Oculus Rift Headset Price – 2017 Review

photo of Oculus Rift VR headset

The retail variation of the Oculus Rift virtual reality (VR) headset lastly arrived in 2016, after multiple advancement sets and numerous years of work. Since then, the outstanding Oculus Touch motion controllers have been contributed to the Rift as a single $598 bundle, slashing $100 each from the original rate of both the headset and the controllers. The Oculus Rift remains functional and immersive, if you have a computer system that can manage it. With the addition of the Oculus Touch controllers, the Rift is more attractive than the now nearly identically priced HTC Vive, though the Sony PlayStation VR is our Editors’ Choice for its ease of use as well as lower price.Oculus Rift Headset Price

Prior to we get started, simply a note that you can discover the headset by itself for around $499, though we strongly suggest getting it with the Oculus Touch controllers. The controllers are available by themselves for $99.

 

What You Need

Official requirements for the Rift$ 399.00 at Amazon are almost similar to the requirements for the HTC Vive. Oculus recommends an Intel i5-4590 or better CPU, an Nvidia GTX 970 or AMD Radeon R9 290 or much better video card, a minimum of 8GB of RAM, an HDMI 1.3 output, 3 USB 3.0 ports, and one USB 2.0 port. One of those ports is for the extra sensing unit of the Oculus Touch controller, and you can establish the Rift itself with just two USB 3.0 ports: one for the headset and one for the external sensor. I tested it using the Origin EON17-X, which has a Core i7 6700K CPU overclocked to 4.5 GHz, an 8GB GeForce GTX 980M graphics card, and 16GB of RAM.

 

Oculus Rift Design

The Oculus Rift headset is easy and downplayed. It’s a plain black rectangular visor with rounded edges and little visual style. The front panel is entirely flat, significant only with an Oculus logo. The sides of the visor are likewise flat, and connect to arms that pivot slightly up and down and connect to the three-strap harness for securing the device on your head.

A strap extends from each arm around the sides of your head, with a 3rd strap extending from the top of the visor over the top of your head, meeting at a cushioned triangle in the back. The straps are held in location with hook-and-loop fasteners, and can be quickly changed. A set of on-ear headphones sit on the arms, able to independently pivot and turn up and down to appropriately fit on your ears.

On its own, the headset is fairly light and comfy. You can wear glasses with the Rift, but it will make the fit a bit tighter. I utilized my glasses when evaluating the headset, which assisted make sure that I saw crisp and precise visuals. But it also made putting the Rift on and taking it off a bit uncomfortable, and depending on the size of your frames, they might hurt your capability to wear the headset for extended periods of time.

The headset links to your PC directly through a lengthy cable television that divides off near completion into HDMI and USB 3.0 ports. The cable television winds down the left strap before running clear of the headset. It’s a bit more uncomfortable than the over-the-top-of-the-head cable of the HTC Vive, and I found myself struggling to discover a comfortable position where the cable television didn’t sit distractingly on my shoulder. But it’s not nearly as big an issue in usage as the HTC Vive’s cable television, since the Vive is designed to work when you’re walking a set location.

The Rift by itself usages a single external sensing unit, a black cylinder that rests on a nine-inch-tall metal desktop stand. The sensor can tilt up and down, and need to be put where it can keep a clear view of the headset when in use. A second, identical sensor tracks the Oculus Touch controllers, and the 2 sensors operate in tandem to improve tracking for all the gadgets and cover a bigger location than the fixed position simply one sensing unit allows.

As soon as you’re operating, a 2,160-by-1,200 OLED panel is used to produce a 1,080-by-1,200 photo for each eye, separated by the lenses in the headset (much like the Vive). The lenses can be changed using a small lever on the best underside of the visor. More on the visual themselves in a bit.

 

Controls

The Oculus Touch movement controllers originally introduced as an optional addition, but have actually given that been added to the $598 Rift bundle. They aren’t the only control choices consisted of in the box, though. The Oculus Remote is a small, rounded bar with a large, circular navigation pad and Back, Menu, and Up/Down buttons. The remote helpfully features a lanyard to keep it attached to your wrist when you’re utilizing the Rift. The Rift likewise consists of an Xbox One wireless controller and a Microsoft Xbox Wireless Adapter for Windows with which you can use it, which comes in handy for VR video games that utilize standard, non-motion-based control plans.

With the Oculus Touch controllers, the Rift’s controls reach parity with the HTC Vive’s, which has actually consisted of movement controls out of the box given that its launch. We go into more detail in our evaluation of the Oculus Touch, however it’s a really comfortable, natural-feeling control scheme with responsive physical elements like analog sticks and face buttons in addition to motion tracking.Oculus Rift Headset Price

 

Setup

Setting up the Rift is basic. You need to download the Oculus setup software application on your PC, which will then walk you through the reasonably few actions essential to obtain going. Initially, plug the headset and sensing units into your computer system, utilizing an HDMI and three USB 3.0 ports. Second, sync the remote by taking out the battery tab and pushing a button. Finally (and additionally), plug the Xbox One receiver into a USB 2.0 port and pair the gamepad with it. As soon as these actions are complete, you can slip the headset on and delve into the Oculus software application.

At this moment in the setup procedure, you can play any software application available on the Oculus Store, but you can go further with reasonably little trouble. By setting the Oculus software to load apps from unidentified sources, you can get the headset to deal with SteamVR, similar to the HTC Vive uses. The launch of Oculus Touch indicates you can now utilize all SteamVR games that support movement controls with the Rift. They sign up as HTC Vive movement controllers when you set them up for Steam, and work perfectly with Vive-compatible games.

