The VR market is booming with high-quality headsets from big-name companies like HP, HTC, Oculus, and Valve. It doesn’t matter if you’re an enthusiast gamer, professional, or are looking to buy a headset as a gift for someone. But buying one is a complex task for someone who’s new to the VR world. Fear not, as we’ve made it simple for you to decide which is the best headset under $1000 that won’t put a hole in your pocket. We tested, evaluated, and rated top headsets, scoring them for:
The tracking accuracy of the headset and the controller,
Ease of setup,
Value for money.
The Valve Index is a headset with a resolution of 1440*1600 pixels per eye, and an incredible refresh rate of 144 Hz. High refresh rates mean the display panels refresh more frequently and minimize motion sickness – a frequent complaint of many VR headset users.
The colors displayed by the Valve Index are duller compared to its competitors, but the display does otherwise compare well. The field of view can be expanded to 130 degrees, but it is optimal at around 120 degrees. The headset and controller are compatible with Valve’s Lighthouse 2.0 tracking system.
The headset is slated to pair with the Valve Index Controllers – which will be referred to as the Knuckles Controllers as they evolve – but at the same time will remain compatible with the HTC Vive and HTC Vive Pro controllers. The Index is slightly costlier than its peers, but it definitely delivers on its promise.
Price – $999
Link – https://www.valvesoftware.com/en/index
The Reverb G2 virtual reality headset was developed in collaboration with Valve and Microsoft. The headset is equipped with industry-leading speakers for a truly immersive experience. In addition, the G2 offers a high-quality resolution of 2160*2160 pixel LCD panels per eye.
The four in-built cameras enable a smooth tracking experience. The new controllers are evolved to provide a new level of comfort which feels natural to hold on to – thus making the whole set-up process a lot easier.
With exceptional display and tracking performance, Reverb G2 is a great buck for money.
Price – $599
Link – https://www.hp.com/us-en/vr/reverb-g2-vr-headset.html
The Oculus Quest 2 improves on its predecessor with a new processor, better resolution, and an eye-catching design. The Snapdragon 865-derived Snapdragon XR2 fares far better than the previous processor, with 6 GB RAM onboard. The in-box controllers are a bit bulkier but provide great grip as a result.
The display now supports 1920*1832 pixels per eye, and the refresh rate is revamped to 90 Hz resulting in smooth transitions while playing. Four in-built cameras constantly track your movements which enables you to experience true six-degrees-of-freedom.
Price – $299
Link – https://www.oculus.com/quest-2/
The Vive Cosmos is a unique headset with a 310-degree tracking field and boasts a display of 2880*1700 pixels per eye. The Cosmos has a 110-degree field of view – which is not up to the industry standard. Inside-out tracking makes the whole setup process enjoyable even for rookies.
Vive Cosmos lacks in tracking because of the system’s glacial reorientation speed resulting in a sub-optimal experience in comparison with the alternatives. At this price point, Vive Cosmos doesn’t stand out as a clear winner but is definitely a product worth trying.
Price – $599
Link – https://www.vive.com/sea/product/vive-cosmos/features/
Rift – S
The Rift-S is a remarkable improvement from its previous models, with the most significant upgrade being the Insight system. This new system employs five tracking cameras directly built-in in the headset. In addition, the display is an upgrade from the original Rift and supports 1280*1440 pixels per eye – the refresh rate is a disappointment as it’s limited to 80 Hz.
If you’re an amateur in this field, then Rift – S will serve as the perfect introduction to the world of VR headsets.
Price – $399
Link – https://www.oculus.com/rift-s/
The use of VR headsets is broadening day by day as technology keeps advancing. Earlier, headsets were almost exclusively used for gaming. With the advancing quality of 3D content, and immersive experiences adding value across the board, headsets are finding extensive use across domains, including training medical students to perform surgeries. In addition, events, retail, real estate lapped up the power of virtual teleportation during the pandemic, allowing their customers to interact with people, places, and things better, remotely. You can also create content for these devices without the need to write a single line of code with help of <a href=”https://www.gmetri.com”>Metaverse</a> platforms like GMetriXR.
Investing in a good headset can make all the difference in making the best of any virtual reality experience. Products like Valve Index and Reverb G2 are the best one’s if you’re okay with paying a little extra, but if you want a low-priced durable product that works smoothly then do look out for Vive Cosmos and Rift – S.
About the author:
Ayush Harsh has a keen interest in the Virtual Reality space. He keeps himself updated with all the news and upcoming technology related to XR, Metaverse, and Immersive Cloud. He pens down his own opinion in relevant spaces.