The Oculus Quest is the latest VR headset from Oculus VR, pioneers of the industry who brought VR mainstream with the Oculus Rift. The Quest is their second headset designed to be a standalone wireless, after the Oculus Go. In simple terms, as we’ll expand on below in our Oculus Quest review, the Quest was designed to be everything you need for VR gaming and experiences. It’s an all-inclusive package with the display, graphics capabilities, memory, storage, connectivity, power, and processing power to deliver VR games, apps, and experiences, without wires or external computers or game consoles required. Does it live up to this goal? Will it help to finally mainstream VR? Or is it a frustrating middle ground, as some experts have claimed? Read our Oculus Quest review to find out all the details and get FocusOnVR’s take on this latest VR headset.
Below, you’ll find everything you need to know about the Oculus Quest, including its specifications, our detailed review, a list of pros and cons, and more!
|Headset Type||Standalone Wireless|
|Original Release Date||2019-05-21|
|Platform||N/A (Oculus App for iOS 10.0+ or Android 6.0+ smart phone required for setup, recommended for browsing/downloading content)|
|Resolution||1440 x 1600 pixels (each eye)|
|Field of View||110° (unofficial)|
|Refresh Rate||72 Hz|
|Onboard Sensors||Accelerometer, gyroscope, 4 cameras|
|Controllers||Oculus Touch controller x 2 (included)|
|Room Tracking||Yes, Inside-Out via 4 cameras (Oculus Insight)|
|Audio||Integrated speakers, 2 x 3.5 mm audio jack for headphones (headphones not included)|
|Headset Connections||USB-C charging port|
|MSRP:||$399 (64 GB Edition)/ $499 (128 GB Edition)|
Our Detailed Oculus Quest Review
VR is exciting and holds a lot of promise for entertainment, gaming, and many areas beyond. However, it was only recently, with the appearance of standalone wireless headsets, that VR has become more user-friendly. Traditionally, tethered headsets required significant setup, and limited your usability to an area directly around your PC. Console-tethered headsets had the same limitations. While basic and premium mobile headsets “cut the cord” and gave you freedom and mobility, they were technically quite inferior, underpowered, and limited. The Oculus Go started to bridge this gap, offering something a step up from a premium mobile headset, though distinctly less than a tethered headset.
The Oculus Quest is designed to be the next evolution of that progress, moving closer to the performance and capabilities of a tethered headset, while retaining the portability of a wireless headset. It’s designed particularly with a focus on serving the needs of gamers who want to play and experience VR, and don’t want a lot of hassle (or to drop several thousand dollars on a top-tier gaming PC). Several new features are added compared to the Oculus Go, and the Quest is definitely in a different class (and at a different price point as a result).
It’s important to start our Oculus Quest review by pointing out that there are two models available, that differ in MSRP by $100. The 64 GB edition and 128 GB edition are identical in terms of technical specs, capabilities, display, and so on. They only differ in the internal storage, at 64 GB and 128 GB respectively. Since this is a standalone wireless headset, the internal storage is where all of your games, apps, videos, experiences, and so on will reside. For most people who are serious about getting the most out of their Oculus Quest and VR headset experience, the 128 GB is preferred. Of course, you can delete or shuffle content off the headset using the Oculus App, and the 64 GB is perfectly serviceable for many games, videos, and VR experiences. But, if you intend to use the headset often, on-the-go, and don’t want to waste a lot of time juggle storage space, the 128 GB is the best choice between the two.
The Oculus Quest is built on the Qualcomm Snapdragon 835 processor, and is the first commercially-available headset on this platform to offer a full 6 degrees of freedom in tracking (X, Y, and Z axes, as well as side to side, forward and back, and up and down room tracking). This is accomplished with both typical on-board sensors as well as 4 separate outward-facing cameras, that allow for what is becoming known as “inside-out” tracking. Traditional headsets accomplish room tracking by using several satellite and base stations positioned around the play area. Inside-out tracking does away with those peripherals, relying on the camera and a virtual map of the play area to deliver similar results. While not as fine-grained as systems using dedicated tracking stations, it’s certainly functional for gaming purposes without major issues.
