Winston is a VR developer focused on creating immersive storytelling experiences. Contact him on Twitter: @VRHeavenNews
May 15th, 2022

As a VR developer, I’ve been fortunate enough to own every VR headset on the market. After trying each one, I have to say the best headset is…

…Up to personal preference.

Sorry for the disappointment.

Unfortunately, different people will have different opinions on what’s the best VR headset. However, there is one headset that’s loved by 90% of VR users…

How to Choose a Headset

There are 5 factors you need to consider before buying a VR headset:

  1. Immersion
  2. Comfort
  3. Platform
  4. Tracking
  5. Cost

Several things can affect each one, for example, resolution, refresh rate and FOV have a great impact on immersion.

If you’re new to this and unsure what this all means, I highly recommend you read how to choose a VR headset where I go into more depth about each of these things.

Best VR Headsets (updated September 2022)

There are a lot of VR headsets on the market, but most of them are outdated. There are 4 headsets that should be considered by everyone, and those are the Oculus Quest 2, Pimax 8K X, Valve Index and HP Reverb G2:

VR Headset Specs Comparison

There are also some older headsets that may fit some specific niche. Find out more below:

  1. Best Standalone VR: Quest 2
  2. Best for PC: Valve Index
  3. Most immersive: Pimax 8K X
  4. Best for movies: HP Reverb G2
  5. Best for streamers: HTC Vive Pro
  6. Cheapest: Oculus Quest 1
  7. Most Comfortable: Modded Quest 2
  8. Best for iPhone: Vive Flow
  9. Best for Beat Saber: Oculus Rift
  10. Best for VRChat: Vive Pro + Trackers
  11. Best for Console: PSVR 2

I will update this section whenever a new headset gets released.

Best Standalone Headset for Gaming: Oculus Quest 2

Price: Cheap | Requires a powerful PC? Nope | Resolution: High | FOV: Low | Wireless? Yes

What is the #1 VR headset? It’s without a doubt the Oculus Quest 2 (also known as the Meta Quest 2).

The Quest 2 is an amazing piece of technology.

It’s completely standalone and wireless, meaning you don’t need a computer to power it. Yet with its built in hardware, its got specs that match or surpass even the most expensive headsets like the Valve Index.

  • Resolution is amazing: No screen door effect!
  • Audio quality is good.
  • Tracking is accurate.
  • Capable of PCVR (through WiFI or cable)
  • You get access to an exclusive library of games (the Quest Store) which other headsets don’t have.

Is the Quest 2 comfortable? Weirdly enough, it’s very uncomfortable if you don’t get any custom add-ons. However it becomes one of the most comfortable headsets with some comfort mods. These will cost an extra $30-$70 but totally worth it.

Why is the Quest 2 so Cheap? Meta takes a 30% cut from their App Store, so they make some money back.

Even with the 30% cut, the Quest 2 is much more expensive to produce than sell, so Facebook/Meta are losing a profit from each headset sale!

They’ve shown that they’re fully invested into the Metaverse and are willing to lose money in order to become a leader in the future. They recently lost $2B in net worth.

So for this reason, you are getting extraordinary value from the Quest 2! No other company can compete with this.

But here are some reasons why you shouldn’t get the Quest 2:

  • You’re an ultra competitive gamer who likes to climb the leaderboards. You want a headset with outside-in tracking!
  • You want full body tracking to dance in VR. There’s no solid full-body tracking solutions for the Quest 2.
  • You want a headset with higher FOV and willing to pay a premium (think $1000+).
  • You don’t want to have a Facebook account.

Otherwise, the Quest 2 is probably the best choice for most people out there. Here’s where you can buy the Quest 2:

Best Overall
Quest 2 VR Headset
$299

The Meta Quest 2 provides a mind-blowing, immersive VR experience that’ll make you forget you’re in reality. At such an affordable cost, it is a must-have entry into VR.

Resolution: 1832 x 1920 (per eye) | FOV: 95° x 95°

Disclaimer: We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase. This doesn't affect you in any way, but helps support our site.

How much size do I need for the Quest 2? 128 GB or 256 GB?

