Virtual reality has been gaining momentum over the last few years and shows no signs of slowing down in 2022. Thanks to the great advances in the visual, monitoring and overall performance of VR hardware, large companies are beginning to notice the power and potential of technology to become a big part of everyday life.
For example, Facebook (which was now) has a new VR headset ready that will support face tracking and mixed reality – and will no doubt come with a pretty bold price. Similarly, Apple is expected to take some form on its way to the end of 2022. Sony is also expected to release which will work with the PlayStation 5 and will include new drivers sometime this year. And in the meantime, we may see other headsets connected to the phone, such as the one start popping up too.
If you are looking for the best VR headset, the ideal choice will depend on what you enjoy doing in the virtual world. VR technology is advancing rapidly, but right now, even the best VR headsets have their strongest position in the gaming market. Correct: This technology is currently best used for playing video games. Actually,which is excellent is one of my favorite ways to play games.
If you are a player who wants to enter the VR space, Quest 2 remains our best choice for the best VR headset experience, even if you need a Facebook account to use it. Quest 2 also remains a strong entry point into the CoR, which does not appear to be obsolete next year.
Even better, VR games are the best they have ever been. I was impressed with Valve’s masterpiece for VR Half-Life: Alyx,not to mention a PC and . However, you still need to decide if you want a headset that plugs into your computer, console, or a standalone variant, such as Quest (which can work as a PC headset). The best VR headset for you ultimately depends on your needs and budget.
The world of CoR technology is moving forward and more will come. Companies like Qualcomm (which makes chips in most stand-alone VR headsets, including the new Quest 2) are building new chips that point to a wave of better stand-alone headsets at lower prices – including those that plug into your phone. . The more expensive and focused on businessshows where more premium standalone VR headphones could develop.
Meanwhile, a VR headset based on a mobile phone – such asand — Yippee . Much of the current capabilities of iPhone, Android, and VR apps don’t even work with old VR goggles. If smartphone-based VR returns, it will be more in the form of small headsets that connect to phones via USB-C for VR content, VR gaming and other uses.
If you are a PC gamer, a solid gaming VR headset connected to a PC offers the most versatile collection of software for an immersive VR experience and allows you to use this headset for creative and business tools. Note that the more powerful VR system will still be largely connected to a desktop or laptop computer, and the PC VR headset may require external sensors, so it may not be the best choice for everyone.
And what about console gaming? AgingIt’s still fun if it’s on sale and you have a PS4, mainly because there are so many more great gaming options for VR for this device than you might think. But keep that in mind while it , needs an older PS4 driver and PS4 camera to work. You may want to wait for (which we hope to see sometime in 2022).
Advanced- andthey are not yet ready for everyday use, so a solid VR headset is the best solution for an escape to other worlds in the meantime. Read on to find out which offers the best VR experience for you. We regularly update this list of the best VR headsets, but please note that prices are subject to change.
Sarah Tew / CNET
Good: Standalone and wireless; great touch controls; comfortable design for playing games; serves as a PC VR headset
Not good: Requires a Facebook account
The $ 299 Oculus Quest 2, without anything else, offers virtual reality games and an immersive VR experience anywhere. This virtual reality headset is faster, smaller, cheaper and more comfortable to wear than the original Quest, but you must log in to Facebook to use it. The new version of Quest 2 doubles the model’s storage for $ 299 to 128 GB for an additional $ 100 and includes a silicone foam cover after voluntarily withdrawing the covers earlier this year due to concerns about facial irritation with a small subset of customers. Existing Quest 2 owners can order a silicone cover for free.
Quest 2 reminds me of the Nintendo Switch for its versatility and fun, plus it only takes seconds to launch and fits really well over glasses. This VR headset has separate motion tracking and a fully mobile VR controller with six degrees of freedom (aka 6DoF), which is the same as those on the PC required by the Oculus Rift, plus a surprisingly great high-resolution display and built-in speakers. Applications are downloaded directly to the headset’s internal storage. Its more limited mobile processor still plays games like Beat Saber, Moss and SuperHot VR very well and can even connect to a computer if you want with a single USB-C cable.
Facebook has shut down the Oculus Rift S, making Quest 2 the best and only option for Oculus VR right now. But PC VR users have many other headset options.
