Augmented & virtual reality headsets are no longer something reserved only for science fiction, and in just a few short years they have become a household standard for many people across the country. We’ve already given you information on the best virtual reality headsets you can find, but if you prefer beating bosses, levelling up, and conquering worlds that most of us could never dream of seeing, the best virtual reality headsets for expert gamers are something you’ll be interested in.
If you’ve spent your entire life using consoles, then these VR headsets are the next logical step to fully immerse yourself in worlds and situations that you could never have imagined just 10 years ago. From vivid, dynamic graphics to supreme comfort to a vast library of games you can enjoy, even if you have to clean up or finish that big project, we have plenty of options for expert gamers, regardless of their preferences or budget.
- HTC Vive Pro Starter Edition Virtual reality headset for expert gamers
- Avegant Glyph AG101 virtual reality headset for expert gamers
- HTC Vive Pro – Virtual reality headset for expert gamers
- Oculus Quest Virtual Reality Headset All-in-one 64GB
- HTC Vive Pro Virtual reality headset only
- Features to look for in virtual reality headsets for expert gamers
- Types of virtual reality headsets
HTC Vive Pro Starter Edition Virtual reality headset for expert gamers
Our top pick for the best virtual reality headsets for expert gamers is the HTC Vive Pro Starter Edition, which, if you know anything about VR headsets, you’re more than familiar with. You get the full VR package, including the headset, 2 SteamVR base stations and 2 Vive controllers. The dual amalgam graphics boast an amazing 2880 x 1600 resolution, offering unparalleled graphics that are perfect for the 21st century, and wouldn’t look out of place in the 22nd century either.
The headset also offers certified high-resolution sound for a fantastic immersive experience. Lightweight in construction, it’s designed for extended use, as there will be no neck or eye strain from prolonged use. It does take some time to set up, but if you’re already familiar with VR headsets, and HTC in particular, it shouldn’t be too much of a problem, and once you dive into your first few games when you’re done, the task will be more than worth it.
- Excellent quality of construction
- Small stage design
- Comfortable for long periods of time
- Long time to set up
Avegant Glyph AG101 virtual reality headset for expert gamers
If you’re looking for the best virtual reality headset that also offers the best possible value, look no further than the Avegant Glyph AG101 VR video headset, which takes advantage of retinal image technology to provide the most advanced viewing experience in wearable displays.
It’s also ideal for nearsighted and farsighted users, and you can adjust the diopter to suit your eyesight so you don’t have to wear your gaming glasses when using it. The built-in HDMI display is also compatible with a variety of devices, including smart TVs, smartphones and your PS4.
The device is lightweight, so you can wear it for hours without feeling any strain at all, and it also doubles as a pair of wireless headphones, something we haven’t seen before in a VR headset. Even though it seems like a novelty at first, you’ll be amazed at the quality it produces.
The only real problem we can identify is the lack of brightness adjustment. If you play horror games, you’ll have to be very careful when sneaking around dilapidated haunted houses, but shouldn’t that make the game even more fun?
- Robust design
- Good quality images
- No effect screen
- No integrated brightness control
HTC Vive Pro – Virtual reality headset for expert gamers
The HTC Vive Pro virtual reality system is the optimal choice for anyone looking to upgrade their current setup and get their hands on the best VR headset the world has to offer. It offers much the same as its predecessor, but there are plenty of upgrades to enjoy, including Steam Tracking 2.0 for a more comfortable and fluid experience.
The high-resolution screen comes in at 2880 x 1600 pixels to deliver the superb fidelity you’d expect from a high-end VR kit, and with controllers, base stations, and headset included, you get the full package, even if you have to pay a pretty penny or two to make it a reality, not a virtual one either.
You’ll also appreciate the spatial sound with noise cancellation for maximum immersion, while the Vive tracker ecosystem adds real objects to your gaming experience to bridge the gap between real life and fantasy.
The wire can sometimes get in the way of immersion, but with a little practice, you’ll soon find a way around that so you can enjoy your headset while sitting, standing, or enjoying an open space for whatever your games require. For more great products for gamers, check out our guide to the best gaming monitors.
- Uniform weight distribution
- Lots of play
- Easily adjustable
- Wires sometimes get in the way and ruin the immersion
Oculus Quest Virtual Reality Headset All-in-one 64GB
Arguably the product that started it all, the Oculus Quest all-in-one VR gaming headset is a fantastic choice for the entry-level VR gamer who still wants the certified quality they find with their console games.
