Technology has given us new lenses through which we can see the world, VR lenses. Virtual Reality is an interactive experience generated by a computer that goes on in a simulated (virtual) environment.
Virtual reality mainly features auditory and visual responses. Although, sometimes, it also allows for other types of sensory responses. The immersive environment is either a replica of real-life, or fictional.
To become immersed in virtual reality, you need some VR headsets. Now, depending on what system you’re using, you might need a VR headset for PC, a PS4 VR headset, an Android VR headset, or a VR headset for iPhone.
We know that finding the right one might be pretty difficult for you, so, we saved you the stress. We made research and gathered together the best VR headsets for whatever system you’re using.
|Oculus Rift + Touch VR System||PC||Yes||3.9 x 3.9 x 3.9 inches; 8.09 pounds|
|Sony PlayStation VR||PlayStation 4||No||7.4 x 7.3 x 10.9 inches; 6.85 pounds|
|Oculus Go VR Headset||Standalone (No system required)||No||8.3 x 8.3 x 4.8 inches; 12.5 ounces|
|Samsung VR Headset Gear||Samsung Galaxy (S6-S9, Note 5 – present)||No||8.2 x 4.8 x 3.9 inches|
|ONN Smartphone VR Headset||Smartphone||No||7.2 x 4 x 5.2 inches|
|Google Daydream View VR Headset||Daydream-Ready Phones||No||6.6 x 4.2 x 3.8 inches|
Table of Contents
- Top 6 VR Headsets Reviews
- How To Pick The Best Headset
- How Do Other People Choose the VR Headset?
- How Do We Choose Our Favorite VR Headset?
Top 6 VR Headsets Reviews
If you’re a Virtual Reality PC gamer, then you definitely know who Oculus is. Oculus, being one of the pioneers of Virtual Reality, is solely focused on providing gamers with immersive gaming experiences. The Oculus Rift is a VR headset that runs solely on PCs.
People have often asked how much immersion can be created with the Oculus Rift. Well, quite a lot, because this headset comes with 2 sensors that track your every move. Also, the sensor cables are 8 feet long each, giving you freedom of movement and expression, you desire. With cords that long you can walk around your room and still be properly tracked.
This System only comes with two sensors. However, if you want complete immersion, you might want to get a third sensor. The two sensors are set up facing you. They work great, until you have to play a 360-degree game and they can’t track you once you turn back. With a third sensor at the back though, plus the two already provided at the front, you’re covered all round.
Also, if you have a bigger room than most, the two sensors might not allow you use the space in the room efficiently.
One huge feature, and probably the biggest thing that places the Oculus Rift a step above others, is that it comes with touch controllers. These touch controllers, one for each hand, allow you to interact with the virtual world.
One downside a lot of people have with Virtual Reality, is that most times, they don’t get to interact with the environment. However, all that is changed with these controllers. With these controllers, you can pick up stuff, punch bad guys, pull out your big guns, and of course, pull the trigger. Complete immersion and interaction.
Another great thing about this VR headset is that it comes with 6 free applications! Yes, you read that right. Don’t you just love a system you can play straight from the box? The applications include games like Robo Recall, Dead and Buried, amongst other fun stuff like Quill and Toybox. There’s something for every member of the family here.
- Comes with 2, 8-feet long (extendable), sensors.
- Comes with two touch controllers (one for each hand).
- Comes with 6 free applications.
- You might need to get more sensors for a more immersive experience or in a larger room.
- Doesn’t come with X-box controller or remote.
- Gets hot after prolonged use.
For all the PlayStation gamers out there, you’re not left out. This VR headset is produced by the same company that produces the PlayStation, Sony. This headset gives you a field vision of up to 100 degrees, making it easy for you to see the virtual world properly.
To use this headset, you must already have a PlayStation 4 console, and a PlayStation Camera (each item sold separately). The PS4 console is the system the VR runs on, and the camera is for positional tracking.
We know a lot of people have eye problems and as such, are required to wear glasses. It would interest you to know that this headset adjusts forward and backward, to accommodate your glasses. Also, it’s lightweight and doesn’t get very hot, so, you can use it for extensive periods of time and still feel comfortable.
With VR headsets and positional tracking, it’s sometimes difficult to get the right position that would be comfortable for a long period of time. That is why Sony added the “re-center” option to this headset. With just the touch of the options button, you can easily re-center, till you find a comfy position to stay in.
So, what makes this stand out?
You don’t need Virtual Reality games and applications to use this headset. Chill. The headset is for VR, no doubt. However, the headset also allows you to play your normal games on a much larger screen.
So, you don’t feel like being immersed and just feel like playing regular FIFA? With this headset, you’ll be playing it on a much larger screen. The cinematic feature also allows you to do the same for movies. We’re talking VR screen almost as large as IMAX! This great feature also means that you can play your PS4 even if someone else is using the TV. Just plug in your headset and play away.