One of the most compelling features to highlight in our Oculus Quest review is the visual resolution. At 1440×1600 pixels in each eye, and a high-quality OLED screen, you’re getting visual quality that, up to this point, has only been available on extremely expensive headsets like the HTC Vive Pro. The Pro still surpasses on technical specs in terms of the screen itself, but on resolution they are on par. The Quest offers higher resolution than the Go, Rift, or HTC Vive base unit, and even the new Oculus Rift S.
It’s also worth noting that you get 2 wireless controllers designed to work with the Oculus Quest and the inside-out room tracking features. These are basically re-designed Oculus Touch controllers, the same as are shipping with the Oculus Rift S. They’re a second-generation product and similar to the first generation Oculus Touch controllers, though the tracking loop has been moved to the top, rather than on the back – a necessity for the cameras to accurately track and sync with the IMU sensor suite in the controllers.
Like most standalone wireless headsets, there’s a built-in battery pack to power everything. There are dual headphone jacks, as well as integrated speakers that do a decent job of providing good quality directional audio. Just note that they tend to leak a lot of sound, though, so you might want to use headphones anyway. Wi-Fi and Bluetooth enable you to link with the Oculus App, download and organize content, and complete the setup process, which is fairly straightforward, and much less technical than the kind of setup needed on the Rift, Vive, or similar headsets. Critically, the Oculus Quest utilizes a USB-C port for charging, allowing much faster charging than on other headsets that rely on standard USB 2.0/3.0 specs.
Build Quality and Performance
Like all of the other Oculus VR headsets, the build quality is good to excellent. High-quality optics, augmented by adaptive software systems help to adjust and maximize the accuracy of the VR display. The headset is well-built and sturdy, and there seems to be a fairly low defect rate judging by overall feedback and comments on popular review sites, online retailers, and enthusiast forums. The biggest complaint on quality is the integrated speakers, which perform well, but leak audio badly. It can be distracting for multiple people to play in the same room, or for you to play a game, watch a video, or enjoy a VR experience with other people around. This is easily remedied with headphones, however.
In terms of performance, the Oculus Quest is leaps and bounds ahead of the Oculus Go. It’s got a much more powerful processor, memory, and other technical features. This allows it to take on more demanding titles, and offer more convincing frame rates. It’s still definitely inferior to the kind of performance you can get with a tethered headset hooked up to a multi-thousand-dollar gaming PC, since you don’t have the benefit of that external processing. But for all of the key VR titles that are available and designed for a standalone wireless headset, there’s no question it performs well – generally, a cut above most of what else is available on the market. There’s definitely no comparison to pure mobile headsets, either, with the scale firmly tilted closer to a tethered VR headset’s performance than a mobile one.
Content Platforms and Compatibility
Like the Oculus Go, the content for the Oculus Quest is stored in the onboard memory, which is why many people prefer to spend the extra $100 up-front to get the 128 GB model over the 64 GB model. Also like the Go, the Oculus Quest allows you to download, delete, and move content around via Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, controlled by the Oculus App on your smartphone. The Oculus Mobile store is the basis for your content, though titles for the Oculus Quest have been more limited than some of the other headset models to date (less than 100 titles as of press time, with only a few dozen more in development).
Of course, like many headsets, you can access various third-party content, sideload titles meant for other headsets, and access various apps, experiences, and titles from around the web. The built-in browser as well as third-party software can enable you to watch TV, access adult content, enjoy freeware VR experiences, and so on without too much effort. The team at Oculus VR has also announced Oculus Go emulation to be released soon for Oculus Quest, which will officially add the Oculus Go library as Quest-compatible titles.
Consumer Reviews and Ratings
Most consumer and professional Oculus Quest reviews and consumer ratings and feedback indicate it is an exceptional VR headset. Phrases like, “Finally, VR for the masses” and “Portable and fun” are quite common among user reviews. In general, people feel that this is a big step forward for VR, and a move toward wider adoption of VR (and a consequent lowering of prices as things progress). This is largely due to the seamless, self-contained nature of the Oculus Quest, and how it “just works,” even with relatively limited technical skills. With no base stations for tracking, no wires or expensive PCs required, it’s a massive step closer to the kind of VR we’ve all been envisioning.
