Oculus Rift Video Quality – 2017 Review

photo of Oculus Rift VR headset

The retail version of the Oculus Rift virtual reality (VR) headset finally got here in 2016, after several development packages and a number of years of work. Ever since, the exceptional Oculus Touch motion controllers have actually been contributed to the Rift as a single $598 package, slashing $100 each from the original rate of both the headset and the controllers. The Oculus Rift remains practical and immersive, if you have a computer that can handle it. With the addition of the Oculus Touch controllers, the Rift is more enticing than the now nearly identically priced HTC Vive, though the Sony PlayStation VR is our Editors’ Choice for its ease of usage and even lower price.Oculus Rift Video Quality

Prior to we get going, just a note that you can discover the headset on its own for around $499, though we highly advise getting it with the Oculus Touch controllers. The controllers are readily available by themselves for $99.

 

What You Need

Official requirements for the Rift$ 399.00 at Amazon are nearly similar to the requirements for the HTC Vive. Oculus suggests an Intel i5-4590 or much better CPU, an Nvidia GTX 970 or AMD Radeon R9 290 or 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. Among those ports is for the extra sensor 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 sensing unit. I evaluated it utilizing 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 simple and downplayed. It’s a plain black rectangular visor with rounded edges and little visual flair. The front panel is totally flat, significant only with an Oculus logo design. The sides of the visor are likewise flat, and link 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, conference at a padded triangle in the back. The straps are kept in location with hook-and-loop fasteners, and can be easily adjusted. A set of on-ear earphones rest on the arms, able to independently pivot and turn up and down to properly fit on your ears.

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

The headset links to your PC straight through a lengthy cable television that divides off near completion into HDMI and USB 3.0 connectors. The cable television unwind the left strap prior to running clear of the headset. It’s a little bit more uncomfortable than the over-the-top-of-the-head cable television of the HTC Vive, and I discovered myself having a hard time to find a comfortable position where the cable television didn’t sit distractingly on my shoulder. But it’s not nearly as huge a concern in usage as the HTC Vive’s cable, since the Vive is designed to work when you’re walking around a set location.

The Rift by itself uses a single external sensing unit, a black cylinder that sits on a nine-inch-tall metal desktop stand. The sensor can tilt up and down, and should be placed where it can keep a clear view of the headset when in usage. A second, identical sensing unit tracks the Oculus Touch controllers, and the 2 sensing units work in tandem to enhance tracking for all of the devices and cover a bigger area than the stationary position just one sensing unit enables.

When you’re operating, a 2,160-by-1,200 OLED panel is used to produce a 1,080-by-1,200 image for each eye, separated by the lenses in the headset (much like the Vive). The lenses can be adjusted utilizing a little lever on the ideal underside of the visor. More on the visual themselves in a bit.

 

Controls

The Oculus Touch motion controllers initially released as an optional addition, but have because been contributed to the $598 Rift bundle. They aren’t the only control alternatives included in the box, though. The Oculus Remote is a little, rounded bar with a large, circular navigation pad and Back, Menu, and Up/Down buttons. The remote helpfully includes a lanyard to keep it connected to your wrist when you’re utilizing the Rift. The Rift also includes an Xbox One cordless controller and a Microsoft Xbox Wireless Adapter for Windows with which you can use it, which comes in handy for VR video games that use conventional, non-motion-based control plans.

With the Oculus Touch controllers, the Rift’s controls reach parity with the HTC Vive’s, which has actually included movement manages out of package because its launch. We enter into more detail in our review of the Oculus Touch, however it’s a very comfortable, natural-feeling control plan with responsive physical elements like analog sticks and face buttons in addition to movement tracking.Oculus Rift Video Quality

 

Setup

Establishing the Rift is easy. You have to download the Oculus setup software on your PC, which will then walk you through the relatively couple of steps necessary to get going. Initially, plug the headset and sensors into your computer system, using an HDMI and 3 USB 3.0 ports. Second, sync the remote by pulling out the battery tab and pushing a button. Lastly (and additionally), plug the Xbox One receiver into a USB 2.0 port and set the gamepad with it. As soon as these actions are complete, you can slip the headset on and delve into the Oculus software.

At this moment in the setup process, you can play any software available on the Oculus Store, but you can go even more with fairly little inconvenience. By setting the Oculus software to load apps from unknown sources, you can get the headset to work with SteamVR, similar to the HTC Vive utilizes. The launch of Oculus Touch implies you can now utilize all SteamVR video games that support motion controls with the Rift. They sign up as HTC Vive motion controllers when you set them up for Steam, and work perfectly with Vive-compatible video games.

While the Rift now has motion controls, it does not rather support the same whole-room VR as the Vive. You can utilize it while sitting, standing, or within an area defined by the two sensors included with the Rift and Touch. It supports a smaller space than the Vive’s wall-mountable sensing units do, however this is a little sacrifice; considering that the HTC Vive is connected to your linked computer with a cable similar to the Rift, actually walking around with the headset on requires you to be really cautious not to journey over the dragging wire. It’s an immersion-breaker that injures the experience of otherwise free movement in VR. The Rift’s head tracking, together with Touch controller tracking, work effectively within the area the sensing units enable.

