Origin EVO16-S review: Great in some ways, abysmal in others

The Origin EVO16-S is a rollercoaster of highs and lows

Origin EVO16-S
(Image: © Future)

Laptop Mag Verdict

The Origin EVO16-S gets a lot right, including unexpectedly high framerate in certain games, formidable battery life and solid productivity performance, but it’s hard to ignore the awful display, overwhelmingly hot bottom and a mediocre speaker system.


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    Surprising gaming performance

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    Good for productivity

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    Gorgeous lid

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    Solid battery life


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    Mediocre speakers

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    Abysmal color depth

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    Bland deck

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    Runs blazing hot

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    Subpar brightness

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The Origin EVO16-S is a weird gaming laptop. How it handles certain tasks with excellency would indicate a transcendent experience might be present all around, yet the way in which it has completely botched its other goals is alarming. It is either the best at something or the worst at something, even when strictly limiting the parameters to gaming performance. For example, it performed the best in Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla, yet the worst in Red Dead Redemption 2.

It’s hard not to recommend this laptop as a result, but it comes with many “buyer beware” warnings. You will be shocked at how dreadful the screen is if you’re someone who cares about the quality of a display, and while the brightness is nowhere near as embarrassing, it's still quite poor. If you’re okay with these caveats, including blistering heat and mediocre speakers, we found that this laptop boasts solid battery life, good performance metrics in certain instances, and awesome gaming performance within select titles. 

I wouldn’t call it one of the best gaming laptops out there, but there’s a lot it does right. Read further along to see if it’s the right laptop for you.

Origin EVO16-S Prices and configuration 

Our model of the Origin EVO16-S costs $1,916 normally, but it’s currently $1,666 on Origin’s website thanks to a limited time offer. It has a 16.1-inch, 1920x1080 display with a 144Hz refresh rate, an AMD Ryzen 7 6800H processor and AMD Radeon RX6650XT graphics card. Our skew also has 16GB of RAM and 2TB of SSD storage, but there are other options to choose from, including up to 64GB of RAM and up to 4TB of SSD storage (from Samsung or Corsair). There’s also an additional m.2 slot if you’re looking to double the amount of space.

The Origin EVO16-S only comes in black, but it can be built in a variety of lid styles through Origin’s website. Up to 23 different HD UV Prints can be etched onto the lid for no additional cost, with custom prints starting at an extra $150. The base prints available range anywhere from a field of stars to a lush forest to a colorful marble pattern, with some placing the Origin logo in clever spots, like the iconic circle sitting in the middle of a blue neuron for one. 

Origin EVO16-S design 

Unsheathing the Origin from its relatively plain black sleeve made me feel like I had just discovered an ancient treasure buried deep beneath the Earth. The design painted onto the laptop's lid evokes the sensation that I’ve entered a new space time continuum and am falling through dimensions overwhelmed by mind bending colors. Either that or I’ve just buried my face in weaving fabric, which is also gorgeous in of itself. Regardless, I absolutely adore this laptop’s lid. 

Origin EVO16-S

(Image credit: Future)

Lifting the lid reveals a black deck with a minimalist aesthetic, which caught me off guard considering how poppy the lid is. Regardless, I’m a fan of this style of keyboard, as the font calls upon futuristic designs with every letter and number being made up of sharp straight lines. The WASD keys have a diagonal line that travels from the top right to the bottom left, while the opposite corners on the space bar have these brackets that remind me of what cybernetic soldiers see when turning their visors on in sci-fi films.

While I appreciate a minimalistic deck, it’s disappointing that there’s not much else here to talk about. You might prefer this, but the lid sets a certain expectation for an elaborate experience when lifting it open. And outside of the keyboard boasting some sleek flairs, this design is as plain as it gets.

The Origin EVO16-S comes in at 14.4 x 10 x 0.8 inches and 5.4 pounds, making it quite close in weight and size when compared to its competitors. The MSI Crosshair 15 R6E (14.1 x 10.2 x 1.1 inches, 5.4 pounds) is the same weight, while the Dell G16 (14.1 x 10.7 x 1.1 inches, 6 pounds) is a little heavier. The Asus ROG Zephyrus M16 2022 (13.9 x 9.6 x 0.8 inches, 4.4 pounds) is lighter and smaller. 

