Do you want to take your gaming experience to the next level? Then you should think of investing in VR. Only a few years ago, when the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive were launched, it appeared that VR was just an overhyped technology for tech enthusiasts with deep pockets. Soon after, the popularity of VR exploded, with big names like Google, Sony and HTC investing in this technology. Fast forward to 2019, and VR fans have been rewarded with wide-ranging options including standalone headsets and head-mounted displays ( HMD). The VR landscape is rapidly changing and is no doubt the technology of tomorrow. It’s making watching movies or playing games fun, interactive and more realistic.
Virtual reality is fairly new in the market, therefore somewhat expensive, but fear not because of the many releases in the market, you can find a headset at your price point. 2019 is a fantastic time to be shopping for the best VR headset for your PC. Whether you are looking for a standalone set or one that tethers to your computer, you won’t go wrong with one of the 5 VR headsets in this review. We went ahead and tested several virtual reality headsets to help you figure what may work for you.
The Best VR Headsets for PCs
We present to you 5 of the best consumer VR headsets for PCs that are actually worth escaping reality to enjoy!
- Get 6 free titles, including: Robo Recall, Luckyʼs Tale, Quill, Medium, Dead and Buried, and Toybox
- Riftʼs ultra low-latency tracking offers unparalleled immersion
- The Oculus Touch controllers bring your hands into VR, letting you interact naturally with the virtual world
- NVIDIA GTX 1050Ti/AMD Radeon RX 470 or greater Graphics Card Required and a RAM of 8 GB+ RAM
- Windows PC and internet connection required - review recommended specs to confirm system compatibility
The Oculus is the grandfather of VR. The Rift is the company’s most polished headset in terms of hardware and software. It’s a well-designed set that is easy to wear and operate.
The Oculus Rift comes with a 2160×1200 OLED display with a refresh rate of 90Hz allowing for seamless immersion. It is the first of its kind to allow full room-scale movement. It uses incorporated cameras for tracking and requires no external sensors.
The headset wears comfortably beating its competitors in design. It is lightweight and straps comfortably with adjustable straps so you can strap yourself for long periods. The face frame fits tighter and can be quite uncomfortable if you wear glasses. Oculus boasts of some of the best controllers we reviewed. It is lightweight, therefore comfortable to use and won’t give the user hand cramps after long use. Perhaps, the best thing about it is how believable the controllers are; it is easy to make a fist, point or grab with using much pressure.
The Oculus comes with software that is just as impressive as the hardware. Oculus has great apps and comes with 50 titles, a collection that is growing. Oculus has made gaming social by launching multiplayer titles that players can cast onto smartphones or other compatible devices
- Capable of room scale VR.
- Can cast content on phones and TVs.
- Extensive app library.
- Great controllers for extended play time.
- Carries a heavy price tag.
- Many downloads needed.
HTC Vive Pro
- STEAM VR 2.0 TRACKING - From seated to standing to full 22’11”’ x 22’11” room-scale. Ideal for multi-user environments for sub-millimeter tracking accuracy.
- HIGH RESOLUTION DISPLAY - Dual-OLED displays with industry leading resolution of 2880 x 1600 pixels for unparalleled visual fidelity of graphics, text, and textures
- SPATIAL AUDIO WITH NOISE CANCELLATION - Hi-res, high impedance headphones, 3D spatial sound with active noise cancellation for an immersive experience without distractions from real-world sounds
- MULTI-USER AND EXTENDED USE – Even weight distribution of the headset, easy on and off, and adjustments for head size, glasses and interpupillary distance (IPD) makes multi-user and extended use easier than ever
- VIVE TRACKER ECOSYSTEM – Expand business use cases by adding real-life objects to VIVE Tracker bringing the object into your virtual simulation. Ideal for motion capture, automotive, aerospace or heavy equipment simulation.
The HTC Vive Pro is possibly the best VR headset in the market now. It has a fantastic design and offers some of the best displays that you can find in a quality headset.
HTC Vive Pro has a Stunning 2880×1600 AMOLED display offering 80 percent increment in dots per inch than the predecessor HTC Vive. Thus, you get to experience crisp visuals with textures and shadows better than seen before.
The design is captivating, beautiful, and ergonomic. It’s comfortable to wear and comes with nose guards which do a great job of blocking out light. The Vive Pro relies on external sensors for precise motion tracking. The hassle comes when setting up the sensors. As for audio, it comes with an incorporated microphone.
- Fantastic AMOLED display.
- Precise tracking.
- Ergonomic design that is comfortable to wear.
- Very expensive.
- Accessories are bought separately.
- FLEXIBLE PLAY AREA - Use VIVE seated, standing or in a space up to 11'5" x 11'5". SteamVR Tracking provides the most ideal experience possible, so play the way that works for you.
