Oculus Rift Vs Vive – 2017 Review

photo of Oculus Rift VR headset

The retail variation of the Oculus Rift virtual reality (VR) headset lastly showed up in 2016, after multiple advancement packages and a number of years of work. Ever since, the excellent Oculus Touch movement controllers have been contributed to the Rift as a single $598 bundle, slashing $100 each from the initial price of both the headset and the controllers. The Oculus Rift stays functional and immersive, if you have a computer system that can handle it. With the addition of the Oculus Touch controllers, the Rift is more appealing than the now almost identically priced HTC Vive, though the Sony PlayStation VR is our Editors’ Choice for its ease of usage and even lower rate.Oculus Rift Vs Vive

Before we get started, just a note that you can find the headset on its own for around $499, though we strongly advise 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 advises 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, three USB 3.0 ports, and one USB 2.0 port. Among those ports is for the additional sensor of the Oculus Touch controller, and you can establish the Rift itself with just 2 USB 3.0 ports: one for the headset and one for the external sensing unit. 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 simple and understated. It’s a plain black rectangular visor with rounded edges and little visual flair. The front panel is completely flat, significant only with an Oculus logo. The sides of the visor are likewise flat, and link to arms that pivot somewhat up and down and connect to the three-strap harness for protecting the device on your head.

A strap extends from each arm around the sides of your head, with a third 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 place with hook-and-loop fasteners, and can be quickly changed. A set of on-ear earphones rest on the arms, able to separately pivot and turn up and down to appropriately fit on your ears.

On its own, the headset is relatively light and comfortable. You can use glasses with the Rift, however it will make the fit a bit tighter. I used my glasses when checking the headset, which assisted make sure that I saw crisp and accurate visuals. But it also made putting the Rift on and taking it off a bit awkward, and depending upon the size of your frames, they could hurt your ability to use the headset for long periods of time.

The headset links to your PC straight through a prolonged cable that splits off near completion into HDMI and USB 3.0 adapters. The cable 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 discovered myself struggling to discover a comfortable position where the cable didn’t sit distractingly on my shoulder. However it’s not almost as big a concern in usage as the HTC Vive’s cable, because the Vive is designed to work when you’re walking 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 positioned where it can keep a clear view of the headset when in usage. A 2nd, similar sensor tracks the Oculus Touch controllers, and the two sensors work in tandem to improve tracking for all of the devices and cover a bigger location than the stationary position just one sensor permits.

As soon as you’re working, 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 (just like the Vive). The lenses can be changed utilizing a little lever on the ideal underside of the visor. More on the visual themselves in a bit.

 

Controls

The Oculus Touch movement controllers initially released as an optional addition, but have given that been added to the $598 Rift plan. They aren’t the only control choices 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 features a lanyard to keep it attached to your wrist when you’re utilizing the Rift. The Rift also includes an Xbox One wireless controller and a Microsoft Xbox Wireless Adapter for Windows with which you can utilize it, which is handy for VR games that utilize 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 motion controls out of package considering that its launch. We enter into more detail in our review of the Oculus Touch, but it’s a very comfy, natural-feeling control scheme with responsive physical elements like analog sticks and face buttons in addition to movement tracking.Oculus Rift Vs Vive

 

Setup

Establishing the Rift is basic. You have to download the Oculus setup software application on your PC, which will then walk you through the relatively couple of actions needed to obtain going. First, plug the headset and sensing units into your computer system, using an HDMI and 3 USB 3.0 ports. Second, sync the remote by pulling out the battery tab and pressing a button. Finally (and additionally), plug the Xbox One receiver into a USB 2.0 port and set the gamepad with it. When these steps 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 application available on the Oculus Store, but you can go even more with fairly little hassle. By setting the Oculus software to load apps from unknown sources, you can get the headset to deal with SteamVR, just like the HTC Vive uses. The launch of Oculus Touch means you can now utilize all SteamVR video games that support movement 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 doesn’t quite support the same whole-room VR as the Vive. You can utilize it while sitting, standing, or within a location defined by the 2 sensors included with the Rift and Touch. It supports a smaller sized space than the Vive’s wall-mountable sensing units do, but this is a small sacrifice; considering that the HTC Vive is tethered to your linked computer with a cable much like the Rift, actually walking around with the headset on needs you to be extremely cautious not to trip over the dragging wire. It’s an immersion-breaker that injures the experience of otherwise totally free movement 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 very same resolution and refresh rate as the Vive, and as such the experience is really comparable in between the two. Like the Vive, the Rift produces a crisp photo with smooth movement and head tracking. In testing, the 3D result of the stereoscopic images actually offered me the sense that the virtual items I was looking at were actually in front of me. Eventually, the Rift headset is a display screen, so smoothness and graphical fidelity will depend on the power of your computer system and elegance of the software. In terms of hardware, however, the Rift produces an engaging virtual experience for the eyes.