While the Rift now has motion controls, it doesn’t rather support the very same whole-room VR as the Vive. You can utilize it while sitting, standing, or within a location defined by the 2 sensing units included with the Rift and Touch. It supports a smaller space than the Vive’s wall-mountable sensors do, but this is a small sacrifice; because the HTC Vive is tethered to your linked computer system with a cable similar to the Rift, in fact walking with the headset on requires you to be extremely mindful not to journey over the dragging wire. It’s an immersion-breaker that injures the experience of otherwise complimentary motion in VR. The Rift’s head tracking, in addition to Touch controller tracking, work extremely well within the space the sensors allow.

 

The Oculus Experience

The Rift shares the same resolution and revitalize rate as the Vive, and as such the experience is really comparable between the 2. Like the Vive, the Rift produces a crisp picture with smooth motion and head tracking. In testing, the 3D result of the stereoscopic images truly gave me the sense that the virtual objects I was looking at were actually in front of me. Eventually, the Rift headset is a display screen, so smoothness and visual fidelity will depend on the power of your computer and sophistication of the software. In terms of hardware, though, the Rift produces an engaging virtual experience for the eyes.

I played a few VR titles offered on the Oculus shop, consisting of EVE: Valkyrie, Farlands, and Lucky’s Tale. I likewise attempted Adventure Time: Magic Man’s Head Games and Virtual Desktop, introduced through SteamVR

EVE: Valkyrie is the star of the launch titles for the Oculus Rift. It’s an online, multiplayer space dogfighting video game sent out in the EVE universe. You play a cloned pilot who runs sorties with your squad versus other, similar teams. It comes down to the area version of team deathmatch in any first-person shooter, however it’s an appealing and fairly deep flight video game.

The format is ideal for utilizing the Rift while sitting. The view puts you in the cockpit of your picked space fighter, and you can easily look around it while remaining in place. The video game itself is controlled with the Xbox One gamepad, piloting the ship with the dual analog sticks and firing with the triggers. Fundamentally, the VR aspect of the video game is unneeded; the experience is actually just like playing a dogfighting game on a typical monitor, simply with the capability to look freely around your cockpit (which does not use any significant tactical benefit). However, the immersiveness the Rift provides in totally engulfing you in this cockpit viewpoint truly makes the game feel more engaging and tense.

It isn’t really a complicated financial MMO like EVE itself, and the design of battle is a bit arcade-like in how ships fly and fire, but it’s enjoyable to fly around in space, shooting at people while they contend you. It feels like among the most complete games made particularly with VR in mind.

Farlands is a xenobiological play area. You play a scientist on an alien planet, searching for new life kinds. You can scan various animals by looking at them, and improve your understanding of them by feeding them foods they want. It has an extremely mellow quality, looking for alien animals and seeing them consume to gradually and progressively open new environments to explore. While the concept appears perfect for motion controls, it was easy to have fun with a traditional gamepad, utilizing a reticle in the center of your view to highlight items and move around.Oculus Rift Headset Price

Lucky’s Tale is a standard cartoony third-person platformer where you control an animation fox as he goes through various levels aiming to rescue his family pet pig. It’s an eye-catching experience that doesn’t really require VR at all. Using the Rift in a video game like this lets you browse quickly from your above-the-action viewpoint. However, you can’t easily move the camera to obtain a much better view of a given position relative to the character you’re managing, which proved to be very frustrating when attempting to get Lucky to collect lines of coins embeded in particular arcs in 3D space; without the ability to pan around Lucky, I could not quickly align my dives.

Our evaluation of the Oculus Touch explains of exactly what Oculus Rift games that support Touch resemble, but to sum up the experience, the optional Touch controllers make things like spray-painting walls, intending guns, and utilizing telekinetic powers feel really natural.

 

SteamVR

I ran Adventure Time: Magic Man’s Head Games (ATMMHG) on SteamVR to see if the Rift could handle it as smoothly as the Vive does. While SteamVR isn’t really the Rift’s native platform, it displayed the user interface and filled the video game completely, and I found it was simply as smooth and immersive as it is on the Vive (however, like with Lucky’s Tale, the real value of playing said third-person platformer in VR is still doubtful).

I likewise tried Virtual Desktop, a program that predicts your computer system’s screen in front of you in virtual space. It was just as functional and appealing as it was with the HTC Vive, revealing my screen as a giant, curved screen around me. The software application can also create a flat screen, and even show your desktop view as a television installed on the wall of a house theater. It’s a handy way to make VR useful, even without VR-specific software. If you wish to enjoy a video and it’s not readily available on a customer for the Oculus Rift or on SteamVR, you can simply pack it with Virtual Desktop.

The only drawback is the resolution of the display. Because the Rift shows a 1,080-by-1,200 photo to each eye, and the virtual screen looks like a floating object, it’s actually smaller than the headset’s per-eye resolution. That indicates text can appear fuzzy and grainy unless you discover a sweet spot from which to look at the screen, and reading can cause eye strain. That said, seeing video on Hulu and Netflix is very cool.

 

Final Thoughts

The Oculus Rift easily produces an immersive, crisp virtual reality experience that will continue to improve with the development of brand-new software application, which has been steadily coming out on both the Oculus store and SteamVR. The release of the Oculus Touch controllers and the addition of them to the $600 headset bundle even more adds to the worth, though the HTC Vive’s current cut to $599 puts them on equivalent footing in rate and features. Both are technically outstanding, effective VR headsets, but our Editors’ Choice stays the PlayStation VR for its lower price and ease of use (though it just deals with the PlayStation 4, rather than a PC).

If you wish to try virtual reality, but you do not want to spend at least $400, the Samsung Gear VR and Google Daydream View are solid options. They’re smartphone-based VR headsets that use some of the best mobile VR experiences you can presently get for around $100. Nevertheless, you need a suitable phone to utilize them.Oculus Rift Headset Price