Virtual Reality junkies have set their eyes upon two major hits that were released eight months ago. The rivals are the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. A lot of people have focused on mobile devices related VR content but now its turn for high-end PC-based VR kits to shine. Offering an end-of-the-year comparison between the two pieces of kit, let’s see how this sums up the year in terms of Virtual Reality.
They are both immaculate devices with no other competitors to even match their reign. If you have a PC that can sport VR setup, please keep these two devices in mind if you want to take reality one step further. Coming with a very expensive price track at around $800 not taking into consideration the price of a PC that supports VR it can prove to be a costly experience.
The Motion Control has stepped up its game over the past year, getting better ergonomics. HTC’s ones give a sense of control and accuracy when it comes to hand controlled-experiences. Regarding Oculus, its Oculus Touch controllers detect when you lift your fingers and mirror their movements in real-time.
HTC Vive’s controllers are nearly perfect in terms of holding weapons. They are both great when it comes to convincing users that they are somewhere else with a slight advantage given to Oculus.
Both of them display surgical precision when it comes to tracing with Vive offering a 360-degree focus. It tracks your directions via two mounted stations which accurately pinpoint your location. The Rift however only offers a 180-degree tracking pattern that does not allow you to stand backwards against the sensor.
Oculus has implemented an option of buying a third sensor that will set you back $79 which sits parallel against the other two sensors which enables 360-degree tracking. Despite this, it still encounters problems in large-scale rooms like the Vive does. In terms of comparison, the Vive performs flawlessly in a 12 x 9 ft of space while Rift can only be used in 8 x 9 ft. surroundings.
Another advantage of the Vive is that it doesn’t need any USB ports as opposed to the Rift’s three.
Being limited to a determined amount of space, the Vive outshines Oculus in virtual space limitations in April. This was yet to change however with the issuing of Oculus’ Guradian system that creates virtual walls which confer the illusion of a limited space that is not to be surpassed.
Regarding audio, Oculus is hands down the winner coming equipped with a pair of headphones right out of the box. As for the Vive you will have to provide your own pair of headphones thus making it a tad difficult to maneuver as it has the tendency to tangle with other wires.
The Rift has an upgradeable audio pack which costs $50 named Oculus Earphones which separates sounds better and confers solid noise isolation.
Regarding visuals, they are bang on even, both devices sporting OLED screens with the same resolution and same field of view. It all comes down to the quality of your PC’s graphics card.
The rift takes the trophy here as it is lighter and smaller with integrated audio hardware as opposed to its bulkier and heavier counterpart. Vive however has moveable lens that allows users that are visually impaired to put some glasses on without feeling any discomfort as encountered with the Rift.
Steam features gamepad-based games for Vive in their store notwithstanding the fact that it’s not their cup of tea. The Rift was built as a gamepad-only device and their store features some amazing titles that provide users with great gaming experience such as Chronos, Lucky’s Tale and Damaged core.
As for standing VR goes, you won’t need so much space in your room as it only requires 180-degree sensors. This is what Oculus Touch was built for and it excels at this category. Rooms can often prove themselves to be a bit of a problem because Oculus Store hasn’t developed their games to feature 360-degree experiences whilst the Vive is all about that. Some major games that make Vive shine are Final Approach, The Gallery, Raw Data and Star Wars’ Trials on Tatooine.
Having invested a lot of time and money since its Facebook acquisition, Oculus has hands on the best VR experience by a large margin. Vive somehow comes out as a bit of a disappointment as it can only boast about their rough-cut indie games. It feels as a little bit of a let-down to have such shortcomings implying the fact that it is hell of expensive.
The Oculus Rift is the best buy in the market as it offers so much more than the Vive does. With its superior controls, better audio and a lot of content to be explored, Oculus Rift is hands down the winner in this matchup.
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