My first experience in virtual reality was with the HTC Vive. Okay, okay, I think I used a Google Cardboard once before that, but my first immersive The VR experience was the HTC Vive. Despite all the fun I had back then, I really have a soft spot for HTC’s particular brand of VR headset. The HTC Vive Cosmos Elite is the biggest update to that original Vive formula HTC has made so far, which is well worth it if you’re debating a VR headset.
The HTC Vive Cosmos Elite would typically set you back $ 900 all-inclusive, which includes two controllers and two base stations, which are needed to track your movements in virtual reality. Thanks to a Black Friday deal on Amazon, however, you can currently slash that price by $ 250.99, leaving you with a fully stocked set of VR headsets at $ 649.
Granted, it’s more than an Oculus Quest 2, even refreshing the Oculus Quest 2 Black Friday deals we’ve seen so far, but there are a few fundamental differences between these two headsets. So you’ll want to consider what you’re looking for when deciding between one or the other.
One thing you will need in order to have the HTC Vive Cosmos Elite, but not the Quest 2, is a gaming PC. The HTC unit is a captive VR headset and therefore cannot run games regardless of your configuration. PC, while the Quest 2 is able to do this thanks to a chip inside the headset. Quest 2 can also be run connected to your PC, so it offers the best of both worlds in this regard.
But I don’t want to downgrade the HTC Vive yet. When properly configured, tracking from the outside to the inside of the Vive, via two base stations, is extremely accurate. I’ve used all of that and the Oculus Quest 2 a whole bunch, and I appreciate the responsiveness and precision of the HTC Vive in that regard. However, I also maintain that the Quest 2 is simply the easier of the two to set up as it doesn’t require a base station or anything like that. For that, it’s a bit of a mix between the two here.
Although ready to use, the HTC Vive Cosmos Elite is the more comfortable of the two. The Quest 2 really slims down the headband to save money, although you can swap it out for a Elite Strap or third-party model if you wish. Although this is a victory for the Cosmos Elite in my books.
The Cosmos also offers great sound, which the Quest 2 lacks out of the box. Again because of its small strap and speaker setup. The Vive’s system is quite similar to that found on the more expensive Valve Index in operation, meaning that the twin speakers hang over each ear to provide an immersive but not distracting audio experience.
Then there’s the case of scalability, and while I’ve mentioned the strap options of the Quest 2 before, there is something to be said about the many facades, add-ons, and options of the HTC Vive Cosmos Elite. These can get pricey a bit quickly, but you can pick up items in VR with the Tracker or even turn that captive headset completely wireless if you want.
If you still can’t make up your mind, we’ve got our HTC Vive Cosmos Elite and Oculus Quest 2 review for your reading.
Likewise, there are also Oculus Quest 2 Black Friday deals to switch you over to this camp. It must be said that even without a real deal, the Oculus Quest 2 is the much cheaper option.