Why we like it: If you own a PlayStation 4 and you’re interested in getting a taste of virtual reality – or if you want to play some VR games without spending the money on a gaming PC and a high-end headset like the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive – Sony’s PlayStation VR is an easy recommendation. If you don’t want to spend the money on a gaming PC, we think the appropriate first headset for most casual gamers is the Oculus Quest; you can read more about it in our guide to standalone headsets Another solid, lower-priced option is the Sony PlayStation VR , which currently costs about $330 for a starter bundle and works with the $300 PlayStation 4 gaming console. Oculus has both tethered and standalone headsets from the Go, to the Quest, to the Rift S. HTC has the Steam-friendly Vive and Vive Cosmos, and the developer-focused Vive Pro Sony has the PS 4-focused PlayStation VR (that will apparently work with the PlayStation 5 if and when that system comes out), and Microsoft is supporting its Windows Mixed Reality platform with a variety of headsets from different manufacturers. Why we like it: The Oculus Rift S is the top pick in our review of the best VR headsets for PCs because it combines a comfortable, approachable design with the largest selection of games and other media If you’re serious about getting into VR, a high-end PC headset like the Rift S is worth investing in. The jump in quality and tracking compared with that of a standalone headset results in a more immersive experience and better games. Up-to-date pricing and reviews for best VR headsets on the market can be found at the VR headset adviser website.
Combined with a faster Snapdragon 835 processor compared with the Oculus Go’s Snapdragon 821, the Quest offers a much more compelling and immersive VR experience, all without the unwieldy cable or PC requirement of the Rift S. We hope to see more standalone 6DOF, dual motion controller headsets in the future, like the upcoming HTC Vive Focus Plus. Tethered headsets like the Oculus Rift S, the HTC Vive Cosmos, and the PlayStation VR are physically connected to PCs (or in the case of the PS VR, a PlayStation 4 ). The cable makes them a bit unwieldy, but putting all of the actual video processing in a box you don’t need to directly strap to your face means your VR experience can be a lot more complex. A wild-card pick for PC VR is the Vive Cosmos, the follow-up to 2016’s HTC Vive The Cosmos has self-contained tracking like the Oculus Rift S and a better-resolution display than the original Vive, but also has swappable faceplates that will add more cameras for mixed reality and external sensor tracking (for larger holodeck-type experiences).
Grab SteamVR to access and play VR games using your HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, Windows Mixed Reality headset, or any other supported VR headset and controllers. Much like the HTC Vive, the Oculus Rift requires a wired connection to a high-spec (and often very expensive) gaming PC, running Windows 7 or higher, but the payoff is the ability to create processing-heavy interactive experiences and games. Various high-profile tech companies such as Google, Facebook, HTC, and others are focusing more resources on developing additional and sophisticated HMD’s for standalone VR. At Aniwaa, we think the future of VR does exist in increasingly wireless yet powerful virtual reality experiences via standalone VR headsets.
The Oculus Rift, Valve and HTC’s Vive, and Sony PlayStation VR — the three high-end headsets we’re currently waiting for — all run off external computers or game consoles. Today, it’s still one of the easiest and best virtual reality headsets gamers can get their hands on. Most of the games for the PSVR can be played using a Dualshock controller, but its ‘Move’ controllers will let you get the most out of the experience and many starter packs include them. There are a whole host of headsets available, too – everything from powerful, high-end models like the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift to mobile experiences like the Samsung Gear VR, Google Daydream View, and the brilliantly simple Google Cardboard.
The Oculus Rift is one of the lightest and most comfortable VR headsets, has hundreds of games and experiences, and even has the highest rated touch controllers of any VR headset according to IGN , the leading video game console review website. The Oculus Rift S offers a high-end VR experience that doesn’t require much fuss, striking a compromise between a more casual headset like the PlayStation VR and the room-scale-focused HTC Vive and Vive Pro. Honestly price and platform will make most of the decision for you – there aren’t any headsets for console gamers besides PlayStation VR and, if you need a standalone headset, you’re basically stuck with the Oculus Quest.
