View photos Oculus Touch review
Why you should buy this: Easily upgradeable in the future, cheapest PC solution.
$599.00 from Amazon
Who’s it for: You want a premium VR headset at a discounted cost.
How much will it cost: $400
Why we picked the Oculus Rift
The Oculus Rift has definitely matured since its release. With the release of its Touch controllers and the complete revamp Oculus Home is getting, the Rift keeps getting more and more competitive. However, there’s one additional reason you should consider picking one up: It got a
significant, permanent price drop.
After getting the price cut, the Oculus Rift — with Touch controllers included — will run you only $400.It still may not be dirt cheap, but it’s very inexpensive for a VR headset. It’s two hundred less than the HTC Vive, and the same price as the PSVR (for a much more robust VR experience). The Oculus Rift, paired with a powerful computer, is every bit as capable from a technical perspective as the HTC Vive. While we still like the Vive better for a number of reasons, including that the Oculus struggles in room-scale experiences, the price drop makes the Oculus Rift awfully tempting.
In terms of software, Oculus’ owner Facebook is really doubling down on the Oculus platform with a slew of software updates coming in 2018. For instance, among the updates coming to the Oculus platform in 2017 is a complete rework of its user interface. Called “RiftCore 2.0,” the new software update will radically alter the way users interact with applications and games.
Now, instead of using an external application to emulate a desktop environment, you’ll be able to access our applications right from the new Oculus Dashboard. You can open windows, re-arrange them, and even jump into the Dashboard right from your VR games. It’s just one of many changes coming to the Rift platform in the coming year, and these new features alongside the new pricing makes the Rift a very attractive VR platform for newcomers.
The last thing to consider is that Oculus will soon be releasing its standalone VR headset, the Oculus Go. It requires neither a smartphone or a PC and instead relies on its own internals for powering its VR experiences. While it probably
won’t compare with the Rift on a technical level, it’ll give you access to all the Oculus software for just $200.
Should you wait: The Oculus Rift just got a price cut, and it’s only going to get better. Now is a great time to buy. Our full review Should you buy now, or wait?
There’s another question haunting this whole discussion, and it’s whether right now is the correct time to buy a premium VR headset at all. If you don’t already have a high-end gaming PC or PlayStation 4, the price is very high right now. Plan on spending $1,000 or more when all is said and done.
These are also all first-generation devices, and as such, there’s a strong likelihood the second wave will substantially overcome their technical limitations at a lower price.
How long will that be until they come out? It’s hard to say. Features like inside-out tracking, gesture control, and haptic feedback are on the way but won’t actually see widespread adoption until 2018. The
Project Santa Cruz headset from Oculus brings a wireless experience to VR, alongside its standalone system the Oculus Go, but both of these are coming out in 2018 and they fill different niches than the full-sized VR headsets like the Rift, Vive, and PSVR.
There are also a host of Windows Mixed Reality headsets just around the corner, like the
Dell Visor, the Samsung Odyssey. These are all going to be in the $350 to $500 range and offer similar experiences to what you’d get out of the Vive and Rift, but the jury’s still out on whether or not they’re really comparable. So if you’re curious about the future of VR, or you’re not quite sold on the above options, it might not be a bad idea to wait.
But, if you’re ready to take the plunge, there are enough games and experiences out there that you’ll have plenty to do — as long as you go with one of the established headsets like the Vive, Rift, Gear VR, or PSVR.
How we test
At this point, you might be wondering how we came to these conclusions. It’s a valid question, and one we try and be as transparent as possible about.
We start by learning everything we can about an HMD, often long before we have a chance to use it. Once we have it in our hands, we try to play as many titles as we can, and push the hardware into awkward situations to see how it responds.
After that, we put it in as many of our coworkers’ hands as possible. We give them free reign over the device, allowing them to choose demo titles and work with it freely. The less instruction we give, the more we see regular users finding hidden corner use cases that reveal the hardware’s mettle, and often points out issues like nausea and controller familiarity that wouldn’t be issues for reviewers.
Most importantly, we take the time to compare the headsets to other offerings on the market. That includes HMDs we’ve spent time with, and products that aren’t available yet, to determine whether each offering represents a good value.
This post was updated on November 10, 2017 by Jayce Wagner to reflect current best picks. The article was originally published on May 26, 2016.
Source : https://finance.yahoo.com/news/best-vr-headset-buy-201533111.html