Wireless and budget-friendly
Meta has taken the gaming world by storm with the Quest 2, a powerful standalone VR headset that's quickly become the go-to VR console of choice for over 10 million gamers. It may not have the big-name IPs of the PlayStation brand, but many bespoke indie-built experiences have already made a name for themselves, and the system is both inexpensive and incredibly easy to use anywhere you want.
- Completely wireless
- Standalone VR console
- Easy to play quickly
- Huge library of games
- Regular updates and new features
- Mobile processor
- Still need a Facebook account (for now)
- LCD black levels are bad
Top-tier tech — at a price
Sony aims to deliver the best VR experience by taking advantage of the PS5's power and well-known brand-name games. Cutting-edge specs and new consumer features like eye-tracking and headset haptics should allow Sony to make some mind-blowing experiences that aren't possible anywhere else. It's just a shame that it still needs a single cable to connect to a PS5.
- PlayStation brand means big-name IPs
- Cutting-edge optics and OLED display
- Advanced haptics and triggers
- 110-degree field of view
- Needs a PS5 to work
- Likely expensive total cost
The Quest 2 and PS VR2 couldn't be any more different if they tried. Sure, they're both VR headsets and have plenty of overlapping features — like having four cameras on each headset that track the controllers and the player's location in the room — but their purposes are different. While both are destined to deliver brilliant VR experiences, the Oculus Quest 2 and PS VR2 are two very different VR systems that focus on opposite ends of the spectrum.
Meta has two huge advantages from the get-go with the Oculus Quest 2: price and ease of use. Meanwhile, the PS VR2 is designed to create cutting-edge experiences — both visually and interactively — with Sony's unique blend of visual prowess in the PS5 and features that other consumer VR devices have never seen.
When weighing the Quest 2 vs. PS VR2, which system is truly right for you? If you're in the market for a new VR system, we've got the answer for you.
Oculus Quest 2 vs PlayStation VR2: Which offers the best VR experience?
The Quest 2 is designed for true freedom of movement, giving gamers the ability to play VR anywhere, whether that's a different room in the house or an entirely new location. It doesn't need a PC or console to power the experience and ends up being a far simpler experience than most other VR headsets. There are no wires to deal with and no annoying configuration changes or tweaks to make to get going — it just works. Yes, that even includes times when you might want to play PC VR games, and there are plenty of ways to play SteamVR on Quest 2 wirelessly.
Having the option to play SteamVR also means that the Quest 2 can have a significantly larger library of games than the PS VR2 will likely ever have. But most gamers will only play games made for the Quest 2 itself, meaning they won't experience titles with cutting-edge visuals and physics modeling like Half-Life: Alyx. Keep in mind that games are stored on the headset, so you'll need to decide between the Quest 2 128GB vs. 256GB.
Sony aims to deliver the best VR experience by taking advantage of the PS5's power and well-known brand-name games. Cutting-edge specs and new consumer features like eye-tracking and headset haptics should allow Sony to make some mind-blowing experiences that aren't possible anywhere else.
Of course, the PS VR2 requires a PS5 to work — a console that's been notoriously impossible to buy for many gamers, but has gotten slightly easier over time. This adds an extra $500 in addition to the headset's final cost. You'll need to plug the PS VR2 into the front of the PS5 to power it, as the PS VR2 will require a wired connection.
Oculus Quest 2 vs PlayStation VR2: Cost and performance
|Quest 2||PS VR2|
|Resolution||1832x1920 per eye||2000x2040 per eye|
|Refresh rate||72–120 Hz||90–120 Hz|
|Field of view||90 degrees||110 degrees|
|IPD adjustment||Manual with 3 presets||Manual|
|Sensors||Six-axis motion sensing system, IR Proximity sensor||Six-axis motion sensing system, IR Proximity sensor|
|Cameras||Four cameras for headset/controller tracking||Four cameras for headset/controller tracking, two IR cameras for eye tracking (integrated)|
|Audio||Integrated mic, headphone jack||Integrated mic, headphone jack|
|Connection||USB-C (for PC VR connection)||USB-C|
|Controllers||Oculus Touch 3rd gen||PS VR2 Sense controllers|
|Compatibility||Quest, PC VR||PS5|
Being completely wireless means the Quest 2 has to run on a processor capable of sipping power from a battery while remaining cool enough to stay inside of a standalone VR headset, which is no easy task. Because of it, the Quest 2's visuals are more on the level of a PlayStation 2 or — at best — early Xbox 360 games. And the LCD display doesn't always handle darker games well, with blacks appearing more gray.
Meanwhile, the PS VR2 is powered by the PS5, a powerhouse of a console that'll deliver breathtaking games like Horizon Call of the Mountain that are simply impossible to deliver on a mobile chipset. The PS VR2 has an OLED display — which will provide much better black levels when compared to the Quest 2's LCD — and it's higher-resolution, to boot.
Sony is also widening the field of view (FoV) to 110-degrees — up from 100 on the original PSVR — so your peripheral vision in VR is significantly expanded. Meanwhile, the Quest 2 uses a relatively narrow 90-degree FoV that some say feels claustrophobic.
