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The Best VR Headset for PC Gaming on a Budget

March 30, 2021 • Zachary Amos


Virtual reality (VR) has taken off quickly. For gaming and entertainment, especially, these headsets fly off the shelves upon release. If you’re in the market for one that will work well with your PC, it can be hard to narrow down the gadgets. You may be asking yourself — which is the best VR headset for PC gaming? Not to worry, you can choose from plenty of options. 

Oculus Quest 2: Best VR Headset for PC Gaming Overall

Often, people point to the Oculus Quest 2 as one of the best overall VR headsets. It’s powerful and fast, which makes it ideal for any form of gaming. You’ll have a field of view (FOV) of about 100 degrees and a refresh rate of 72 or 90 Hz. The LCD display is clear and quick with a per-eye resolution of 1832 x 1920. 

You will have to buy an Oculus linking cable for your PC — as you will with most VR headsets — but other than that, the connection is seamless. You can play countless games with the best quality visuals. Honestly, it’s worth it to get the Quest 2 instead of the Quest 3 if you value quality and affordability.

Part of what makes the Oculus Quest 2 so monumental is the cost-effective price starting at $299. Get yours today.

Valve Index: The Best VR Headset for Extended Gameplay

As a PC user, you know that some gadgets work better than others for gaming. It’s what makes the Valve Index the best VR headset for PC gaming. On par with the Oculus Quest 2, the Valve Index covers all the bases.

With a vas 130-degree FOV, the Index is a leader in the field. A high refresh rate of 80, 90 or 120 Hz — and the experimental 144 Hz — lets you adjust based on your games. Per eye, you’ll get a resolution of 1440 x 1600. 

It is a bit heavy, but for the visual and audio quality and connectivity, you can get it for $499.

Oculus Rift S: Best VR Headset for PC Gaming on a Budget

You may have heard the news that Facebook is discontinuing the Oculus Rift S. With the success of the Quest 2, this model is falling into the background. However, that shift doesn’t mean that the Rift S isn’t a worthwhile investment.

Quite the opposite, this VR headset is powerful. You’ll get a stunning LCD resolution of 2560 x 1600 and a FOV of 110 degrees. Additionally, the refresh rate is 80 Hz.

The Rift S is comfortable and great for PC gaming. Its standard price is $399, but you’ll be able to find it cheaper since it went out of production in December 2020.

HP Reverb: The Best VR Headset for All-Around Performance

With an equal per-eye LCD resolution of 2160 x 2160, the HP Reverb swoops in as a strong contender for the best VR headset for PC gaming. The refresh rate is 90 Hz and the FOV is 114 degrees — which puts it ahead of some competitors.

This VR headset should be a strong contender for which one you purchase. However, keep in mind that HP is now releasing a follow-up. The G2 launched recently and has been shipping out to consumers. 

Compare the two and see which one fits your needs the best. Either way, PC gaming will get a unique twist! The Reverb is available for $649.

HTC Vive Cosmos Elite: The Best VR Headset for Clear Visuals

Last on the list, the HTC Vive Elite is a force. At a whopping LCD resolution of 2880 x 1770, you’ll have clear gameplay when you connect to your PC. The FOV is 110 degrees and you’ll get a refresh rate of 90 Hz.

This headset is the second from Vive. Developers learned from the first one and improved the resolution, ergonomics and capabilities. Now, you’ll get smooth gameplay and clear pictures. 

The HTC Vive Cosmos Elite is on the pricier side of the spectrum, at $899. However, if your priority is resolution, then this VR headset is the one for you.

Choosing the Best VR Headset for PC Gaming

With all these options, you’ll want to narrow down your search by focusing on your needs and preferences. Do you want the best resolution? Does cost-effectiveness matter more to you? Would you prefer an abundance of controls? Your answers will ultimately help you decide which VR headset to buy. Happy gaming!