128 GB. It’s enough to store as many games as you’d like. Exception: If you want to store a lot or movies or record lots of gameplay footage, then it’s better to go 256 GB. For more info, read my Quest 2 file size breakdown.

Best Headset for PC: Valve Index

Price: High | Requires a powerful PC? Yes | Resolution: Medium | FOV: Medium | Wireless? No

If you’re buying a headset primarily for Steam games, and have the budget to afford it, the Valve Index is a solid choice.

The Valve Index is more immersive than the Quest 2 due to it’s higher FOV and superb audio quality. Although the resolution is lower, it’s hardly noticeable.

On top of being more immersive, the Valve Index also has superior tracking, with lower latency, allowing you to have a slight edge in competitive games like Pavlov VR and Beat Saber.

If you want to get into games like VRChat, it’s possible to get full body tracking with the Valve Index. You’ll need to buy 2-3 VIVE trackers for this (one for each leg, and optionally one to track your waist).

The downsides of a Valve Index is you do need to have a powerful VR-ready computer to run it. It’s also a bit heavy and will get slightly uncomfortable over time. Still, the design is well-done, so the comfort is not too bad.

The worst thing about the Valve Index is the controllers degrade very fast, especially if you swing it around very fast (in games like Beat Saber). It’s not uncommon for these controllers to break after 3-6 months of usage.

Despite all the disadvantages, I still love my Index. I mainly use my Quest 2, but I often use the Index when I play SteamVR games like Half-Life: Alyx.

steam headset recommendation

The Valve Index isn’t available in all countries. You can buy the Valve Index here:

Best for PCVR
Valve Index VR Full Kit
$1,039.95

The Valve Index is ultra-immersive and ideal for competitive games like Beat Saber and Pavlov (Counter-Strike VR) with it's superior, low-latency tracking.

Resolution: 1440 x 1600 (per eye) | FOV: 109° x 109°

Disclaimer: We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase. This doesn't affect you in any way, but helps support our site.
10/03/2022 12:01 am GMT

Most Immersive VR Headset: Pimax 8K X

Price: Very high | Requires a powerful PC? Yes | Resolution: High | FOV: Very high | Wireless? No

Pimax 8K X opinion

The Pimax 8K X has a near human-vision FOV of 160° (horizontal) and a 3840 x 2160 resolution (per eye). Total resolution = 7680 x 2160

Words cannot describe how immersive this headset is.

With other headsets, it feels like you’re looking through a pair of binoculars:

Binocular Vision VR Headset

The Pimax feels very close to real life vision!

However, there are several drawbacks to the Pimax headsets:

  1. Distortion: The center of your vision is clear, but the peripherals are blurry. This is due to the lenses and there’s no way to fix this. However, your brain learns to ignore the distortion quickly, and you only focus on the center of the screen most of the time.
  2. Price: The Pimax 8K X is extremely expensive. Not only do you need to buy the headset (HMD) but you also need to buy basestations and Valve Index controllers separately.
  3. The headset is also ‘experimental’ and you’ll need to tweak a lot of settings in order for it to work. Each game you play will require some settings tweaks.
  4. Not all games support the high FOV, so you might need to turn it down for those games.
  5. You need a very powerful computer to run it.

But overall, if you can afford it, this provides an absolutely insane experience that’ll blow your minds. If you get this headset, it wouldn’t be a bad idea to also get a Quest 2 along with it.

The Pimax 8K X is best for realistic flight simulators or racing simulators… Games like Microsoft Flight Simulator, Elite Dangerous or iRacing look phenomenal on the Pimax!

Whenever I play these games I say “screw my Quest 2” and pull out my Pimax 8K X.

Here’s where you can buy the Pimax 8K X:

Pimax Vision 8K X DMAS | Pimax

The Pimax 8K X is the most immersive headset on the market! If you want a high end experience to blow your mind, this is the headset for you.

Resolution: 3840 x 2160 (per eye) | FOV: 160° x 103°

Disclaimer: We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase. This doesn't affect you in any way, but helps support our site.

Note: You have to buy 2 controllers and 2-4 base stations as well. I recommended 3 base stations, but 4 provides a very slight boost to tracking.