Origin EVO16-S ports 

The Origin EVO16-S has a decent selection of ports.

Origin EVO16-S

(Image credit: Future)

Starting on the left, there is a USB 3.2 Type-A port, a headphone jack and microphone jack.

Origin EVO16-S

(Image credit: Future)

On the right side, there is another USB 3.2 Type-A port and USB 3.2 Type-C port.

Origin EVO16-S

(Image credit: Future)

And on the back, it has a USB 3.0 Type-C and a RJ45 port.

Origin EVO16-S display 

The Origin EVO16-S’ 16.1-inch, FHD (1920 x 1080) display offers decent brightness and a 144Hz refresh rate, but its color depth is shockingly bad, stripping the vibrancy out of many scenes, whether I played a video game or watched a movie.

Origin EVO16-S

(Image credit: Future)

I watched the trailer for Puss in Boots: The Last Wish and noticed many issues when comparing it to other displays, particularly the lack of color. When looking at the giant’s moss-covered back during the scene where Puss has a bell hanging over him, I couldn’t help but notice how dark and muted that color was. Whereas it was a lush, bright green on my other displays, the Origin EVO16-S somehow turned that into a dark green. The brightness levels were nowhere near as offensive, but I remember thinking “this could be brighter” when looking at the gorgeous scenery of this phenomenal film.

Knowing full well that this display has trouble with color, I decided to launch Hi-Fi RUSH and put it to the ultimate test in vibrancy. As soon as I launched the game and saw Chai chilling out on the couch I could tell something was wrong. Tango Gameworks’ latest project is meant to really pop, yet even a game like this comes across as flat. While jumping between this incredibly energetic city, it always felt like I was getting the lesser experience.

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DCI-P3 color gamut
Row 0 - Cell 0 DCI-P3 color gamut percentage
Origin EVO16-S45.4%
Asus ROG Zephyrus M1683.6%
Dell G1675.3%
MSI Crosshair 15 R6E116.6%

The Origin EVO16-S did terribly in our color tests, reproducing only 45.4% of the DCI-P3 color gamut. Not only is this way below the mainstream gaming laptop average of 75%, it’s also significantly worse than competitors like the Asus ROG Zephyrus M16 2022 (83.6%), Dell G16 (75.3%) and MSI Crosshair 15 R6E (116.6%).

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Display brightness
Row 0 - Cell 0 Brightness
Origin EVO16-S280 nits
Asus ROG Zephyrus M16450 nits
Dell G16335 nits
MSI Crosshair 15 R6E300 nits

The Origin EVO16-S’ performance in our brightness tests were nowhere near as embarrassing, managing an average of 280 nits. Even then, it’s still below our category average of 301 nits. The Zephyrus M16 (450 nits), Dell G16 (335 nits) and MSI Crosshair 15 R6E (300 nits) easily outclass it.

Origin EVO16-S audio

The Origin EVO16-S’ bottom-firing sound system is mediocre at best, offering decent loudness and clear vocals, but instruments often get lost to the cacophony of sounds. Additionally, this speaker system seems incapable of presenting percussion with fullness.

Origin EVO16-S

(Image credit: Future)

The music in Hi-Fi RUSH was noticeably low even at max volume, but this also applied to nearly everything going on within the game itself. During a cutscene, I could barely hear the characters talking to one another, and sound effects like smacking robots, explosions, and gunfire had a vacantness to them. Everything layered upon itself in a homogenous way and it sounded like indiscernible noise at times. I was still able to keep to the beat and understand the general rhythm of the game, but it’s far from an ideal aural experience.

I started testing the sound system’s music potential by playing “1,000,000” by Nine Inch Nails and was shocked by how vacant the opening drum hits were. I initially assumed this would be the worst audio on a laptop I had ever tested, but as vocals and guitars got introduced into the mix, it began to sound acceptable.

