HP Victus Review (15-fb0028n, 2022)

$967.99 $1,099.99 SEE AT AMAZON

7.6 Total Score
GOOD

The HP Victus 15 (15-fb0028nr) delivers respectable performance for its price. As a new entrant, it’s created solely for the price-conscious buyer but it can play high-end titles well whilst balancing most other productivity tasks with ease.

PROS
  • Solid performance for the price
  • 1080p 144Hz display looks great
  • Can double as a work laptop
  • Excellent price
CONS
  • Hum-hum battery life
  • Not very portable

The HP Victus 15 (15-fb0028nr) is what you have in mind when you think of a budget gaming laptop that will get the job done, but not cost an arm and a leg. It’s one of the latest models in HP’s growing line of low-cost gaming machines; there is the bigger HP Victus 16, and both versions start off extremely affordable, much lower than existing Omen gaming laptops, without compromising too much on specs and only moderately increases on price as the specs go higher.

As designed, the HP Victus is certainly a no-frill gaming laptop that doesn’t get the kind of refinement you get on most gaming laptops, let’s say something like the Alienware x15 R2 or Asus ROG Zephyrus G14, but at least it gets three modest color options (mica silver, performance blue, and ceramic white) for the chassis, so it’s not a bad looking laptop either.

If you’re looking for a super-portable gaming laptop, however, the Victus is not an ideal choice to recommend over some other portable gaming laptops on the market. And, the design itself has some misses that make it hard to fully recommend this rig for daily uses without having to plug in a fair number of peripherals.

For those looking for the ultimate cheap gaming laptop that packs some great gaming experience at a rock-bottom price, the HP Victus 15 is worth checking out for sure. Though its basic design and a bit bulky body hold it from making it to our best gaming laptops category, its specs will run most AAA titles, as well as balance work and school-related tasks.

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About the HP Victus 15

HP’s Victus seems like a replacement for the HP Pavilion Gaming line of laptops. The V-logo is drawn from the diamond used by its more premium Omen gaming brand. Essentially, it’s a gaming line of laptops that’s designed for a variety of tasks – gaming, school, and office – and that’s reflected by both the pricing and design.

  • CPU: AMD Ryzen 7 5800H
  • Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 3050 Ti
  • RAM: 16 GB DDR4
  • Screen: 15.6-inch FHD IPS LED Display, 144Hz
  • Storage: 512GB SSD
  • Connectivity: Wi-Fi 6, Bluetooth 5.2
  • Operating System: Windows 10 Home
  • Weight: 5.06 pounds (2.3 kg)
  • Size (W x D x H): 14.09 x 10.04 x 0.93 inches

The basic model of the HP Victus 15 starts at an incredibly low price tag of ~$599, in the US with the lowest specs. The price goes up with additional upgrades like an AMD Ryzen 7 or Intel Core i7, an Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050Ti GPU, 16GB memory, or a 512GB SSD; or higher.

Design and Features

Like the HP Victus 16, the Victus 15-fb0028nr has a design that carries over a few design elements from the HP Omen lineup but maintains a rather conservative aesthetic. The Victus logo sports the same Omen logo’s basic geometry, with the logo showing up on the lid and the venting above the keyboard.

As mentioned above, the Victus 15 is available in three colors – Mica Silver (dark gray), Performance Blue, and Ceramic White; but it doesn’t necessarily look like a smaller version of the HP Victus 16, it looks much sleeker thanks to more rounded rear edges. It’s not the first time we’re seeing a gaming laptop with a more mainstream look, we have the Razer Blade 15 and Asus ROG Zephyrus G15 that don’t look anything close to gaming but pack a punch. If you want a laptop that looks the part and packs the power of a gaming machine, the Asus ROG Strix G15 looks gamer through and through.

The HP Victus 15 is crafted from plastic, just like the HP Victus 16. Well, the lid is quite bendable and the keyboard deck also comes with a bit of flex, although the smaller model is a little more solid. The Victus 15’s design does have some issues, though. For starters, the laptop’s sharp, angled aesthetic combined with the big V emblazoned on the top of the case gives the Victus a vibe that’s not reflected in the rest of the chassis.

HP Victus Review screen

Also, the machine’s weight is quite of an issue. At just over five pounds, the Victus is quite heavy which is great as it can take quite a beating, but it will be a downside when you need to carry it around. This is a laptop, thanks to a pairing of weight and size, that will most likely stay on a desk most days, that it slides into a bag for daily commute.

Connectivity is robust, with one exception. You get a USB-C 3.2 Gen 1, two USB-A 3.2 Gen 1, a full-size HDMI 2.1, an Ethernet connection, a 3.5mm audio jack, and a full-size SD card reader. The one glaring omission is Thunderbolt 4, which we’ve seen in laptops at this price point. Wireless connectivity comes via Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.2.

