The best VR headset is the one that lets you indulge in more than a light bit of escapism, diving into fantastical worlds and amazing adventures instead.
There are so many amazing virtual reality games to play now that it can feel like you're too late to get into VR, but we'd argue that's simply not the case. Now's the perfect time to do it because we've got better tech than ever, allowing you to play multiplayer VR games with ease, and it's perhaps the most affordable it's ever been too.
Plus, along with heavy-hitters like Meta and Pico, there are still plenty of companies trying to enter the field, with Apple venturing into this arena with both an exciting AR headset and its own augmented reality glasses in development, and Valve rumoured to be working on a follow-up to the immensely powerful Index.
So, to help you figure out which of the many headsets is the one for you, we've gone ahead and made a list of the best VR headsets right here. All you need to do is keep on reading.
Best VR headsets
1. Meta Quest 3
Best VR headset overall
Item dimensions: 184 mm x 160 mm x 98 mm
Storage capacity: 128GB / 512GB
Platform(s): Meta VR, PC
The Meta Quest 3 is an immense upgrade over the Quest 2 in just about every conceivable way. The resolution, field of view, processing power, and eye comfort have all seen improvements. It makes playing VR games feel fresh again, and even when streaming games from a PC, there's still an impressive improvement.
Better yet, the headset also boasts a much-improved passthrough, and now has it in colour. This isn't just for quality of life though, as the Quest 3 uses it to properly implement mixed reality as well. That means you can now enjoy capturing adorable aliens, for example, as they burst through your living room walls, which is quite the experience by the way. It should open up a lot of games in the future too, despite it being early days for now.
Plus, because it has access to every Meta Quest game that's come before it, it can offer experiences from both the Meta game library and PC-compatible games including Beat Saber, SuperHot VR, and Skyrim VR (which features some amazing mods alongside the base game).
It's just a stunning device, and the mix of price and stats makes it one of the best VR headsets around. Also, keep in mind that the "headset only" version on Amazon does come with controllers as well; it's a weird label.
- Read More: Best Meta Quest games
2. Valve Index
Best premium VR headset
Item dimensions: 59.69 x 43.18 x 22.86 cm
If you're not overly concerned by cost and just want to experience VR gaming at its best, then the Valve Index headset could be the ideal choice for you.
Offering a powerful sound, a stunning display, and a wide field of view, this headset can provide that immersive experience you're looking for. Not only is the headset itself impressive, but this also comes with 'Knuckle' controllers that are incredibly responsive to help you navigate virtual worlds with ease.
In terms of compatibility, there are a whole host of games available to play in the SteamVR library, including some VR favourites such as Half-Life: Alyx (which also has some incredible mods) and Among Us VR.
It is a little bulky. However, we'd argue its larger size is a worthwhile sacrifice for its exceptional performance. For instance, it's capable of showcasing images at 144Hz, a refresh rate that rivals some of the best gaming monitors on the market.
This kind of performance can't go unnoticed, hence why we've picked out the Valve Index as one of our top picks.
- Read More: Best VR mods
3. Sony PlayStation VR2
Best VR headset for PlayStation
Item dimensions: 212 x 158 x 277 mm
Sony's latest VR offering trumps the first iteration in every conceivable way. With 2000 x 2040 resolution per eye, adjustable lenses, a 110-degree field of view, and even vibration in the headset itself to add realism, this thing is nothing short of a beast.
It also features a six-axis motion sensing system, an IR proximity sensor, and four embedded cameras for headset and controller tracking. It actually also tracks your eye movements, which makes for a more accurate experience in virtual reality alongside more interesting control options.
When you add in the tactile controllers, and the incredible games on offer on the PS5, including Horizon: Call of the Mountain, Tetris Effect, Gran Turismo 7, and No Man's Sky, you have a headset more than capable of rivalling the PC offerings.
So, if you've got a PlayStation 5 and you want to try out VR, the PSVR2 is an excellent option to enter a virtual world while on your console, especially as connecting the two is a breeze considering they're both made by Sony.
- Read More: Best VR games
4. HTC VIVE Pro 2
Best VR headset with a high-resolution
Item dimensions: 53 x 34.5 x 18.5 cm
When it comes to the resolution, the HTC VIVE Pro 2 is a hard one to beat. Offering a staggering 5K display, with a 120-degree field of view and lightning-fast 120Hz refresh rate, this headset can truly bring virtual reality to life.
While this is a standout headset in terms of performance, it requires a standout gaming PC to perform at maximum capacity. But, while the original Vive has unfortunately been discontinued, this newer iteration has plenty of years of support left, so you'll be able to play some brilliant games on PC for a long while yet.
In addition, you can buy a neat little HTC Vive Wrist Tracker to improve hand tracking, while also giving the headset the ability to track mounted objects with full 6DOF, With such trackers, you can also set up full body tracking too. Also, if you've got a Miracast-enabled device, then you can also cast your HTC Vive to a TV, allowing others to join in while you play so they can follow along with what's happening right in front of your eyes.
It may be a little on the pricey side, but we think the HTC Vive Pro 2 is worth every penny considering just how impressive its picture is.
- Read More: Best VR gloves
5. HP Reverb G2
Best budget VR headset
Item dimensions: 7.49 x 18.59 x 8.4 cm
Budget is a tenuous term when it comes to the realm of VR, because while the HP Reverb 2 is definitely cheaper than some, it's still fairly pricey. That being said, if you've got a powerful gaming PC to hand, then we'd seriously recommend considering this device as, like we say, it is a little more budget-friendly than most.
That's partially because of lenses and speakers from Valve, which help this thing shine when enjoying SteamVR games. In fact, while VR gaming on PC, the HP Reverb 2 is incredibly comfortable thanks to its unusually large cushions and adjustable lens distances.
It has four cameras built into it as well to not only allow it to perform mixed reality, but also allow it to be free of sensors, which is a huge boon for those who want to avoid clutter and ensure less hassle upon set-up.
It's worth mentioning as well that it's fairly lightweight, while still being a solid VR headset that has a lot of oomph. The real plus side though is that it doesn't cost as much as most other PC-only options, making it well worth checking out in our opinion.
- Read More: Best VR headsets for racing games
Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Buying a VR headset can often lead to a ton of questions. Don't worry though, as we've answered some of the most frequently asked queries below.
Is VR bad for your eyes?
One concern around VR headsets is that they could cause eye strain. While this isn't unique to VR headsets, in particular, it can be avoided by taking regular breaks, just like when using a laptop or your phone. You can read more about how long you should be using VR headsets here, as well as how best to avoid VR motion sickness, which is also a handy thing to know.
Other tips to avoid eye strain include ensuring the VR headset is properly calibrated and adjusted to your comfort and opting for a device with high-resolution graphics to reduce the screen door effect.
With these tops, VR can be enjoyed safely, although it's essential to use it in moderation, pay attention to your comfort, and be aware of potential issues like motion sickness and eye strain.
Are VR headsets worth it?
Absolutely, and while they may not pack as much graphic quality as their console competition, they can deliver immersion that's unrivalled by anything you can play on your PS5 or Xbox Series X, for example, or on PC.
VR headsets are a popular choice nowadays to experience a range of titles, and they can even be used for non-gaming activities with the technology now better than ever.
Plus, there are a ton of excellent multiplayer VR games, giving VR headsets great potential for social gaming with friends.