VR Headset Choices for PC Sims - Autumn 2023

This topic is for VR headsets in 2023 from the perspective of a PC flight or driving simmer. It’s not really a ‘which is the best VR!’ comparison, but more for sitting down and making DCS or Assetto work well. I did one in 2018 as well if you’re wondering where your money went.

This is a wiki post, which means anyone else can add to, edit and update it. That would be appreciated as this information will age out and there are some things releasing this year.

In the Notes column if you have one of these devices, tag your name @ and add your comments please. If you don’t want to do that then just add a post below and we can collectively update.

2023 PC VR Sims Headset Comparison

Name Release Price (USD) Category Specs Notes
HP Reverb G2 Nov 20 $599 (but goes on sale a lot as EOL) PC Inside Tracking Fresnel LCD 2160x2160 per-eye / 107° diagonal / 90 Hz. Details. @fearlessfrog End of life. Small sweet spot. Unreliable cable. Decent image @Freak adds that the number of dots (either R,G, or B) per pixel is only 2 instead of 4, leading to a relatively low image quality for the number of pixels being rendered.
Meta Quest 2 Oct 20 $399 but goes on sale due to EOL Standalone Inside Tracking Fresnel LCD 1832x1920 per-eye / 113° diagonal / 120 Hz. Details. @fearlessfrog End of life due to Quest 3. Easy to set up and use. Good tethered option.
Varjo Aero Jan 22 $1999 headset only, $150 base station, $299 controllers PC Outside Tracking Aspherical LED 2880x2720 per-eye / 121° diagonal / 90 Hz. Details. @fearlessfrog Foveated rendering through eye tracking. Comfort? @Troll Needs counterweight on the neckstrap. SteamVR tracking.
Meta Quest Pro Oct 22 $999 Standalone Inside Tracking Pancake LCD 1800x1920 per-eye / 111° diagonal / 90 Hz. Details. @fearlessfrog Eye tracking for good performance. Great lenses and screens. @chipwich loves his.
Pico 4 Oct 22 $430 Standalone Inside Tracking Pancake LCD 2160x2160 per-eye / 122° diagonal / 90 Hz. Details. @fearlessfrog Battery powered, but has cable for power but not display? Europe/Japan only? @Freak pancake lenses are amazing but my wifi was too slow, causing latency @Johnny has one
Pimax Crystal May 23 $1599 w controllers Standalone Inside Tracking Optional Steam VR lighthouse tracking Aspheric QLED 2880x2880 per-eye / 120° diagonal / 160 Hz. Details. @fearlessfrog Heavy unit, so comfort? @Troll Optional eye tracking for foveated rendering
Meta Quest 3 Oct 23 $499 (probably) Standalone Inside Tracking Pancake LCD 2064x2208 per-eye / 113° diagonal / 120 Hz. Details. @fearlessfrog Looking good, as I think tethered confirmed now?
Somnium VR1 ? (2023 ish) $? (maybe $1700) plus trackers/controllers PC Outside Tracking Dual element aspherical QLED 2880x2880 per-eye / ?° diagonal / 120 Hz. Details. @fearlessfrog Has a lot of emphasis on passthrough AR ability although might be product options, good for sim mixed physical setups? Eye tracking for foveated. SteamVR tracking.
Bigscreen Beyond ? (2023 ish) $999 headset only, $1580 w track/controllers PC Outside Tracking Pancake QLED 2560x2560 per-eye / ?° diagonal / 90 Hz. Details. @fearlessfrog Small unit, so light etc. No eye tracking. Custom facial foam via iPhone scan. SteamVR tracking.

So the Pico 4 is not available to buy in the US / Canada officially? Is it a sort of Amazon import thing then? Huh.

FAQs | Customer Support | PICO Global (picoxr.com)

@Freak - there was no choice of a PC tether cable then? (just to confirm)

Not sure, hope @Johnny can provide more details on the Pico 4


Pico 4 does not have DisplayPort connection, but you can use either WIFI or USB cable for PC VR.

So far the best experience has been wireless with Virtual Desktop software. Pico’s own Streaming Assistant works also for USB, but the quality has not been not on par with VD.


Me likey! :grin:

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For the ‘Not Really’ bit at the end, probably worth mentioning the Varjo Aero as a direct comparison to look at at that stage of spending.

EDIT: Updated - the Meta Quest Pro is also worth a look after the Quest 3 comes out and has some sim reviews. The Quest 3 has no eye tracking option but a higher resolution and the same or better lenses, and for half the price. The Pro does have much better panels though, so hard to tell yet. It really depends on if Meta screw anything up for the Quest 3 launch or discount the Pro after 3 is out, or come out with a Quest 3 Pro edition soon.


I like that the flow chart leaves no option for not hating fb a little! :smile:


What, no Meta Quest Pro, the absolute best flight simming VR headset ever made? Shame! :laughing:


Add it to the table under the Quest 2? A few people do use them for DCS for sure.

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Nice chart :slight_smile: that directs me to a Bigscreen Beyond (if the reviews are good :smiley: )

My G2 runs strong sill and being heavily supersampled (OpenXR @ 200%) provides me with a lot of nice VR simming… but… but… you know what I mean.


Perfect! I love a good flow chart.

