At least 3 to 4 times a year, someone close to me asks me, “Anthony, I’m buying a laptop. Can you help me find? Systematically, the first part of my answer begins with, “Do you need it to play two games?” “. This is absolutely necessary because gaming computers require specific components such as a graphics card and a powerful processor. It is so specific that most major companies have a sub-division dedicated solely to gaming, as is the case with HP with its OMEN division for its laptops, including the one in my test: Victus.
The gaming branch of the HP company continues to take its place in the market with a wide range of computers, monitors, software and accessories under this brand. Whether you prefer a tandem AMD/NVIDIA or Intel/NVIDIA or dual AMD, OMEN by HP has a gaming configuration to suit your taste. Here we will cover the 16-e0010ca model equipped with an AMD Ryzen 5000 series 5 processor and a GeForce RTX 3500. Is this the ideal option for your PC gaming needs?
Technical specifications of Victus 16-e0010ca from HP (2021)
|Processor||– AMD Ryzen 5 5600H (up to 4.2 GHz maximum boost frequency, 16 MB L3 cache, 6 cores, 12 threads)|
|Graphics card||– NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 Laptop GPU (4 GB dedicated GDDR6 memory)|
|Memory||– 8 GB|
|Space||– 512 GB PCIe® NVMe™ TLC M.2 SSD|
|Screen||– Full HD with a diagonal of 16.1 inches
– 1920 x 1080, IPS, micro-edge, anti-glare,
– 250 nits, 45% NTSC
|Connection||– Realtek Wi-Fi 6 (1×2) and Bluetooth® 5.2 combo card
– Built-in 10/100/1000 GbE LAN
|Ports||– 1 USB Type-C® SuperSpeed port, 5 Gbit/s transfer speed (DisplayPort™ 1.4 and HP Sleep and Charge)
– 1 SuperSpeed USB Type-A port, 5 Gbps transfer speed (HP Sleep and Charge)
– 2 SuperSpeed USB Type-A ports, 5 Gbps transfer speed
– 1 HDMI 2.1 port
– 1 RJ-45 port
– 1 Smart Pin socket
– 1 combined headphone/microphone jack
|Dimensions||– 37 x 26 x 2.35 cm|
|Weight||– 2.46 kg (depending on configuration)|
|Price on the page||– $1249.99 CAD|
Design and ergonomics
Most companies dedicated to gaming rely on a very colorful style and devices that turn heads. Between keyboards that change color and brand icons that shine, we’re more into aesthetics than practicality. For its part, HP does not fall into the Victus trap by offering a classic design and a very beautiful metallic blue finish. In addition, the letter V, which is very prominent and reflects like a mirror on the shell, the gaming signature of the laptop is very transparent.
Of course, like most gaming laptops, this one is thicker and heavier than traditional laptops. Among other things, we find a fairly wide space between the keyboard and the screen for the integrated speakers (I’ll come back to that later). On the other hand, there is a fairly substantial border around the black plastic screen, which bothers me a little. Gamers already have to make significant trade-offs like weight and heat output, so I would have liked thinner bezels or the same blue color as the laptop. Unfortunately, they are necessary due to the design of the computer when it is closed (the edge covers the speakers).
Otherwise, there is quite a lot of space at the joints between the screen and the base. It is obvious that this is the kind of design decision that increases the thickness of the product and decreases the ergonomics. But I know it’s possible to do better because my 2019 Razer was thinner. However, it’s much better than what I’ve seen on Alienware, which are even less ergonomic. And in any case, the price of the Victus is much more interesting, so it’s a fairly easy compromise to make.
On a screen level, it is perfect for the vast majority of gaming needs. An FHD screen in 1920 x 1080 resolution is more than enough and it is the logical configuration for the price paid. Admittedly, high-end models are often equipped with 4K OLED screens, but this would easily double the price of the computer, which is not necessary. The impact of a 4K screen on a 16.1″ size is much less than on a 55″+ TV.
Personally, I like the color reproduction and the fact that there is not too much backlighting. It doesn’t shine too much in the eye, which helps with realism. In addition, the anti-glare works particularly well on the screen. I usually play on a dining table that is very bright. However, I had no problem playing in the middle of the day without having to lower the curtains.
