Join Sony’s VR Headsets Revolution

With companies launching VR headsets left and right, it was only a matter of time before one of the gaming giants like Sony got in on the action. However, contrary to what most people expected, when Sony finally unveiled their virtual reality device it turned out they were actually working on a way to make VR headsets cheaper and bring them to the regular people, those of us who cannot afford to be throwing money around left and right on various gadgets and luxuries. 

What are the Implications? 

So what exactly does this initiative mean for Sony and the rest of us? Well, with the launch of the first VR gaming console dedicated to the budget market, Sony is the first company that attempted to bring virtual reality gaming to the masses. In turn, this makes it much more viable for developers to focus on VR games in the future, and that’s precisely the kind of shift we’ve started to observe. It wouldn’t be too far-fetched to say that this is the beginning of the virtual reality revolution in gaming; now that we can all enjoy it, nothing can stop us from taking this science-fiction-like direction we’ve been dreaming of since we were children. As a matter of fact, this is quite similar to when Sony released the Playstation 2 many years ago, helping families on a tight budget get into console gaming without breaking the bank. In turn, this resulted in a renewed public interest in video games and ultimately led to some of the most memorable gaming titles. 

join-sonys-vr-headsets-revolution

The Big Three 

As of now, there are three main VR headsets for you to make your choice form: The HTC Vive, the Oculus Rift and the Playstation VR. All three of them have encountered a lot of success since being released, and it’s likely that the companies behind them will become mainstream players in this market for decades to come. 
 
With that being said, all three VR headsets had a very different road to stardom. To begin with, Valve’s VR headset, the Vive, was actually the result of their collaboration with HTC, a mobile device designer. Nobody saw this union coming, and yet it ultimately made sense as minds that think alike finally found each other and worked together to bring something truly special to the community. 
 
The Oculus Rift had a much more humble beginning, being nothing once but a meager project on Kickstarter. With a bit of time though, the idea gained a lot of traction and the project even involved John Carmack, the famous genius developer from id Software, the company that basically invented the first-person shooter genre. Two years after it was funded, Oculus VR was acquired for a price of $2 billion dollars by Facebook. 
 
Finally, the Playstation VR was designed by Sony to be an internal piece of hardware that isn’t expensive to manufacture. While they came a tad late to the party in relation to their competitors, they’ve certainly upheld their stellar reputation in the gaming industry by creating an inexpensive option that remains as technically-impressive as the other ones. 

What Makes Playstation VR Worth It 

So what is it exactly that makes it stand tall above the other VR headsets? To begin with, it only costs $400, which is a real blessing when compared to the Vive’s price of $800 and the Oculus Rift’s price of $600: VR gaming on a budget is now indeed possible. Having launched Thursday on October 13th, it already boasts a very strong game lineup which included 31 titles at launch, and 20 more promised to be coming soon. Sony also promised to release at least another 50 titles before the end of the year, effectively giving them the largest game library of the three VR headsets. 
 
While for the moment VR headsets only allow us to play short games intended to be showcases more than anything else, with the release of the Playstation VR it’s very likely that some full games will be created for it very soon. In other words, we are currently witnessing a true revolution in the gaming industry as Sony finally found a way to take it to the next level without charging us an arm and a leg for it. Though it’s still very early in the race, this is one VR headset that will probably remain the best for a very long time.

Best Virtual Reality Headsets

Christmas is quickly approaching us, and if you have a gamer in your life, chances are he/she has a virtual reality, or VR, headset on their Christmas list. Even though there aren’t many VR headsets out there yet, it still may be a tough decision to make. To make your life easier, and to make sure you get your gamer the best VR headset to me his or her needs, here are the VR headsets compared all in one place.

 

HTC Vive

htc-vive

HTC Vive comes from HTC and Valve. It incorporates two tracking cameras that will need to be set up around the outside of the gaming area. This is for the room-scale dimensional tracking. It also comes with two pole controllers that can be used for tracking along with the headset.

The set up for this headset may be a little difficult because of all the accessories, but the gamer will actually be able to walk around in a 3D environment. They will be able to control this environment through triggers and a track pad on the controllers. Of the headsets, this one is the bulkiest. It is also has 5 meter wires connected to a station. Even though the wires may be a hassle, they are plenty long enough to move around the room.

