All-in-one (AIO) computers are becoming more popular everyday; they’ll probably become the standard of desktop computing soon if they’re not already. While one of the main problems that PC users have with the AIO devices was the screen size, HP decided to address this issue by releasing the largest AIO PC on the market today, the HP Omni 27.
Design and specifications
As the name suggests, the Omni features a massive 27” edge-to-edge glass screen encased in a beautiful aluminum body, and is ready out-of-the-box with a few accessories including a very stylish wireless keyboard and mouse. The hefty body (14.5 kg) is supported on a slab of aluminum at the bottom to maintain balance, and is mounted to two hinges that allow a slight back and forth screen movement. Not the most adjustable setting but quite decent.
The standard version ships with a Core i5 processor from Intel, and you have the option to upgrade to a Core i7 if you need the extra processing power. Both processors perform reasonably well for both the standard and the more advanced user.
The Omni 27 comes with up to 8 GB of RAM, a 1 TB SATA hard drive, a Blu-ray player (optional in some models, built-in full HD webcam, and your standard connectivity options, 4 USB2 ports, 2 USB3 ports, Ethernet, digital audio, wifi and a 6 slot card reader.
The 27” screen supports a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels (aspect ratio 16:9). lower than what you’d get on an iMac, or even the iPad for that matter which supports 2048×1536 pixels, but it does the job perfectly when it comes to HD video playback of video games with good brightness and colour saturations levels. You probably won’t be happy with the screen if you’re using it with design software or text editing as it doesn’t exactly have the highest pixel density.
Speaking of video games, the Intel graphics chip on the Omni does quite an impressive job, we’ve managed to run some of the latest games in the market and they performed really well, maybe not on the highest settings but still pretty good.
Software and performance
The Omni ships with Windows 7 Home Premium 64, and HP – as always – ships it with loads of their own software utilities including HP TouchSmart, a visual interface that replaces the Windows desktop with what HP considers a better version. Now we have to say that we were confused by the name TouchSmart, as we spent a good amount of time smudging the screen with our fingerprints until we realised the word “Touch” has absolutely no context with this device, which makes the otherwise-quite-useful interface upgrade a bit pointless.
We’ve pushed the Omni to the limit of high end performance by running multiple applications from the Adobe Creative Suite, heavy graphics 3D games and HD media, all of which performed smoothly without a hiccup. The HP Omni proved to be a powerful device indeed; however, we have to mention again that you might not be happy with the screen resolution as a designer.
Some versions of the Omni come with an HDMI input port (yes Input) which allows you to connect other HDMI devices to view them on the Omni screen, so you can pretty much have your PC, Gaming console and cable TV in one – Omni – station.
Most models also come with Beats Audio built in, which gives you a spectacular listening experience, and the built-in speakers offer great quality audio playback with a really immersive 3D surround depth.
- Hardware- 7/10
- Performance- 9/10
- Value for money- 6/10
As far as AIO PCs go, the Omni is probably your best option on the market today. It is definitely a great home computer and can even be a great workstation depending on your line of work. We hope the next one comes with a better screen resolution, but till then, and for once as a PC user, you dont have to feel jealous of all the iMac users out there.
This review was done by Fahed Sabbagh – proud geek and passionate blogger. You can catch him wax poetic on all things geeky at www.nerdyface.com.