PlayStation VR2 – Hardware Review

Users lose all sense of reality, and enter another world...

It goes without saying that the first PlayStation VR was met with just criticisms, despite its wallet friendly approach. With competition that had mastered its craft, delivering virtual reality at peak standard, the hardware floundered after a few years on the market and was aided by only few titles to back it. I was a fan of the hardware upon initial release, as it was my first foray into VR, but after hearing murmurs of the Meta Quest – then known as Oculus – having up to 2K resolution per eye, I was enamoured by its potential by comparison to the PSVR. I acquired the Meta Quest 2 right before its Facebook buyout, and was elated to be playing games at a higher standard than my PlayStation VR. When the PSVR2 was announced, I kept expectations low with what I thought may have been another cheap experience for users to own on the principal that PlayStation 5 owners weren’t prepared to fork out another premium on top of their home console.

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However, I can most definitely put those fears to rest as the PSVR2 is above and beyond its predecessor in every way, making the old model look like a baby’s toy. With resounding positivity put toward its upgrades and changes to the way you control the unit, this is indeed a quality VR experience that is set to take on the market with unequivocal force. 

The power of the PS5 backs the headset like a PC would a standard VR unit, while it would be remised to state a RTX 4080 would outright decimate it, but a more budget friendly Meta Quest 2 would seat itself side-by-side the PSVR2 in terms of performance, despite the Quest’s independent hardware specifics residing within the actual shell of the headset. This gives the PSVR2 leeway to take advantage of its market with the obvious caveat that it will rely on software exclusive to the PlayStation 5.


Price: $879.95AUD
Display method: OLED
Panel Resolution: 2000 x 2040 per eye
Refresh Rate: 90Hz, 120Hz
Lens Separation: Adjustable
Field of View: Approx. 110 degrees
Sensors: Motion six-axis and IR proximity
Cameras: 4 front tracking, IR eye tracking
Feedback: Vibration on headset 
Communication: USB Type-C
Audio: 3.5mm Stereo Jack
Weight: 560g

With time comes refinement, and PlayStation have definitely taken feedback for the PSVR’s shortcomings. Undoubtedly, a massive relief comes in form of its singular USB Type-C that connects right to front of the PlayStation 5 console, alleviating the headache that was the PSVR’s Module, which was independently powered, and used an HDMI passthrough that was incapable of outputting 4K to your TV, rendering it useless for PS4 Pro users. Crystal clear visuals are inherently noticeable, with panel resolution upwards of a combined 4K, with refresh rates hitting a fluid 120Hz depending on the title you play. The adjustable lenses are a massive welcome for those with eyesight issues, or just need to have the lenses slightly closer or farther apart, something that was a pain to deal with on the original PSVR.

The crown seats itself nicely around your head with a retractable lever to expand the band, and a twist-dial to tighten its grip. The front of the headset has its own power button at the bottom to activate the unit, allowing users to have it connected to their PS5 at any time while entailing an action button beside it, with a retractable button for the visor above along with another dial to adjust the aforementioned lenses. The sponge padding is protected by a faux-leather like wrapping, along with a flexible rubber protector to seat the visor comfortably above the bridge of your nose and across your eyes. I will note that there is some stiffness to the rubber upon using the unit at first, but seems to soften up over time. This did give me some nose-pinching problems but were quickly attenuated.

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A proprietary set of 3.5mm earbuds are provided in the box, moulded to fit the PSVR2, so there aren’t any loose cables that get in the way while enjoying your headset. It would have been nice to have a sound solution similar to the Meta Quest 2, where no earphones were required but this is an adequate solution. The sound using the earbuds are in fact excellent and are quite easy to install to your VR2, with a plastic mould attaching to the back-bottom of the crown, with the other being a direct plug-in to the audio jack provided on the unit. It’s a suitable fit to compliment the VR headset if you haven’t chosen or decided upon a pair of high-end headphones to match your gaming experience. The cameras enable a display passthrough so you’re not completely blind to world around you, even going as far as scanning your surroundings upon initial setup to place a virtual barrier within your vicinity. If you exit the virtual zone, the passthrough will activate so you may see how far out of bounds you are. This is also handy for users that may need to place down their controllers.

Speaking of, the controllers ergonomics are designed similarly to the remotes seen paired with a Meta Quest 2, or the Oculus Rift – it’s premium counterpart – and are an emphatic improvement over the PS Move controllers used from the PS3 to PS4. While the Move controllers were primarily a marketable solution to players already owning the oddly shaped peripheral, they weren’t designed for Virtual Reality, only adapted. The new PSVR2 controllers work in-tandem with the VR2’s “sense technology”, relaying haptics and vibration triggers that are similar, but not quite as accurate to the Dualsense controller. No adaptive triggers, but haptics are evident that are more on the Nintendo Switch side of “smart rumble” seen in portable unit’s joycon’s. Button placement is a little confusing to get used to with square and triangle placed on the left hand, while square and cross sit opposite on the right while both handhelds mirror features like its analogue sticks, PS Home button and placement of Share and Options respectfully.

the PSVR2 is a first of a kind home console VR experience that is going to set the bar high for its market, and for PlayStation 5 users for years to come.

Both entailing a Wii-like wrist strap so players don’t haphazardly sling their remotes across the room, along with a ring sensor surrounding the wrist for the headset to read your hand and digit placement. It’s excellently designed to mimic precise hand movement within your game, while pressing down on buttons will activate said action such as gripping onto a weapon or door handle, etc. Speaking of detailed haptics, the subtle vibrations that are entailed within the VR unit is unbelievable, and takes realism to the next step. Booting into the Horizon Call of the Mountain, the brush of leaves or being unblinded within the opening act, the headset simulates these sensations perfectly grasping sense of immersion toward the universe you traverse through. It’s the simple things like this that give users a genuine Virtual Reality experience that other headsets are yet to introduce to the market. This is a step ahead of the curb for Sony, and definitely one I was so excited to try.

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Then there is interactivity with the environment, such as splashing the water within the river surrounding our canoe, while feeling the rumbles of massive footsteps that approached us from mammoth watchers to other mechs within Horizon’s world. It is remarkable. With quality comes cost, as the unit is set at a premium price here in Australia of $879.95, just a little higher than a PS5 unit itself but for what the headset is capable of, it’s worth the price for early adopters. Another caveat is the controller’s battery life, while I was able to play for a continuous six to eight hours, I was alerted that both my remotes were running out of juice around the five hour mark. If you’re playing short sessions, I would highly advise you pick up the charging dock sold separate to the PSVR2, so at least you won’t ever have to worry about manually plugging in the controllers to charge.

With all that said, the PlayStation VR2 is absolutely a must experience for all PlayStation 5 owners out there. The novelty of its immersion is superseded by its quality aspects. It’s no toy, nor is it a budget headset like its previous counterpart. It delivers a high-end AAA experience first-hand without the gimmick of quickly giving players their VR fix. This is virtual gaming like never seen before on a technical scale that’s monumentally industry leading, ultimately paving the way to inspire its competition to inherit its haptic features. Given how early within the PS5’s life cycle this extraordinary peripheral has been paired to its master device, the PSVR2 is a first of a kind home console VR experience that is going to set the bar high for its market, and for PlayStation 5 users for years to come.

PlayStation VR2 – Hardware Review


Enjoy heightened sensory and emotional experiences as PlayStation®VR2. Sense technology combines eye tracking, headset feedback, 3D Audio and the new, intuitive PlayStation VR2 Sense controller to create an incredibly deep feeling of immersion. Discover heightened sensory and emotional experiences through revolutionary PlayStation VR2 Sense™ technology.


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