Review 5+ best virtual reality headset under $50 in 2023 – Which One Is Best For You?

If you’re looking for a whole room VR headset that will give you plenty of room to move around or a great stand-alone VR headset, we’ll have the product for you. If you want more information on the best and most up to date pricing on the products mentioned, be sure to check the links in the description below. 


Oculus Rift S

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The fifth product on our list is the Oculus Rift S. This is our best PC tethered VR headset. If you’re looking to get into VR, then the Oculus Rift S is a great entry-level option to start playing hundreds of games and exclusives already available from the Oculus store. Price around 300 dollars, the Rift S improves on the previous Rift headset with a sharper screen and a camera array that doesn’t require external sensors and gives you accurate motion tracking for both the headset and controllers and is one of the best tethered VR headsets for PC.

The exterior design of the Rift S consists mainly of plastic and padding so it’s pretty lightweight and it’s fully adjustable. So, it’s easy to find a fit that works for you. You don’t have to deal with setting up any sensors around your room which is great because the Rift S has them built in. The head set has built-in audio that sounds pretty clear although the base is a bit weak.

Overall though, they do a good job at maintaining immersion while in a game. The controllers are also made of plastic but they feel pretty solid, lightweight, and comfortable. The only downside is that the controllers don’t have rechargeable batteries and require a standard AA battery for each controller.

Games are definitely more immersive as you swing your sword or actually feel like you’re casting spells versus just pressing a button. But there’s even more that you can do with the Rift S. You can watch movies in VR and even virtualize your desktop so you can browse through your computer or use Google Maps to experience other parts of the world with Google Maps VR.

If you’re looking for a good VR headset and don’t mind being tethered, the Oculus Rift Ask is a great option for anyone wanting to explore the threeD world of games, movies, and more.

Playstation VR

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The fourth product on our list is the PlayStation VR. This is our best VR headset for consoles. PlayStation VR is an affordable introduction to quality VR and one of the best headsets that run off of a console. Some of the experiences won’t be as crisp as the ones found on the Oculus Rift or HDC Vibe but for a system that uses a PS4 instead of an expensive PC gaming rig, it’s more than acceptable.

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Retailing at around 380 dollars, the PlayStation VR will let many more people experience VR gaming and is one of the most affordable systems with motion control. The headset looks like a sci-fi movie prop with all of its weight on the padded plastic crown that sits on your head. The screen dangles down instead of being pulled tight against your face so it’s more comfortable than the Rift S.

One of the most crucial parts of a VR headset is the screen and the single screen 1920 by 1080 image is impressive even when compared to higher-end models but the field of view on the PlayStation VR is a bit narrower than its competitors. Motion tracking is where the system feels a little bit lacking. The single camera works reasonably well except for occasional problems keeping track of the move controllers.

It’s also difficult to attack an opponent that’s behind you since you won’t be able to spin around 180 because your body would block the PlayStation camera’s view of your hands. Despite the PlayStation VR’s relatively low resolution, it still looks very good in games and the headset is comfortable to wear and easy to use.

It does have some drawbacks but overall, it’s still a lot of fun to be at the forefront of something as exciting as VR and this is one of the most affordable ways to experience it if you already have a PlayStation.

Oculus Quest 2

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The third product on our list is the Oculus Quest 2. This is our best stand-alone VR headset. Currently priced around 300 dollars, the Quest 2 is lightweight, comfortable, and powerful enough to run detailed virtual reality experiences with a great screen. While there have been completely untethered experiences in the past, the original Quest was really the first headset to really take it up to the next level and the Quest 2 improves on that even further.

The resolution is very high with a near 3K resolution screen for each eye and runs at a frame rate of ninety frames per second. You’ll also get the Oculus touch controllers with a design that’s very influenced by the rift. All of the buttons are on the inside with the triggers and inner triggers on the outside for reaching down, picking things up, and using a weapon.

