Oculus Rift With Touch Controllers Review
Hi all and welcome to my first ever review. I’ll be reviewing the Oculus Rift and the Touch Controllers. I finally bought the Oculus Rift with the Touch Controllers and a few games and I’d like to say it’s been a great experience and absolutely mind blowing at times to see how far we have got with VR technology! It’s a great single player experience and also great when friends are round as most people are shocked at how good it actually is and how well it performs.
In the Oculus Rift headset box it includes:
- Oculus Rift Headset with Quick Start Guide
- Camera Sensor with Built-in Stand
- Small Plastic Tool for Integrated Headphone Removal
- Oculus Remote with Integrated Battery
- Xbox One Wireless Gamepad
- Xbox One USB Wireless Receiver for Gamepad and Instructions
- 2 x AA Batteries for Gamepad
- 2 x Oculus Logo Stickers
- Oculus Lens Wipe Cloth
In the Touch Controllers Box it Includes:
- Left and Right Handed Touch Controllers
- Camera Sensor with Built-in Stand
- 2 x AA Batteries
- Quick Start Guide
The big questions for me were:
Is it worth it?
Is the Vive better?
Do I have the space?
Will we get the games and software needed to make it last?
Will there be a better headset soon making the rift outdated?
At just over £700 when I bought the Rift and Touch Controllers without any games it is very expensive. You also need a computer with the power to run the thing as well (luckily I had just rebuilt my computer during the last year: I7 4790k GTX 980ti and 16gb Ram)
Minimum required specifications:
Video Card: NVIDIA: GTX 1050 Ti / GTX 960 or greater | AMD: RX 470 / R9 390 / R9 290 or greater
CPU: Intel i3-6100 / AMD FX 4350 or greater
Memory: 8GB RAM
Video Output: free HDMI 1.3 output
USB Ports: 1x USB 3.0 port plus 2x USB 2.0 ports (3x USB 3.0 recommended)
OS: Windows 10 64 bit
Obviously there are many computers out there advertising VR ready but they are super expensive and if built one yourself I’m sure would be a fair bit cheaper. Not everyone can build a computer but honestly it’s really not that hard.
It’s hard to say the headset and controllers are worth that amount of money but the experience really can’t be described, to put on the headset and look around honestly immerses you beyond belief!
I’d say that if you have the computer with the power to run the Rift definitely go for it I’m sure you will not be disappointed. If you are having to build a computer to run it then it may be worth waiting to see if we ever get a decent price drop to make it more affordable. Obviously if money is no object go buy the computer and Rift and stop reading the review and get playing!! 🙂
The headset is currently £50 cheaper on Amazon so it is £499 and then £189 for the touch controllers, obviously the touch controllers aren’t necessarily needed but the experience with them is hard to even describe! Also, it depends what you planning to actually do with the Rift, if you are playing cockpit type games (racing Sims or Space sims) and don’t have the space for room scale then just go for the rift headset as the touch controllers will not really be any use to you. If you have the space 100% go for the touch controllers as well because they are amazing!
Is the Vive Better?
Comfort wise the Oculus Rift wins hands down due to the lightweight headset and just all round comfort. It also has really good built in headphones, the Vive doesn’t have. These headsets are both very good but for different things. The Rift is much better for people with a smaller play space and people playing cockpit style games, the Vive is better for people with plenty of room and going to use room scale. Regarding the controllers the Rift takes this one, the touch controllers were well worth their wait (they weren’t released at the same as the headset and the Vive’s controllers). The Vive’s controllers are still very good but the Rifts are definitely better. Apparently HTC do have some new touch controllers on the horizon so very soon there should be nothing between them. The Oculus does still perform very well when using it in room scale but you do need to invest in another sensor (£80) really for a decent room scale experience. The Rift has the better Touch Controllers but the Vive has better Room Scale so its a hard one to answer which is actually better as both headsets have very similar panels. I would personally go with the Rift because of the Touch Controllers and how comfortable the headset is, also if room scale is what you are after, you can add a couple more sensors and have 4 sensors to give you a complete room scale on par with the Vive’s setup.