And that’s before you address the processing issue; the Rift S and Vive headsets need pretty powerful PCs to run, while the PS VR requires a PlayStation 4. If the cost isn’t a deal breaker but the cables are, HTC offers a wireless adapter for the Vive, but it requires a desktop PC with a free PCIe slot to work. On our list, the Oculus Rift S, HTC Vive Pro, and HTC Vive Cosmos are all VR headsets that work with PC gaming. Based on our reviews, the Oculus Quest is the best VR headset overall, because it lets you play the hottest VR games without being tethered to a PC. Plus, the Oculus Quest now offers hand tracking, so you can interact with content without having to use dedicated controllers.
Tethered headsets tend to be more focused on video games than the rest of the pool, and both the Oculus Rift and PlayStation VR make frequent use of gamepads. Six years after the first iteration of the Oculus Rift kickstarted the modern era of virtual reality, the now Facebook-owned company is back with not one but two new entries, joining a raft of big names from HTC’s Vive to Sony’s PlayStation VR and even Nintendo. When it comes to games, the Oculus Rift S and HTC Vive Cosmos are in a very PlayStation vs. Xbox scenario, where the former has the critically-acclaimed games and the latter has an awesome service to experience a ton of games for free.
For a cable-free experience, we recommend the Oculus Quest, but if you want the hyper smooth and sharp graphics that only a tethered VR headset can provide, the HTC Vive Cosmos is easily one of the best VR headsets for sale right now. From left: the HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, and PlayStation VR headsets. A standalone VR headset gives you a good VR experience without an expensive game console or gaming PC, and Oculus Quest is the best one you can buy right now.
The problem with VR at this stage of the game isn’t that there’s too few VR headsets on the market or that there’s not enough content, but that there are way too many to pick from, especially now that there are more and more headsets hitting the streets like the Oculus Quest , Valve Index and HTC’s Vive Cosmos. There’s no doubt the HTC Vive Pro produces some of the best virtual reality experiences it’s possible to get on the planet right now, but there are caveats – the headset is expensive, you need a fairly decent PC to run it from, and it can be a little complicated to set up. If you already have a respectable computer system to hand, it’s definitely worth considering. Virtual reality headsets aren’t particularly stylish, as donning any of these models makes you look like you’ve been kicked through the discount aisle of PC World, but the best VR headsets can provide a sort of magical gaming experience that’s almost indescribable.
Also, the Windows Mixed Reality store doesn’t have as many compelling VR experiences as the Rift and SteamVR stores, though you can use SteamVR games on Windows Mixed Reality headsets, again with some software wrestling. HP is giving VR headsets another shot: After first releasing a fairly unremarkable PC-based headset among a wave of similar Windows Mixed Reality devices in 2017, the company is now back with a device that aims to trump competitors like HTC’s Vive Pro with a higher display resolution. The Oculus Quest is a standalone VR headset that you can connect to a PC via a USB 3.1 cable, allowing you to play Half-Life: Alyx just as if you had a Rift S. The display quality is similar to the Rift (not as good as the Index or Vive).
The Oculus Quest is an impressive standalone VR headset – you don’t need any gaming console to experience virtual reality with these goggles. HTC initially developed its Vive-series VR headsets with the room-scale tracking paradigm by design to allow gamers to use limited room space for experiencing virtual reality without disturbing their roomies. Play VR games using SteamVR with your Vive, Rift, Windows Mixed Reality, or other PC VR headset.
Sony’s PlayStation VR headset can’t track you quite as well as the competition can, but it’s good enough to provide a fun, solid virtual reality gaming experience. Despite HTC’s beefier Vive Pro VR headset, the original Vive model remains the most complete and approachable VR experience for PC. It’s specifically built for room-scale experiences and its game library is simply massive. Tethered – headsets that act as a display device to another device, like a PC or a video game console , to provide a virtual reality experience.
A more affordable option than the HTC Vive or Oculus Rift, PlayStation VR is tethered to a PS4 rather than an expensive PC gaming rig. Overall, the Oculus Rift S is the best VR headset for folks looking for a PC-based system that plays a huge library of great games for a decent price. VR headsets allow you to play Steam games specifically made for virtual reality, such as “Beat Saber,” as well as older games modded to support it, like “The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim VR.”
