HP has two gaming lines, the premium Omen series and the newer, more budget-friendly Victus. Both of those are getting some mid-2022 updates, focusing on processor options, improved cooling and tweaks to bundled software.
Omen 16 improvements
The Omen 16, which sits in that middle 16-inch gaming laptop zone, has a revamped cooling system that primarily moves more air through the laptop. That includes adding a fourth vent on the outside and a fifth heat pipe inside. HP says that's enabled the temperature from both the GPU and SSD to drop and even lets the system run quieter.
This works hand-in-hand with HP's Omen Gaming Hub software, using an internal thermal sensor to dynamically allocate power between the CPU and GPU as needed while gaming.
CPUs get some new options, including current 12th-gen Intel choices. The top end is now up to an Intel Core i9-12900H or AMD Ryzen 9 6900HX. For graphics, you can now go up to an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070Ti GPU (or Ryzen RX 6650M). Previously, the 16-inch Omen topped out at a regular 3070 GPU.
HP also has 15-inch and 17-inch Omen laptops, but those are not getting updated right now. The new 16-inch models will be available "this summer," according to HP and will start at $1,199.
Reviving the Victus
The relatively recent Victus line is getting a new addition, adding a 15-inch model to the current 16-inch one. Victus is positioned as a more budget-friendly option. HP calls it, "the younger sibling to the seasoned Omen brand."
We've had some serious internal discussion lately of what the definition of a budget laptop should be, both for mainstream laptops and gaming ones. Traditionally, we've set $1,000 as the ceiling for a budget gaming laptop, but inflation and chip shortages have made me reconsider, putting the new bar closer to $1,200.
The new 15-inch Victus starts at $799, it's not yet clear what specs that entry-level system will have. The high end for the Victus will be an Nvidia 3050Ti or AMD RX 6500M GPU and up to an Intel CoreTM i7-12700H or AMD Ryzen 7 5800H CPU.
The system will be available in silver, blue or white. I had a brief hands-on peek at it, and I noted that it has huge bottom vents now. HP says the new design has a significant overall airflow improvement over the previous 16-inch Victus. We'vewith an 11th-gen Core i7 and Nvidia 3060 GPU and liked it as a budget laptop pick.
Like the Omen, the new 15-inch Victus is also expected to arrive in summer 2022.