The best Oculus Quest 2 review
Oculus Quest 2: is it worth your purchase?
- High resolution display
- Oculus Insight is not perfect
- DPI presets
- No dedicated headphones
The Oculus Quest 2 offers high-quality standalone capabilities and the option of converting into a PC VR headset when needed, and to top it off, it’s cheaper than virtually any other similar device available today.
Retail price (RRP)
From $ 299
Oculus Quest 2 review
The Oculus Quest was a big change when they were announced in 2019, but like any first-generation product, it had its flaws. Oculus looks to fix those problems in the Oculus Quest 2, offering a refined design, an incredibly detailed screen, an impressive processor, and versatility frankly unmatched by any other VR headset on the market right now, and it’s cheaper this time too.
The Oculus Quest 2 doesn’t represent a reimagining of standalone headphones, but instead offers a refined design that answers many complaints about the original.
The Quest 2 is reminiscent of the original, with the same minimal aesthetic, but this time Oculus opted for a light gray finish compared to the black of the original. It’s certainly a nice change compared to the dark color scheme of most VR headsets available right now, but it remains to be seen how clean the white fabric of the headband will become over time.
The most important thing is that the Quest 2 are smaller than the previous model, and also a little lighter. The sheer size of the originals was one of the biggest complaints, weighing in at 571 grams, but the Quest 2 have taken 68 grams off the top, now weighing 503 grams.
It may not sound like a lot, but it shows in longer periods of play, with less pressure around the eyes and head where the headset comes into contact with the face. They’re also generally smaller – around 10 percent smaller than the originals, in fact measuring 191.5mm x 102mm x 142.5mm.
As well as being more comfortable to wear, they make the Quest 2 more portable than its predecessors, and by replacing the original rubber strap with a cloth one, it makes it even more compact.
One of the biggest draws of standalone VR headsets is that you don’t need to be tethered to a PC, so a smaller form factor encourages you to take the Quest 2 on the road.
That new fabric strap system is designed to be easier and more comfortable, making it easy for newcomers to VR to get the best possible fit.
As experienced VR users know, a good fit is crucial for a detailed viewing experience – even a slightly loose headset will likely cause images to blur and suffer from chromatic aberration.
To simplify the experience, Oculus scrapped the side strap adjustments in favor of two plastic sliders found on the back of the headset. Moving the sliders closer or further apart will loosen and tighten the earpiece, making things much easier.
There is still a standard velcro strap on top of the headset, but adjusting one is much simpler than adjusting three.
Oculus also boasts that the new strap system is more flexible than the original, accommodating all kinds of hairstyles and head shapes, but with relatively short hair that’s not really a problem I’ve had with the Quests.
Like the original, the Quest 2 has invisible speakers built into the sides of the headphones, and this time they work just as well. In fact, there appears to be a slight improvement in overall audio quality and volume, and the audio spatial effects are notable as well.
That is, it is not the same as wearing headphones, but it is a much simpler solution and allows you to communicate with those around you if you are in a social environment, as long as you do not have the volume too high, anyway.
Otherwise, Oculus Quest 2 is similar to its predecessor; It features a USB-C port and a headphone jack, although the latter has been moved to the side of the headphones, and there are also four front-mounted cameras to help with positional tracking, albeit slightly smaller this time.
The refined design aside, the Oculus Quest 2’s biggest change is undoubtedly the display. It’s a quick-change LCD like its predecessor, but that’s where the similarities end; The Quest 2 has increased the screen resolution, which is now 1832 x 1920 per eye compared to 1440 x 1600 on the original Quest, and a 90Hz refresh rate is also offered this time around.
It’s a major improvement compared to the original mission, and it shows immediately when you put the headphones on. Everything from text to textures to shapes looks more detailed and defined, and that really helps improve the immersion and that “I forgot where I am” feeling that VR provides. Seriously – it’s a day-and-night comparison, and you’ll never see the original Quest, or any other VR headset, the same way.
That resolution is an improvement not only on the Quests, but also on the Oculus Rift S (1280 x 1440 per eye), the HTC Vive Cosmos (1440 x 1700 per eye) and even the Valve Index (1440 x 1600 per eye), which makes the Oculus Quest 2 one of the most capable VR headsets on the market overall, not just when it comes to standalone headsets.