I have tried a few setups with the Sensors on the Oculus by putting one sensor in front of you and one sensor behind, this does work ok but can lose a bit of tracking when you turn to the sides but certainly isn’t a bad experience but the third tracker will make it a much better experience. The space needed to use Oculus touch isn’t too bad, you need to be able to stand and have enough room to swing your arms without making contact with anything (the only thing I constantly smack is the light!!). Setup on the Oculus is very simple and can be moved from room to room if needed as setup takes minutes, The touch controllers are setup when you setup room scale and literally are just a matter of inserting the batteries, following the on screen instructions. One thing to note with the Oculus that was a major problem for me was problems with the USB compatibility, THIS WAS AN ABSOLUTE NIGHTMARE OCULUS!! I was getting an error saying the tracking quality wasn’t good so I switched USB port, that fixed that sensor then the other started playing up, then the headset started flicking on and off, in the end I followed the Oculus compatibility tool and bought the USB PCI-E card they recommended. When I fitted it I still had the same problems, if not worse, it’s all something to do with the USB power apparently and the Oculus not working with certain USB Controllers!! I went on the Oculus forums and it seems I’m not the only one with these problems, seriously the community for the Oculus are great! Someone has made a tool for the toolbar which I installed and never had a problem since, massive thank you to that person. I won’t mention any names as I’m sure he doesn’t want to be bombarded with messages for the tool so if you need help hit the contact button and I’ll point you in the right direction of the tool. With this now sorted the only other things I would recommend getting are a HDMI extension cable and 3 USB 3.0 extensions to give you more freedom with the headset. Obviously that only really applies to you if you’re planning on getting up and moving around with it. The picture below is a 2 metre USB 3.0 extension cable and a 2 metre HDMI cable held together that you can leave plugged in ready to use so saves you having to get behind your computer every time you want to use your Rift if you unplug when your finished with it.
Links to the cables and PCI-E card i bought can be found below these are tested working.
Storage of the Rift was always a major concern for me, many people use the original box but I prefer to put that away and keep it in good condition so I got a small storage box and a carpet tile and cut to size, this keeps everything clean, tidy, secure and safe from sunlight as its important to look after the lenses on the Rift. Also with the box this way you can securely and safely put all of your Oculus stuff in one box so it makes it easier to transport about if need be.
There are many games available for the Rift but many do feel like very short demos which can be a little disappointing but in all honesty I can’t imagine many people sitting on games on the Rift for hours on end because it can cause a headache after a couple of hours or so and for some even motion sickness (I haven’t as yet). There are games such as Dirt Rally, Project Cars and Assetto Corsa which feel absolutely amazing with a wheel cockpit setup. Elite Dangerous is amazing on this headset, I’ve clocked up many hours playing this game on the Xbox One but the minute I put it on the Rift I was blown away! There are a few touch compatible games which are also very good, I was very impressed with Superhot VR and The Climb. Minecraft is also very good especially if you have a son who knows everything about it to guide you through how to make stuff 🙂 I will mention that Minecraft does tend to make you feel a little nauseous at times because of the moving in VR while not moving in real life but after a while you do get used to it I think it just takes time for your brain to adapt to it. Bullet train was also a fantastic experience even though a very short demo, I put my girlfriend on this and she was actually jumping away from people appearing in front of her to just give you an idea on the immersion of this. The apps for drawing are also very good, the Medium app is very fun as well as Kingspray Graffiti which both put the touch controllers to full use with great accuracy. There are some great looking games in the pipeline such as Robo Recall made by Epic Games as an Oculus Exclusive, Resident Evil 7 after the year of being a PSVR Exclusive and Fallout 4 to name a few. It would seem that big game developers are getting onboard with VR. Games can either be purchased from the Oculus store or Steam. There is also Vorpx which basically lets you play games like Skyrim, GTA V and many others in VR, I’ve not yet tried this but do intend on buying and reviewing this in the future. You can also live stream your Xbox One onto the headset.
There are a few applications for viewing your desktop and it does actually feel like you are sitting in a room with a massive screen in front of you. This can also be set to start up when the computer starts so if you didn’t have a monitor for any reason you can boot straight onto the Rift headset. Text can be a bit blurry but watching videos is great on such a large screen. The blurriness can be tackled slightly by using the development tool and turning up super sampling. It’s default setting is 1.0, I usually put it to around 1.3-1.5 and find this helps a fair bit and doesn’t hit performance too much. Games such as Project Cars also benefit well from this but it’s just about finding a middle ground with the hardware you have and how high you go with the super sampling without it dropping your FPS too much.
If you are like I was, worried there will be a Rift CV2 soon and make your CV1 worthless it’s a risk you take, there isn’t anything about one as yet as far as I’m aware. I can’t see Oculus just dumping all the people who have invested near on £1000 on their product but who knows, hopefully they will release small minor upgrades to go onto the CV1 like HTC have announced for their headset.
- Great Immersion
- Lightweight and very comfortable
- Good games to come as well as a few to date so far
- Vorpx is a good option to play existing games
- Touch controllers are great and very robust and fit your hands perfectly
- Simple and quick setup
- Needs good hardware to power it
- Needs a third sensor for optimal room scale
- Headset and sensor wires are fairly short
- Motion sickness can be an issue for some
The Oculus Rift is a fantastic piece of hardware and in my opinion worth the money, if you have the space and the hardware to run it I would fully recommend it! If you are tight for space this is still a great investment if you are into racing sims and space sims because a triple monitor setup doesn’t compare. With the addition of the new touch controllers it is a complete package and goes head to head with the Vive and in my opinion, wins!
VR is here to stay so either jump on now or wait a year but it is something you have to experience to know how good it actually is!
Thanks for reading and hope this was helpful, please feel free to leave some comments on anything that was good or any improvements you think I could make in future reviews.
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