At the same time, there’s certainly room for improvement. The biggest complaint that many users have is that the headset is less comfortable than the Oculus Rift or Oculus Rift S. This is due in large part to the added 25% or so weight premium over those headsets. The battery is responsible for almost all of this increased weight. While ¼ pound doesn’t seem like much, it greatly accelerates fatigue and discomfort for many wearers. As always, proper adjustment and fitting of the headset before use can help to decrease this, but there is no denying this is heavier and more front-weighted than other headsets on the market.
Support, Customer Service, and Warranties
Like all Oculus VR headsets, there are several good support and customer service options. Online forums, both official and third-party, have an active community of users who are often eager to help troubleshoot, answer questions, and provide advice. The company itself offers FAQs, setup and user guides, video tutorials, and so on. There is also a ticket-based support system for you to directly contact customer service through the Oculus website. For most people, however, this is unnecessary unless you run into trouble – the setup is very straightforward, and it’s really practically ready to go out of the box. Like other Oculus products, US consumers receive a 1-year manufacturer’s warranty, and EU consumers a 2-year manufacturer’s warranty. Additional third-party protection plans are available, too, from many sellers, which can extend protection for 3-5 years in many cases.
Price and Value
The Oculus Quest retails for $399 for the 64 GB edition and $499 for the 128 GB edition, both roughly on par with the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. This is a higher price point than the Oculus Go, which makes sense given the much more powerful hardware and capabilities that the Quest offers. It’s definitely worth the money given the hardware that’s under the hood, though the key decision factor for many users will be whether or not portability and self-contained matters to them. There’s no denying that tethered headsets like the Rift offer better performance and are more future-proof in some respects because they rely on gaming PCs, which can be upgraded and refined, for their processing power. With that said, the Rift – even the new Rift S model – are inferior or comparable in terms of raw graphical resolution and other technical specs. So, for what you are purchasing, the value is definitely there.
Oculus Quest System Requirements
As a standalone headset, there are no system requirements for the Oculus Quest – you don’t plug it into any external device to handle processing or graphics, it’s all contained within the headset. The only requirement, in terms of hardware, is a modern smartphone, running iOS or Android, in order to set up the device via the Oculus App. It is also recommended to use your smartphone to type and search for apps, games, and content, as it’s a lot easier than using the wireless controller to type by clicking on letters from within the virtual interface.
Oculus Rift Minimum Specs
- Graphics Card
- NVIDIA GTX 1050Ti/AMD Radeon RX 470 or greater
- NVIDIA GTX 960/AMD Radeon R9 290 or greater
- Intel i3-6100 or greater
- AMD Ryzen 3 1200, FX4350 or greater
- 8 GB+ RAM
- Video Output
- HDMI 1.3
- USB Ports
- 1x USB 3.0 port, plus 2x USB 2.0 port (1 per sensor)
- Windows 10
Oculus Rift Recommended Specs
- Graphics Card
- NVIDIA GTX 1060/AMD Radeon RX 480 or greater
- NVIDIA GTX 970/AMD Radeon R9 290 or greater
- Intel i5-4590 or greater
- AMD Ryzen 5 1500X or greater
- 8GB+ RAM
- Video Output
- HDMI 1.3
- USB Ports
- 3x USB 3.0 ports, plus 1x USB 2.0 ports
- Windows 10
Pros and Cons
The Oculus Quest’s key pros and cons are summarized below.
Summary and Oculus Quest Review Score
The bottom line of our Oculus Quest review is that it’s a superb standalone wireless headset, and likely the best that’s currently available on the market in that class. It’s leaps and bounds ahead of mobile headsets, and significantly more advanced and powerful than the earlier Oculus Go. The biggest decision users will have to make is whether or not they value the wireless, tracking-station-free portability, and self-contained aspects of the Oculus Quest. If you have a powerful gaming PC, a tethered headset like the Vive, Vive Pro, or Oculus Rift or Rift S model might make more sense for you as a longer-term investment. For the masses, however, the Oculus Quest presents a middle ground that is weighted for gaming and performance, without the need for additional expenses, and with the freedom to play without wires and without limits.