I played a couple of VR titles readily available on the Oculus store, including EVE: Valkyrie, Farlands, and Lucky’s Tale. I likewise 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 game sent out in the EVE universe. You play a cloned pilot who runs sorties with your squad versus other, similar teams. It boils down to the space version of group deathmatch in any first-person shooter, however it’s an engaging and fairly deep flight video game.

The format is perfect for utilizing the Rift while sitting. The view puts you in the cockpit of your chosen area fighter, and you can freely browse it while staying in location. The 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 unnecessary; the experience is actually just like playing a dogfighting video game on a normal monitor, simply with the ability to look easily around your cockpit (which does not use any significant tactical benefit). However, the immersiveness the Rift provides in completely engulfing you in this cockpit perspective truly makes the game feel more interesting and tense.

It isn’t a complex financial MMO like EVE itself, and the design of fight is a bit arcade-like in how ships fly and fire, however it’s satisfying to fly around in space, shooting at people while they contend you. It seems like one of the most total video games made particularly with VR in mind.

Farlands is a xenobiological playground. You play a researcher on an alien world, trying to find brand-new life types. You can scan various creatures by staring at them, and improve your understanding of them by feeding them foods they desire. It has an extremely mellow quality, trying to find alien animals and viewing them consume to gradually and progressively unlock brand-new environments to check out. While the idea seems ideal for movement controls, it was simple to play with a traditional gamepad, utilizing a reticle in the center of your view to highlight objects and move around.Oculus Rift Vs Vive

Lucky’s Tale is a standard cartoony third-person platformer where you manage an animation fox as he goes through various levels attempting to rescue his animal pig. It’s a distinctive experience that does not truly need VR at all. Using the Rift in a video game like this lets you look around easily from your above-the-action viewpoint. Nevertheless, you can’t readily move the electronic camera to obtain a much better view of an offered position relative to the character you’re controlling, which proved to be extremely frustrating when aiming to get Lucky to gather lines of coins set in specific arcs in 3D space; without the capability to pan around Lucky, I couldn’t easily align my dives.

Our evaluation of the Oculus Touch goes into detail of what Oculus Rift video games that support Touch resemble, however to summarize the experience, the optional Touch controllers make things like spray-painting walls, aiming 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 might handle it as efficiently as the Vive does. While SteamVR isn’t really the Rift’s native platform, it displayed the user interface and filled the video game perfectly, and I discovered it was simply as smooth and immersive as it is on the Vive (though, like with Lucky’s Tale, the actual worth of playing said third-person platformer in VR is still questionable).

I also attempted Virtual Desktop, a program that projects your computer system’s screen in front of you in virtual area. It was just as functional and interesting as it was with the HTC Vive, revealing my display as a giant, curved screen around me. The software can also generate a flat screen, and even show your desktop deem a television mounted on the wall of a home theater. It’s a convenient way to make VR helpful, even without VR-specific software application. If you wish to enjoy 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 display screen. Considering that the Rift reveals a 1,080-by-1,200 photo to each eye, and the virtual screen appears as a floating things, it’s actually smaller than the headset’s per-eye resolution. That means text can appear blurry and grainy unless you discover a sweet area from which to take a look at the screen, and reading can cause eye strain. That stated, watching 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 improve with the development of new software, which has actually been gradually 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 further contributes to the value, though the HTC Vive’s current cut to $599 puts them on equal footing in rate and features. Both are technically outstanding, powerful VR headsets, however our Editors’ Choice stays the PlayStation VR for its lower cost and ease of use (though it only deals with the PlayStation 4, rather than a PC).

If you want to try virtual reality, but you don’t wish to invest a minimum of $400, the Samsung Gear VR and Google Daydream View are strong choices. They’re smartphone-based VR headsets that provide a few of the very best mobile VR experiences you can presently get for around $100. Nevertheless, you need a compatible phone to utilize them.Oculus Rift Vs Vive