Best VR Headset for Movies: HP Reverb G2

Price: Mid-Range | Requires a powerful PC? Yes | Resolution: Very High | FOV: Low | Wireless? No

HP Reverb G2 is the Ideal VR headset for watching movies

It’s a mid-range headset, cheaper than the high-end headsets like the Index and Pimax, but more expensive than the Quest 2.

It’s not ideal for gaming, because the tracking is pretty bad, but it does the job if you’re not a serious, competitive gamer.

Comfort and resolution are the two most important factors for watching movies on a headset, and this headset excels in both of them.

Note: You need a decent PC in order to run this headset. If you’re just watching movies, you won’t need anything crazy powerful. However, due to its high resolution, it’s very GPU intensive for gaming.

The good news is that it can run on poorer computers, by halving the resolution in the settings. Here’s where to buy the HP Reverb G2:

Best for Movies
HP Reverb G2 VR Headset
$524.99

Lightweight and ultra high resolution. It's the perfect headset for watching movies for hours on end.

Resolution: 2160 x 2160 (per eye) | FOV: 98° x 90°

Disclaimer: We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase. This doesn't affect you in any way, but helps support our site.
10/03/2022 02:34 pm GMT

Best VR Headset for Streaming: HTC Vive

Price: High to Very High | Requires a powerful PC? Yes | Resolution: Average | FOV: Low | Wireless? Possible with the adapter

One of the original top VR headsets. It still has a use today for it’s eye-tracking, finger-tracking and full-body tracking capabilities.

If you pair this headset with Valve Index controllers, you get finger tracking.

Combine with 3 VIVE trackers (the best trackers on the market) and you’ll have full body tracking.

Add a VIVE Pro Eye and you’ll have eye tracking.

Granted, all this is super expensive. The headset alone isn’t expensive, but the add-ons are.

Only do this if you’re really committed to streaming!

Best for Streamers
HTC Vive Pro Eye Virtual Reality Headset Only

This headset is perfect for streamers to show off their entire body in VR. Capabilities: Accurate full body tracking, eye tracking, and finger tracking.

Resolution: 1440 x 1600 (per eye) | FOV: 103° x 102°

Disclaimer: We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase. This doesn't affect you in any way, but helps support our site.

Note: You’ll also need to buy 2-4 base stations.

Cheapest VR Headset: Quest 1 (Used or Refurbished)

Price: Cheapest | Requires a powerful PC? No | Resolution: Average | FOV: Low | Wireless? Yes

Don’t have enough money for the other options? Try looking for a used or refurbished Quest 1 or 2.

I’ve seen Quest 1s go for $100-$150. Whilst a refurbished 64 GB Quest 2 can go for around $200.

Quest 1 vs. Quest 2:

  • The resolution is much worse. You’ll see the individual pixels (known as the screen-door-effect), although you get used to this quite fast.
  • The controllers are nowhere near as durable so they might break if you clash them together. Controller replacements are nearly impossible to find nowadays.
  • The hardware isn’t as powerful, so you won’t be able to run a few of the newer games like Resident Evil 4.

Overall, a refurbed Quest 2 is the ideal solution, but if you can’t afford that, you can try looking for a Quest 1.

There are some other headsets that might be cheaper (like the Samsung Odyssey), but trust me – those aren’t worth it nowadays.

Most Comfortable VR Headset: Modded Quest 2

The most comfortable VR headset is kind of a trick question, since you can buy mods to make the headset more comfortable.

Thanks to the existence of mods, the headset’s design isn’t too important anymore, but its weight is something you should take into consideration.

The Quest 2 and the HP Reverb G2 are some of the lightest headsets, so they are the most comfortable headsets with comfort mods.

Since the Reverb G2 tends to overheat abit, I’d rate it as slightly less comfortable.

Here’s where you can buy the Quest 2 + VRCover + Elite Strap:

Best VR Headset for iPhone: Vive Flow

Price: High | Requires a powerful PC? No | Resolution: Medium | FOV: Low | Wireless? Possible with the adapter

These VR goggles are extremely lightweight and doesn’t feel like wearing a headset at all. It feels more like wearing glasses. And that’s the main selling point of the Vive Flow. You can wear these all day and watch movies on your phone.

