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Rift versus Vive. I have only one winner.

janhercajanherca Posts: 35
Lawnmower Man (or Woman)
After using both during a few weeks for me there is only one clear winner: Oculus Rift, and let me explain my reasons for saying this.

Five key points:

1. Products are compared poorly. We must compare the HMD on one side and the controllers in the other. Since Touch will not come until September, we must remove Valve's "cutlass" controllers from the comparison. We must also take concepts as room-scale outside the comparison. Both Rift and Vive allow room-scale. Simply games for Rift are more focused on playing seated. But that will change with the arrival of Touch. We have to compare pears with pears, so I will focus on comparing the two HMDs and nothing else, which for now is what Oculus has released.

2. Focusing on the HMDs, there are four key aspects. First is the arrangement of pixels. Rift is noticeably better what means it feels to have higher resolution than Vive, and also less screendoor effect. It is quite remarkable, not slightly. For example, in a game like Elite Dangerous it means that in Rift you can comfortably read the interface panels and in Vive you need to lean forward. It is a very noticeable difference.

3. Ergonomics. Absolute Zero for HTC Vive. Vive in my opinion is a Developer Kit 2 put in a nice box. It has the same ergonomics as the Oculus DK2, I mean, painful. Weight badly distributed that causes that after half hour of play my cheeks hurt, where all the weight is supported, and it hurts my head. From the backside there go four wires attached! (yes, yes, four), which form a rigid assembly pulling you down and creating an enormous discomfort in both standing and sitting experiences. Sitting is even worse. The absence of integrated headphones is very noticeable and it is a mistake. Putting them on is a nuisance every time you use the HMD. Rift is more rigid in its foam, but on the contrary it feels super light on the head and it don't press your face at all. This allows a huge difference in terms of hours of use. I have played up to two hours at Rift without any discomfort symptom. With Vive, half an hour and I'm in trouble.

4. Lens glare. This effect of Fresnel lenses is equally pronounced in Vive than in Oculus Rift. Both share the same problem. In games with high-contrast black backgrounds with bright interfaces, such as Elite Dangerous, it is a problem that is very pronounced and very annoying. You can only reduce it by decreasing the brightness of the interface, but even that way it pops out. This is no better in Vive than in Rift. Both equally bad.

5. The most important point in my opinion, the one and only that leave in nothing previous three, is the Async Time Warp, the wonder created by the genius John Carmack. HTC Vive does not have this technology and it is super noticeable. I have done tests on a PC slightly above the minimum specs required by Oculus and Valve. The card I've used is a GTX970. In Rift all games are extremely smooth, even the most demanding, as Elite Dangerous or Project Cars. Never, never I have a drop of frames. In any moment. With HTC Vive sometimes there is judder. Not a judder to stop you playing, but there are moments in games as Elite Dangerous when entering a space station where definitely the wonder created by Carmack shines in all its glory. A GTX970 is enough to play Elite Dangerous in Rift, but not in HTC Vive.

All my current experience, both sitting and standing, both installing, buying games, settting options, etc. Everything is comparatively better in Rift than with Vive. The only plus point for HTC is the tracking system. It is very good. The sensors have a huge tracking volume and are very accurate. Oculus camera, although is great for being just a camera, is below. But also consider that HTC Vive are two base stations that must be placed in a very specific position in the room, and that is a hassle installation.

Overall, after two weeks of testing with each other, I have a clear winner. Oculus Rift. There's no more. I only can say that from now on, except for games or apps only available in SteamVR, I'm going to enjoy the rest in Rift. And I am convinced that when Oculus releases Touch most of the content that is now exclusive to SteamVR and is only room-scale oriented will also be available for Rift. So I have no concern in that regard. Oculus is not going to be as a device with a fragment of the content of VR. Developers are super eager to get their creations to the widest possible audience.

I do not do this analysis in order to alienate anyone from the idea of ​​purchasing the product from HTC. I only expose this as informative, but I recommend to anyone who is in doubt of what product to buy that if he or she has a way to test the products by a friend, do it, try the same game in both headsets, and evaluate calmly after a long gaming session which product you are interested in more. Rift and Vive are expensive purchases. My advice if you are in doubt is to have patience and seek the opportunity to try and see if what I say in this analysis is true or not. I've read dozens of reviews and each makes an assessment putting pears and apples on the table. There are those who appreciate the room-scale above all things, and of course that is a feature with limited support in Rift since it only gives you one sensor and HTC Vive carries two. If all you want to experience the VR is the room-scale, then surely Rift disappoint you. But in my opinion, that is not the way to do an objective review of the products. We have to compare what is now available in both products, and within that, evaluate all what they offer, from installation, to purchasing of content and using the content. Again I recommend to not trust any review, including this one, and please, try first hand the products before buying them. Perhaps if you are patient and wait for Touch you end finding that all Oculus products (HMD, sensors and controllers) are better than HTC equivalents. And that would make worth the waiting.

