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I tried the Oculus Quest 2 for a couple of hours and wrote a review

For context, this is comparing with my Valve Index which is not very apples-to-apples.

This is specific to the wireless embedded mode, not tethered Quest Link mode. I tested it with the Elite Strap, which ought to be included by default.


Tracking is “surprisingly good” as everyone says, especially superficially. It’s hard to visually detect glitches when the system is operating smoothly.

On the other hand, I did feel mild nausea after some casual use. Normally I can use my Index (or old Vive) for hours without nausea. It’s hard to tell if this is due to some more subtle tracking issues, or because of the limited lens controls, or purely from processing glitches.

It’s not hard to make the embedded computing system overload and jitter. Using it while apps are installing causes tracking failures, or using insufficiently “optimized” apps like VR Chat. The tracking will freeze occasionally or swing aggressively.

It’s not very common under more “Made for Quest” experiences.

I was particularly concerned about the Quest inside-out controller tracking but again I was surprised at how well they worked. Not perfect (there were positions where they jittered or disappeared), but better than expected. Under good operating conditions, it was more than tolerable.


Text clarity is very very good, but the graphics fidelity on everything else is noticeably sad.

Granted it’s an underpowered platform, compared to an expensive gaming computer, but this comes with consequences.

Obviously “optimized” scenes are very low-polygon, but that can still work under the right context. The thing that is more noticeable is the textures are very low quality too. The end result feels kind of like playing a game on Low Quality settings in 800x600 resolution but on a 6K high-DPI display. The vector-rendered elements are very crisp, but everything else is from a different lo-fi universe.

The field of view is noticeably tighter than the Valve Index, but I am also personally less bothered by this than most.

No complaints with any screen door effect or godrays.


It is very pleasant to be wireless. Wired headsets never bothered me as much as it bothers some people, but I do wish the Valve Index came out with a wireless module already. At minimum, it makes the “grab and play” experience a bit better.

On the other hand, I suspect the Quest 2 is a much better device when tethered to a gaming box via Quest Link. I haven’t tried it in this mode, since it’s hard to imagine it being better than the Index in any metric so why bother… But if it’s a question of budget, then it seems like a viable option.


While wearing the Quest 2, the built-in audio is fine. Not nearly as good as the Index, which is better than a lot of dedicated headphones!

On the other hand, the sound is more audible outside of the headset than inside. Anyone else in the room gets to experience everything you experience at x1.25 the volume.

One of the cool parts of audio inside of a head-tracked VR environment is that it’s easy to simulate 3D audio very well, this is great for the wearer but terrible for everyone else. I could feel a bit of nausea just sitting in the same room as someone playing the Oculus Quest 2, just from all of the simulated audio positioning shifting.

Thankfully there is an AUX port on the headset so it’s easy to put on your own headphones.


There are only two IDP presets, luckily one was pretty close to my head shape. My eyelashes hit the lens a bit, and luckily I do not need to wear glasses.

With the Elite Strap, the device is a good weight and comfortable to wear for extended periods, no complaints. Not quite as comfortable and adjustable as the Valve Index, but a fair bit lighter. If the Valve Index is a Herman Miller Aeron Chair, the Oculus Quest 2 with Elite Strap is a budget look-alike from Staples that gets you most of the way there.

Certainly more than good enough to sit back and enjoy a full-feature 3D film, or dance around for a couple hours.


No complaints but they do have a “budget” feel to them coming from the Index Knuckles, or even the Vive Wands. They’re small, but reasonably comfortable. Not certain they would win in a fight against a TV, or certainly not against some drywall (which my old Vive wands have more than enjoyed taking on).

Oculus Store

Compared to Steam, the Oculus Store is a sad experience. It was difficult to find a hierarchical listing of games or experiences. The search worked well, but you need to know what to search for. Overall it did not feel like the people who designed it live on the same planet as I do.


The device and all of your purchases are locked to your Facebook account. Fuck Facebook. This is a deal breaker for me and should be for everyone, I would never spend my own money on anything that profits Facebook. My only hope is that they’re selling the Quest 2 below cost and that it’s thoroughly jailbroken soon.


I really wish there was another competitor in the “embedded wireless with optional tethered” tier that I could recommend as an alternative, but there isn’t. For people who can’t commit to a gaming box yet, there’s simply no other option. I can’t fault Facebook for cannibalizing and betraying the Rift team with the Quest line, it’s clearly the best move in our current VR ecosystem, especially at the price point they’re selling.

Overall it feels like a $500-600 device being sold for $370 USD (with the Elite Strap), with clear intent and inevitable success of dominating the entry-level tier of VR. I’m sure Facebook will more than make up any losses through the walled-garden they’ve assembled.

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