Another thing that makes this headset stand out is that it is “plug and play”. What that means is that, you don’t need to update any drivers or troubleshoot anything to use it.
Can you use it on anything aside a PS4? Well, partially. You cannot use the actual Virtual Reality experience on any other device. However, you can use the cinematic view on your Xbox or PC. Note that re-positioning on other consoles is difficult. One thing you have to know, though, is that this VR headset is not the clearest out there. Also, if your camera is not positioned properly, it’ll lose track of your positioning.
- Very versatile. Can also be used to play normal games and watch movies on a larger (virtual) screen.
- You don’t need to troubleshoot any drivers.
- PlayStation move controllers (sold separately) makes the game even more interactive.
- Not as clear as some other VR headsets.
- Loses track if your camera isn’t positioned well.
- Too many wires. These wires limit your movement. Even the headsets with 3D spatial audio, come with wires.
The littlest big screen! Just like we’ve mentioned earlier, Oculus is creme of the crop when it comes to Virtual Reality, and this Go VR Headset only solidifies that point. It’s named “Go” because this VR headset is one you can use on the go. It is a standalone headset that requires no external console to function. Yes, no smartphone, no PC, no gaming console! How do you navigate then? Well, it comes with a controller (remote, if you prefer), that you can use to manipulate the virtual world. You can use it to go through settings, options, and even take screenshots and screen recordings.
How does it work? Because it is standalone, it doesn’t require any other device to run. However, you would need your smartphone to set up your Oculus Go. You’ll need to download the Oculus app, register, and then set up your headset. Also, you can use the app on your Smartphone to download/purchase apps for your Oculus Go. You can actually look for apps using the Oculus Go, but using your smartphone just makes the search easier.
As at the time of this review, there are already major media apps available on the Oculus Go. These include: Netflix, Hulu, HBO, Showtime, Facebook, 3D Video & Image Software etc.
How about the Visual experience? We can tell you for free that this is clearer than a lot of other headsets out there. This is because, it doesn’t depend on the graphics quality of the system it’s running on as it doesn’t run on any system.
Few downsides to the Oculus Go include the fact that it doesn’t come with an external SD card slot, and the battery life is short. Without the option of an SD card, the apps you can have on your Oculus Go are limited.
Oculus Go’s are available in either 32gb, or 64gb. The normal battery life if you’re using multimedia, is about 2.5hours. That goes down further, if you’re using the immersive 3D experience. That’s just sad.
- It doesn’t require any external system, it is standalone.
- The visuals are great, every detail is captured.
- Comes with a controller for easy navigation.
- You can use a smartphone app to download apps to the headset.
- Great for multimedia viewing, using apps like Netflix, HBO, etc.
- No SD Card slot.
- Poor battery life.
- Doesn’t use any google apps. No Maps, no Earth, no YouTube.
First and foremost, the only compatible phones with the Samsung VR Headset Gear are the following:
- Galaxy Note 9 (additional adapter needed).
- Note 8.
- Note FE.
- Note 5.
- S7 Edge.
- S6 Edge.
- S6 Edge+.
- Galaxy A8(2018).
- A8 star.
If your phone is not among the phones listed above, then, sorry, you cannot use this headset.
This headset is plug & play, what that means is that no additional drivers or device settings are needed to make it work. However, just as has been stated above, if you have a Note 9, you need an additional adapter. But do not worry, the adapter can be sourced for free from the Samsung Customer Service. Call 1-800-SAMSUNG, for more information.
One thing about this, though, is that you have to remove any sort of phone protection case before you fix it into the headset. Phone protection case also includes screen guards. If you use tempered glass screen guard, the connection that is meant to be made between the headset and the phone will be shaky.
You can have your glasses on while using this, it’s perfectly fine. The eye holes will adjust forward and backward, appropriately, to fit your glasses.
- It is plug and play, no additional drivers needed. Except for the S9 that needs an additional adapter.
- Additional adapter for S9 is free.
- You can wear glasses while using it.
- Only works with compatible phones.
- Cannot keep your phone protection on while using.
If you’re looking for a cheap VR headset, we don’t have that in this review. Cheap usually signifies something poorly made with sub-standard materials. However, the ONN VR Headset is definitely very affordable and yet excellent in performance. In fact, it is so affordable, you can get one for every member of your family, comfortably. It comes with plastic see-through lenses that allow you view your phone screen like it is a virtual environment.
It doesn’t come with any buttons, remotes, or controllers, though. And because of that, the games you can play with this headset are very limited. Basically, the games you can play can only involve head bopping or rollercoaster rides. But then again, you can use this to watch any movie. Nonetheless, to watch something in 3D, the video has to be specifically made for VR glasses. You can find videos like that on YouTube.
If you’re new to Virtual Reality and you want something with low risk and considerably fair reward, you should absolutely get this. Also, if you want to experience Virtual Reality with a very tight budget, this is the headset for you.