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It has its own self-contained motion tracking so you don’t have to set up sensors and you get a full motion 6 of freedom VR controller. A big caveat for the quest too is that you need a Facebook account to log in but it does make it convenient and fun to meet up with friends in VR and also discover communities around the world. You can download the VR apps right into the headsets on board sixty-four gigabytes of storage and you can upgrade it to 250 gigabytes.

You’ll be able to play games like Beat Saber, Moss, and Super Hot VR and you can even connect it to your PC using a single USB-C cable. If you’re looking for a stand-alone VR headset, the Oculus Quest 2 is faster, smaller, and cheaper than the original Quest. Plus, it’s more comfortable to wear. And as long as you don’t mind having to log into Facebook to use it, the Quest 2 is one of the best standalone VR headsets around.

HTC Vive Cosmos Elite

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The second product on our list is the HTC Vive Cosmos Elite. This is our best wholeroom VR headset. If you’re looking for one of the best wholeroom VR headsets, the HTC Vive Cosmos Elite uses lighthouses as base stations for tracking that gives you up to 160 square feet of play space for an ultra-realistic VR gaming experience and is priced around 900 dollars.

The Cosmos Elite has gone back to lighthouse tracking and to briefly explain, it uses two base stations that are placed into the corners of your room and they sweep the interior with lasers. There are receptors on the headset and controllers and that’s what determines where everything is located. So you don’t need cables running from the base stations to your computer.

They just need power. All of the processing that determines where you are is done by your through the cable on your headset and then it’s done wirelessly from your controllers to your headset as well. It sounds like a lot but it proves to be incredibly accurate tracking. When it comes to resolution, the Cosmos Elite features crystal clear graphics with a combined 2880 x 1,700 resolution at ninety hertz.

Plus, the all-new LCD panels reduce the distance between pixels so it minimizes the screen door effect. The audio is fantastic and the headphones are adjustable and comfortable and sound really good when they’re sitting against your ears with no cables to fuss with and if you ever need to step out of the VR world for a moment, the Cosmos is Leads visor flips up easily without disrupting your VR exploration.

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If you’re looking for a whole room VR headset with great video quality and sound plus the freedom to move around in a large space with accurate tracking, the HTC five cosmos elite is one of the best whole room VR headsets around. Especially with the suite of modular options making it future proof.

Valve Index

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The first product on our list is the Valve Index. This is our best high-end VR headset. If you’re looking for one of the best VR experiences around, the Valve Index lets you experience high fidelity virtual reality. With a price tag of around 1,000 dollars, The Valve Index is worth every penny. Thanks to its excellent screen, best in class 130 field of view, the best available controllers, and impressive tracking. Like the HTC Vibe Cosmos Elite.

The Valve Index uses Lighthouse 2.0 base stations for tracking. They’re simple to set up and once powered up, everything automatically connects up. Plugging into a PC is just as simple. A single cable cleanly splits at the end into USB, display port, and AC power and can be up and running in as little as ten minutes.

The wider field of view makes the scuba goggle effect of most VR headsets almost disappear immediately setting the index apart from every other VR headset. The impressive 1140 by 1,600 per eye resolution is greater than the Rift S is 1280 x 1440 and there’s an IPD slider to adjust the lens width and two forward facing cameras allow for binocular pass through video and the LCD screen produces a great VR image. The built-in headphones are super comfortable and they don’t actually touch your ears at all.

Yet the sound quality and positional 3D audio are excellent without much sound bleed. The Valve Index controllers are the most forward looking part of the package with the ability to sense whether each of your fingers is individually extended or closed and because they’re strapped to your hands, you can completely let go and see your in-game hands fully open and actions like throwing virtual objects are much more intuitive. If you’re looking for a fantastic VR experience, the Valve Index features some of the best hardware VR has to offer and with its best-in-class display resolution and refresh rate, you’re going to experience some impressive, high fidelity virtual reality. 

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