These goggles are made for: travelling, meditation, watching Youtube videos or movies, and attending VR concerts.

The downsides of the HTC Vive Flow is that it drains your phone’s battery quite fast. Also it’s not designed for gaming.

The price can also be pretty hefty for something that doesn’t offer any gaming. Regardless this could be a one of the best VR headsets for meditation, as it’s ultra light-weight.

Where to buy the Vive Flow: HTC official site.

Best VR Headset for Beat Saber: Oculus Rift

Price: Cheap | Requires a powerful PC? Yes | Resolution: Low | FOV: Low | Wireless? No

If you want to become the best Beat Saber player, then the Oculus Rift (not Rift S) will allow you to be an ultra competitive Beat Saber player. It has one of the best tracking on the market and is very cheap. Most of the top leaderboard players use a Rift.

However, if you have the money, the Valve Index is also an option. It’s got even better tracking than the Rift S, but the controllers degrade fast when you swing very fast. Also it’s much more expensive.

Read more about the best VR headsets for Beat Saber here.

Best VR Headset for VRChat: HTC Vive Pro + VIVE Trackers

HTC Vive Pro is a mid-range headset that allows you to get full body tracking and the option to go full wireless with the wireless adapter.

It’s comfortable, which is important for VRChat, as you’ll often spend prolonged periods of time in this game.

In order to get full body tracking set up, you’ll need to buy 2-3 VIVE trackers (2 for your feet, 1 for your waist which is optional).

Read more about the best VR headsets for VRChat here.

Where to buy the HTC Vive Pro:

Best for Streamers
HTC Vive Pro Eye Virtual Reality Headset Only

This headset is perfect for streamers to show off their entire body in VR. Capabilities: Accurate full body tracking, eye tracking, and finger tracking.

Resolution: 1440 x 1600 (per eye) | FOV: 103° x 102°

Disclaimer: We earn a commission if you click this link and make a purchase. This doesn't affect you in any way, but helps support our site.

Best VR Headset for Console: PSVR 2

Price: Unknown | Requires a powerful PC? No (requires PS5) | Resolution: Very high | FOV: Medium | Wireless? No

Don’t get the PSVR 1, wait for the PSVR 2. It’s 10x better and worth the wait.

The PSVR 2 seems very promising and might even rival the Quest 2 (it won’t surpass it though due to being confined to console VR). The advantages of a PSVR 2 is that you get access to an exclusive collection of Playstation VR games.

The downside is, you won’t be able to play Quest exclusive games and PC VR titles. You also won’t be able to get custom songs for Beat Saber and VRChat likely won’t be available.

Headsets to Avoid

HTC Vive Pro 2

This headset has one of the best specs on the market with extremely high resolution and FOV, so it might seem like a the perfect choice. However, this proves you can’t just look at a headset’s specs. There are many compromises done to achieve these high specs.

First: The horizontal FOV is much larger than the vertical FOV, meaning it’ll feel like you’re looking at a screen through a letter box. For VR, this ruins immersion as normal human eyesight isn’t a letterbox widescreen.

Secondly: In order to achieve their “high” FOV, there is very little binocular overlap which is a huge issue that causes distortion and discomfort when looking at the images.

Thirdly, due to it’s powerful specs, the headset heats up like crazy and becomes unbearable after an hour of use. Also there are terrible “glares” (god rays) when looking at the screen. Overall, this headset is a thousand-dollar headset, but I wouldn’t even recommend it for half the price.

For more info, see this video:

PSVR

If your first experience with VR is console VR, you’ll be missing out a lot. Just take my word on this and get a PCVR headset or a standalone headset like the Quest 2 which is also capable of PC VR. Also, the PSVR 2 is coming out later this year with much more promising specs so you’ll be better waiting for that.

Upcoming VR Headsets

There are headsets coming out in 2022 that you should keep an eye on:

  • Project Cambria
  • PSVR 2
  • Pimax 12K QLED

“Should I wait for the PSVR2/Project Cambria/Quest 3?”

