Now that more and more people are jumping onto the bandwagon of VR, choosing it to be the penultimate and the latest form of entertainment, the debate between Oculus and HTC is getting worse. Both these VR headsets were launched in 2016 and since then there have been a dramatic drop in prices and a major addition to the features list. The Oculus rift now has support for room-scale while housing motion controllers.
However, there is one major issue with VR and that is out is still a budding technology and quite expensive, to be honest. We, tech enthusiasts, have dreamed about VR watching those science fiction movies, now that it is finally here, it has a lot of demands. It demands a bag full of cash and a beefed-up PC. Still, for those of us who have managed to save every little penny for their VR sets let’s check which one should you buy among Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.
HTC Vive vs. Oculus Rift S – Comparison
In terms of hardware, that is the machine controlling display and movement of the headsets along with their inclination, both of them sports state of the art specs. Two screens are providing 1800 x 1200 resolution per eye within both these headsets providing a 90Hz frame rate. Considering screen size, HTC beats oculus as it sports a 3.58-inch screen as opposed to a 3.54-inch screen of the Oculus Rift. Below are the detailed hardware specs.
|HTC Vive||Oculus rift|
|Type of display||PenTile OLED||PenTile OLED|
|Size of display||447 PPI, 3.58 inch||456 PPI, 3.54 inch|
|Per eye resolution||1080 x 1200||1080 x 1200|
|Overall resolution||2160 x 1200||2160 x 1200|
|Refresh rate||90 Hz||90 Hz|
|Field of view||100 degrees horizontal (+/-)
110 degrees vertical (+/-)
|80 degrees horizontal (+/-)
90 degrees vertical (+/-)
|Weight||1.03 pounds||1.04 pounds|
|Motion controllers||2x motion controllers||2x touch controllers|
|Standard support||PC based support||Xbox One|
|External sensor||2x Lighthouses||2x Constellation sensors|
|Tracking area||15 x 15 feet||Two sensors 5 x 5 feet
Three sensors 8 x 8 feet
|Input||1x HDMI 1.4
1x USB-A 2.0
|1x HDMI 1.3
1x USB-A 3.1
1x USB-A 2.0
|Link box requirement||Yes||No|
1x Headphone jack
|Price||$ 500||$ 400|
When HTC’s voice had launched in 2016, it started shipping with two motion controllers, two lighthouses and a link box with an exorbitant price tag of $800. Come 2019, three years from the launch has seen a symmetric $ 300 drop in the price range, as it is now available for $500. Oculus rift on the other hand ship with two sensors that can be mounted on any flat surface. Oculus does state that to get a full room experience users to need to get three sensors, the third can be acquired for an additional $ 60. Unlike HTC, Oculus does not need a link box; instead, it can directly connect to the USB and HDMI ports. Moreover, another added benefit is that the Oculus VR relies solely on the USB of the USB port so there is no need for an additional power supply.
|HTC Vive||Oculus rift|
|Processor||Intel Core i5 4590
AMD FX 8350
|Intel Core i3-6100
AMD FX 4350
AMD Ryzen 3 1200
|Graphics||GeForce GTX 1060
Radeon RX 480
|GeForce GTX 1050Ti
GeForce GTX 960
Radeon RX 470
Radeon R9 290
|Memory||4 GB||8 GB|
|Input||1x USB 2.0||1x USB 3.1
1x USB 2.0
As you can see, you need a brawny system to support a VR headset, this setup would cost somewhere around $ 1000 to $ 1500 depending upon the hardware. Thereafter, if you have to buy additional sensors, the cost just keeps on rising. However, we would not advise you to buy the HTC Vive if you are looking to buy a VR for the first time. It is meant for hardcore VR users who form a minority in the VR bandwagon.
Area of play
The biggest setback that the VR has and will continue to have is that you are blind as a bat when wearing one of these headsets. You could make a hole in your flat screen or punch an onlooker, destroy furniture and the list goes on. Both HTC Vive and Oculus have systems in place to ensure that this type of damage does not happen. Oculus’ system is called guardian and it offers a 5 x % feet play area with two sensors while HTC’s significantly better system, named Chaperone, offers a 15×15 area. However, if you choose to increase the play area of the Oculus rift you would need to shell out an extra $ 60 for a third sensor that would give you an 8 x 8 feet play area.
The Controllers & Controlling Software
The controllers have similar functionality; however, they are miles apart on aesthetic grounds. The HTC controller has a wand-like structure, and despite this structure, it fits comfortably. Whereas the Oculus rift has ergonomic misshapen rings, the handle is missing although the shape provides a firm grip on the sensor-packed controller. HTC supported the Steam VR, however, Oculus owners could sideload steam tiles by launching the games on their PC. All in all, Oculus has better software since it allows the side loading of games.
So people, there we have it, HTC Vive vs. Oculus Rift, although the HTC Vive excels in a lot of hardware aspects, we would recommend the Oculus Rift. It is $ 100 cheaper and you can sideload games without having to spend additional bucks. Although it is difficult to pick a winner since both the R&D teams have put in their heart and soul into building these masterpieces, Oculus is the one for me. For the simplest of reasons, it provides a wide range of input and games without having to burn a hole in your pocket.
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Ashtosh is a Senior 3D Modelling & Graphics designer with 11 years of experience specializing in Virtual Reality development, He holds Masters in 3D Visualization from University of Texas and a Certified designer.