HP Victus 15-fa0038nf review: our full review – The laptop

They’re all well and good, all these expensive gaming PCs, but when it comes to breaking the piggy bank on your first paycheck or convincing parents to invest… 2,000 euros isn’t easy to invest. This is why entry level is important and it should be an area where competition is raging. HP is looking to recover its share of the pie with the Victus 15-fa0038nf, a gaming PC that doesn’t look particularly good, but its quality / price ratio is more than appealing on paper. And actually?

HP Victus 15-fa0038nfTechnical sheet

Model HP Victus 15-fa0038nf
Screen size

15.6 inches


1920×1080 pixels

Display technology


Touch screen


Processor (CPU)

Core i5-12450H

Graphics chip (GPU)

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650

Memory (RAM)


Internal memory


Wi-Fi standard

Wi-Fi 6 (ax)

Bluetooth version


Operating system (OS)

Microsoft Windows 11




2290 grams



Product sheet

HP Victus 15-fa0038nfdesigning

Spread the word… You won’t look back with your Victus phone in front of you. But not because it’s badly designed, but because it eschews the usual frills of basic PC gamers who seek aggression above all else. No red, no green, no LEDs, but a relatively plain black plastic shell.

Source: Anthony Wonner – Frandroid

The material isn’t bad, and the Victus seems durable. In the end, it almost looks like a basic desktop computer from 2015/2016 if the back isn’t completely made of heatsink. This is where we recognize the gamer in him.

Source: Anthony Wonner – Frandroid

On the format side, once again totally agree. Think of a 15.6-inch laptop: that’s exactly what the HP Victus is. An intermediate format, which is easy to transport without being too inconvenient, and can be used seamlessly once at home. But here it is: the computer is a bit bulky, and its 2.3 kg weight will be felt in a bag and at arm’s length. Which, for its price category, is not very surprising.

Keyboard and touchpad

Does the HP Victus have a gaming keyboard? Not too. But it’s not a bad keyboard for all that: the keys are nicely separated and have a pleasant activation spacing, but we’re in the shackles of a classic notebook keyboard. With one important detail: the space bar is light, too light and breathable ultra-thin switches that we were afraid to damage with a glance.

Source: Anthony Wonner – Frandroid

It’s a shame, because without it it’s a joy to use. The same goes for the touchpad, which is a satisfying width. Even though it’s not made of glass, the plastic layer doesn’t stick to your fingers and is still comfortable. This is a “nice” laptop configuration, but it relies on a few peripherals to be “gamer”.


On the left side of the device you can count on the classic power port, a USB A 3.0 port, a combo jack and a full-size SD port. On the right we have an HDMI 2.1 port, a second USB A 3.0 port, an Ethernet port, and a DisplayPort 1.4 compatible USB C port.

Concessions are clearly made on the USB A port, which stops at USB 3.0 and therefore at 5 Gbit/s bandwidth, but again: the choice makes sense to limit the price of the machine. The connectivity of the device itself is not bad. It’s even nice to find a full-size SD card reader.

webcam and audio

The 720p webcam doesn’t do miracles, of course. You have to keep costs in check, and even premium computers can’t convince of this. The same goes for the audio, which has absolutely no standout features other than “useful for watching YouTube videos”.

HP Victus 15-fa0038nfScreen

The HP Victus is equipped with a 15.6-inch IPS LCD panel with a pixel definition of 1920 x 1080, which is a 16:9 ratio, supporting a maximum refresh rate of 60.06 Hz. the sun, and cannot be touched.

Words cannot be chewed: this plate is despicable. Based on our investigations and with DisplayCal software, we found a maximum brightness of just 267 cd/m² for a contrast of 459:1. Delta E00 comes in at 11.25, the highest I’ve seen on any device as we look more towards numbers around 1.5. There’s no grayscale or colors shown naturally on this one.

It’s no wonder that our measurements reveal just 55.7% sRGB space coverage, 38.4% Adobe sRGB, and 39.4% DCI P3. It’s a disaster, yes… but the manufacturer doesn’t hide it. The official technical sheet notes 45% NTSC coverage and a maximum brightness of 250 cd/m². It’s pretty simple: it’s a big sacrifice that HP has chosen on the entry-level Victus to make sure it’s financially accessible. We got the impression of using a panel with a permanent yellow filter.

And this sacrifice is painful, too severe. For 50 euros more, the HP 16-d0426nf equipped with a 144 Hz panel is much better in this regard despite having a similar configuration. Hence the choice of HP is almost unforgivable for this configuration.

HP Victus 15-fa0038nfSoftware

The HP Victus software world is largely centered around the Omen software, usually on manufacturer gamer configurations. The latter allows for some quick optimizations, like smartphone game mode, by freeing up RAM and optimizing storage space, but isn’t particularly outstanding. Victus doesn’t even have the right to high performance mode, and is content with the default mode or quiet mode. You can simply increase the fan speed.

Unsurprisingly, entry-level laptops come with a few ads pre-installed, like McAfee or ExpressVPN. However, it would be forgiven at this price.

HP Victus 15-fa0038nfShow

The HP Victus is equipped with an Intel Core i5-12450H, the latest generation from Intel, with 8 cores and 12 threads. This is paired with 8 GB of DDR4 3200 MHz RAM. Instead, this last generation of CPUs will have to play with an Nvidia GeForce GTX 1650 with 4GB of GDDR6, the mid-range GPU from three generations ago. We also have 512 GB of storage thanks to the Western Digital SN810 SSD, at PCIe Gen 4.

On its own, it’s amazing to see the latest generation of CPUs and SSDs with cards that don’t support raytracing or DLSS. If you can easily do without the first, the second can work wonders on entry-level configurations to allow for smoother sessions.

General benchmarks

There were no unpleasant surprises on the performance side of the Core i5. Under Cinebench R23, its scores of 8647 in multi-core and 1653 in single-core place it within the expected averages for this kind of configuration. The same goes for the 6282 points on PCMark 10. The best part is its SSD, which offers the expected performance for PCIe Gen 4.

Obviously on the video game side of the shoe it’s a squeeze. The GTX 1650 is a very good mid-range card in 2019. Today, with the evolution of modern games, this card is out of date. That’s not to say you can’t get something out of it these days: Cyberpunk 2077 runs at 23 FPS on low presets, and Red Dead Redemption 2 can average 35 FPS on high settings.

But here it is: this configuration has run out of steam, and is only months away from becoming completely obsolete. But if you’re planning to only play less demanding games, like Apex Legends running at a steady 60 FPS in medium configurations, it’s still doable.

Cooling and noise

At least the HP Victus isn’t too noisy, even when the fan is running at maximum, and doesn’t exceed 41°C under heavy loads. This makes it a relatively acceptable PC for family use.

HP Victus 15-fa0038nfAutonomy

The HP Victus is equipped with a 52.5 Wh battery, and requires a 150W power supply to operate. The USB-C port isn’t PowerDelivery compatible, so you’ll need to bring a power supply with you to recharge the device. It also supports fast charging to recover 50% in 45 minutes.

Source: Anthony Wonner – Frandroid

On classic office use, including web browsing, writing, and a few YouTube videos, the computer’s autonomy ran between 6 and 7 hours of use. This is a bit disappointing compared to computers like the ROG Zephyrus G14 which has a much more efficient configuration, but still decent for a PC gamer.

HP Victus 15-fa0038nfPrice and availability

HP Victus 15-fa0038nf is available in the market. It is sold at the official price of 849 euros.

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HP Victus 15-fa0038nf at the best price?

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