Have fun
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Comments

  • Hiro_Protag0nistHiro_Protag0nist Posts: 3,066 Valuable Player
    It took me 10 minutes with the Vive to realise that i wouldn't be able to use it for prolonged periods.  It weighed too much and then putting on a set of headphones - the band over my head and the fitting just wasn't right.  Now, they were someone else's headphones but i instantly remembered putting on my own with the DK2 - bloody awful.  With trial and error i'm sure owners will get it to suit them but i don't want trial and error, i want it to be consumer-ready.
  • Kalec84Kalec84 Posts: 558
    Trinity
    Good speech :)
    I'm looking forward to know the real winner of this debate (Rift vs Vive) when the touch comes out and we will finally know who is better :)
  • SuperdeluxoSuperdeluxo Posts: 114
    andyring said:
    It took me 10 minutes with the Vive to realise that i wouldn't be able to use it for prolonged periods.  It weighed too much and then putting on a set of headphones - the band over my head and the fitting just wasn't right.  Now, they were someone else's headphones but i instantly remembered putting on my own with the DK2 - bloody awful.  With trial and error i'm sure owners will get it to suit them but i don't want trial and error, i want it to be consumer-ready.


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  • Hiro_Protag0nistHiro_Protag0nist Posts: 3,066 Valuable Player
    Kalec84 said:
    Good speech :)
    I'm looking forward to know the real winner of this debate (Rift vs Vive) when the touch comes out and we will finally know who is better :)

    I think the word we should be using is preferred.

    Some will prefer the Rift, some will prefer the Vive...  which is fair enough.
  • Percy1983Percy1983 Posts: 1,325
    3Jane
    I will say this is basically my reasoning to get the Rift over the Vive, the HMD is simply better.

    I will say room scale doesn't interest me but tracked controllers do and Touch does looks quite a lot better.

    I do get the feeling the Vive was rushed to market to not miss the boat where Oculus really did spend a lot of time getting it right.

    By all means I seems the Vive is a great bit of kit and I am sure many will enjoy it, but it just does tick the right boxes for me.
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  • DerekSpeareDerekSpeare Posts: 165
    Art3mis
    edited May 2016
    I have had the DK2 for 18+ months and have demoed both the Vive and the CV1.  The OP's comments on the SDE in the Vive are correct.  The SDE with the Vive is much closer to the DK2 and only somewhat better.  The SDE with the CV1 is there, but significantly better than the DK2.  Comfort go to the CV1 as well. ATW is makes a remarkable difference, but I'd expect something like it from the Vive in the future.  The roomscale feature is irrelevant to me, but may be for others.  The Vive's controllers are great, but not for me. 

    Ultimately it's the implementation of the VR HMD that wins the day.  Right now it's the CV1 in my opinion.  What will be in five years is another matter.  If Oculus wants to be that one in five years, they really need to improve their execution and deployment to the point of perfection.
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  • AHeckmanAHeckman Posts: 214
    Art3mis
    i was expecting to see chicken dinner... sadly disappointed.
  • JED44JED44 Posts: 448 Poster of the Week
    Very good review /comparison . If only more people on the forums actually took the time to make coherent and informed arguments. I have to ask for the vive did you adjust the back strap correctly? I used to have it on the top of my head closer to a baseball cap and the weight of the vive was all on my cheeks, but after I loosened the top strap and was able to get it lower on my skull the weight was distributed a lot better and it became loads more comfortable.
  • ZoomieZoomie Posts: 1,764 Valuable Player

    Thanks for the review janherica.  Your list of preferred features matches mine pretty closely and an "apples to apples" review is something I asked for when these units first started shipping.  Reading reviews like this helps me justify my wait for Touch. 

    Now that apples to apples is out of the way, how much do the Wands add to your overall experience?

    Do you find yourself using room scale more often with the Vive?  If so, is it because the experiences are geared towards room-scale or is the Vive better suited in some way?

    Which headset are you spending more time using, and with what apps?

    Do you have a list of the best experiences for both headsets?  Ideally owners of both headsets will eventually be able to use every VR experience and game, so it's nice to see a "best of" list from the other side.