HTC has launched new virtual reality (VR) headsets called the Vive Cosmos Play and Vive Cosmos Elite. With more options than ever to suit budgets, play styles – and games and experiences actually worth paying for – there’s never been a better time to don a headset and step into a new reality. If you want a great headset with the largest selection of VR games and media that is comfortable enough to wear for extended periods, the Oculus Rift S offers a high-end VR experience at a reasonable cost (especially if you already own a PC).
PC: To use the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive you will need to hook up the headsets to a powerful PC. It doesn’t need to be particularly expensive, but a rig with a good GPU and graphics card is essential to process the tasks the headset will send its way. Available on ten different types of Android phones while offering users hundreds of VR apps, games, and 360-degree experiences, the Google Daydream View is one of the best VR headsets for Android users. Not only does the Oculus Go have over 1,000 VR apps, streaming services, games, and 360 degree experiences, but it also lets users immerse themselves in virtual reality without being tethered to an expensive computer, video game console, or mobile phone.
Even though the PlayStation VR has a lower panel resolution, a narrower field of view, and a smaller library of games (around 200) than the other tethered VR headsets on this list, it still boasts a simple user experience and a better collection of games since its made by Sony, a video game and video game console company. PlayStation VR is a great way for beginners and PS4 owners to play VR games because it’s comfortable, easy to use, and less expensive than VR headsets for PCs. We found that all currently available headsets of this type have less reliable tracking, less content, and worse controllers than the Oculus Rift or HTC Vive.
It supports room-scale VR. And it doesn’t take much time to set up. Additionally, the Rift S has a wide selection of compatible content because you can download games, movies, and other experiences from both the Oculus and SteamVR libraries. But if you’ve already got a gaming PC and want a richer, more immersive VR experience with better graphics and more games, the Oculus Rift S is the one to get. Oculus went from acclaimed virtual reality startup to Facebook subsidiary pretty darn quick due to its smart tech, and HTC joined along not long after with arguably the best PC VR headset for much of the tech’s nascent life: the HTC Vive.
At the moment, the four best on the market – the Valve Index, HTC Vive, Oculus Quest and PlayStation VR – are unsurprisingly the most expensive of all the mainstream VR headset offerings, but there are some less expensive options if you’d rather dip your toes into VR before spending your entire pay check. For an all-in-one virtual reality package, the Oculus Quest is very hard to beat: you get the convenience of a VR headset that isn’t tethered to a PC, but you get more power and performance than you do from a typical standalone headset. Its more limited mobile processor still plays games such as Beat Saber , Moss and SuperHot VR extremely well, and it can even connect with a PC if you want to, using a single USB-C cable Read our Oculus Quest review.
This headset does come with a hefty price tag though, almost as much as the gaming PC you’ll need to run it. It’s also available to buy on its own – but in order to get it to work you also need to purchase the tracking base stations and controllers at extra expense or with the Vive Pro Starter Kit for £1048/$1099. The Rift S is a tethered virtual reality headset that requires a decent gaming PC to run, but delivers a fantastic gaming experience with brilliant visuals, audio and room-scale play. Games Come First – With gamers in mind, PlayStation delivers a new world of unexpected gaming experiences through PlayStation VR. Be sure to visit vr headset adviser for the best VR headsets on the market to buy.
SteamVR supports the Valve Index, HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, Windows Mixed Reality headsets, and others. The?Oculus Quest is intended as a standalone handset, hence the integrated storage, but it can also connect to a PC for use with games like Half-Life Alyx with the official lightweight fibre optic Oculus Link Cable ( ?89/$79 ) or another high-spec USB-C cable ( ?7 / $19 ). The display is a bit better than the Rift S, at 2880×1600, but as it is an OLED screen with a Pentile subpixel arrangement you do lose out on some fine detail. Virtual reality games for PCs are a different experience from games on traditional consoles like the Xbox and PlayStation.