Unless you’ve been caught under a rock the last few years, you know the latest gaming trends have provided an alternate universe you can visit at your leisure (and, no, this doesn’t include using any mind-altering substances). Virtual reality is just about as good as the real thing, and even better in some cases. If you’re having a rough day IRL, all you have to do is pop on a VR headset and off you go, escaping the existence that currently ails you. There are a ton of fun games that can be played using virtual reality, and gambling using this platform is the wave of the future.
But are all Virtual Reality headsets the same? Not necessarily. Need some guidance? Read on for tips on five of the best VR Headsets to best enjoy this world of pure imagination.
1. Oculus Rift
The now-Facebook-owned Oculus has integrated headphones that provide a 3D audio effect along with rotational and positional tracking. A stationary sensor that usually sits on the user’s desk picks up light emitted by LEDs and then transmits it into the head mounted display. 3D space allows the user to sit, stand, and walk around the room.
2. HTC Vive
Developed by HTC and Valve Corporation, this VR headset uses “room scale” tracking technology. No static virtual reality here! It allows the user to move in 3D space and use motion-tracked handheld controllers to interact with the VR environment. Some say this headset is better for those who wear glasses than the Oculus Rift, as it has a lens distance knob that moves the Vive lenses closer and further to your face. But others don’t like the heavy weight and bigger size of the Vive as well as the more manageable size of the Rift.
3. Sony PlayStation VR
Sony Interactive Entertainment’s version of the VR headset—known as Project Morpheus during the development phase—was released in October of 2016. If you already own a PlayStation 4 home video game console, you’re in luck, as this was designed to be fully functional with this. This system can output a picture to the PlayStation VR headset and the TV at the same time. The television will either mirror this picture displayed on the headset or it will display a separate image for the sake of competitive or cooperative gameplay. This headset works with the standard DualShock 4 controller or the PlayStation Move controllers, so it’s quite versatile. It also has nine LEDs on the surface for the PlayStation Camera to be able to track 360-degree head movements. With an incredible display resolution, it’s no wonder over one million of these units had been sold as of June of this year.
4. The Samsung Gear VR
Released in November of 2015, this mobile virtual reality headset is compatible with Samsung Galaxy smart devices (Galaxy Note 5, Galaxy S6/S6 Edge/S6 Edge+, Galaxy S7/S7 Edge, Galaxy A5, or Galaxy S8/S8+). When it’s in use, the smart device acts as the headset’s processor and display while the Gear VR unit acts as the controller. The controller also contains the field of view and the headset includes a touchpad and back button on the side. A proximity sensor lets you know when the headset is on.
5. Google Cardboard
Of course, you know Google would have to get into the VR game, and this is just one of their popular applications. This particular platform is used with a head mount for a smartphone. Unlike the others, this was developed as a low-cost system, with viewers that can be built by the user. If that’s out of your wheelhouse, a pre-manufactured one can be purchased. It’s known for its versatility, as it can be used by both Android and iOS operating systems. To use it, users run applications that are compatible, place the phone into the back of the viewer, and then view content through the lenses.
Although the world of virtual reality devices hasn’t caught on like wildfire as the tech world originally thought it would, it’s certainly not going anywhere. For more on the best VR headsets you can buy, visit beslyproducts.com for a buyers’ guide.