Oculus Link Now Works with USB 2.0 Cables, Including the One that Ships With Quest


Oculus Quest can function as a PC VR headset with the Oculus Link feature which was introduced in beta late last year. At launch the feature only supported USB 3.0 cables, which somewhat awkwardly didn’t include the cable that came in the box with Quest. A recent update to Oculus Link now allows Quest to use the feature with USB 2.0 cables, including the one it ships with.

Our friends over at Cas & Chary VR tested the change to Oculus Link with Quest using the included USB 2.0 cable and found that it seems to work just as well as USB 3.0 cables which were originally the only supported option, presumably due to bandwidth requirements.

While some people already seem to have received the necessary update to their Oculus desktop software to support tethering to Quest with USB 2.0 cables, if you can’t seem to get it to work you may need to opt into the beta version of the Oculus software.

Oculus hasn’t made an official announcement about the change, but it did quietly change the official Oculus Link specs from “1x USB 3.0 ports” to simply “1x USB port.”

The Most Interesting Thing About Quest Tethering is What it Says About Next-gen Oculus Headsets

It isn’t clear if the change is due to optimizations to Oculus Link which may have reduced bandwidth requirements, or if the company had simply set the bar a little too high in the first place.

That makes it a little awkward though that Oculus introduced its own $80 Oculus Link cable, only to turn around and make it so that the cable that comes included with Quest would work just fine. Granted, the cable included with Quest is only 10 feet long—just a little too short for our taste—whereas Oculus’ official Link cable is a more comfortable 16 feet.

That said, Cas & Chary tested the included Quest USB 2.0 cable with a USB extender and found that it also works just fine, so we’d still highly recommend picking up an inexpensive extender to get a lot more slack in your tether.

It should be said that USB cables with more bandwidth may allow for higher quality visuals when using Oculus Link, but so far we haven’t seen reports that this is the case. While it’s convenient to be able to use the USB 2.0 cable included with Quest for Oculus Link, if you’re planning on getting a longer cable or an extender, it would probably be wise to get a USB 3.0 cable just to future-proof yourself with more bandwidth.

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Ben is the world's most senior professional analyst solely dedicated to the XR industry, having founded Road to VR in 2011—a year before the Oculus Kickstarter sparked a resurgence that led to the modern XR landscape. He has authored more than 3,000 articles chronicling the evolution of the XR industry over more than a decade. With that unique perspective, Ben has been consistently recognized as one of the most influential voices in XR, giving keynotes and joining panel and podcast discussions at key industry events. He is a self-described "journalist and analyst, not evangelist."
  • GunnyNinja

    Well of COURSE it can…now that I have sold my Quest because I got frustrated try to get usb 3 cables to work….

    • rchrdcrg

      Hey, if anything, they’ve shown a true drive to make it as accessible as possible. Can’t blame you but in hindsight it looks more and more like it’s worth having some faith in Oculus/Facebook. They’ve already pushed the Quest so far beyond its original intentions that on that alone I would have faith in their product.

      • GunnyNinja

        I did have faith in it. That’s why I bought it. Just like the Rift I still have. But it either works or it doesn’t. It didn’t. I don’t keep things that don’t work. Now it does. Faith wasn’t the problem. Not being psychic, maybe…

        • rchrdcrg

          I can’t argue that!

    • mfx

      lol you sold your Quest because you couldn’t find a usb 3 cable ?
      Sounds like a guy who’d say I sold my car because il couldn’t find out what type of gaz it needs.

      • GunnyNinja

        No I sold it because I bought several usb 3 cables and couldn’t get a stable connection. Thanks for playing…And I made $200 on it. Buys a lot of gaz…

        • Adrian Meredith

          Why would you buy a quest purely for link. That defeats the whole point of it being standalone and wireless.
          It’s much better to use virtual desktop anyway which is massively improved

          • GunnyNinja

            Where did I say “purely”? When I was rolling around on the floor shooting, wasn’t a cable in sight. Don’t assume…you know why…

          • Andrew Jakobs

            then why sell it?

          • GunnyNinja

            Did I mention I made $200 on it? I have other things to do besides wrangle usb cables. The standalone stuff didn’t impress me enough to keep it just for that. And again, I’m not psychic.

        • Simon Vermette

          Well in theory if you sold it for a fair price, you should be able to buy another used one for the same price.

          • GunnyNinja

            I’ve moved on. I’ll wait for the next HMD to come out. No way I’d ever pay more than retail for one. In fact, I didn’t this time. I don’t want anything that badly, and frankly surprised people do, but hey, it worked out well for me.

  • LoneWuff326

    The quest has changed so much since launch u can basically call it a different headset
    i mean when it launched i thought it was over hyped and under powered, boy was i wrong
    every since it lauchned it was updates after updates…who new u would be able to connect to your pc, or have hand tracking, or passthrough on demand, side quest, connect to ur pc wireless, steamvr support etc this literally is a different headset they even improved the already good tracking, voice commands, browsing the web, oculus go apps
    if i hd bought the quest in may when it launched and someone came from 1 year from the future and handed me the quest again i would probly think its the Quest S thats how muched its changed since launch

    • Theresa J. Lampert

      My acquaintance showed me information on how she was averaging over 4k monthly by doing a task she found using the net… The best benefit of doing the job through the internet is usually that I am generally home with the the kids and also I freely move out on holiday vacation for a long period. I was quite surprised and made a decision to have a shot at it… At this point I really feel so fortunate she told me this, and would highly recommended it to everyone to try it… Here is what I do> earn15kmonthly.xhre.com

  • Andrew Dilks

    Does anyone know if audio is supported? Didnt see it mentioned in the article or in the video. I have a very obvious red Icon in the app saying No headset audio. Wondering if I’m the only one or if there is a fix.

    • bcm

      It is supported, but it’s a bit unpredictable. I was playing “Scanner Sombre” on Steam and the audio would come out of the main speakers, but I would just select Oculus Headset as main audio out on my PC and it worked fine (surround and everything).

      A few days later I tried it again, and sound was playing from main speakers again. I didn’t bother to change it this time. But then, I decided to try Beat Saber (Steam again), and suddenly all sound played from the Quest Headphones.

      The “No headset audio” message appears most of the time both with the Quest Link and the Rift S I’ve borrowed from work. It never really affected my actual sound though.

  • Greyl

    Good news; hopefully it encourages more Quest users to get a VR-ready PC.

  • ImperialDynamics

    oh wow!!! How more awesome can this headset get?!

  • It’s clear that they are improving the technology… most probably there will never be a Rift 2

    • Kataki kun

      Yes there will be, Half-dome prtotoype 3 is already being worked to be the next gen PCVR.

  • jisdaboss1

    it doesn’t work with the quest. i tried it and it has to be 3.0 in order to work