I end up either; a) mowing at lot more yards for cash, and getting sweaty and smelly, or; b) dumpster diving…and getting sweaty and smelly? :thinking::sunglasses::grinning:

Sidebar | I was out for the summer but have noticed in the last week or so an improvement in performance in DCS with my 3808ti/G2: getting close to a steady 90 FPS everywhere (medium+, not high settings). This is in Syria + clouds.

So They did somthing. I do keep my over-priced space heater of a PC in a clean, bloat-free (pristine) condition which has always helped.


The G2 seems to be a good fit for my almost 4 year old PC (i7 9800X 32Gm and RTX 2080Ti). I will most likely be upgrading to a new PC next year and it seems pointless to upgrade my headset before then.


Just my .02, but yes, I think so. I don’t know how to quantify the usage numbers, but there are quite a few YT videos discussing the Pro’s use with flight simulations. It’s my 6th VR headset and the first that felt the image quality improvement revolutionary rather than evolutionary. Its not just higher resolution, but how well the sweet spot is eliminated.


Yep, added it - it’s a good current option. It is really hard to know how it fits in after the Quest 3 comes next month, but with its eye tracking it is worth a look for sure. It really depends on how quickly Meta deprecate it for some sort of Quest 3 Pro sku or not. Quest Pro does have really good screens as well, while although the resolution is higher on the Q3, they are unlikely to be as good (imho guessing).

EDIT: I updated the flowchart narrative as well, as the QPro was a bit of an omission.


Nicely done :+1:


I have a Rift CV1, Quest 2, Index and Pico 4.

Since buying the Pico 4 I rarely use the others. The Rift CV1 is a back-up back-up and I really just keep it now for nostalgia/first retail etc etc.

The only downer with Pico 4 is the power. I have external batteries that I use for Quest 2 but they are not good for the Pico 4 as it requires quite a bit more oomph than the Quest.
I tried using the same USB-C cable from the same power port that I use to keep Quest going indefinitely but it made little difference to Pico 4’s state of charge whilst in use. I have since bought one that should do the job, but haven’t tried it yet.
Byte Dance have also since enabled USB tethered VR with the Pico 4 - but again, I’ve not tested it yet.

For flight sims - all current ones (except XP12 which I don’t own) run very well and look way better in Pico 4 than the other headsets. I’m really amazed by how clear everything in the cockpit is with this headset - and the performance is great with my i5 9600k and RTX4080 with 32GB DDR4.

I have one other reservation that has little to do with simming - how much sleazy stuff there is on the Pico store, that pops up in the store when you put the headset on! It seems that ByteDance think all VR users are some kind of pervs.
I hope that doesn’t affect how they prioritise updates.

Only other thing is that it could be a little comfier. There is a face plate and pad/gasket available and it gets your eyes closer to the lenses and this gives a larger FOV, but in my case it gives me eye strain before long, so I went back to the standard one. You can easily fit specs inside the headset, and they do provide a spacer as well. It’s the lightest, too - I barely notice weight or heat with this, which I do especially on Index, but also a bit with Quest 2. The passthrough is also excellent (and in colour) - good enough to read notes, anything on the monitor etc.

there are very easy to use screenshot and video recording functions - just use a dedicated button on the right controller, which I leave next to my joystick just for that.

It has a built-in movie theatre:

Screenshots and video recordings are saved to the headset, and you can move them to your PC with a USB cable and no extra software required (Windows looks on it as it does a phone - it has a DCIM and Movies folder - or external hard drive).

That’s about it.


I owned Rift DK2, HTC Viva, Quest2 and lastly got Reverb G2 as attempted upgrade which I was dissapointed with.

In summary currently flying with Quest2 simply because of superior optics (large sweetspot), comfort (active cooling) and MUCH superior ASW. I tried to buy Reverb G2, but go dissapointed extremelly as the sweetspot is outright terrible compared to quest. Like who cares if a tiny center is cleared if your head hurts that everything off-center is foggy!

Secondly people don’t realize this if they didn’t personally tried multiple headsets, but for flight simes that are performance heavy, ASW (the thing that takes 45 FPS of game and creates 90FPS from it using some magic) is very much dependent on the software quality and here, Quest2 shines! E.g. compared to ASW of reverb/openxr, there are NO artifacts around window edges in cockpits and stuff like that, also ASW is done on HW of the headset so free performance.

All in all, I am waiting for quest3 now as if it was second comming as I really want pancake lenses + the code quality of oculus quest 2 (especially ASW). Wireless gaming is a bonus as I cannot imagine playing stuff like HL Alyx with a damn cable anymore, also helps with those short evening flight sessions where you do not want to bother setting up cable, you just pull that thing on your head and take off.


Yesterday I tested this USB to PC connection for the Pico 4. I used the same Joto USB-C (headset) to USB-A (PC) on a case/motherboard direct USB3.1 socket that I had used with Quest originally.

The Pico streamer was unable to find the headset. I will keep trying, though - took a couple of goes to get it sorted with Quest (1), but once I did there were never any issues again, despite so many people having problems.

I also tested my new mains powered charger, which has a 15W USB-A socket and a 25W USB-C socket.

I had a 2 hour session plugged into the USB-A socket and when I took my headset off and unplugged it, it still had a full charge. So that’s how I will use it for flight simming in future.

I’ll post if I get the streamer via USB working. Got a few things left to try with that.


Meta has the Quest 2 on sale for $250 US, including a free Elite Strap. Pretty good deal for someone wanting to try VR for minimal investment.