However, there is a downside: the headphones will only support 72Hz at launch, with 90Hz support to come later. Even once 90Hz support is released via OTA software update, it is something developers will have to manually code support for, so it may be a while before we see standalone Quest apps taking advantage of the higher update rate than hardware offers. Still, it will be one more gift for VR fans once it’s released.
The only downside is that this time it’s a single 3664 x 1920 panel, as opposed to the two screens on the original, and that presents a problem or two. The most careful will have noticed that I did not mention the IPD adjustment slider when discussing the various parts of the headset earlier, and that was no accident – it is no longer there.
Instead, Oculus rolled out a new system in Mission 2 that makes you move the lenses to adjust the IPD, and there are only three presets to choose from: 58mm, 63mm, and 68mm. It’s a much less fancy option than the original, which now requires you to remove your headphones to adjust the IPD and then put them back on to see how it looks, but Oculus claims it simplifies a traditionally complex system, citing the fact that the Most consumers do not know their IPD.
This way, Oculus claims, you can simply select the setting that provides the best viewing experience and not have to worry about the numbers. I understand the logic, but as I say, it is a pain to adjust when you are using the headset for the first time, and it also means that if your IPD is outside the 58-68mm range, your VR experience will suffer negatively.
Knobs and controls
As important as headphones are the controllers, and Oculus knows it. Following a radical redesign of the original Rift controllers that were shipped with the Rift S update and the first Quest, Oculus has again decided to change the controller form factor with the Quest 2, but this time, changes are welcome.
Oculus essentially removed the thumbrest from the controllers when it updated them for the original Quest, and that was a big complaint from VR fans, especially those who had the original Raffle and knew what they were missing. Oculus heard the complaints, this time offering a larger thumb rest area alongside the analog sticks, and the drivers are generally a bit larger than the originals as well.
Aside from the design, the updated controller has other benefits, the most important of which is increased battery life. The original Quest controllers died too quickly, and that quickly became a drawback, especially if disposable AA batteries were used to power the controllers. Oculus has done a lot of behind-the-scenes work and implemented a number of changes, such as reducing the number of infrared LEDs in the rings, to offer a supposed 4x improvement in battery life.
That’s hard to verify, of course, but after using the Quest 2 for a few weeks, I still have to change the AA batteries in the controllers, and I certainly couldn’t say the same for the original controllers.
There are also a ton of little improvements, like improved haptic feedback and automatic switching on of the drivers when you put on the headphones, that improve the overall VR experience.
You also have the option to completely ditch the controllers and use your hands to navigate the virtual space, thanks to the return to manual tracking.
Introduced after the Oculus Quest launch in 2019, the headphones use built-in cameras to detect and track your hands in real time, allowing you to use your hands to navigate the Oculus user interface and even play games that support the Oculus hand tracing. The problem is, it wasn’t that great on the Quest, as it was lost to track and was a bit awkward overall.
Although the arrangement of the cameras has not changed in mission 2, there seems to be a noticeable improvement in manual tracking, possibly due to the greater processing power available.
It’s a lot more stable this time around, and it doesn’t seem like I have to be that obvious with my gestures when playing games like Wizard’s Waltz. It’s still best in well-lit environments, with performance that quickly deteriorates in available light, but I’d certainly rate it as a viable alternative if your controllers are dead and you want to watch a bit of Netflix in VR.
With the increased resolution and refresh rate offered by the Quest 2, it is obvious that Oculus had to include a more powerful processor. After all, unlike PC VR headsets, all processing is done on the headset itself. Fortunately, Oculus has done its job by opting for Qualcomm’s Snapdragon XR2 platform, with performance comparable to that of the top smartphones of 2020.
The enhanced display can be handled with ease, without any noticeable stuttering or lag at any point during my stay with the headphones, even during the most intense Beat Saber sessions, but the XR2 is far more important than that.
You see, Oculus is so confident in the XR2’s capabilities that it claims that the VR games and experiences available in Quest 2 will likely expand in new ways to take advantage of the extra power on offer. The company did not give any details in questioning, but we will likely see longer and more detailed VR games appear on the headset in the coming months and years.
In addition to the Snapdragon XR2, you will find 6 GB of RAM and 64 or 256 GB of internal memory, depending on the variant you choose. Notably, storage space is the only difference between the two versions of the Quest 2, with identical hardware in all other respects.
