For those (like myself) who get a little pit in their stomachs every time they see how much any given year’s best gaming laptops cost, the HP Victus series — a budget line that has become one of Best Buy’s most popular products in the two years since its release — is a welcome breath of fresh air.
HP made a bunch of flashy announcements at its Amplify Partner Conference today, but buried within them is one I actually think could make a difference for a lot of shoppers: the Victus 16 has been refreshed for 2023, and it’s gone a little bit wild.
Specifically, the Victus 16 is now available with an RTX 4070 graphics card. The 2021 Victus 16 only went up to an RTX 3050 Ti (a model currently listed at $949). Even if you include the older Victus 15, which has a broader range of chip options, the top option I’m seeing currently available is an RTX 3060. Needless to say, we can expect significantly better performance from that 4070 system than we would from RTX 3050 Ti or RTX 3060 models.
In terms of processors, the new Victus maxes out at either an Intel Core i7-13700HX or an AMD Ryzen 7 7840HS. These are high-end chips, ones you’d expect to see in a very expensive laptop. And while I obviously can’t say for sure as of this writing, I wouldn’t be surprised if the Victus is one of the most affordable ways to get any of these three chips in 2023.
I tested a Core i5 / GTX 1650 model of the Victus 15 last year, which was listed at $799. It didn’t offer the same performance you’d get from an RTX 4070 machine, but it was a decent rig with a number of attractive features.
I would, of course, expect a 4070 Victus to be more expensive than that GTX model. But the former could still be a compelling option for price-conscious shoppers who don’t need a fancy chassis or fancy RGB lights but do want powerful performance in demanding games.
In the more expensive sphere, HP has also announced a new Omen Transcend 16 device with a 16:10 Mini LED display (claiming 1,180 nits of peak brightness), a 4.6-pound (2.1 kg) magnesium frame, and a new square vent design. It’s HP’s thinnest and lightest gaming laptop to date. This is more of a multipurpose laptop that could be used on the go for things like work and studying. HP states that it’s built for “gaming, work, and everything in between.”
The Transcend 16 goes up to a Core i9-13900HX and RTX 4070. (It appears to be Intel only, unlike the Victus.)
HP has also refreshed its regular Omen 16 laptop with both 13th Gen Intel (up to a Core i9-13900HX) and Ryzen 7000 (up to a Ryzen 9 7940HS) options. This one will go up to an RTX 4080 and will offer a QHD 240Hz display.
The Victus 16, Omen Transcend 16, and Omen 16 are all expected “early this spring.” They will start at $1,049.99, $1,299.99, and $1,699.99, respectively.