    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C Clarke
  • janhercajanherca Posts: 35
    Lawnmower Man (or Woman)
    JED44 said:
    Very good review /comparison . If only more people on the forums actually took the time to make coherent and informed arguments. I have to ask for the vive did you adjust the back strap correctly? I used to have it on the top of my head closer to a baseball cap and the weight of the vive was all on my cheeks, but after I loosened the top strap and was able to get it lower on my skull the weight was distributed a lot better and it became loads more comfortable.
    Yes, tried every single posible position, but I did not find it so comfortable as Rift. The strap at where the four cables goes out in the back has a very unfortunate shape, and it don't adjust to the back to the head as rounded as Rift. I suppose it has to be related to the fact that Rift is rigid in all the lateral and back straps. I must say that the foam in Rift I find it less comfortable than Vive, but I'm sure we will be able to change that foams in the near future using different sizes and different roughness. But what we aren't going to see in anytime is different straps for Vive in laterals and back. So at the end, you deal with Rift foam because the overall feeling is noticeable better.

    I must say that for me the number one in the wishlist is comfort, and that means not only comfort in weight or weight distribution. Comfort also in easiness of installation. It took me no more than 15 min to install Rift. It took me about an hour to install Vive, and I ended super tired. I had to put sensors in shelves, to use screws to make them stable and looking down. It supposed to me use a long power wire extensor to connect one of the sensors to a far away power plug. It was an intense hour sweating to place all the wires in place. When I ended I was so tired that I left playing games for the next day.

    So I'm talking about that type of comfortness. The one that lets you plug everything in minutes, start enjoying instantly, and leave you several hours later wanting for more, not wanting to stop because of headache.
  • janhercajanherca Posts: 35
    Lawnmower Man (or Woman)
    Zoomie said:

    Thanks for the review janherica.  Your list of preferred features matches mine pretty closely and an "apples to apples" review is something I asked for when these units first started shipping.  Reading reviews like this helps me justify my wait for Touch. 

    Now that apples to apples is out of the way, how much do the Wands add to your overall experience?

    Do you find yourself using room scale more often with the Vive?  If so, is it because the experiences are geared towards room-scale or is the Vive better suited in some way?

    Which headset are you spending more time using, and with what apps?

    Do you have a list of the best experiences for both headsets?  Ideally owners of both headsets will eventually be able to use every VR experience and game, so it's nice to see a "best of" list from the other side.

    I must say I am loving room-scale experiences as much as seated ones. I love to play games like Elite or PCars in a good cockpit with all the peripherials, but I have tried Hover Junkers and Tiltbrush and they are also amazing. We must make clear to people that do not know about VR that room-scale is not a feature only available in HTC Vive. It is a feature that you gain when you put one or more sensors with a huge tracking volume. You can achieve it with the Rift camera, although the experience is more limited than the one with current Vive and two sensors in the corners. But that definitely will change with Touch and its extra camera.

    Vive has come with room-scale experiences earlier than Oculus. They are totally focused on this type of experiences, but is really Vive better than Rift in this respect? For me the Vive HMD is clearly worse than Rift. Now I want to be patient and wait for Touch to come and make a good review, comparing the same games in both environments, and check if Vive really has this feature on its own or not. After seeing the big quality of Rift, I am starting to have a pretty amount of confidence in that Touch is going to offer us a great surprise. I has been amazed by Oculus since DK1, and not liked very much the Facebook adquisition, but the are super great guys and they have never deceive me with their products. Lot of reviews are saying Vive is a step forward on top of Rift, and I am not so sure of this statements. Better wait and see what happen at the end of the year.
  • darkcrayondarkcrayon Posts: 82
    IMO having a camera on the HMD is pretty important for proper room scale unless you're in some kind of dedicated VR gaming facility.  Not that someone couldn't make a little USB addon you attach to the CV1.  But out of the box it's a major advantage in room scale (for me) in the Vive.  And I think we have yet to see (in real home environments) how well room scale will work with a second camera that comes with Touch.
  • bigmike20vtbigmike20vt Posts: 2,237
    Project 2501
    nice thoughts..... my only concern is, whilst the rift CAN do the same room scale VR as the VIVE (tho possibly on a smaller scale) as shown by the fantastic contraption dev,  if oculus insist on BOTH cameras being set up forward facing then I fear room scale will only be a bolted on extra for the rift. if the motion controllers are only tracked in front of you, then full room vr is a bust.

