The HP Omen Transcend 16 Laptop represents the pinnacle of HP’s gaming laptop line-up. It comes with many of the qualities that one would expect from a high-end model, including a solid chassis crafted from sturdy metal, a keyboard with RGB lighting per key, and the inclusion of Thunderbolt 4 connectivity. However, what truly sets this device apart is its mini-LED display. The brightness and color quality of this screen exceeds anything else on the market that I have tested.
It is worth highlighting that the mini-LED feature is quite expensive. It is only included in the top-tier configurations, which can drive the price to almost $3,000. If you are not prepared to invest that much, then there are other gaming laptops available for purchase that may be a bit bulkier, but still manage to provide outstanding performance at a more affordable price point.
In terms of design, the HP OMEN Transcend 16 closely resembles the standard Omen 16 but differs in a few slight ways. It is lighter at 4.62 pounds (compared to 5.4 pounds), thinner at 0.78 inches (versus 0.93 inches), and deeper to accommodate the taller 16:10 display. Its magnesium-aluminum build feels sturdier than the plastic build of the standard model. However, the Shadow Black finish is unfortunately prone to fingerprint smudges.
The rear edge of the machine is where the thermal exhaust and I/O ports are located. It houses the charging port, a RJ45 Ethernet port, a HDMI 2.1 slot, and a USB-A 3.2 port. The left side features two Thunderbolt 4 ports, an exhaust vent, and a 3.5mm audio combo jack. The right side has a USB-A 3.2 port and another exhaust vent. While it lacks an SD card reader, the included ports should suffice for most users.
Personally, I really like the sleek design of the HP Omen Transcend 16 laptop. It isn’t garish, or too in-your-face. So many gaming laptops often aim to make a bold statement, but the Omen Transcend takes a more understated approach. It avoids excessive external lighting, with its keyboard being one of the few illuminated parts.
The Omen logo is discreet, appearing as subtle lettering on the lid. The most eye-catching design element is a cyber-inspired “16” on the right palm rest, which is as extravagant as things get in terms of aesthetics.
The keyboard features per-key RGB lighting and flat chiclet-style keycaps. The oversized touchpad beneath the keyboard suffices for everyday tasks and productivity work, although using a USB mouse is still a preferable option. Above the display, a 1080p webcam with IR for Windows Hello facial recognition enhances convenience and security. Two stereo speakers at the HP OMEN Transcend 16’s front deliver ample volume without distortion, which are more than suitable for casual gaming.
A notable departure from the Victus 16 and Omen 16 models is the Transcend’s 16:10 display aspect ratio. The Transcend offers multiple display options, starting with an FHD+ display with a 165Hz refresh rate and 7ms response time. Users do have the option to upgrade to a QHD+ resolution without mini-LED technology, boasting a 240Hz refresh rate. Although, the model we reviewed was the high end version and thankfully included that mini-LED display.
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The standout feature of the HP Omen Transcend 16 is this beautiful mini-LED display panel with QHD+ resolution, a 240Hz refresh rate, HDR 1000 support, and over 1,200 nits brightness when HDR is enabled. This mini-LED display provides exceptional color and contrast without OLED’s burn-in risk. It may just be the best-looking panel that I have ever seen on a laptop with my own eyes.
Tests with a SpyderX Pro colorimeter revealed outstanding color reproduction, with 100% sRGB, 91% AdobeRGB, and 99% DCI-P3. The display achieves 868 nits brightness without HDR, there was also no backlight bleed issue that I noticed when viewing dark images. The 240Hz refresh rate accommodates the Core i9 CPU and RTX 4070 Laptop GPU, with a 5ms response time being a viable option for most games. The mini-LED technology offers impressive color and contrast, rivaling OLED without the screen burn concerns.
The HP OMEN Transcend 16’s cooling system is interesting, regulating power between the CPU and GPU to maintain optimal performance without thermal throttling. During testing, the CPU reached temperatures of up to 98°C, stabilizing at 85-89°C while drawing 65W (with occasional spikes to 92W). The GPU maintained around 92°C, drawing about 87W. This indicates a focus on CPU power, especially since the RTX 4080 isn’t an option. Noise levels peaked at 54.5 dB during the stress test.
Out of the box, the HP OMEN Transcend 16 comes with Nvidia Studio drivers, tailored for creative tasks. While switching to gaming drivers yielded minor performance gains, it didn’t seem to significantly impact gaming performance in any major way. The Intel Core i9-13900HX CPU delivers robust performance. The SK hynix M.2 PCIe 4.0 SSD that comes built into the laptop also boasts blazing load speeds.
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With a 97Wh battery, the HP OMEN Transcend 16 managed slightly over an hour in PCMark 10’s gaming rundown test under full performance. As with most high-end gaming laptops, using AC power while gaming is a necessity here. Using PCMark 10’s modern office rundown with a 60Hz screen refresh rate and balanced performance, it ran for four hours and 32 minutes.
During my time with the HP Omen Transcend 16, I mainly used it for writing, editing, and photo manipulation. The only real reason that I downloaded a handful of games onto the device was for testing purposes. For general productivity, the device was great due to its CPU-centric performance, however, it is clearly not optimized for gaming in the same way that something like the Asus ROG Strix Scar 16 is.
If you are looking for a device laden with premium productivity features and a gorgeous display, then this thing is tailor-made for you, just be prepared to pay a premium price. While excelling in a number of areas, the HP Omen Transcend 16 is not the best choice for those looking for a smooth, premium, AAA gaming experience. Those who are looking for that can find what they are after elsewhere for less capital.
HP Omen Transcend 16 – 7/10
The HP Omen Transcend 16 was provided to FandomWire for review by Edelman.