Also, the 16.1″ bezel size is just perfect. I’ve always found 17″ to be a bit too much and 13″ too small. I was used to a 15.4″ screen, but the size of the Victus is even better. It’s just a shame that HDR is only compatible with streaming media or with a compatible external display.
Finally, with a 165 Hz screen, you will have a very fast response time in compatible games. One can easily push the machine to 120 FPS and more. This is the case in most games with a few exceptions that I will mention below.
Power for games
So on a game level, Victus is positioned in a very interesting way. When I talk about the budget for a gaming computer, I often tell people to prepare at least $2000. However, the HP model proves me wrong, as it can perfectly meet the needs of the majority in terms of gaming.
During my weeks of testing, I tried several video games on different services. Between Xbox Game Pass (download and cloud), Steam, Epic Games and PlayStation Remote Play, I’ve been around quite a bit. With an NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 and an AMD Ryzen 5 5600H processor that boosts up to 4.2 GHz, we are quite well equipped. It was very easy to get 60 FPS at 1080p and near max settings except in a few more demanding games.
Among other things, I am thinking of Deathloop, which has just arrived on Game Pass. I had to keep the settings closer to midrange settings. That’s mostly because the graphics card is rolling with 4GB of dedicated GDDR6 memory, while the game recommends 6 or 8GB. There are other recent games that claim as much as Spider-Man Remastered, but that’s very specific. Neither God of War (2018) nor Gears 5, which are two of the most visually beautiful games on PC, have this problem. And even then, the game is fully playable, just at a slightly lower quality.
Music to my ears
Then the sound aspect is always something I follow closely, and Victus does not disappoint. HP has entered into a partnership with the excellent Danish company Bang & Olufsen for its laptops. B&O is recognized for the quality of its various audio peripherals, and let’s just say it shows. The speakers are powerful and precise enough to deliver good sound quality. Well, for immersion I still prefer headphones, but it’s good for the radio, podcasts and the music I listen to.
In addition, the sound is particularly good for vocals, as they are very clear. Conversely, the bass level is less pressed, but it’s not something that bothers me. I know this is something that will annoy some people, but it is very personal.
As for the software integrated into Victus, there is good and bad. First, HP imposes on us several apps that are pre-installed but not really needed. I am thinking, for example, of ExpressVPN, which is included on the computer with a 30-day trial version. HP also has a large suite of software, not all of which are relevant. Nevertheless, the computer is equipped with a state-of-the-art SSD that makes it possible to start up very quickly.
On the other hand, HP gives us a very practical tool with the OMEN Gaming Hub software. This offers several features such as creating virtual spaces to play and communicate with friends. However, what catches my attention is its game optimization feature. The company doesn’t have a monopoly on this feature, but I find it interesting that it’s so easy to do. Just launch a game and the software will automatically close unnecessary programs running in the background. This is perfect for saving a few MB of RAM to optimize the speed of our games.
Finally, for those unfamiliar with BIOS, the software offers several interesting suggestions. For example, we get indications of the temperature of the CPU and GPU, the use of RAM, the storage space or the speed of the network. We can even make overclocking to our liking and Victus is quite flexible in that sense which is great. In short, we get a lot of information to maximize our gaming experience.
Finally, let’s talk about autonomy. On its website, HP talked about a duration of about 10:30, which surprised me a lot for a gaming computer. In general, 6-7 hours is already good, but after my test, I must say that the company has not misled us. When playing and demanding a lot of resources, of course we are talking more than 4 to 5 hours, but it is already excellent. It was nice not having to track the remaining battery life too often.
In addition, the computer did not heat up too much, which means that the company has optimized the air circulation. Honestly, I haven’t often seen models that disperse the air so well even in the middle of a game. Looking closer at the bottom of the device, you can see the size of the vents, which take up almost half of the device. That explains the heat management pretty well.
Verdict on Victus by HP
In conclusion, the Victus 16.1 from HP is a gaming laptop that offers very good value for money. He’s proof that you don’t need to spend $2,000 to $3,000 to play on your PC. If you ever want the top of the line, HP offers other configurations with better processors and graphics cards. But I really think it’s not necessary for most players, especially since we can always use cloud services if needed. In short, if you’re in the market for a new gaming laptop, this is a choice you should strongly consider.
Review of the HP Victus Gaming Laptop
Software and connection