 

The Oculus Experience

The Rift shares the same resolution and refresh rate as the Vive, and as such the experience is really similar between the two. Like the Vive, the Rift produces a crisp photo with smooth movement and head tracking. In testing, the 3D effect of the stereoscopic images really offered me the sense that the virtual objects I was staring at were actually in front of me. Ultimately, the Rift headset is a display, so smoothness and graphical fidelity will depend on the power of your computer system and elegance of the software application. In regards to hardware, however, the Rift produces a compelling virtual experience for the eyes.

I played a couple of VR titles offered on the Oculus store, including EVE: Valkyrie, Farlands, and Lucky’s Tale. I also attempted Adventure Time: Magic Man’s Head Games and Virtual Desktop, released 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 team versus other, comparable squads. It boils down to the area version of group deathmatch in any first-person shooter, however it’s an engaging and fairly deep flight video game.

The format is ideal for using the Rift while sitting. The view puts you in the cockpit of your chosen area fighter, and you can easily look around it while staying in location. The game itself is controlled with the Xbox One gamepad, piloting the ship with the dual analog sticks and shooting with the triggers. Essentially, the VR aspect of the video game is unneeded; the experience is in fact much like playing a dogfighting game on a typical display, just with the capability to look freely around your cockpit (which does not use any substantial tactical advantage). Nevertheless, the immersiveness the Rift uses in entirely engulfing you in this cockpit perspective truly makes the game feel more interesting and tense.

It isn’t an intricate financial MMO like EVE itself, and the design of battle is a bit arcade-like in how ships fly and fire, but it’s satisfying to fly around in space, shooting at individuals while they shoot at you. It seems like among the most complete games made particularly with VR in mind.

Farlands is a xenobiological play area. You play a researcher on an alien planet, trying to find brand-new life types. You can scan various creatures by staring at them, and enhance your understanding of them by feeding them foods they desire. It has a really mellow quality, trying to find alien animals and viewing them consume to gradually and progressively open new environments to explore. While the concept appears ideal for movement controls, it was easy to have fun with a standard gamepad, using a reticle in the center of your view to highlight items and move.Oculus Rift Video Quality

Lucky’s Tale is a basic cartoony third-person platformer where you control a cartoon fox as he runs through different levels aiming to rescue his family pet pig. It’s a captivating experience that doesn’t really require VR at all. Utilizing the Rift in a video game like this lets you take a look around quickly from your above-the-action viewpoint. Nevertheless, you cannot easily move the electronic camera to get a better view of an offered position relative to the character you’re managing, which showed to be really discouraging when trying to get Lucky to gather lines of coins set in particular arcs in 3D area; without the ability to pan around Lucky, I could not easily align my jumps.

Our review of the Oculus Touch explains of what Oculus Rift video games that support Touch are like, but to summarize the experience, the optional Touch controllers make things like spray-painting walls, aiming weapons, and utilizing telekinetic powers feel extremely natural.

 

SteamVR

I ran Adventure Time: Magic Man’s Head Games (ATMMHG) on SteamVR to see if the Rift might manage it as efficiently as the Vive does. While SteamVR isn’t the Rift’s native platform, it displayed the user interface and packed the 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 actual value of playing stated third-person platformer in VR is still questionable).

I likewise tried Virtual Desktop, a program that forecasts your computer system’s screen in front of you in virtual space. It was just as practical and appealing as it was with the HTC Vive, revealing my display as a giant, curved display screen around me. The software application can likewise create a flat screen, as well as reveal your desktop deem a tv installed on the wall of a home theater. It’s a helpful way to make VR useful, even without VR-specific software application. If you want to see a video and it’s not offered on a client for the Oculus Rift or on SteamVR, you can just pack it with Virtual Desktop.

The only disadvantage is the resolution of the screen. Given that the Rift shows a 1,080-by-1,200 photo to each eye, and the virtual screen looks like a floating item, it’s in fact smaller than the headset’s per-eye resolution. That indicates text can appear blurred and rough unless you discover a sweet area from which to look at the screen, and reading can trigger eye stress. That stated, enjoying video on Hulu and Netflix is extremely cool.

 

Final Thoughts

The Oculus Rift comfortably produces an immersive, crisp virtual reality experience that will continue to enhance with the development of new software, which has actually 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 plan further adds to the value, though the HTC Vive’s recent cut to $599 puts them on equal footing in rate and functions. Both are technically impressive, effective VR headsets, however our Editors’ Choice stays the PlayStation VR for its lower rate and ease of use (though it just works with the PlayStation 4, instead of a PC).

If you want to try virtual reality, however you don’t want to invest at least $400, the Samsung Gear VR and Google Daydream View are strong choices. They’re smartphone-based VR headsets that use some of the very best mobile VR experiences you can presently get for around $100. Nevertheless, you require a suitable phone to utilize them.Oculus Rift Video Quality