It feels like VR headsets have been around forever, even though we are still very much in the early days of virtual reality. A couple of years ago, Facebook brought VR to the masses with the Quest 2. The newest technology in the market is fostering Quest Pro to form a new baseline level of tech designed to bring digital worlds to life. The plan is to make them as intuitive and interactive as possible. Meta has achieved this, and while the $1,500 price is hard to justify, it’s easy to see why this technology is well received in the market.
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Demo Set And Current Design
During its demo session, the Quest Pro seemed like the real deal. The headset is far superior in terms of fitting when compared to the default Quest 2 strap system. It wraps around the head securely so there is no trouble for people with long hair. But ever since that amazing demo, the Quest Pro has become a pain to use. The ring forces all the substantial weight on the upper area of the forehead, leaving a pain sensation in the hairline area when finally removed. It’s much better to keep the fit loose, so the headset remains less stable during games and activities that may require extensive movement. I would go as far as saying it’s even worse than the Quest 2 with its optional Elite Strap. At least the former included an overhead strap for perfect balance.
The Curious Case of Controllers
The Quest Pro headset cannot be completed without the Touch Pro Controllers. Meta is now using the previous design as we got on the Quest 2. Instead of relying on a massive light ring with LEDs, the controllers are now packed with built-in sensors, easier to manage for both hand and finger tracking. This is perfect for streamlining the design and provides a noticeable upgrade in responsiveness. The level of haptics has been elevated to add an extra level of immersion, considerable for applications. This adds an extra layer of control, making it easier to use the entire thing as a stylus.
A great example we can see in this aspect is the Painting VR. These brushes hold an abundance of variety and pinpoint vibrations that convey a sense of size and weight. The effect is akin to HD Rumble on the Nintendo Switch’s Joy-Con. Dare I say with an even better fidelity for force feedback. Last but not least, the controllers subtly textured rubberized grips make things secure, even when sweating profusely while smashing things with your friends. The only downside here is the hand straps Valve, which are missing from this set. They would allow users to quickly switch between buttons and hand gestures without needing to put down the controller.
Three Birds, One Setup, Configuration, Battery The new Quest Pro is even easier to set up than its predecessor. The usage and safety instructions are conveniently simple to follow. In my experience, it only takes a few minutes to perfect. One thing to point out is that pairing the Quest Pro with the Oculus app on the smartphone is rather arduous. This is a head scratcher as it points to a missing update or a default error from the manufacturers. Overall, this could have been done much better.
There is nothing special about the menus and settings, they are eerily similar to the Quest 2. Users can now access new features like face tracking, turn them on and off through the quick menu to save up on battery. Putting the device to full usage, the Quest Pro lasted for about 90 minutes with regular changing applications, especially in the Mixed Reality mode. You can now charge the headset with a USB-C cable. Giving Meta the benefit of the doubt, I turned off tracking options resulting in a Quest-2-like runtime of over 2 hours. The VR headset has a good recharge time, reaching its full power in under two hours on the included docking station.
A Look on Resolution And Refresh Rate
Unfortunately, this is the most disappointing feature of The Quest Pro. It has a criminally lower resolution of 1,800 x 1,920 pixels per eye than its previous installment. One of teh headsets main rivals, the Pico 4 Enterprise brings a rather high stature display of 2,60 x 2,160. Still, the image clarity of Quest Pro is far more clear than the Quest 2, exceeding lens quality. The newly introduced pancake lenses eliminate god-rays, a huge success in terms of refresh rate.
Let’s talk about the refresh rate, it ranges from 72 to a maximum of 90 hertz. As with the Pico 4, the downgrade is not very clear as 90 Hz is the gold standard for VR. The same refresh rate is also known to produce a smoother, more realistic, and more enjoyable image.
Meta Quest Pro: Pro For A Reason
The Meta Quest Pro is undoubtedly the most advanced standalone VR headset available in the market right now. The“Pro” in its name is not just a superlative, but a perfect fit. Yes, the price is on the expensive spectrum. Even though Meta says it’s a headset for both enthusiasts and brand professionals, the price range implies that it suits the latter much better. The improvement between the previous model and Quest Pro are clear to see. But anyone following Metas work will know they are not drastic. Finally, the eye and face tracking are one of the best features available, exceeding their potential. But it requires an abundance of practice. Our final verdict would be to definitely buy the headset if you are an enthusiast, and even more so if you work in a professional environment. But for beginners, they might be better off looking at more price friendly headsets.
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Featured Image: The Verge