Hardware Requirements 

OS: Windows 7 SP1 64 bit or better

Video Card: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970/ AMD Radeon 290 equivalent or better

Video Output: HDMI 1.4

CPU: Intel i5-4590/ AMD FX 8350

Memory: 4GB RAM

You will also need a Steam account to access the games and a minimum of a 5 ft. by 6 ft. area with no obstacles to use the VR headset.

Specs

2400×1080 resolution

Max refresh rate of 90 Hz

Headphones not included

Price 

$800

Pros:

2400×1080 resolution and 110 FOV provides fantastic visual experience. Room-scale positional tracking gives better movement in 3D world Large selection of games in Steam

Cons:

Most expensive Virtual Reality headset Needs a large space to work PC is needed for use with this headset

2. Oculus Rift

oculus-rift

Oculus is very well known in the virtual reality world and the Rift has probably one of the greatest virtual reality experiences. It is very comfortable to wear, and comes with a motion sensor. Also included is a wireless Xbox One controller to add to the gaming experience. There are Oculus Touch controllers that can be used to upgrade, but they are not necessary for the headset to work. The Oculus Rift also comes with a microphone and headphones to intensify the gaming experience.

Hardware Requirements 

OS: Windows 7 SP1 64 bit

Video Card: NVIDIA GTZ 970/ AMD 290 or better

Video Output: HDMI 1.3

CPU: Intel i5-4590 or better

USB Ports: 3 USB 3.0 ports and 1 USB 2/0 port

Specs

2160×1200 resolution

110 degree FOV

Price 

$600

Pros:

2160×1200 resolution and 110 FOV for beautiful visual experience Positional tracking for enhanced movement Large game library through Oculus

Cons: 

Motion sickness can happen from extra degrees Oculus Touch controllers are not available yet Requires a PC with a high-end GPU

3. Playstation VR

playstation-vr

Playstation VR from Sony is the newest virtual reality headset. The great thing about this headset is it does not require a PC. It actually is used with a Playstation 4 and still gives an excellent virtual reality experience. This particular headset is probably the most comfortable, but it is still very heavy. Because of its size its great from those gamers who wear glasses. Motion tracking is done by the Playstation Camera with a set of blue LED lights. Because of this, it is not as accurate as the other motion tracking devises. It also has a little bit of an awkward button layout.

Hardware Requirements 

Playstation 4

Playstation 4 Camera

Specs 

1920×1080 resolution

100 degree FOV

120 Hz refresh rate

Headphones not included

Price

$399

Pros:

Fastest refresh rate Sleek design Does not require a PC

Cons: 

PlayStation Camera and Move controllers not included Lowest resolution Awkward button placement on controllers

4. Samsung Gear VR

samsung-gear-vr

The Samsung Gear VR is great for the simple reason that it can be used with a smart phone instead of an PC. This very cost effective headset was made possible because of Oculus and Samsung working together. It comes with a USB connector that allows you to charge your device while you are playing it. It has a touchpad to navigate menus as well as a home button, back button, and volume control.

Hardware Requirements 

Samsung Galaxy Note 7, Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge, Galaxy Note 5, Galaxy S6 Edge +, Galaxy S6, or Galaxy S6 Edge

Android-compatible Bluetooth controller

Specs 

2560×1440 resolution

AMOLED screen

101 degree FOV

Price

$99

Pros: 

2560×1440 resolution and 101 FOV Controls on the device for ease in navigation Cost effective

Cons:

Only compatible with certain Samsung phones No positional tracking No game pad

5. Google Daydream

google-daydream

Google has been working to find the happy medium between its Cardboard project and a $1,000 head-mounted display. The Google Daydream is that happy medium. It is lightweight to provide added comfort during gaming. It has a small motion-tracked controller and is very small in size. The headseat just came out on November 10, so it is still very new.

Hardware Requirement

Google Pixel, ZTE Axon 7, Asus Zenfone 3 Deluxe

Specs 

Resolution varies based on phone

Price

$79.00

Pros: 

Lightweight and comfortable headset Included controller and trackpad Lowest priced headset

Cons:

Light bleeds into the view of the screen Limited game library