In 2024, laptop makers have a choice: launch laptops with Intel’s “Raptor Lake Refresh” mobile CPUs or use Intel’s AI-powered Core Ultra “Meteor Lake” chips instead. HP is launching two new Omen Transcend laptops this week at CES 2024 and you’ll have a choice between both processors as well as a new OLED display option.
HP is launching both the Omen Transcend 14, a 14-inch gaming PC, with your choice of either the Core Ultra 7 155H or the Core Ultra 9 185H inside–the top echelon of the mobile Core Ultra chips Intel launched just before the holiday. Alternatively, you can choose the Omen Transcend 16, which will feature the mobile version of Intel’s Raptor Lake Refresh microprocessors, either the Core i7-14700HX or the Core i9-14900HX, which Intel is debuting at CES 2024.
Providing two processors to PC makers like HP offers them a substantive choice: select the power-efficient Core Ultra or decide upon the older but more performance-optimized Raptor Lake Refresh architecture instead, which has already debuted on the desktop. On the desktop, at least, that chip doesn’t seem to offer much more performance than the 13th-gen Core alongside similar power levels, though features like Wi-Fi 7 make the platform attractive.
For that reason, HP seems to be focusing on the Omen Transcend 14, which HP is billing as a device “designed to play games anywhere”. As a gaming laptop, this isn’t a surprise. But HP is trying to play up the battery life, not usually a strong suit for gaming laptops: 11 hours, at least measured by the (non-gaming) MobileMark 25 benchmark. In part, that’s due to a new feature within the Omen Gaming Hub app, where you’ll be able to disable the discrete GPU and use integrated graphics only, alongside an Eco mode, for long battery life during the daytime office hours.
At night, of course, HP wants to allow you to dial up the GPU horsepower. Like 2023’s Omen Transcend notebook, HP isn’t selecting the strongest card in Nvidia’s GeForce GPU deck, allowing a choice of between the RTX 4050, the RTX 4060, and the RTX 4070 GPU instead. The laptop also offers the choice of either 16GB or 32GB of LPDDR5x-7467 DRAM and either 512GB, 1TB, or 2TB of PCIe Gen 4 NVMe SSD storage. HP offered a maximum of 16GB of RAM and 1TB of SSD storage in the 2023 16-inch model, so it’s nice to see HP pushing the limits here.
Interestingly, HP is going somewhat light on the AI capabilities of the new Meteor Lake/Core Ultra chip inside the Omen Transcend 14. HP showed off the Transcend playing Cyberpunk 2077, but also streaming the game using the embedded NPU’s AI capabilities. The Omen Gaming Hub app won’t necessarily tap AI, but it will automatically put the laptop into a dynamic refresh rate capability while on battery, saving about 7 percent of battery life, HP says.
HP is touting this as the coolest 14-inch laptop under 19mm, with the laptop sucking in air through a under-chassis vents, creating a pressurized zone for heat dissipation through the rear vents. It’s the Omen Transcend’s first rear-venting configuration, which is akin to a traditional laptop cooling method. The chassis is made from aluminum for improved thermal dissipation, however, and the laptop even takes advantage of the new 140W USB-C power spec, charging 50 percent in just 3 minutes. At 3.61 pounds and 18mm thick, that’s not really that heavy, either.
The display, though, points to this laptop hovering on the threshold of a content-creation machine as well as a gaming laptop. (Yes, there’s RGB, a four-zone RGB keyboard will be available at launch, with per-key RGP available later.) The 14-inch display is OLED-only, offering the rich blacks of that display technology, at 2880×1800 resolution. But the refresh rate moves between 48 and 120Hz, which doesn’t quite touch the 200+Hz refresh rate usually preferred by gamers.
The Omen Transcend 14 offers a fairly conventional port structure: one Thunderbolt 4 port, one 10Gbps USB-C port with sleep and charging capabilities, and two USB-A ports, which also includes charging capabilities on one of those ports. There’s even an HDMI 2.1 port as well.
The Omen Transcend 16, by contrast, offers the same memory and SSD configurations. However, the RAM is a bit slower in terms of clock speed, DDR-5 5600 instead. Here, the display is the standout, it too has an OLED option, but the 16-inch display includes 2560×1600 resolution and up to 240Hz refresh rate. Otherwise, you can choose from 2560×1600 (240Hz) and 1920×1200 (165Hz) IPS options instead. The port options will slightly differ, with a pair of Thunderbolt 4 ports and two 5Gbps USB-A ports instead, alongside Wi-Fi 7 and Wi-Fi 6e wireless options.
The Omen Transcend 16’s charging returns to a traditional barrel charger with the larger power demands and the weight increases as well, to 4.62lb and 0.78 inches of thickness. You’ll also have one more choice, between Ceramic Black and Shadow White.
HP will ship the Omen Transcend 14 for $XXXX in __ and prices for the Omen Transcend 16 will begin at $XXX as well.
Additional reporting by Michael Crider.