After months of anticipation, the Playstation VR (aka Project Morpheus) is finally available. Clocking in at $399.99, it sits in the middle ground between high-end VR headsets like the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift and entry-level VR headsets like the Samsung Gear VR. The Playstation VR does need a Playstation 4 to use, which adds an extra $300-400 to its price, but compared to the cost of the high-end gaming PC needed to use the Vive or Rift, the Playstation VR seems like a bargain.
The headset is well designed, and seems to leak intention. It’s far more comfortable than its competitors and is aesthetically less cyber-punk and more JJ Abrams. Set-up is also a breeze. Unlike the Vive, which requires mounting sensors around your room and dealing with PC drivers, the most complicated part about setting up the Playstation VR is the cable management.
The PSVR headset delivers 3D audio processing, so the sounds you hear in your game or movie are more immersive. It’s visuals leave something to be desired, however. The Playstation VR has a single 5.7-inch OLED screen (compared to the Rift’s dual-screen) which renders at 1080p (again, compared to the Rift’s 2.5k resolution). While the difference might seem negligible to the every-day consumer, someone spending $400 on a VR headset should expect the best.
One huge drawback is that the Playstation VR can not currently play in-browser VR porn. Users have to transfer their videos to their Playstation 4 via USB. Playstation VR also can not yet handle 3D video and will render them in 180-degree 2D. It is extremely likely that the Playstation Media Player will be updated to address this in the near future.
Conclusion: Playstation VR is the first of the great middle-ground VR Headsets. More powerful than the inexpensive smartphone-powered VR headsets, but weaker than the highest-end PC headsets. The Playstation VR is also a great compromise in barrier-to-entry. Nearly 40 million people own Playstation 4’s, it is comparably easy for them to buy-in to VR, compared to someone who needs to build a dedicated gaming rig on top of the cost of the headset. If you are one of the many who already own a Playstation 4, and are interested in VR, there is no reason not to pick one up.
Added on: 2016-11-30 15:21:28