In comparison to the Meta Quest 2, the Meta Quest 3 offers a slimmer, more comfortable VR headgear with better visuals and performance as well as new touch controls. The Quest 3 succeeds in practically every manner in outperforming the Quest 2, nonetheless, the mixed reality experience is still in its infancy.
The Meta Quest 3 is Meta’s offers best VR headset and is definitely the best VR headset that I’ve ever tested.
The Quest 3 enhances the Meta Quest 2 by slimming down with pancake optics and providing better display resolution. It also features redesigned Touch Plus controllers that fit perfectly in the hand, despite lacking hand-tracking capabilities, a feature that was previously lacking in previous Quest headsets.
There is only one issue: Meta markets the Quest 3 as a mixed reality headset rather than just a virtual reality headset. Although the full-color video passthrough is great, I discovered that I still spent the most of my time in virtual worlds.
The Quest 3 is a superior best VR headset despite occasional underwhelming, making it a top choice for those seeking a superior experience.
META QUEST 3: SPECS
|Header Cell||Meta Quest 3|
|Chipset||Snapdragon XR2 Gen 2|
|Resolution||2,064 x 2,208 pixels per eye|
|Battery life||2.2 hours (rated)|
|Size||7.2 x 6.2 x 3.8 inches|
META QUEST 3: PRICE AND AVAILABILITY
The Meta Quest 3 headset is available for pre-order on Meta’s global web store and select retailers, with a release date of October 10, and will also be available for purchase without pre-order.
The Quest 3 offers two models: 128GB with storage for $499, and 512GB with storage for $649, with the latter costing more for a larger storage capacity.
META QUEST 3: DESIGN
The Meta Quest 3 is significantly slimmer, with a 40% slimmer visual interface compared to its predecessor, as confirmed by a satisfied user who has worn both models.
The Quest 3 offers a more ergonomically balanced wear experience, with a noticeable difference from the top-heavy Quest 2.
Meta’s slimmer design allows users with glasses to adjust the facial interface using two black buttons inside the headset. The new IPD wheel also allows for lens distance adjustment. The stock settings allow easy wear with glasses, and adjustments are simple.
META QUEST 3: DISPLAY
The slimming of the Quest 3 visor is in part thanks to the use of pancake optics. Also commonly known as pancake lenses, these work by layering thin lenses to reproduce images in a smaller space. The displays also boast a bigger resolution than the Quest 2.
Meta has introduced the 4K+ Infinite Display on the Quest 3, featuring two LCD displays with a resolution of 2,064 x 2,208 pixels per eye, while the Quest 2 has a resolution of 1832 x 1920 per eye.
Meta indicates that developers can achieve an experimental refresh rate of 120 Hz for the displays.
Even though Quest 3 uses a mobile chipset, it has more vivid colors and impressive graphics. While it doesn’t match the graphical fidelity of a PC VR headset, the game doesn’t care. The video passthrough has a drop-off in graphical fidelity, but the augmented reality holographic overlays maintain their visually stunning look, making the game enjoyable even with lower-fidelity surroundings.
First Encounters is a demo available under “Get Started with Meta Quest” in the Explore tab. Players must capture alien puffs that invade their room, despite the room’s appearance, to experience the visual impact of the game.
META QUEST 3: CONTROLLERS
The new Meta Quest 3 features Touch Plus controllers, which are rindless and adopt the design of the Touch Pro, unlike the previous Quest 2’s Touch controllers.
The Touch Plus controllers, a step up from the Quest 2, are ergonomically impressive and fit perfectly in the hand. Despite losing the tracking ring, they still manage 6DoF tracking and use Retouch Haptics for better feedback and immersion. Although the feedback could be stronger and more nuanced, it’s a nice addition to the gaming experience.
Hand tracking can be used in Quest 3 to navigate screens and select games and apps by double-tapping the sides of the controllers.
The Meta feature, Direct Touch, has briefly replaced Touch Plus controllers and haptic feedback. While the hand tracking concept is promising for browsing or watching videos, the execution of this feature has not been worth abandoning.