In addition to that, Sony is outfitting the PS VR2 with a bevy of new features we have yet to see on any consumer-grade VR system. For example, eye-tracking will enable a more realistic social presence by letting you make actual eye contact with other players. Eye-tracking also doubles as a way to get better graphics out of the PS5 by enabling foveated rendering, a trick that only renders the center of your vision in the highest resolution. That means Sony can pack better visuals in every game since most of the display will render at a lower resolution.
Plus, Sony programmed the eye tracking so it helps you set the proper interpupillary distance, while the Quest 2 leaves you to measure your eyes yourself. It'll ensure you don't use the wrong setting by mistake.
The PS VR2 Sense controllers feature a brand new design and advanced haptic motors inside for realistic rumble, and the triggers are the same adaptive triggers found on the PS5's Dual Sense controller. That'll make grabbing virtual objects feel more real than ever. Additionally, the PS VR2 headset has a haptic motor inside, letting you feel every punch and shot you take in a game.
But there's no denying how unfortunate it is that Sony isn't offering a wireless PS VR2 at launch. Having a cable attached to the PS5 means that Sony can make a smaller and lighter headset — since batteries and other processing components won't need to be inside — but it also means that you're still physically tethered to the PS5 by a cable.
Cables aren't the end of the world, but they certainly can be experience-breaking when they get tangled up. Even giving gamers the ability to buy an extra add-on would have made the difference, and this could very well happen in the future.
The other issue is that the PS VR2 has no built-in audio, so you have to buy your own like the Pulse 3D wireless headset. The Quest 2's built-in audio isn't great, so we usually recommend buying compatible Quest 2 headphones, but you can do without and still have an immersive experience.
The price of the PS VR2 hasn't been revealed just yet, but we expect it to cost at least $300 on its own. The Quest 2 starts at $399 — the same starting price as a PS5. While the starting prices are the same, the Quest 2 is its own self-contained console; the PS VR2 requires you to have a PS5. It's speculative for now, but it's entirely possible that overall cost of the PS VR2 will be doubled that of the Quest 2.
Oculus Quest 2 vs PlayStation VR 2: The big names (and the big games)
Since the Quest 2 debuted near the end of 2020, Meta has been acquiring small studios and making big partnerships with VR publishers. We've seen big-name remakes like Resident Evil 4 VR launch exclusively on Quest 2 and we know that several other big-name remakes are on the way, including GTA: San Andreas.
But many of those big-name games are titles that gamers, especially seasoned ones, have already played in years past. Sure, VR puts a new perspective on these games — and in the case of Resident Evil 4, makes a classic even better than before — but there's nothing quite like a brand new experience in a world you're familiar with or with characters you love.
That's where Sony's strengths come in. The PS VR2 has the might of PlayStation Studios behind it — a massive conglomeration of developers working toward one goal: to make as many award-winning PlayStation-exclusive games as possible.
This past year has delivered quite a bit of growth to PlayStation Studios, the least of which is certainly not the acquisition of several proven VR developers. In fact, Horizon Call of the Mountain — the first announced PlayStation VR2 exclusive title — was developed in partnership with one of the studios Sony acquired in 2021. It'll give players the ability to explore the world of Horizon and battle its mechanized beasts like never before.
Since then, we've learned other native PS5 games like Resident Evil Village will also appear as PS VR2 exclusives, and we can hope other popular first-person Playstation titles like Borderlands 3 or Deathloop will convert into VR easily.
Plus, a recent State of Play revealed some former Quest-only titles like Star Wars: Tales from the Galaxy's Edge and Demeo will come to PS VR2 with graphical upgrades. So we can hope other popular Quest 2 games will make the jump to the newer console with better performance and visuals — though they'll lose the wireless roomscale appeal.
With tens of millions of Quest 2s sold and a great library of games, Meta has done very well developing a VR gaming console through lots of indie developers. Sony, meanwhile, will rely more on its recognizable properties and big partnerships to make a major splash.
Reach for what's now
The PS VR2 might grow into an amazing console with a strong library sometime after its planned 2023 release, but the Quest 2 is the headset to beat for a long time to come. It's been out for well over a full year now and has gotten exponentially better. Meta has now removed the requirement of a Facebook account for the Quest 2, which was easily the biggest deterrent for some people. Even still, if the idea of using a Meta-owned headset with Facebook ties is a big negative, Sony's PS VR2 is the best way to go once it comes out.
For everyone else, the wireless freedom, ease of use, and low entry cost of the Quest 2 make it incredibly easy to recommend. It's the best way to experience VR, no matter what console you prefer or even if you are a PC gamer. You'll get an amazing library of games and content that work on the Quest 2 by itself, plus the ability to play PC VR games if you've got a VR-ready gaming PC.
Meanwhile, the PS VR2 will only ever work on the PS5 since it's not designed to be a standalone headset. That's not a problem if you're a PS5 gamer but, given the extra cost and the difficulty acquiring a PS5 has been since launch, the Quest 2's lower price, versatility, and ability to actually buy the thing make it a no-brainer choice right now.
No wires, no mess
It's a totally wireless VR console, and it's much less expensive than the PS5. So see what all the fuss is about!
- Nick RansbottomFreelance writer, VR/AR
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