck.  The wonderful large matte trackpad of the Omen 15 supports gestures and responds quite well to them.

When it comes to the ports, you have a regular, but healthy selection.  On the right, you will find two USB 3.0 vents, separated by the Screen Port and Thunderbolt 3.0 port via an exhaust vent.  On the left, we now get a full-sized SD Card reader, a combined headphone/microphone jack, a complete size HDMI port and another USB 3.0 port.

HP OMEN 15 2020 BATTERY LIFE TEST

The HP Omen 15 2020 powered by the Intel CPU is not the best when it comes to battery life.  Together with the Windows power profile set to’best battery life’, the laptop delivered only two minutes and hours.

This makes sense given the notebook houses a rather small 52Whr battery.  Using the laptop for simple office function provides slightly better battery life of 3 hours and 20 minutes, but honestly, you are going to need to take the power brick for this laptop with you constantly.

HP OMEN 15 2020 BUILD AND DESIGN

The HP Omen 15 2020 looks nothing like the Omens of earlier.  HP has really made this notebook super slick and elegant concerning its layout language.  This is a notebook that may slip into board-room meetings as readily as it could into LAN parties.

Almost every aspect of the new Omen 15 is rock solid, except one; the Lid.  The lid has far too much flex, it wobbles along with the hinges don’t retain the straight line alignment.

What that means is that if you lift the lid from one corner, you’ll see the entire display get tilted ever so slightly.

The wobble on the display can be so awful that if you are using the laptop in an area with a fan running at full rate, the damn thing starts bouncing up and down.

It almost feels that HP began building this machine from the base up, and at that time they got to the lid, they had run out of cash.

Hence the ridiculously inadequate quality of the lid.  Another thing that’s a little annoying is how easily the body holds smudges.

The lid, the computer keyboard and even the bottom of the laptop holds smudges, so if you have naturally oily fingers, or a dope moisturizing routine, expect to see smudges on this item.

HP OMEN 15 2020 UPGRADEABILITY

One thing that I really liked about the HP Omen 15 is how easy it’s to get into.  Just eliminate the Philips head screws from the bottom, slip in a pry tool and voila.

Inside we are greeted with dual NVMe slots, with only one of them being populated, 16GB of all DDR4 memory (8GB x two sticks), which can be updated to 32GB and ofcourse, the battery.

Here we get a better look in the heat exchanger that runs across the length of the rear and can confirm it is metal, rather than a filler substance.

Contemplating t hat storage and RAM are normally the only upgradeable parts of a laptop, HP has done well by providing a spare NVMe slot and ofcourse, sticking to physical SODIMM slots rather than soldering the RAM into the motherboard.

The HP Omen 15 2020 includes a box cost of Rs 1,20,999.  At this cost, we just cannot recommend a gaming notebook which has an entry-level GPU.

You are certainly paying a premium for your Omen brand name here.  But if it could be found for cheaper, then you need to certainly give this laptop a fantastic hard look.

It will pack all the ideal components like a powerful CPU, lots of (upgradeable) RAM plus a super-fast, large capacity NVMe drive, with space for more.  The screen Is Excellent for editing, gaming, watching movies etc.

PROS

  • Impressive thermals.
  • Performs well for gamers and content creators.
  • The screen is crisp and color accurate

CONS

  • The lid wobbles and flexes.
  • Nvidia GTX 1650Ti feels a bit out of place in this config.

HP OMEN 15 2020 SPECIFICATION

  • The review unit HP shared with us had the following configuration:
  • Processor: Intel Core i7-10750H (6 cores, 12 threads)
  • RAM: 16GB DDR4 @ 3200MHz
  • Storage: Samsung 1TB NVMe
  • GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650Ti
  • Display: Full HD IPS display with 144Hz refresh rate

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