The display has a 1080p resolution and looks great when playing on High and Ultra settings with other graphical features enabled, especially thanks to its 144Hz refresh rate. Elsewhere, there’s no backlight for the keyboard, which otherwise is a very simple and comfortable one with a good-sized trackpad, meaning you’re limited to well-lit areas.

Performance

The HP Victus 15 (15-fb0028nr, 2022) model in this review is the mid-tier version that packs an AMD Ryzen 7 5800H processor, 16GB RAM, 512GB SSD, and Nvidia GeForce RTX 3050Ti graphics card. No matter which version of the Victus you choose, air circulation is top-notch, with a dual-fan setup and a much larger vent at the bottom of the laptop. Even during more intensive gameplay, the laptop barely generates any real heat.

In terms of gaming performance, this is a mid-tier configuration and as such you expect some decent gameplay without sacrificing too much. The GeForce RTX 3050 Ti used here is a mainstream GPU for a gaming laptop with 4GB VRAM, sitting below the RTX 3060, and a follow-up to the GTX 1660 Ti and GTX 1650 for laptops. The shift from GTX to RTX certainly brings lots of benefits including ray tracing and DLSS features.

HP Victus Review lid

In real-world gaming tests, the HP Victus 15 plays the Assassin’s Creed Valhalla runs at about 26fps on average at Ultra and 82 on Low, so if this kind of game is more your jam, you can feel free to crank up the settings, but in Medium (59 fps) setting is where you’ll get the best balance of framerate and graphics.

Hitman 3 is a true surprise, considering how demanding it is to run. In tests, with the setting cranked to Ultra preset and the Victus 15 still runs above 60FPS. This rig loves Hitman 3 and it shows.

In other non-gaming-related tasks, the HP Victus 15 is an impressive machine. It easily runs multiple tasks like streaming movies, voice/media conference calls, editing office documents, and more. If you’re looking for a well-balanced laptop, that has the power to run modern games and the minimalist design to be used at the office, this is a good option.

Overall, with the AMD Ryzen 7 5800H processor and 16GB RAM, the HP Victus 15 easily handles demanding productivity workflows and you can even get away with some low-end creative tasks.

Battery Life

The Asus ROG Zephyrus G14 is one of the few laptops we’ve reviewed to date with good battery life. The rest, including our review unit, the HP Victus 15-fb0028nr are less impressive, lasting a little over four hours, which is almost half of a full work day.

When used for less demanding tasks, the Victus 15 lasts around the same time. For gaming, the battery drains much faster, which would limit unplugged sessions to maybe two hours at most.

However, its charge time isn’t badly off, when using the included charger, you can get over 60% charged in around an hour. That time would even be faster if using a USB Type-C charger and is something we’d recommend if that option is available.

HP Victus Review: Verdict

In the end, how much you like the HP Victus 15 is going to depend on what you envision in your ideal gaming laptop, and how much you’re willing to spend to get the best possible configuration. If your emphasis is on gaming, the Victus will push out some impressive graphics without spending too much money.

In fact, I’d say the Victus 15 performs well enough and is built solidly enough to make it a solid new entry in the entry-level gaming arena. You’ll just want to compare the available configurations to ensure you’re getting the exact one to meet your gaming needs.

The best alternative to the Victus 15 is the HP Victus 16: It’s a little larger but can be configured with a much faster GPU, and it gets a fairly better display. However, if you need to stay in the 15in range, the MSI Pulse GL66 (11UGK-001) is an even better choice. For around the same price, the Pulse GL66 offers an Intel Core i7-11800H processor, a much better Nvidia RTX 3070 graphics card, 16GB RAM, and 512GB SSD storage. And, it’s much lighter than the HP Victus, and that scales the issue of portability we had with the Victus.

Should you buy the HP Victus 15?

If you want a very affordable gaming laptop, YES. The HP Victus 15 has a very reasonable starting price of around $600, and it won’t exceed $1,200 with all the upgraded specs. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a cheaper, well-rounded laptop. There’s definitely a model to fit every budget. Just make your selection carefully from among HP’s available purchasing options.

Last update on 2022-08-07 at 14:01 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

OUR PICK

HP Victus 15.6" Gaming Laptop PC, NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3050 Ti, AMD Ryzen 7 5800H

$1,099.99
$967.99
 in stock
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1 used from $929.27
Amazon.com
as of August 7, 2022 2:03 pm
HP Victus Review (15-fb0028n, 2022)
HP Victus Review (15-fb0028n, 2022)
$967.99 $1,099.99
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