Top positive review
Great Oculus allowed apps to be vertically offset for lying down
Reviewed in Canada on February 28, 2019
First off, to set the context, I’ve had an Oculus Rift and Samsung GearVR for about a year.
I stopped using my Oculus Rift because I found it annoying to be tethered to my PC and the external sensors were not pretty to look at, even though I made every effort to hide the extra wires. By the way, check out my video on how I mounted 3 sensors with using any tools. The Oculus Rift was an amazing gaming VR headset and I had a lot of fun. I regret selling it.
Speaking of the Samsung GearVR, I used it with my Samsung S9 but I found it extremely frustrating that everytime I wanted to jump into VR I had to take off my the phone’s case and change my phone’s resolution from medium to high, which I avoided because it drains the battery. Worst of all, after play some games, the phone would overheat and render the game too slow to play and my phone’s battery would severely drained.
I couldn’t wait for the Oculus Quest, so I decided to buy the Oculus Go hoping it would satisfy my needs for mobile VR. Unfortunately, this hasn’t been the case.
The reason why I bought the Oculus Go was so that I didn’t have to be seated or tethered near my computer. I wanted to lie on my bed and look up while I was surfing the web, playing games and watching movies without straining my neck. It’s so frustrating that most if not all apps cannot be re-centered vertically so that the content is front of you as you are lying flat on a surface. In rare cases, you can vertically reposition the content such as the Oculus Home and some apps like SkyBox, a great media player, but if I want to play poker for example, I must sit. At this point, I don’t see much difference in sitting in front of my computer. Sure I can take the Oculus Go outside but that is not the reason why I bought it. This has been major deal breaker for me, despites some other minor complaints such as...
There’s a noticeable flicker on bright backgrounds in games such as Virtual Virtual Reality that has been very distracting. With the Go running mostly at 60hz, it can feel choppy at times and very uncomfortable for my eyesight.
Coming from the Oculus Rift, It’s hard to go from 6 DOF to 3 DOF when playing games. It’s like playing playing Super Mario 64 and going back to Mario on the NES. I think the remote is really good for what it is, and there are some fun games that work in 3 DOF but it’s hard to appreciate what you have on the Go knowing what roomscale 360 tracking feels like.
Video playback from my network drive has been choppy and not very smooth which really defeats the purpose of this device being a media consumption device. You definitely want to avoid H.265 HEVC codec and stick video formats with H.264, as the Go does not have enough power to run these files. It is usable, but unlike a PC VR headset, you can’t throw any ultra hi res video file at it and expect it to work.
I find 3D video content still so blurry with lots of Screen Door Effect. I tried watching National Geographic and the poor video quality makes the experience not very immersive.
I find that performance slightly degrades as you used the headset for a long period of time. The metal heatsink gets hot and you can tell the CPU is struggling when the battery runs out pretty fast.
I know that I’ve been really negative in this review and I want to emphasize that your use cases may be different from me. I am coming from an Oculus Rift hoping to find a flexible mobile VR but I ended up being disappointed since I must remain seated for a comfortable experience. If Oculus updated their software to allow apps to be freely recentered so that lying on your bed is a comfortable experience, I would definitely keep this device.
One thing I do like is that I can comfortably wear my blue light blocking glasses, even without the added glasses spacer that is provided. This is a major improvement over the Rift.
I really think for the price and for what you get, I am still very impressed. From the improved visuals and the simple controller, I think someone who hasn’t owned a PC tethered VR headset would really appreciate the Oculus Go. If you deciding between the GearVR or Oculus Go, definitely pay the extra for the Go for significant performance and convenience boost.
I will have to wait for the Oculus Quest or perhaps I will get the Samsung Odyssey Plus, as that higher res and inside out tracking that doesn't require external tracking sensors is very tantalizing proposition.