Does The PSVR Live Up Its Expectations?
Sony jumped into VR with big expectations to satisfy. Oculus and HTC/Valve already sell incredible products in the Rift and Vive. They offer high-resolution, low-latency displays and accurate tracking, setting the benchmark for consumer-grade virtual reality technology. It’s not realistic to expect PSVR to hit that high-water mark, particularly given the headset's price point. But Sony had to deliver an incredible experience nonetheless. Why would anyone spend $500 on an accessory just to get mediocrity in return?
Thankfully, Sony delivers. The company put together an impressive piece of hardware that complements its game console well. If you already have a PlayStation and you're interested in virtual reality, PSVR is a great way to get the technology into your home.
Sony’s platform offers a comfortable, easy-to-adjust head-mounting mechanism. The headset is also the best option we’ve seen for people who wear glasses thanks to its mechanical relief system and the way the visor hovers in front of your face.
The panels that Sony developed for PSVR are surprisingly crisp and clear. Thanks to the RGB subpixel arrangement, it’s hard to tell that the display resolution is lower than what the Rift or Vive offer. Sony proves that resolution isn’t everything. The technology inside obviously plays a big role in determining the HMD's image clarity.
But Should I Buy One?
If you have the means to buy a PSVR, we don’t think you’ll be disappointed with the hardware. Just don’t expect a lot on the content side during these early days. Developers are still figuring out what works and what doesn’t in VR. In the meantime, we're bound to see a lot of shorter VR experiences.
The cost of a PlayStation 4 and PSVR bundle will set you back more money than an Oculus Rift. And if you opt for the PS4 Pro, the package costs as much as an HTC Vive. But both PC-centric platforms still need a relatively high-end computer to drive them.
Gamers who already own a PS4 console have the most affordable path to premium VR available to them. We should all be so lucky. Even if you don’t have a PS4, Sony’s is still the most affordable high-end VR platform you can buy. Yes, the Vive and Rift are a notch above. But PSVR's value is undeniable. Conversely, most PC enthusiasts have a hard time justifying VR unless they already own fast-enough gaming rigs.