I thought it was just the song that was the problem, so I swapped to “Whirring” by The Joy Formidable. The opening melodic guitar came out at a solid volume alongside the harsher background guitar, but as soon as the percussion started to hit, it once again sounded vacant. With the introduction of vocals and further instruments layered on top of that, it became a little messy, making it difficult to discern individual sounds even if the general vibe of the song was still there. The sound also gets crackly and pops when things get too loud.

If you like listening to music on your laptop’s speakers, you will be unhappy with what’s built-in here. We recommend the best computer speakers or one of the best gaming headsets or best headphones to offset this issue. 

Origin EVO16-S keyboard and touchpad 

The Origin EVO16-S sacrifices larger keys for a full keyboard, providing access to a lovely number pad. Some won’t enjoy how tight this makes the keyboard feel, but I am more at home when dealing with smaller keyboards that keep things close together. Having to reach all the way to the other side of the laptop on other keyboards to use backspace while working is often inconvenient. However, I despise how small the right shift key is on the Origin. I’m someone who needs my shift keys to be the equivalent of at least two or three keys, yet it’s only the size of one in this case.

Origin EVO16-S

(Image credit: Future)

During the 10fastfingers.com typing test, I managed an average of 111 words per minute with an accuracy of 99%. When trying the same test on my mechanical keyboard, I achieved 117 words per minute and 96% accuracy. I’m quite impressed by how well I did with the Origin EVO16-S’ keyboard; my fingers felt right at home thanks to the size of the keys. I also quite enjoy how clicky the keys are, offering a satisfying clack whenever you type.

The Origin EVO16-S’ trackpad can feel difficult to push around sometimes, especially when trying to use more than one finger at once, but it is on the smoother end of the spectrum. Very few trackpads can elicit the divine sensation of gliding your fingers across a smooth pearl, but I found this to be competent enough for getting some work done and moving files without losing my mind.

Origin EVO16-S gaming and graphics 

The Origin EVO16-S is packing an AMD Radeon RX 6650XT graphics card with 8GB of VRAM, which should be more than capable of managing moderately demanding games at decent frame rates. In fact, it surprised us by exceeding expectations in a few of our tests. It didn’t do nearly as well in some other games, but for it to even outpace a laptop with an Nvidia RTX 3070 Ti in a single game is impressive.

And unlike how the RTX 3060 limits the user to 6GB of VRAM, this GPU’s much needed boost to 8GB will let you crank up graphic settings a notch higher. I played Hi-Fi RUSH at the highest settings and experienced no stutters or framerate issues after an hour of play, and while it isn’t the most demanding game in the world, I was pretty happy with how it performed.

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Borderlands 3 (1920 x 1080)
Row 0 - Cell 0 1920 x 1080
Origin EVO16-S88 fps
Asus ROG Zephyrus M1673 fps
Dell G1674 fps
MSI Crosshair 15 R6E82 fps

On our Borderlands 3 test, the EVO16-S did a surprisingly good job when compared to its competitors, managing an average of 88 frames per second at 1080p. It outdid the category average (70fps), Zephyrus M16 (Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070 Ti, 73 fps), Crosshair 15 (Nvidia GeForce RTX 3070, 82 fps) and the Dell G16 (Nvidia GeForce RTX 3060, 74 fps).

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Assassin's Creed: Valhalla (1920 x 1080)
Row 0 - Cell 0 1920 x 1080
Origin EVO16-S86 fps
Asus ROG Zephyrus M1672 fps
Dell G1669 fps
MSI Crosshair 15 R6E78 fps

The laptop continued to blow us away when running our Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla tests, as it came out with an 86fps average at 1080p, easily outclassing the category average (63fps), Zephyrus M16 (72 fps), or the Crosshair 15 (78 fps) and Dell G16 (69 fps).

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Far Cry New Dawn (1920 x 1080)
Row 0 - Cell 0 1920 x 1080
Origin EVO16-S83 fps
Asus ROG Zephyrus M1694 fps
Dell G16104 fps

While the EVO16-S seemed to be knocking it out of the park until now, it didn’t do nearly as well in our Far Cry New Dawn benchmark, maintaining 83 fps at 1080p. This is a worse performance than the category average (88fps), Zephyrus M16 (94 fps) and Dell G16 (104fps).

