HP Drops Omen Branding From New VR Backpack, Makes it More Powerful

Say what you want about VR in general, but backpack VR PCs for the average consumer certainly haven’t caught on. So HP is taking a different tack with its latest VR backpack. The company is pushing the device (which HP says is nearly 30% more powerful than its predecessor) as an appealing option for architects, professional training purposes, and location-based entertainment (think massive VR installations and smaller VR arcades).

HP VR Backpack ( (Image credit: HP))

HP says the backpack is “specifically designed to tackle VR engines including Unreal and Unity” (just like pretty much every other PC with a certain level of dedicated graphics), and will include an 8th Generation Intel Core i7 processor and Nvidia RTX 2080 graphics. HP says the hardware upgrades add up to a 30% performance boost and 25% beefier graphics over its previous-generation backpack. But that extra power is likely going to mean more power consumption. The company says battery life will be about an hour, but you can hot-swap those batteries, and HP will of course be happy to sell lots of extras (and extra chargers) to anyone interested in setting up a pay-to-play VR arcade.

Photo (Image credit: Tom's Hardware)

When you aren’t wearing the VR backpack, HP says you’ll be able to attach it to a standard VESA mount. And the system can even be docked to turn it into a more traditional PC. The company includes a VR Backpack G1 Dock in the box, although you can buy extra docks, as well. HP says the backpack will be available sometime this summer for a starting price of $3,299.

Here’s a rundown of the VR Backpack’s key specs, direct from HP:

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Operating SystemWindows 10 Pro 65
ProcessorIntel Core i7-8850H
ChipsetIntel QM370
Maximum memory32GB DDR4-2666
Memory slots2 SODIMM
Internal Storage256GB-1TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD
GraphicsNvidia GeForce RTX 2080
Power330W external power adapter
Dimensions13.1 x 9.3 x 2.4 inches
WeightStarting at 10.3 pounds / 4.66kg (including batteries and harness)
Matt Safford

After a rough start with the Mattel Aquarius as a child, Matt built his first PC in the late 1990s and ventured into mild PC modding in the early 2000s. He’s spent the last 15 years covering emerging technology for Smithsonian, Popular Science, and Consumer Reports, while testing components and PCs for Computer Shopper, PCMag and Digital Trends.