Rift S vs Quest

Oculus Quest vs Rift S – Don’t Buy One Before You Know This…

Are you wondering if Oculus Quest is actually better compared to Rift S? If you do, you are already on the right track. Having doubts is better than diving full into something before being properly informed, despite many online praising Quest.

There is never one that is 100% better than the other, unless there is a big age difference in technology. Rift S and Quest are both fairly new, and they have some things I want you to be aware of. I have my recommendation down below, but before that, here is what needs to be said:

The Pickle of Displays

Oculus Quest vs Rift S displayAfter all this hype of Oculus Link, there is still some things you should know before going for Oculus Quest. Even though on paper, Oculus Quest has more pixels, the display is actually slightly worse due to combined factors of “subpixel amount” and the lack of proper supersampling.

The supersampling is easily explained by the fact that computer will always be able to outperform portable devices. It increases the resolution by quite a margain (depends on how much your PC can handle) while Quest has no real power to back it up.

The second point, and that’s where the pickle comes, is that Oculus Quest has less pixels altogether, despite having more on paper.

On paper, Oculus Quest resolution per eye = 1440×1600 (2,304,000 pixels).
On paper, Oculus Rift S resolution per eye = 1280×1440 (1,843,200 pixels).

In reality, however, resolution should be calculated like this:

Oculus Quest resolution per eye = 1440x1600x2 pixels (4,608,000 pixels).
Oculus Rift S resolution per eye = 1280x1440x3 pixels (5,529,600 pixels).

Oculus Quest vs Rift S pixels and resolution

That results in Rift S having 20% more pixels than Oculus Quest.

You might have noticed that I added x2 and x3 to the calculation. Those are subpixels. Oculus Quest has 2 subpixels (RGB) per pixel. Oculus Rift S has 3 subpixels (pentile).

Oculus Quest vs Rift S pixels and resolutionThe end result from that is marginal, to be honest, but it is true that Rift S will have a better display clarity. This pickle we tackled here is actually quite similar to Rift vs PSVR debate. Rift has more pixels on paper, but many report that PSVR gives better clarity. It’s the subpixels that make the difference, and I would say it’s damn time they start mentioning it on paper whenever resolution is touched upon.Oculus Quest vs Rift S pixels and resolutionInteresting thing to note though, is that the text seems sharper on Oculus Quest. Everything up-close is seen with better clarity, but distant objects give Rift S an edge. That actually might be due to an IPD adjuster that Oculus Quest has and Rift S lacks. Rift S changes IPD (distance between your pupils in millimeters) through software. Software’s safe spot is between 63 and 67mm. It can change up to 58 and 72, but the comfort level seriously deteriorates beyond that safe spot. Oculus Quest IPD works differently. It does it mechanically. That means, if your eyes are a bit further apart or on the closer side, I’d advise you to only go with Oculus Quest. There are many different ways to measure your IPD.

I personally used a ruler and a mirror. A bit rough, but, you know, I like it rough…

It’s a joke, don’t quote me.

I do have to say though, that resolution isn’t everything either. Oculus Quest, despite the clarity, gives better colors. Compared to Quest, Rift S has noticeably duller colors. We have all heard of OLED displays, and Oculus Quest has a clear advantage over Rift S in this regard. Since Rift S has an LCD display and Quest comes with OLED, it results in deeper blacks, and more colorful imagery overall for Quest. Some even prefer that over more pixels, so it truly does make a difference.

 

Does Competitive VR FPS Matter to You?

Refresh rate is quite important, especially when people are prone to motion sickness. VR sickness has been a thing since Palmer thought of Oculus Rift in his bed 10 years ago. Currently, it is just unavoidable, and most people have experienced it, despite VR makers urging developers to create standing experiences.

So mentioning all that, Oculus Quest refresh rate is 72Hz compared to Rift S’ 80Hz. Do it actually make a difference? Fortunately, not really. Oculus company uses all kinds of techniques, so that a regular user doesn’t even notice such things. I will be awesome if VR technology grows to a point that it can compete with regular monitors which, by the way, are starting to release 360Hz displays. Whether it’s even needed for 2D screens or not, is another topic, but we can’t deny that it would help in Virtual Reality. But, with what we have now, it is entirely tolerable.

The Comfort of Quest vs Rift S

That one has to go to Rift S. Why?

The weight distribution. Oculus Quest has to run on something, and that, in this case, is battery. That adds weights. And the weight is in the front.

That means the weight will be distributed to front side the most, which in turn pressures your face. Despite the fact that there is small difference between in actual weight (Rift S= 544 grams vs Quest= 570 grams), Quest feels definitely heavier. Rift S has a halo style headstrap, which is the main reason it’s comfort is so good. The weight pressures your whole head, whereas Quest has a tendency to put pressure on your face. That, in turn, leads to shorter playtime. After few hours, you’ll feel like you have to take a pause. With Rift S, you can play for hours on end.

To battle Oculus Quest weight, make sure to use the tips from this video:

 

You May Have to Spend Extra $80 with Oculus Quest…

That price is for the cable. To get a full advantage of the Oculus Quest, you can plug it into your gaming PC (if you have one). Unfortunately, the cable does not come with the Oculus Quest because PC-compatibility is a fairly recent software update that wasn’t really planned with the original Quest.

You might think that it’s a lot of money, and you are right, but it seems it’s actually not that expensive when we look at alternatives. It is 5 meters long (over 16 feet), made of fiber, durable, flexible, USB 3.2 signaling 5GBps, and can charge your Oculus Quest.