    I am personally hoping oculus behind the scenes are in full u-turn and are considering either throwing in a 2 camera system in with the touch so the other one can be mounted behind, or looking to optimise their software to officially support the 2 cameras in diagonal room positioning.


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  • EliteSPAEliteSPA Posts: 1,538
    Project 2501
    edited May 2016
    Nice review, I have the Vive and waiting my lovely toy, I can tell if you put your straps on the right spots you balance the weight of the HMD so its not all the weight on the front side, I can play hours without any issues and for the earphones I did the trick and no issues at all, btw I notice some lag spikes in Hover Yunkers, I have to set graphics to medium and also sometimes it lags. Rest of the games works perfect maxed out. Have someone also experience the same issue? Do you guys turn off G-Sync? I know its only for the primary monitor. Cya in VR!

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  • nAV2016nAV2016 Posts: 514
    Trinity
    I simply went with the founder of the technology..and thou i have not used either there is definately a dk2 look to the vive..i cannot help but feel it is a rushed approach to bring out the technology..but some people do say it is brighter and offers more clarity which i find disturbing since i ordered the rift..lol


  • EliteSPAEliteSPA Posts: 1,538
    Project 2501
    The sweet spot on the Vive is better then Rift as I saw in some honest reviews comparing both.
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  • ZoomieZoomie Posts: 1,764 Valuable Player

    @EliteSPA If this is true then the sweet spot in the Vive must be enormous.  On my Rift it's considerably larger than the DK2 and the image stays in focus all the way to the edge.

    Maybe someone like @ThreeDeeVision can weigh in on the sweet spot difference between the two.

    Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
    - Arthur C Clarke
  • jabjab Posts: 104
    Art3mis
    Stopped reading at point 1...
  • TadinTadin Posts: 169
    Art3mis
    jab said:
    Stopped reading at point 1...
    So your not interested in knowing which Headset is better, not even a little curious ? Because thats at least 75% of the Vive (all be it 100% of the Rift until Touch)
  • EliteSPAEliteSPA Posts: 1,538
    Project 2501
    Zoomie said:

    @EliteSPA If this is true then the sweet spot in the Vive must be enormous.  On my Rift it's considerably larger than the DK2 and the image stays in focus all the way to the edge.

    Maybe someone like @ThreeDeeVision can weigh in on the sweet spot difference between the two.

    Cant confirm it @Zoomie until my rift arrives, but thats what I read and saw on all the reviews, maybe wrong but again until I have the Rift cant do any comparison, maybe @ThreeDeeVision can tell us more about it.
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  • jabjab Posts: 104
    Art3mis
    Tadin said:
    jab said:
    Stopped reading at point 1...
    So your not interested in knowing which Headset is better, not even a little curious ? Because thats at least 75% of the Vive (all be it 100% of the Rift until Touch)
    I am interested in the best VR experience, since after all this is supposed to be a VR headset.
  • janhercajanherca Posts: 35
    Lawnmower Man (or Woman)
    EliteSPA said:
    The sweet spot on the Vive is better then Rift as I saw in some honest reviews comparing both.
    Lot of reviews and saying things like that about sweet spot or FOV or other lens features. From my experience this weeks, no change at all in FOV or sweet spot from one to another, at least not something so noticeable like the resolution of the screen. We have about one hundred degrees in FOV more or less. If you play a game in which you are at a big open space, you can be a little worried about this. But for example, in any sim game, like Elite or PCars, that limited FOV seems natural because it make you feel you where a helmet. I do not agree with those that asks for more FOV desperately. You can move the head. We do it a lot. Our human peripherial vision is super bad, so we need to move the head constantly.