- FULLY IMMERSIVE - Realistic movement and actions from precise, 360-degree controller and headset tracking with realistic graphics, directional audio and HD haptic feedback in the virtual world
- POWERED BY STEAM VR - Enjoy over 1500 games for SteamVR, plus everything you love about Steam, including new releases, automatic game updates and millions of your closest friends
- PLAY SAFER - The Chaperone system warns you when you reach the boundaries of your play area and the headset's front-facing camera gives you a glimpse of the real-world when you need it
- VIVE VIDEO - An immersive, cinematic VR video player for standard, 3D, 180 and 360 degree videos. Available free on VIVEPORT and Steam.
The HTC Vive is a great headset for someone looking for a top of the range headset but at a lower price. It works great with PCs or laptops with a powerful graphics card to play. The headset works with Valve to stream games with brilliant picture.
The Vive is the first partnership between HTC and Valve to give its users room-scale VR where they can interact with the environment to produce crisp picture and sound while streaming the latest titles. With the SteamVR™ tracking, players get a superior virtual reality experience than ever before with two wireless controllers that make gameplay feel real.
The Vive headset is easy to wear and sits comfortably with adjustable straps. It comes with nose pads and interchangeable inserts for a better fit. The HTC vive will give the player a great experience at half the price of the upgraded HTC Vive Pro. It’s loaded with accessories that make it even better. For instance, TPCast add-ons make it wireless eliminating the need for a tethering cable. The Vive comes with a not too shabby collection of over 350 games and thanks to Viveport, a subscription service, players have access to more titles and apps.
- Comfortable headset.
- Accurate room tracking.
- Easy to use adaptive controllers.
- The display resolution is not the best.
- Pricey accessories.
Samsung HMD Odyssey
- 3K anti-sde AMOLED display (2880x1600) with wide 110O field of view
- Easy setup process, leveraging inside-out tracking (no additional tracking equipment necessary)
- Access to Windows mr store and steamer libraries for thousands of games & experiences
- Premium, built-in AKG headphones w/360O spatial Sound and Mic
- Adjustable headband, now 10% lighter with improved comfortable materials
The Samsung HMD Odyssey is a mid-range priced headset that feels like a premium gadget in terms of its build and performance.
The headset has a beautiful 2880×1600 AMOLED screen giving a crisp image. In addition to a great display, it comes with immersive headphones and inside out tracking to give the gamer a lifelike gaming experience.
The Odyssey comes in a sleek matte black design with two wireless controllers that make gameplay seamless. The great AMOLED display brings out the best in every game you play. That combined with a rich spatial sound adds to the richness of the gadget. Ultimately, the saving feature of the Odyssey is its compatibility with Windows 10 PCs and laptops. It does not require much power or space to operate it.
- High-resolution display.
- Immersive audio.
- Great inside out tracking.
- A bit pricey.
- It is a heavy headset.
- Personal Viewing: The littlest, big screen. Crystal clear optics and state-of-the-art 3D graphics make your headset feel more like a personal theater
- Viewing with Friends: Watch with friends. Meet up in VR with friends and fans from around the world to catch live sports, concerts, or just your favorite TV show
- Portable & Easy to use: Ready when you are. Experience portable, all-in-one VR. That means no PC, phone, wires or hassles
- Controller: Effortless control. Whether it's navigating to your favorite shows or to a far-off land, the intuitive controller makes getting there a cinch
- Built-In Audio: Surrounded by sound. Spatial audio drivers are built right into the headset, providing dramatic, immersive sound without the need for bulky or tangled headphones. Oculus Go also features a 3.5 mm audio jack
Another entry from Facebook owned Oculus. The Oculus Go is quite affordable compared to the other pricier models.
This Oculus model boasts a good resolution and a great sound system. This a standalone model as no hardware is required but can work with most basic laptops and PCs as it doesn’t require much power. It has an integrated camera for 360-degree tracking and the display of 2560×1440 @ 72Hz is great for a lower budget headset.
The headset is made from plastic with inside padding that is easy to remove and clean. The design is comfortable for extended periods. If you are interested in watching less interactive games and content, this headset will work just fine. In addition, you have access to an extensive game library.
- Striking design.
- Easy to set up and use.
- Does not have sharp visuals as the competition.
- Lacks room for tracking capability.
Depending on your budget and specific needs, we are sure you will find a VR headset that fits your needs. These headsets are great for gamers who are looking for the best specs at different price points. We particularly liked the HTC Vive Pro because it’s feature-packed with a great display and audio system. All our VR headsets are available on Amazon.com for purchase and shipping. Get yours today!