Virtual reality has come a long way from the oversized helmets used back in the day, to the sleek, futuristic gadgets we have now with exciting capabilities.
These days, we are spoiled for choice when it comes to virtual reality headsets, and the main culprit for this is Oculus, a company owned by social media giants, Facebook. This company consistently puts out top-of-the-line virtual reality headsets that always end up being the best out.
The main headsets of this leading VR manufacturer are the Oculus Rift, Oculus Go, Oculus Quest, and the Oculus Rift S.
Those are all fantastic devices built for different users in mind – some are entry-level gadgets for VR newbies, movie-watching users, or core gamers. Some of these gadgets need a computer and other external hardware to run, while others are standalone headsets that work perfectly on their own.
This article will compare two standalone headsets – the Oculus Go and Oculus Quest. We have made other similar comparisons on our website; feel free to check them out.
The Go and Quest are quite similar devices that are bent on confusing buyers but don’t worry. We have done the research, and this article will show you the key differences between the Oculus Go and Oculus Quest, to help you make a more informed buying decision if it comes down to these two.
What is the Oculus Go?
Most virtual reality headsets use an external display system like a smartphone screen, and this has some drawbacks. First, the quality and size of your display as well as overall performance is greatly determined by the quality of the external display; hence, you would see pricey VR headsets undermined by poor smartphones.
You cannot compare the experience you get on these smartphones to that from dedicated VR headsets, and this is where standalone gadgets are vital. The Oculus Go needs no additional gear; you require the headset and controllers.
The primary limitation of the Oculus Go is that the device does not track backward, forward, or up and down movements; it tracks only orientation and tilt. This is also known as 3DoF or 3 Degrees of Freedom.
It costs around $200 and is a fantastic headset that you will not regret buying. Later in this post, we will discuss the features and specifications, and how they stack up with that of the Oculus Quest.
What is the Oculus Quest?
The Quest is the newest virtual reality headset in the Oculus line up. At first look, you might get an impression that this is just another headset with a few variations at yet another attempt to buy over fans of rival VR headsets, but I can assure you that the Oculus Quest takes the virtual reality experience to new levels. This device is similar to the Oculus Go as it is also a standalone virtual reality headset with great potential.
One difference between the Oculus Go and the Oculus Quest is that the Quest has better motion tracking. While the Oculus Go only tracks tilt and orientation of the headset, the Oculus Quest tracks all directions, and this device also debuts some new inside-out tracking technology that works pretty great. Tracking will be compared in the next sections.
The Oculus Quest is a pricey VR headset that sells for around $400, which is double the price of the Oculus Go. It is not built for stationary usage like the Oculus Go; this is a specialized gaming device.
Lastly, the Oculus Quest weighs around 100 grams more than its counterpart, the Oculus Go, but this is not the worst thing ever. You won’t notice the extra weight unless you have used a lighter alternative for a while.
Note that standalone virtual reality headsets are usually more expensive than non-virtual reality consoles. However, in the long run, you spend less on the standalone options because you won’t have to also buy an external display or accessories.
What is the Difference in Display for the Oculus Quest versus the Oculus Go?
The designs of Oculus VR headsets have improved recently. The sensors on these two gadgets are not obvious, but instead, smoothened up to align with the rest of the exterior of devices. These virtual reality headsets are entertainment gadgets that are all about display first, and so, we will start our comparison on what the Oculus Go and Quest offer in this department.
The Go is a powerful piece of hardware that delivers stunning visuals thanks to its 2560 x 1440 WQHD resolution (i.e. 1280 x 1440 pixels per eye). The Oculus Go also has a refresh rate of up to 72Hz. At a viewing size of a decent 5.5 inches, this device feels quite comfortable, and one gets the feeling that it was built for binge TV show watching or playing games for extended periods.
The Oculus Quest, on the other hand, packs a more amazing display resolution of 1600 x 1440 per eye. Compared to the Oculus Go, the Oculus Quest has richer colors and blacker blacks than the Oculus Go. On its display, you will notice no grains or distortions, and all this headset is oiled up by powerful processors, which we will discuss in the next section.
Speaking of comfort, this gadget is not as cozy as its counterpart; however, you will notice that Oculus made it a little broader, and this is to allow people make use of this headset while also putting on their eyeglasses.
Winner: Thanks to the distinctly better display resolution, the Oculus Quest wins the display category.
What are the Features and Performance Difference between the Oculus Quest versus the Oculus Go?
Both virtual reality headsets are standalone devices, meaning that you do not need any additional hardware to make use of them. Qualcomm Snapdragon chips power the Oculus Go and Quest, but while the Go runs on an 821 processor, the Quest steps it up to an 835 version of the chip.
The Go works perfectly with applications for the Samsung Gear VR, so you get the same features offered by its Samsung counterpart in addition to more than 100 apps that ship with this virtual reality headset.
The Oculus Quest is the newest kid on the block from the VR giants, and the device is far from disappointing. Announced officially in 2018 and previewed in 2019, this standalone headset can be set up using the Oculus mobile app.
As it is a relatively new device, the Oculus Quest does not promise support for as many apps and games as the Go, but one thing you will notice on unboxing these two beasts is that the Oculus Go ships with only one controller, while the Quest comes with two.
Another difference between the Oculus Go and the Oculus Quest is that the Quest sports a USB Type-C charging port, which delivers faster charging than that of the Oculus Go. From personal experience, I can tell you that the Quest is lasting much longer than the Go, giving you at least 2X the usage time.
Winner: This has to be a tie for now. The Oculus Go gives you access to tons of apps and games, but the Quest is still a new device, so can’t stand against the Go just yet.
What are the Audio and Tracking Difference Between the Oculus Quest versus the Oculus Go?
For obvious reasons, poor audio quality can be a deal-breaker when purchasing a VR headset. Here, both virtual reality headsets offer pretty much identical features. They both sport integrated speakers with spatial audio systems, so with them, you do not need any headphones.
However, if you want a personal experience, these gadgets allow you to plug your headphone into their 3.5mm jack. They also both have built-in mics for in-game communication and platforms such as Oculus Rooms.
The Oculus Go as stated earlier, ships with one controller while the Quest comes with two. On a first impression after using both VR headsets, you would notice that the Oculus Quest has better tracking capabilities than the Go. None of them require external trackers, but the Oculus Go makes use of simple components such as an accelerometer, gyroscope, and magnetometer, thus can only track tilt and basic rotation, as stated earlier.
The improved Oculus Quest is another entire animal that offers more intuitive tracking thanks to four sensors mounted on the corners of the headset. Also, another exciting tracking feature of the Oculus Quest is the object and boundary tracking. With this enabled, users will never walk into an obstacle.
Winner: Oculus Quest wins in this category by a mile.
From what we have seen, you cannot go wrong with either of these Oculus VR headsets. If you were to purchase one of these today, the obvious choice would be the Oculus Quest.
If you already have an Oculus Go; we believe the Quest is well worth the upgrade with full support.