Oculus Quest 2 – First Impressions
Priced at $399, Oculus Quest 2 has all the right specs to be a good VR headset in my opinion. Easy to set up and all I needed was a phone (I used my iPhone) and a Facebook account. That’s it!
Oculus Quest 2 Specs
- VR Category – All-in-one VR
- Tracking – Oculus Insight inside-out tracking
- Input – Two Oculus Touch controllers
- Resolution – 1832×1920 per eye
- Display Panel – Fast-switch LCD
- Audio – Integrated positional audio
- Processor – Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ XR2 Platform
- Battery Life – ~2-3 hours
- Storage – 128GB, 256GB
- Supported Usage Modes – Seated, standing, room-scale
- Glasses Friendly – Comfortable to wear with glasses or RX inserts
My favorites are, All-in-one VR, use it while Seated and Glasses Friendly!
I’m not into high-action VR games but I always wanted to play the game of Cricket (my favorite game) in VR to experience the real cricket stadium atmosphere. To my surprise, there are no cricket games in the main Oculus App Store.
In Feb 2021, Oculus launched a separate app store named “App Lab for Quest”. This allowed developers to distribute their VR apps and games on Oculus without going through the Oculus review and curation process. This move allowed 3rd party developers to develop and distribute their VR apps, collect feedback and improve their apps. Interestingly at the time of this article, there are more apps/games in the App Lab when compared to the main Oculus Store.
From the Oculus Developer site – App Lab is a distribution option for Oculus Quest apps that do not require Quest Store approval. App Lab apps are hosted on the same Oculus infrastructure as Quest Store apps, allowing customers to purchase and run App Lab apps in the same way they do Quest Store apps. The difference is that App Lab product detail pages are discoverable by means of a direct URL or exact search only. Apps can qualify for App Lab distribution by complying with the applicable policies and passing a limited initial technical review. Oculus may require additional technical reviews and higher standards, for example, in response to complaints, policy violations, or other thresholds Oculus may apply.
Websites like https://sidequestvr.com/ and http://oculusapplab.com/ maintain a list of apps that we can download via AppLab. I found the Cricket game from these websites.
Oculus Native App on iPhone (not sure about Android) can also be used to search for apps using keywords, for example, “Cricket”. If a match is found in the App Lab, those results will be displayed in the app. (refer to the screenshots). If we try to install apps from App Lab, there is a warning message, highlighting the fact that the app may be still in the development stage or the Oculus review process is not yet completed.
Note: Not all apps in App Lab are free!
Oculus Quest 2 does come with an additional spacer to accommodate users who need to wear glasses. Honestly wearing the headset with your glasses on is a real pain, at least for me.
Interpupillary Distance (IPD)
Pupillary Distance (PD) or Interpupillary Distance (IPD). Knowing this measurement will greatly help in adjusting the LEFT and RIGHT lenses.
IPD is the distance measured in millimeters between the centers of the pupils of the eyes. This measurement is unique to each person and based on whether that person is looking at near objects or far away.
There are some easy options to get this measurement by using an app on iPhone, called EyeMeasure https://apps.apple.com/us/app/eyemeasure/id1417435049 On the other hand, your eye doctor will be able to give you this info too.
Oculus Quest 2 offers this adjustment in predefined increments in both horizontal and vertical planes. If multiple people in the household are using the same headset regularly, adjusting the lenses all the time could add some additional prep time.
Understanding Oculus Quest 2 Lenses
Fresnel Lens – I’m not an expert in this area but here is my understanding at a very high level. In order for VR to work, lenses should be placed very close to the eye pupil. To see an image and experience VR, at the very basic, the conventional plano-convex lens must be used to enlarge the image. These lenses are heavy and add to the overall weight of the headset.
Instead of the traditional lenses, Oculus Quest 2 uses lighter-weight lenses known as Fresnel Lenses. Fresnel Lens design allows the construction of lenses of large aperture and short focal length without the mass and volume of material that would be required by a lens of conventional design. Read more about Fresnel Lens here
If you notice Oculus Quest 2 lenses, they both have a circular pattern. These lenses are Fresnel Lenses. Well, this solves the problem of maintaining the headset weight but also introduces another problem i.e. limited viewpoint. As you can see in the picture, your eye pupil has a limited area on the lens through which your eye can get the best picture resolution. If you experience blurry vision this could be the issue. If you need to wear glasses this viewpoint can be very tricky as well.
Finding the sweet spot on the lens is the key to a better VR experience. Knowing your IPD, adjusting Oculus Quest 2 lenses in both horizontal or vertical planes is very important. If you wear glasses and would like to avoid the trouble of keeping your glasses and the frame intact, you can try prescription glass inserts, specifically designed for your Oculus Quest 2.
Framedirect has some options, I haven’t tried yet but definitely planning to invest.
Regularly cleaning the lenses is also important. Due to the circular pattern lenses are more susceptible to collecting dust.
What’s the fun if can’t share your best cricket shots or game achievements with your friends? I read a lot of articles on how to share your VR moments using a variety of techniques and options. For example, using Chromecast connected to a TV or AirReciver App on a Windows laptop for live streaming on Twitch, etc.
Oculus App on iPhone has this feature already built-in. Just pick the Casting option from Settings and choose Phone as the destination and you are all set.
Here is the video via the Casting feature of my first attempt to play cricket on Oculus Quest 2. So I did not notice any lag or overhead on the actual play due to casting but there seems to be a lag or disturbance in the recorded video. I must say it is fun to play Cricket in VR.
If you want to jump into VR apps/games development for Oculus Quest 2, here is the link https://developer.oculus.com/
Priced at $399, Oculus Quest 2 has all the right specs to be a good VR headset in my opinion. Easy to set up and all I needed was a phone (I used my iPhone) and a Facebook account. That’s it! Oculus Quest 2 Specs VR Category – All-in-one VR Tracking – Oculus Insight inside-out…