Oculus Rift vs HTC Vive
The HTC Vive is the heavier headset of the two, but is also the best. The build quality is good and the sensors ensure an almost error-free room-scale VR experience.
The Oculus rift is a solid VR headset, in which the controllers and their input in VR especially make an impression. Picking up objects and sign language are no problem with the Oculus Motion controllers.
The HTC Vive and Oculus Rift look very similar when you only look at the specifications. Yet there are differences, so I look beyond just the numbers and reflect on the comfort, the controllers and tracking, and the image quality.
Side by side
|Spec||Oculus Rift||HTC Vive|
|Resolution||OLED 2160 x1200||OLED 2160 x1200|
|Refresh Rate||90Hz (90FPS)||90Hz (90FPS)|
|Field of View||110 degrees||110 degrees|
|System requirements||i3-6100 / GTX 960||i5-4590 / GTX 970|
The big advantage of VR gaming is the unprecedented immersion in the game world. It's important that you actually notice as little as possible of the gear on your head. The Vive and the Oculus both use almost the same system, with the glasses being at the front of your head, with headbands and Velcro to keep it in place. In this aspect, the HTC Vive is at a disadvantage, since it's a lot heavier than the Oculus Rift.
Controllers and tracking
The Vive uses the so-called Vive Wands with a touchpad for your thumb and grip buttons on the side. The build quality and tracking in games is excellent. The 2 Vive sensors can generate a playing field of approximately 5x5 meters and, in my experience, thanks to its 70+ sensors, the Vive can follow almost faultlessly. This makes for a better room-scale experience, which will become increasingly important in future games.
With the Touch controller, The Oculus travels in a different direction. I see a well-known thumbstick; my fingers are literally surrounded by internal tracking and a haptic sensor. This gives the Oculus my favorite function: gesture tracking. This means the controller follows your fingers and I can point to an object in multiplayer games, for example. The Oculus sensors have more trouble with this, and a third sensor is required for truly infallible tracking.
The maximum image quality is the same for both headsets. Both have an OLED panel with a combined resolution of 2160x1200. Both panels also work with the 90Hz refresh rate you need to avoid getting bothered by motion sickness. The speed of the components of your PC is important here, since the Oculus technically cheats at lower specifications to reach 90fps. This makes the Vive the winner.
Both the Vive and the Oculus currently provide a mature VR experience. Still, the HTC Vive is a bit further in terms of tracking and sensors, so I found that experience a little more pleasant. Yet, the Oculus Rift is still a good buy and especially recommended if your PC is less powerful and you want to dig a little less deep in terms of money.