This has been a banner year for gaming PCs, and gaming laptops in particular. Following excellent gaming systems from Lenovo,, Origin PC, and others, HP is adding a new entry, timed for the holiday season, called the Omen.
HP at one time produced many gaming laptops and desktops, especially after acquiring the Voodoo brand in 2006, but has of late left the PC gaming market to others. The new Omen is, the company says, part of its overall consumer strategy to drive growth in new segments and appeal to passionate customers who know what they want.
The Omen is a 15.6-inch gaming laptop that pairs an Intel Core i7 CPU with Nvidia's GeForce 860M graphics card, plus 8GB of RAM and a 128GB SSD. That's remarkably similar to systems such as the, which has the same 1,920x1,080-pixel touchscreen (although the Y50 is available in an optional 4K configuration).
The basic black design, milled from a solid piece of aluminum, is accented by tapered edges with a speaker grille along each side. That tapered edge doesn't seem to leave much room for ports and connections, so they're all on the back. There's also a red backlit keyboard with six programmable function keys along the left edge. The Y50 has a similar red keyboard, but looks boxier and thicker compared to the Omen, which is about 20mm thick and weighs 4.68 pounds (2.1kg).
That base configuration will be available to order in the US starting November 4 from the Microsoft Store, BestBuy.com and other online retailers, and shipping a few weeks after that. The base configuration will be $1,499, with a 256GB SSD option for $100 more, or the 256GB SSD and a 4GB version of the GeForce 860M for a total of $1,699.
At this time, international pricing and availability, including for the UK and Australia, was not available from HP, but we'll update this post when it is. The base price of $1,499 converts to £940 or AU$1,715, but expect final local prices to vary considerably.