It includes touch controllers for versatile gaming options, while preview tracking mirrors your movements without the need for external devices. The beyond-the-room scaling feature also allows you to use your Oculus wherever you are, as long as you don’t get overzealous around your grandmother’s finest china. It’s easy to set up, and with different hard drive sizes available, you can find the option that meets your needs.
For your convenience, the free Oculus app lets you sync them seamlessly. If you’re not sure which game to start with, you’ll get all three chapters of Vader Immortal for free with your purchase (but only until the end of January, so get them soon).
You don’t have to have a computer, but that can work against it, as you may find the graphics a bit cartoonish compared to other options. For some, however, this is all part of the charm.
- Free game included
- Entry-level device
- No computer required
- Graphics are a bit cartoonish
HTC Vive Pro Virtual reality headset only
If your budget doesn’t allow you to buy the starter kit but you still want to experience an HTC device, the HTC Vive Pro virtual reality headset is a superb alternative and still offers enhanced graphics and an immersive experience that you won’t find with other VR headsets.
You can use it in any position, and the headset comes with improved ergonomics to ensure a comfortable and satisfying experience. To sweeten the deal, you also get a 6-month subscription to Viveport Infinity, which lets you check out over 700 games to see what you like.
However, depending on your device, you may encounter some compatibility issues. So it’s worth checking if it connects to your device before you buy it. If you get the green light, you’re setting yourself up for hours of fun that you may never get back, but we know it will all be worth it. You may also like some of the best gaming headsets on our list, so be sure to check them out.
Features to look for in virtual reality headsets for expert gamers
Before you decide which of the best virtual reality headsets for expert gamers is the right one for your setup, take a look at these key features to look for and think about.
Resolution – High resolution is a hallmark of VR gaming and if you want the most immersive experience possible, you need fantastic resolution to really feel like you’re there. However, not all VR headsets offer such superb resolution, especially the all-in-one options with the screen built into the headset. If you’re using your phone, the resolution isn’t as important, but for other types of headsets, 4K or even 5K are available.
Comfort – You don’t want to wear an uncomfortable headset, as this could ruin your experience and reduce the amount of time you spend using it. A VR headset should sit comfortably on your head, while a padded face mask will add an extra level of protection and prevent chafing and abrasions. A useful feature to look for is adjustability, as it allows all family members to use the headset, regardless of age.
Compatibility – Most devices these days offer broad compatibility, but it’s still an important thing to consider. You want to buy a headset that is compatible with the device you’ll be using, whether it’s your smart TV, game console or smartphone. All-in-one systems don’t require such compatibility, but it’s still something you need to think about.
Setup – If you’ve never used a VR headset before, you may run into some configuration challenges. A frustrating setup is an easy way to pick on your new product before you’ve even used it for the first time. Most VR headsets give simple, straightforward instructions and there are always YouTuber videos you can watch if you get stuck.
Size and Weight – Size and weight is another factor to consider, especially if you want to engage in long gaming sessions, as the device should not be so heavy that it causes neck strain. Also, a headset that is too large will be difficult to store and carry with you.
Remote control – A remote control makes navigating between menus easier and can make the whole experience much more manageable and smooth. They’re not essential, but they’re worth considering if you don’t want to fiddle with the controls on the top or sides of the headset.
Game Library – The value of buying a VR headset for gamers lies in the Game Library. HTC and Oculus have the largest game libraries in the world, and with Viveport subscriptions, you can check out as many as possible. That said, there are other devices that allow you to play these games as well. It all depends on how much you want to spend and what kind of games you’re looking for.
Types of virtual reality headsets
Tethered – These devices are the most immersive and have controls that match your movements and can also include real objects in your environment. You have to connect them to a PC via HDMI or USB cables, which makes them less portable than other options.
Standalone – Also known as an all-in-one VR headset, this is the most convenient and all you have to do is make sure the device is charged. From there, you can browse, watch and play your favourite games wherever you are, as they don’t require a connection to a PC or smartphone.
Smartphone – As the name suggests, this headset works with your smartphone. All you have to do is to install your smartphone in the port and start your VR experience. Recently released smartphones are the most powerful and have the best variety of games, and they also offer the best resolution.