META QUEST 3: SETTING UP
The Meta Quest 3 is a user-friendly headset that can be set up with ease by pairing it with your phone’s Meta Quest app and connecting it to your home Wi-Fi network via a QR code. Two RGB cameras, a depth projector, and a passthrough in full color power it.
The cameras and passthrough of Quest 3 provide two virtual reality options: rooms Cale and stationary. Rooms Cale uses passthrough visuals to suggest a plays pace, which can be adjusted with controllers, while Stationary provides a circle for seated use.
The rooms Cale boundary setup requires adjustments using controllers and walking around the room to ensure the automatic boundary is set at the right limits.
The passthrough for mixed reality involves creating your room’s walls using the controller, scanning for furniture, and highlighting them using the headset. Once this is done, the virtual mesh or polygons will cover your furniture, allowing you to begin playing in mixed reality.
META QUEST 3: PERFORMANCE
The Meta Quest 3 is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon XR2 Gen 2 processor, offering twice the graphics processing power of the Quest 2 and 8GB of RAM.
The headset, despite not having benchmark testing, was found to be responsive and efficient when playing games like Samba de Amigo and Pistol Whip. Although it doesn’t offer hyper-realistic graphics, it’s a step forward from older Meta Quest 2 games, which felt like an old arcade game.
META QUEST 3: GAMES
Quest 3 offers access to over 500+ Quest 2 games and apps, as well as new Quest 3 games, and enhances some existing Quest 2 games for select games that benefit from Quest 3’s superior performance.
The author has tried a variety of Quest 3 titles, including classic Quest 2 games like NFL Pro Era and Superhot VR and Native Quest 3 games like Assassins’ Creed Nexus, which are visually impressive and enjoyable to play.
The Meta app for viewing sporting events in VR, Xtadium, has not impressed the user due to its poor non-HD video feed and lack of HD or 4K 180-degree or 360-degree camera feed. The user hopes that the feature will improve with live NBA games, as it currently lacks a competitive edge over TV.
META QUEST 3: MIXED REALITY FEATURES
The Quest 3 headset lacks a sense of mixed reality, with most games being virtual reality games. While some games like First Encounters and Lego Brick tales integrate their environments into gameplay, the majority are still virtual reality games. The author suggests that most tabletop experiences benefit from mixed reality, as they allow players to remain grounded and not fully immersed in the virtual world. Overall, Quest 3 does not feel like a fully immersive mixed reality headset.
Quest 3’s video passthrough impressed, but it underwhelms in mixed reality features, despite its potential for future app development.
META QUEST 3: AUDIO
Meta claims the Quest 3 has a 40% louder audio range and 3D spatial audio with enhanced clarity and bass, but in testing, it was sufficient loud enough.
The speaker’s loud device can be noticeable in a room, so for privacy, wired earbuds can be connected via the 3.5mm headphone jack or wireless earbuds via Bluetooth 5.2 support.
The spatial audio in games like First Encounters and Dungeons of Eternity is helpful in determining enemy spawning or origin. It also provides full, rich sound for music-driven rhythm games like Samba de Amigo and Pistol Whip.
META QUEST 3: BATTERY LIFE
Meta reports that the Quest 3 has a battery life of 2.2 hours on average, which may vary depending on device usage and settings.
The quest can be charged from 100% to dead in 1 hour and 57 minutes, using Quest 3 and 2 games and watching 30 minutes of District 9 on the Pluto TV app.
META QUEST 3 REVIEW: VERDICT
The Meta Quest 3 is a superior successor to the Quest 2, offering improved comfort, thinner, lighter, and higher display resolution. However, it falls short in providing many opportunities for full-color video passthrough, despite being promised as a mixed reality headset.
The Quest 3 is the best VR headset out there, as it can be connected to a PC for playing most VR games with the optional Link cable or Air Bridge accessory. This makes it a better choice than PC VR headsets or the PSVR 2. However, the Quest 3 doesn’t make the author more likely to best VR headsets in general than the Quest 2.