    I see resolution more critical, or for better say, perceived resolution, because you can increase it with several techniques. Subpixel array matters, and inter-pixel space also matters. Oculus has managed to have a better panels clearly. That supposes in huge difference in some games, the difference that makes you read texts or not without moving your head back and forth.
  • in6secondsin6seconds Posts: 405
    Art3mis
    Tadin said:
    jab said:
    Stopped reading at point 1...
    So your not interested in knowing which Headset is better, not even a little curious ? Because thats at least 75% of the Vive (all be it 100% of the Rift until Touch)
    point one is dumb because you're taking out the vive controllers just because the rift does not come with the touch? you realize the touch is not a part of the cv1, but the vive controllers are clearly a part of the vive.
  • GigantoadGigantoad Posts: 394
    Nexus 6
    edited May 2016
    Good comparison, but also a little unfair to be honest. It's perfectly valid to compare just the HMDs, but it doesn't change the fact that Vive ships with motion controllers right now and Rift doesn't. If you're talking about HTC throwing a product onto the market prematurely, you could just as well make the point that Oculus did the same thing by releasing the HMD without touch controllers. By not acknowledging this and comparing just one (admittedly most important) component instead of the whole product, and worse, giving points to Oculus for what seems to you will  be the better touch controllers somewhere down the line without having ever used them, you don't inspire a lot of confidence with the "clear winner" statement.
  • TadinTadin Posts: 169
    Art3mis
    Tadin said:
    jab said:
    Stopped reading at point 1...
    So your not interested in knowing which Headset is better, not even a little curious ? Because thats at least 75% of the Vive (all be it 100% of the Rift until Touch)
    point one is dumb because you're taking out the vive controllers just because the rift does not come with the touch? you realize the touch is not a part of the cv1, but the vive controllers are clearly a part of the vive.
    I've used the Vive and its fantastic, the motion controllers really are a huge part of VR, but I still think its useful to have a comparison of the Headsets, especially if you're like me and still waiting for a Rift that looks like it won't arrive much before Touch.
  • AnotherCrazyCanadianAnotherCrazyCanadian Posts: 319
    Nexus 6
    I've found (from an outside perspective, not looking in) that the only reason the Vive is 'better' is because of the touch controls and roomscale gameplay. Like that other guy said it feels like it was rushed to market to compete with the oculus. I really think that if the Oculus Touch controllers end up releasing and being better than anything the Vive comes out, that many games will be ported and retrofitted for the Oculus. I think I also remember reading that roomscale sounds better than it actually is and the seated experience will eventually rule out.
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  • monsterOzeromonsterOzero Posts: 11
    Virtual Boy (or Girl)
    edited May 2016
    If the VIVE was owned by Facebook it would have been destroyed by the critics.

    "800$?!?!? LOLZ!!"

    SDE?!? 2016?!? LOLZ!!

    "It's clear that the Facebook VIVE was rushed to the market to counteract the HTC RIFT...HTC have done their homework with the hiring of John Carmack and the release of the DK1/DK2. The Facebook VIVE is a fail"

    Or I can imagine What would happen when Microsoft buys HTC.

    Microsoft VIVE anyone?
  • MaxxgoldMaxxgold Posts: 349
    Trinity
    Just wanted to help you out with point 4. If you actually turn up the gamma or brightness it actually reduces the lens flare. Its not ideal but that is what I do in Elite Dangerous and it works pretty well. If you notice, in games that are brightly lit there is no lens flare. So I decided to brighten up games that have darker scenes and it is working. In Elite Dangerous space is still dark, while turning up the gamma and turning down the HUD brightness.
  • janhercajanherca Posts: 35
    Lawnmower Man (or Woman)
    Tadin said:
    jab said:
    Stopped reading at point 1...
    So your not interested in knowing which Headset is better, not even a little curious ? Because thats at least 75% of the Vive (all be it 100% of the Rift until Touch)
    point one is dumb because you're taking out the vive controllers just because the rift does not come with the touch? you realize the touch is not a part of the cv1, but the vive controllers are clearly a part of the vive.
    I'm not comparing Rift with Vive in the usual sense of comparing all in the box because HTC has forced users to buy a pair of controllers that are in a different product category than HMDs, as Sonly and Oculus are doing. So for a more objective comparison, I think that for now we must focus on comparing what we have in both boxes, and wait to end of the year to compare the rest of things. I think that is the fair way and the most useful for people having doubts about what to purchase that are more concerned about HMD than about controllers.
  • janhercajanherca Posts: 35
    Lawnmower Man (or Woman)
    Tadin said:
    jab said:
    Stopped reading at point 1...
    So your not interested in knowing which Headset is better, not even a little curious ? Because thats at least 75% of the Vive (all be it 100% of the Rift until Touch)
    point one is dumb because you're taking out the vive controllers just because the rift does not come with the touch? you realize the touch is not a part of the cv1, but the vive controllers are clearly a part of the vive.
    I'm not comparing Rift with Vive in the usual sense of comparing all in the box because HTC has forced users to buy a pair of controllers that are in a different product category than HMDs, as Sonly and Oculus are doing. So for a more objective comparison, I think that for now we must focus on comparing what we have in both boxes, and wait to end of the year to compare the rest of things. I think that is the fair way and the most useful for people having doubts about what to purchase that are more concerned about HMD than about controllers.
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