Another great thing about this headset is that it has no batteries and requires no charging. All you have to be worried about is your phone’s battery life while using this. It works well with any smartphone; iPhones, Samsung phones, anything, provided the screen size is not more than 6 inches.
- Very affordable.
- No batteries, doesn’t need power to run.
- Works well with all Smartphones with screens less than 6 inches.
- No remote or controller. You have to remove phone to navigate, then place back to use.
- Doesn’t work with PC, PS4 or other gaming consoles.
The last, but certainly not the least, VR headset we would be talking about today, is Google’s Daydream. If you’ve been waiting for a Google VR Headset on this list, well, sorry to keep you waiting. This is obviously the best Google VR Headset out there, obviously better than the Google cardboard.
In terms of compatibility, the Daydream only works with “Daydream Ready” phones. Such phones include various Samsung devices, iPhone devices, and of course, the Google Pixel phones. Before you buy this headset though, we’d advise that you check if your Smartphone is Daydream Ready by clicking this link. In that page, you’ll find the full list of phones that can use this device.
This headset comes with a remote control that enables you navigate through options and settings seamlessly. You can also use the remote as a controller for some games. You can wear this VR headset over your glasses. However, be warned that it can become uncomfortable after a long period of time.
Another great thing about this VR headset is that it is affordable. Although it’s not as affordable as the ONN VR Headset, there’s no doubt that this headset will be nice to your pockets.
- Comes with a remote control.
- Can be used over glasses.
- Quite affordable.
- Only compatible with “Daydream Ready” phones.
How To Pick The Best Headset
There are certain features that make VR headsets have that make them VR headsets. For a VR headset to be considered the best, its features must have the best qualities. Also, it is important to note that the best VR headset for you, might not be the best VR headset for your friend. This is because, what you majorly want to use the headset for, determines which is best for you.
What do we mean? Just like we have highlighted with the different headsets listed above, some are great on PS4 consoles, but rubbish on PC. Some others are good for smartphones and don’t work at all on an Xbox. With that said, to choose the best headset, you have to consider the following:
- What system would you be running it on?
This is the most important thing you want to check out for. The systems we mean are: PCs, PS4 and Xboxes, Smartphones, or nothing at all. Knowing what you want to use the headset on, will determine what headset to buy, as what works on one system might not work on another.
- What do you want to use it for?
After picking a set of VR headsets that work on the system you want to use, you’ll need to ask yourself another question: “what do I want to use it for?” Uses can include gaming, internet surfing, or movies. Some headsets are best for gaming, others, multimedia, and so on. You’ll need to check what the manufacturer markets as the primary use of the headset.
The final, yet probably the most important thing you need to look out for is the price. If you’re new to VR, and just want something to play with, we advise going for something under $100 dollars. However, if you want the best quality, you’ll have to be looking higher than that.
Don’t ever break your bank because of a headset. Get what’s affordable for you, they’re all great. We put this last, and so should you. Don’t be deceived by cheap VR headsets. Most of those are poorly made with sub-standard materials. You’ll end up making the wrong economic decision in the long-run.
Now all that we’ve mentioned before are the major factors you would need to consider. However, there are other minor things you might want to check out. They include:
- Color and design.
- Strap size.
- Lens adjustability (can you use it with glasses on?)
- Battery life.
- Apps and games available.
How Do Other People Choose the VR Headset?
Well, first-timers to the world of Virtual Reality often favor ONN Smartphone VR Headset. Aside the fact that this is by far, the most affordable, it’s one you can use with any smartphone. And who doesn’t have a smartphone?
People also like it because they don’t have to get any extra system to use it with, their smartphone is enough. Another reason why people like it is because it doesn’t die. So it doesn’t need to be powered, and you can use it all night long.
On the other hand, veterans who already know a lot about Virtual Reality, really like Oculus, both the Oculus Rift, and the Oculus Go. The Rift is for the Veteran gamers who love VR PC gaming, while the Oculus Go is for people who love big screen, cinematic, multimedia viewing.
PS4 gamers use Sony, while Samsung phone owners use the Samsung VR gear, obviously.
How Do We Choose Our Favorite VR Headset?
Well, we think all of these headsets are really great in their own rights. However, one that simply stood out for us is the Oculus Rift + Touch VR System, the most popular steam VR headset.
It provides that extra edge above all others on this list because of its Touch System. No other VR headset allows you to be able to interact with the virtual world like this one does. With this, you can punch, pinch and pick up objects, all in the virtual world. It just takes Virtual gaming to a whole new level!
Another thing that stands out for us are the motion sensors. While the Sony headset uses only one camera for motion sensor, this one comes with two (and you can add more). The two sensors track your every move around the room, making the game even more immersive. Consider adding a third sensor, though. Your experience will be positively jacked up!
If you’re looking for the best PC VR Headset, we think the Oculus Rift + Touch VR System is definitely for you.