If you want, you can actually use cheaper versions, like this one on Amazon.

This Anker USB 3.0 works in most cases. It is also an official recommendation by Oculus as a cheaper variant, but there are some things you should know. The experience may be worse because it’s 3 meters long instead (10 feet), is a lot more rigid, charges your Oculus Quest slowly, and has a risk of not wanting to work well with your setup. The risk is low, but it is there nonetheless.

If you think about searching for similarly specced cables like Oculus sells, you may be end up searching for a long time. It is actually underpriced considering what it packs. Also, there is a chance that you may accidentally buy a wrong version. The market is saturated with so many different USB cables now, that it’s very easy to get lost in that snake cage.

My own advice is to bite the bullet and purchace the Oculus link cable directly from Oculus. It adds to the cost, but at the same time adds a whole new world that wasn’t even planned by Quest users. Then you’ll have the full experience and will avoid any negative incidents in the future.

 

You May Have to Re-buy Your Rift Games

Rift S vs Oculus Quest games

You may think that VR games are VR games, but they are differently built from the start, so a lot of games that are out there, are built for one headset platform only. Not all hope is lost, however. There is a whole list of games that don’t have to be bought again and are ready to go. This is the official Oculus cross buy list:

Titans of Space PLUS
€9.99
Path of the Warrior
€19.99
AFFECTED: The Manor
€9.99
Death Lap
€19.99
Waltz of the Wizard: Extended Edition
€9.99
The Climb
€29.99
Espire 1: VR Operative
€29.99
Vader Immortal: Episode III
€7.99
The Under Presents
€19.99
The Curious Tale of the Stolen Pets
€14.99
Last Labyrinth
€39.99
Pistol Whip
€22.99
Synth Riders
€16.99
The Thrill of the Fight
€9.99
Knockout League
€19.99
Dreadhalls
€9.99
Vader Immortal: Episode II
€7.99
Wands
€19.99
TribeXR DJ School
€19.99
Cave Digger
€19.99
Half + Half
Free
Real VR Fishing
€19.99
End Space
€14.99
Acron: Attack of the Squirrels!
€19.99
SculptrVR
€9.99
Star Chart
€9.99
Pinball FX2 VR
€14.99
Ninja Legends
€19.99
Please, Don’t Touch Anything
€9.99
Raccoon Lagoon
€14.99
République VR
€14.99
Gun Club VR
€19.99
Racket: Nx
€19.99
Gravity Sketch
€29.99
Accounting+
€11.99
Fujii
€14.99
Richie’s Plank Experience
€14.99
SWORDS of GARGANTUA
€19.99
The Wizards
€24.99
Electronauts
€19.99
Vader Immortal: Episode I
€7.99
Creed: Rise to Glory
€29.99
Racket Fury: Table Tennis VR
€19.99
Angry Birds VR: Isle of Pigs
€14.99
Bonfire
€4.99
Dance Central
€29.99
OrbusVR: Reborn
€39.99
BOXVR
€29.99
Tilt Brush
€19.99
VR Karts: Sprint
€14.99
Apollo 11
€9.99
Ocean Rift
€9.99
Dead and Buried II
€19.99
Virtual Virtual Reality
€14.99
Apex Construct
€19.99
Shadow Point
€19.99
Keep Talking and Nobody Explodes
€14.99
I Expect You To Die
€24.99
The Exorcist: Legion VR
€24.99
Drop Dead: Dual Strike Edition
€14.99
Robo Recall: Unplugged
€29.99
Face Your Fears 2
€19.99
Thumper
€19.99
Journey of the Gods
€29.99
RUSH
€19.99
Ultrawings
€14.99
Space Pirate Trainer
€14.99
Ballista
€14.99
Sports Scramble
€29.99
Fruit Ninja
€14.99

There may be some other games that are also cross buy, that aren’t on the list. In that case, you’ll have to check it manually on Oculus Games site where it will list either Rift or Quest, or in our case, both. Another awesome site to check availability is vrdb.app. They list a lot of games there, as well as genre, rating, and a price.

The One I Recommend to You is…

Despite all these points, it is still Oculus Quest.

rift s vs oculus quest recommendation

BUT, only if you plan on playing all the VR games and don’t mind a slight downgrade. After all, Rift S does offer slightly better comfort and resolution when playing PC oriented VR games, but Quest has its own advantages, manifesting in image vividness, IPD support, in portability, movie viewing, and in many more points.

Even if the PC support hasn’t been added to Quest, I’d still would say that Quest should be a likely pick for mainstream audience. Most people in the world don’t have a PC powerful enough to run VR games, and Quest is a bridge that Oculus Go or Gear VR couldn’t really be. I allows all the people get a taste of true Virtual Reality without sacrificing much.

Like consoles, Oculus Quest does not cost much. It’s built to be an all-in-one VR device, and I couldn’t recommend it enough.

People who have tried it after playing with HTC Vive, Oculus Rift or any other popular cabled VR masks have said numerous times that the immersion you get from not being hooked up to a computer brings the wow effect on a whole new level. The points or disadvantages that I pointed out above are just a reminder of what you are getting. To be fair, for most, I believe, it won’t even matter and isn’t a big deal.

But, it’s up to you to pick what works best for you. If you want a more detailed comparison, check out this article. Here is where you can get them:

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