HP Omen Transcend 14: Gaming laptop that’s not short on comfort

Gaming laptops are often aimed solely at gaming. Seldom are they also slim and designed so that carrying them along for other activities isn’t a hassle. However, that seems to be the case with HP’s Omen Transcend 14 gaming laptop. Priced at Rs. 1,74,999, this 14-inch laptop isn’t heavy for your backpack. But does it have enough power and features? Let’s try and see.

The Omen Transcend 14 boasts two standout features: its design and display. The laptop measures about 18mm in thickness when closed and weighs approximately 1.64kg, making it one of the more portable laptops with gaming capabilities. It features an aluminum chassis with vents at the back, housing two ports – HDMI 2.1 and USB type C with power delivery and DisplayPort. On the left side, you’ll find the 3.5mm audio jack and USB type C with Thunderbolt 4 and DisplayPort near the middle, while the right side houses two USB type A 3.2 Gen 2 ports in the far corner. The display sports thin bezels, except for a broader and more reflective chin that includes the Omen logo. The laptop’s dual hinges are positioned on either side from the middle and are raised across other areas.

The keyboard is of a slightly different build and design compared to usual HP laptops, but it has decent travel and click-ability for its keys. These are four-zone RGB backlit keys (and not per key) with lighting that extends plenty on and around the keys. You can configure RGB using Omen Gaming Hub. The keys are comfortable for gaming or usual typing needs, even for longer periods of use. The trackpad next to it is large enough and performed decently when it came to picking up the usual Windows gestures for scrolling and switching between apps, but its click mechanism could have been a little more refined in terms of responsiveness.

The 14-inch 2.8k (2880 x 1800) OLED display is highlighted for its exceptional brightness and sharpness, making it suitable for various use cases. Additionally, it is noted as an IMAX-certified display with a 16:10 aspect ratio, catering to content creation needs such as video editing while maintaining HDR content quality, particularly for shadowy scenes. The display’s 120Hz higher refresh rate is emphasized for vibrant visuals and punchy colours, meeting the requirements for both video and gaming. Furthermore, the display is praised for its good text rendering, viewing angles, and colour depth, contributing to its overall appeal.

The laptop is equipped with Intel’s 16-core Ultra 7 155H that can reach clock speeds of up to 4.8GHz for turbo needs, coupled with Intel Arc Graphics, 24MB L3 cache, Nvidia’s GeForce RTX 4060 (65-watt variant) GPU, 16GB of RAM, and 1TB m.2 SSD. When it comes to gaming performance, the Omen 14 handled Returnal at around 70 frames per second when played at 1080p resolution, while Metro Exodus Enhanced Edition ran at around 47FPS, and Elden Ring maintained an almost consistent 60FPS at 1080p. However, for a demanding game like Cyberpunk 2077, it’s unlikely to exceed 50FPS at 1080p resolution on this laptop. Despite this, it can still hold its own for the most part with the hardware and slim profile in place. The laptop’s fan can get a bit noisy during gaming, but it isn’t the loudest by any means. For general use, the performance meets the standard. It demonstrated sequential read and write speeds of about 6.9GBPS and 4.3GBPS, respectively, which is satisfactory.

The laptop runs on Windows 11 Home (version 23H2) and handles Office apps, web browsing, and background music playing without issues. However, it did show some performance issues when waking up from sleep, with the OS at times taking 10-15 seconds longer than expected. This occurred multiple times despite rebooting the laptop. Other than that, there aren’t many performance issues. The WiFi performance is top-notch for both 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequencies. Overall, the laptop’s gaming performance may not be the best, but it can handle general use and offers satisfactory hardware and slim design.

The bottom-firing speakers are quite loud and provide decent depth for bass and vocals, but they are not the cleanest or most depthful for your gaming needs.

The laptop is powered by a 71Wh battery and comes with a 140-watt USB Type-C charger, which can charge it in around two hours. The Omen 14 lasted around 4 to 4.5 hours on most workdays, and much less if you play games for longer, which is significantly less than what you would want from a laptop that’s expected to handle heavy workloads.

All in all, the Omen Transcend 14 is a well-made 14-inch gaming laptop that looks nice and weighs less for a gaming machine. It offers pretty decent performance when it comes to gaming and boasts a great display. However, its battery life does disappoint compared to other departments. Nevertheless, it still comes across as a good option for those looking for a gaming laptop that isn’t too heavy to be carried and can handle most games at medium to highest settings.