One aspect that hasn’t changed is the battery life, which offers around two to three hours per charge, depending on what you’re playing. For me, that’s more than enough, but there will be people out there who will want to live and breathe VR all day, every day. The good news is that Oculus is launching the Quest 2 Elite Strap with battery and carrying case with the aim of doubling the battery life of the headset, although I haven’t had a chance to see it myself, so I can’t comment on what. effective that is.
Let’s take a minute to talk about tracking: Like its predecessor, the Quest 2 uses the Oculus Insight system to intelligently calculate the position of the headphones and controllers in real time. It’s an impressive feat, but as current Quest owners can attest, it’s not always perfect.
You will need to be in a well-lit environment for the four on-board cameras to correctly calculate their position, but more importantly, your hands will not be tracked if they are out of the camera’s view – behind your back, for example. This may seem like a niche, but there are a number of VR titles in the Quest that require you to get behind your shoulder to access weapons and other gadgets, so it’s something you’ll probably experience often.
It uses built-in sensors to estimate your position in physical space, but it takes a fraction of a second to regain full tracking when detecting controllers, and that can make all the difference in a brave and competitive shooter like Onward.
It’s not a problem unique to the Quest – it’s also a problem with the Oculus Rift S and HTC Vive Cosmos – but unless you want to create a dedicated gaming space with trackers placed around the room to fully capture motion, à la Live Cosmos Elite, it is a commitment that you will have to endure.
Don’t get me wrong, it offers impressive 1: 1 tracking and works flawlessly most of the time, but there are times when it can get a bit confusing.
Content and Oculus Link
When Oculus Quest first launched, there wasn’t an overwhelming amount of content available. But still, that didn’t deter consumers, and the growing fan base has resulted in an ever-increasing number of games and experiences being tailored to autonomous headsets.
Fast forward to today, there are more than 200 apps and games available for download via the Oculus Store, including ports of popular PC titles like Beat Saber, Arizona Sunshine, and most recently Holopoint.
Oculus claims that developers have found the Quest platform to be more profitable than other VR platforms, suggesting that there could be a swath of apps and games in active development for the platform.
Adding to this the best performance offered by the XR2 chipset, the content available on Oculus Quest is likely to continue to grow in the months and years to come.
Basically, you will never run out of things to play and experiment with in Oculus Quest 2.
That said, there are still plenty of VR titles, like the very popular Half Life: Alyx, that are simply too complex to connect to standalone headsets, requiring a high-end gaming PC to power the experience.
Oculus’ answer to this is Oculus Link, a feature introduced in the Quest in beta form after launch. Oculus did officially release the beta version software with the release of Quest 2, relying on its capabilities.
For those of you who don’t know, Oculus Link allows you to connect your Oculus Quest headset to your gaming PC via USB-C and enjoy PC VR games. It’s a huge feature of the Quest, offering the best of both worlds – the ability to use the headset anywhere without cables, and the option to convert it to a PC VR headset whenever you want. The versatility of the Quest 2 is simply unmatched right now.
It’s also not a substandard VR experience, in fact, with the improved resolution and refresh rate offered by the Quest 2, it has the potential to provide a higher quality VR experience than most VR headsets for. PCs available today, and at a fraction of the cost too.
Price and availability
The Oculus Quest 2 can be purchased on Amazon Spain from October 13, 2020. You can add to presale in your Amazon basket if you wish.
The price of the glasses will be 349 euros if you choose the 64 GB option or 449 euros if you choose the 256 GB option. They are a hundred euros more but it is more than double the capacity in gigs, which can be a good investment.
The Oculus Quest 2, frankly, are the VR goggles to buy if you’ve been waiting to do it all in VR. The headset is smaller and lighter than its predecessor, with design adjustments to make it more comfortable for long periods of gaming, and the controls are not only more ergonomically shaped, but also last 4 times longer than the originals.
The headphones’ high resolution and high refresh rate puts not only the original Quest to shame, but almost every other VR headset available today, and despite all those extra pixels of power, there isn’t an iota of stuttering thanks to the powerful Snapdragon XR2 chipset.
The Quest 2 is a standalone VR gaming headset, but it’s more than that. Thanks to Oculus Link, you can connect Quest 2 to a gaming PC to enjoy PC-exclusive VR games and experiences like Half-Life Alyx, and with the detailed display, it will provide a better experience than many custom-made VR headsets. for PC available right now.