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Red Dead Redemption 2 (1920 x 1080)
Row 0 - Cell 0 1920 x 1080
Origin EVO16-S53 fps
Asus ROG Zephyrus M1660 fps
Dell G1660 fps
MSI Crosshair 15 R6E67 fps

This disappointing performance continued with Red Dead Redemption 2, where it could only average 53 fps at 1080p, bringing it below the category average (57fps), Dell G16 (60fps), Zephyrus M16 (60 fps) and Crosshair 15 (67 fps).

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Shadow of the Tomb Raider (1920 x 1080)
Row 0 - Cell 0 1920 x 1080
Origin EVO16-S73 fps
Asus ROG Zephyrus M1682 fps
Dell G1676 fps
MSI Crosshair 15 R6E92 fps

And in our Shadow of the Tomb Raider benchmark, the laptop hit a 73 fps average at 1080p, and while that’s identical to the category average, it’s just below the Dell G16 (76 fps). However, the Zephyrus M16 (82fps) and Crosshair 15 (92fps) soared past both laptops.

Origin EVO16-S Performance 

The Origin EVO16-S is packing an AMD Ryzen 7 6800H processor, 16GB of RAM and 2TB of SSD storage, allowing it to handle a number of productivity tasks at once. Whether you’re looking to pull up a movie on Netflix while dozens of Google Chrome tabs are open on pages like YouTube, Twitch, Google Docs, and Sheets with Spotify playing in the background, this thing has the power to handle it all with ease.

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Geekbench 5.4 results
Row 0 - Cell 0 Mutli-core score
Origin EVO16-S9,696
Asus ROG Zephyrus M1611,225
Dell G1612,043
MSI Crosshair 15 R6E10,578

On the Geekbench 5.4 overall performance test, the Origin EVO16-S’ multi-core score of 9,696 was quite a bit greater than the category average of 5,643. However, it performed worse than Dell G16 (Intel Core i7-12700H CPU, 12,043), the Zephyrus M16’s (Intel Core i9-12900H CPU, 11,225), and the MSI Crosshair 15 R6E (i7-12700H CPU, 10,578).

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Handbrake (Video transcoding)
Row 0 - Cell 0 Time (min:sec)
Origin EVO16-S5:41
Asus ROG Zephyrus M167:05
Dell G166:23
MSI Crosshair 15 R6E6:44

The Origin EVO16-S converted a 4K video to 1080p resolution using the HandBrake app in 5 minutes and 41 seconds, which is a little slower than the category average (5:26), but it completely demolished the Dell G16 (6:23), Zephyrus M16 (7:05), and MSI Crosshair 15 R6E (6:44).

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SSD speed test (in MBps)
Row 0 - Cell 0 Score
Origin EVO16-S1,722
Asus ROG Zephyrus M161,871
Dell G16745
MSI Crosshair 15 R6E728

The EVO16-S continued to blow us away in our file transfer test, duplicating 25GB of multimedia files in 16 seconds for a 1,722 megabytes per second (MBps) transfer rate. This puts the laptop in another universe when compared to the category average (745MBps), Crosshair 15 (1TB PCIe SSD, 728MBps) and Dell G16 (512GB PCIe SSD, 745MBps). And although it was close, it couldn’t match up against the Zephyrus M16 (1TB M.2 NVMe PCIe 4.0, 1,871MBps).

Origin EVO16-S Battery life 

The Origin EVO-16S’ battery life isn’t outstanding, but it lasts long enough to go up against its many competitors. On the Laptop Mag battery test, which involves continuous web browsing over Wi-Fi at 150 nits, the Origin EVO16-S lasted 6 hours and 48 minutes.

