Top 5 Best VR Headsets of 2016 - Gear UP

Script written by Marc Saltzman.

VR glasses are the future of gaming and technology. So, you may be wondering which is the best virtual reality headset you can buy in 2016, or if cheap VR goggles are worth it. WatchMojo teams up with tech-spert Marc Saltzman to bring you a VR headset buyer’s guide, by counting down five VR headsets you should buy on Black Friday 2016 – no matter what your budget is.

If you want to have a say in what gadgets we review or our upcoming topics, be sure to check out our Interactive Suggestion Tool at WatchMojo.comsuggest

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Script written by Marc Saltzman.

Top 5 Best VR Headsets of 2016 - Gear UP


Ever since flicks like The Lawnmower Man and The Matrix, sci-fi enthusiasts and gamers alike have dreamt of immersive virtual reality experiences, but despite a few small innovations over the years they’ve been more “virtual” than “real.”

Until now.

Hey everyone, Welcome to Gear Up, the WatchMojo series that looks at the latest in tech trends. I’m Marc Saltzman, and in this video, we’ll look at FIVE hot VR systems available today, perhaps to help you decide which one is for you.

Of course, when we talk virtual reality we’re referring to a lightweight HMD – head-mounted display – that, when connected to a source, such as a computer, smartphone or video game console, plays stereoscopic 3D images on a pair of high-resolution screens in front of your eyes -- and the visuals are mapped to your head movement in real-time, too. In other words, you can look up, down and even behind you and it’ll look as if you’re really there in this digital world. And there’s spatialized audio, too, so you can hear sound seemingly coming from specific areas of the world you’re in.

Whether you’re into gaming, 360-degree movies, or using VR for education, therapy, commerce, socializing or other applications, here’s what’s available.

#1: HTC Vive


The most comprehensive solution for virtual reality buffs is HTC Vive.

Built for computers, HTC Vive ships with a comfortable VR headset with twin high-resolution screens, and a built-in camera for when you need to see around you; there’s two room-scale base stations that track your movement in a 3-D play space -- no, you don’t just sit down with HTC Vive -- and there’s two wireless controllers that let you interface with content.

Speaking of content, the Valve VR store now has more than 700 downloads supported by HTC Vive, plus you get a couple of games for free when you buy the system, too.

#2: Oculus Rift


Purchased by Facebook for $2 billion dollars – yes, billion with a “b” -- Oculus Rift also plugs into a compatible personal computer, like HTC Vive, and delivers an immersive 360-degree experience with VR games, movies, educational software, and more – including many exclusive titles you won’t find anywhere else.

Included with the headset is an Xbox One controller, but Oculus Touch is now available, a pair of wireless controllers, for a more engaging interactive entertainment experience.

Some Oculus Rift stats for ya: there are more than 100 titles today and more than 130 by end of 2016 – 35 of those titles work with Oculus Touch. One of the dozens of launch titles for Oculus Rift, Farlands lets gamers explore an uncharted planet and discover new forms of life (including insects, fish and plants), while Lucky's Tale, included, is a fun platforming adventure.

#3: PlayStation VR


The only VR headset in our round-up that works with a TV-based video game console, PlayStation VR debuted in October 2016 and was designed to plug into the PlayStation 4 or PS4 Pro.

Setup is a breeze, as you simply plug the gear into the console, mount the PlayStation Camera – not included -- just below or above your TV, and then don the comfortable and light headset and earbuds. Optional but recommended, grab a pair of the PlayStation Move wireless controllers for the full experience.

With a strong focus on gaming, PlayStation VR launched with lineup of 30 games, including exclusive titles such as Batman: Arkham VR, PlayStation Worlds, Rez Infinite, DRIVECLUB VR and RIGS Mechanized Combat League. Roughly 50 PlayStation VR titles are expected by the end of 2016.

#4: Samsung Gear VR



Number 4…the only VR headset in our list that debuted in 2015…but recently revamped…Samsung Gear VR

The newly refreshed Samsung Gear VR is a portable VR platform to use with one of six compatible Samsung smartphones to experience virtual reality -- by simply popping the phone inside the headset. Supported devices include Samsung Galaxy S6, S6 edge, S6 edge+, Galaxy Note5, Galaxy S7, and Galaxy S7 edge.

After you insert your phone, you can run games and apps by touching a small touchpad on the right of the headset or via an optional Bluetooth controller, if you like. The new Gear VR is 30 percent lighter and more ergonomic than last year’s model, plus you can even wear glasses with it.

Some other Gear VR stats: There are millions of Gear VR owners in 150 countries. People have spent more than 20 million hours in Gear VR. There are more than 400 apps on the Oculus Store for Gear VR. And when it comes to cross-platform play, about 30 Gear VR titles are also available on Oculus Rift.

#5: Google Daydream


The newest player on the scene, Google Daydream is also a mobile-centric VR headset – like Gear VR -- where you snap in a compatible Daydream-ready smartphone into the fabric-lined headset, grab the small wireless control pad you get with it, and then launch one of the many experiences that work with the Google Daydream platform – which – unlike Google Cardboard -- is built-into the Android Nougat 7.1 operating system.

More affordable than all the other VR headsets in this round-up, Google Daydream only works with a couple of phones right now, like Pixel and Pixel XL, and there’s not a ton of content yet – abut 25 titles -- but Google has courted many developers who are working on cool VR projects, so expect the floodgates to open in 2017.

Hey, thanks for watching Gear Up; I'm Marc Saltzman. Let us know in the comments section which tech products you want us to review next and if you're interested in any of these products, you can find links in the description below. For more tech-tastic lists, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.
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