Good: Really sharp, high-resolution display, great sound, comfortable design
Poorly: Average drivers
If your idea of the best VR headset has the best image quality in consumer VR, the latest HP VR headset wins. For serious players (or fans of VR racing sims), this VR technology may be your best choice. The 2,160 x 2,160 resolution per eye and 114 degree field of view are the best in this price range, and the lightweight and comfortable headset also has fantastic tilt speakers designed by Valve. Technically, it is a Microsoft Windows Mixed Reality headset that prefers to run into the native Microsoft Windows 10 VR ecosystem, but bridges Steam VR and works with these games and applications. Built-in camera monitoring of the room is easier to set up than external Valve Index base stations, but it is more prone to surveillance errors. The included drivers, based on Microsoft’s VR driver design, look more clumsy than Oculus Touch or Valve Index drivers. In-ear speakers are also your only sound choice: there is no headphone jack.
It usually costs $ 599, but you can pick it up at HP for $ 200 right now.
Read our review of HP Reverb G2.
Sarah Tew / CNET
Good: Amazing futuristic drivers; high quality headphones; works with Vive hardware
Not good: Expensive; requires room setup and cable to connect
The Valve headset may be the most interesting virtual reality experience for the PC this year, precisely because of the new new drivers. Valve’s “knurled” controls are pressure sensitive and can track all five fingers, so they’re almost like gloves. Not many applications use them yet, but Valve hardware is compatible with HTC Vive, which is also built on the Steam VR platform. The Index headset has excellent sound and a really sharp display with a wide field of view.
The index uses external “beacon” boxes, which means you must first set them up in the room. It’s not as self-sufficient as Oculus’s Rift S, which can monitor a room with in-headset cameras, or HTC Vive Cosmos. It’s definitely not wireless either, but if you already have some Vive hardware, you can add parts of the Index so you can combine them.
Read our Valve Index review.
Sarah Tew / CNET
Good: Lots of games; lower price; works with many PS4 drivers such as DualShock and Move
Not good: The resolution is not peak; Sony has not yet produced great VR drivers to compete, but a new version may come next year
The years-old PSVR headset from Sony is still the only head-mounted display for game consoles, and its screen still offers a surprisingly immersive experience. However, Sony has confirmed that it is working on a next-generation PSVR headset for the PS5 with a new driver set that could come in 2022 if you want to wait. Meanwhile, Sony has delivered – and continues to deliver – many great virtual reality games, many of which are exclusive. All you need is PSVR and PlayStation 4 and you can start playing. (Here are some good games to get you started.) However, this VR system shows its age compared to the alternatives. And the new PS5, while working with the old PSVR, will need your old drivers and PS4 camera plus camera adapter to work.
Note that this PlayStation VR headset is becoming more and more difficult to obtain. If you don’t want to opt for a refurbished model, the best price you’ll find is the Iron Man VR package, which usually costs $ 350.
Frequently asked questions about VR
Should I wait to buy a VR headset?
There are a lot of anticipated headsets this year, as I mentioned above: Meta’s Project Cambria, PlayStation VR 2 and the mysterious Apple device. There must be others. VR is a technology that is still on the move and companies are focusing on products that are smaller and better connected to devices such as phones. It is probably best to spend as little as possible to avoid investing in outdated equipment. Quest 2 has by far the best value, and coincidentally, it’s also the best-designed headset with the best benefits at the moment, if you’re okay with the design to live under the metaversion Meta umbrella and Facebook’s data policies.
What should I look for in a VR headset?
It really depends on whether you connect to a PC or not … and whether you plan to work with it. There are many Windows-compatible headsets, but they differ in display resolution. The higher the better and also the larger the field of view. Headsets can now recover at up to 120 Hz, and the faster they can recover, the more natural and smooth the movement in the VR. Most PC VR headsets have a similar driver design and can bridge work tools and applications. In terms of portability or stand-alone convenience, Quest 2 currently has no competition (Vive Focus 3 is focused on business and Vive Flow is still too germinal to be recommended). For gamers with a game console, the PlayStation VR is the only option, but you’ll probably want to wait until 2022 on PSVR 2 if you have a PS5. Also consider application libraries: Oculus has a lot of exclusive games, headsets connected to Windows have a lot of compatibility with working applications and experimental tools, and the Sony PlayStation library also has unique VR games.
How do I take care of my VR headset?
VR headsets can be dusty and dirty. Pay special attention to lenses that should be gently cleaned with a microfiber cloth in the same way as you handle glasses (do not use liquids). It is a good idea to invest in a silicone cover that protects the face plate from sweat and dirt, or to look for other face covers that can be replaced over time. It is a very good idea to keep the headset covered when not in use. Take extra care not to expose the VR headset to bright sunlight: The sun can damage the VR displays if the rays hit the headset lens. (To be safe, I keep mine in cases or turn the lenses away from the windows.)