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Battery life results
Row 0 - Cell 0 Time (hours:mins)
Origin EVO16-S6:48
Asus ROG Zephyrus M166:34
Dell G164:00
MSI Crosshair 15 R6E7:03

This is slightly higher than the category average (6:35), making it a decent choice if you need to bring a laptop on the go. It also ran way beyond the Dell G16 (4:00), but was only just a little ahead of the Asus ROG Zephyrus M16 (6:34). However, the MSI Crosshair 15 (7:03) barely outlasted it.

Origin EVO16-S Heat 

The Origin EVO-16S is just slightly below our comfort threshold even when it isn’t gaming. But when you do launch something heavy duty, you’ll want to keep this thing far away from anything vital.

In our non-gaming tests, which involved playing a 1080p video for 15 minutes, its hottest got to 94 degrees Fahrenheit (at the rear-center underside). The touchpad stayed nice and cool at 75 degrees, while the G and H keys were around 84 degrees.

It’s unfortunate that the Origin EVO-16S doesn’t handle its heat very well when gaming, as it went up to 136 degrees at its rear-center underside. This is nowhere near our 95-degree comfort threshold and we recommend not letting it rest anywhere near your lap. Otherwise, the touchpad stayed a nice and cool 75 degrees, while the G and H keys were 106 degrees.

Origin EVO16-S Webcam

Surprise surprise! The Origin EVO16-S has a 1080p camera, instantly making it higher quality than most laptops out there. But just because it’s FHD, doesn’t mean it’s necessarily good, as I immediately noticed that my vibrant pink room turned into a desaturated nightmare as if I had just walked into a Zack Snyder film.

Origin EVO16-S

(Image credit: Future)

The image wasn’t super grainy and it admittedly looked better than most laptop webcams, but even then, you might want to consider looking at our best webcams page if you don’t want the color stripped from your soul. 

Origin EVO16-S Software and warranty 

The Origin EVO16-S operates on Windows 11, but it doesn’t come with many of the pre-installed applications I was expecting. You can use the AMD Software: Adrenalin Edition application to customize its performance in-depth, with a variety of system, graphics, display, audio, video, hotkey and performance options available.

Origin EVO16-S

(Image credit: Future)

In the System section, you can factory reset the laptop, reset game stats, report a variety of issues, and learn more about your hardware. The Graphics section offers four default profiles, including Gaming, eSports, Power Saving and Standard. You can also customize your own loadout, turning on AMD-specific features like Radeon’s Super Resolution, Anti-Lag, Chill, Boost and Image Sharpening modes. 

The Display section has options for AMD FreeSync, Virtual Super Resolution, GPU Scaling, Vari-Bright, Display Color Enhancement, Custom Color and Color Deficiency Correction. You can also install AMD Privacy View through this. 

Video options allow you to swap profiles between Cinema Classic, Enhanced, Home Video, Outdoor, Sports and Vivid. If you’d like to customize it yourself, all that becomes available is a brightness meter. And in the Audio section, you can turn on AMD Noise Suppression. The Hotkeys tab shows you AMD-specific keybindings you might want to keep in mind for easier access, but it also lets you turn them off if you don’t want to accidentally turn something on without realizing it while gaming.

The Origin EVO16-S comes with a one-year limited warranty.

Bottom line 

The Origin EVO16-S outperformed its competitors in many categories, even though it was also the worst in others, making this a particular product depending on your tastes. I would never recommend it to those obsessive about color depth and brightness, but the performance numbers on certain games are hard to ignore.

It’s also hindered by mediocre speakers and an unbearably hot bottom while gaming, but alongside the solid battery life and impressive productivity performance, there’s plenty here worth your time. If you want a laptop at a similar price point that demolishes it in display vibrancy, we recommend checking out the MSI Crosshair 15

Momo Tabari
Contributing Writer

Self-described art critic and unabashedly pretentious, Momo finds joy in impassioned ramblings about her closeness to video games. She has a bachelor’s degree in Journalism & Media Studies from Brooklyn College and five years of experience in entertainment journalism. Momo is a stalwart defender of the importance found in subjectivity and spends most days overwhelmed with excitement for the past, present and future of gaming. When she isn't writing or playing Dark Souls, she can be found eating chicken fettuccine alfredo and watching anime.