PSVR2 = yes, it seems much better than the PSVR.

Project Cambria = probably not. It’s a different headset that serves a different purpose. If you’re planning on getting a high end headset like the Valve Index, then it’s possible to wait. But if you’re planning on getting a Quest 2 – do note that Cambria will be much more expensive and possibly PC VR only, meaning you need a powerful PC to run it.

Quest 3 = nope. Who knows when it’ll be released. Oculus said it won’t be released for a while.

Pimax 12K QLED = Yes if you can afford the price which “starts” at $2400.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much space do I need for VR?

Most games can be played in a 2.5 x 2.5 m enclosure.

Some games are called ‘stationary’ experiences and can be played by standing or sitting on one spot.

Roomscale games require at least 4 x 4m, but not many games are roomscale.

Which VR Headsets Are Worth Buying?

There are a lot of outdated headsets out there. If a headset isn’t included on this list, it means you shouldn’t even consider getting them:

  1. Oculus Quest 2 (best overall)
  2. Valve Index (best for PC VR)
  3. Pimax 8K X (most immersive headset)
  4. HP Reverb G2 (best for watching movies)
  5. HTC Vive (best for full body tracking and eye tracking)
  6. Oculus Rift (oudated, but best for Beat Saber)
  7. PSVR 2 (best for PS5)

Is it worth buying an Oculus Quest 2 in 2022?

In my opinion, everyone should own a VR headset. It’s basically free fitness, great for your health (both physical and mental), and provides mind-blowing entertainment. The Quest 2 is the best headset to get in 2022, so everyone should own one.

Is the Oculus Quest 2 the Best VR Headset?

For 95% of people, yes. Here’s why the Oculus Quest 2 is the best headset:

  1. Durability: The Quest 2 is a TANK. The Nokia of VR headsets.
  2. Comfort: The most comfortable with comfort mods.
  3. Resolution: Nearly the best out there.
  4. Wireless: No annoying wires. No computer needed to run it.
  5. Tracking: Top notch tracking.
  6. Cost: The most affordable headset.

It’s debatable that this headset is even better than the Valve Index or Pimax 8K X. For me – I find they fulfil different use cases and I like to have them both.

I love the high FOV of the Pimax. But I also love the wireless/standalone nature of the Quest 2 and the convenience of using it without having to tweak settings for each game to run smoothly.

Is it worth getting Oculus Quest 2 256GB?

It’s not a terrible choice, but I would recommend the 128 GB Quest 2 for most people. You can store dozens of games at once with just 128 GB. Here’s a breakdown of game file sizes.

Can I use VR with Glasses?

Yes you can although it’s more uncomfortable with glasses and you run the risk of scratching your lenses. I recommended buying a VR prescription lens if you wear glasses.

Can you watch netflix on Oculus Quest?

Yes, there’s a Netflix app.

Is Oculus Quest 2 better than rift S?

Yes, there’s no reason to get an Oculus Rift S over the Quest 2 nowadays.

Does Oculus Quest 2 come with games?

Not unless you bought it during some special sale.

Does Oculus Quest 2 have free games?

Yes, there are many free games and demos to try. Here’s a list of 50+ free VR games (some require PCVR).

Is Oculus Quest 3 coming out?

Not anytime soon. The Quest 3 is expected to be announced during Meta’s Connect event which will happen sometime around October 2023. Of course, this could be delayed as well.

Oculus Quest 2 vs. Meta Quest 2?

They’re the same headset, just had a name change when Facebook rebranded into Meta.

Does VR Make You Sick/Dizzy?

It depends on the game: Games like Thrill of the Fight and Beat Saber are beginner friendly and cause no motion sickness. You can play these for hours and not get sick.

Games that require you to press the thumbstick to move around can cause motion sickness to some people. About 60% of people experience VR motion sickness in these types of games. 70% of them get used to it over time and never experience anymore sickness.

If you get sick easily in VR, you can stick to games like Thrill of the Fight and Beat Saber until you grow more resistant to it.

Popular Posts

Quest 2 Comfort Mods
ad for best VR ready PCs
fun VR games