Oculus Quest (formerly Santa Cruz) has been officially revealed, launching Spring 2019 for $400. We’ve got our first up close look at the newly refined headset.
Update (3:00 PM PT): In a previous version of this article, it was stated that Oculus Quest and Oculus Go shared the same resolution. This is incorrect, and has been corrected in the body of the article.
Upon entering the press room at Oculus Connect this morning, three display stands stood off to the side of the room. Each under glass, the Oculus Go and Oculus Rift flanked the third display stand which was covered by a black cloth: the international tech conference signal for “we’re about to reveal something special.”
As Oculus Quest was revealed, the cloth came off and we got our first up close look at the new high-end standalone headset from Oculus.
Of course, we’ve seen Santa Cruz before (the prototype that Quest is based on), but careful inspection of Quest shows a number of changes, some obvious and some subtle.
First and foremost, this is the first time the company has shown the finished controllers, which now include thumbsticks and buttons rather than a trackpad. Oculus is straight up calling these ‘Touch’ controllers (even though they’re a little different from the desktop version), since they have all the same inputs, including the ‘hand triggers’ (for grabbing), which work so well on the Rift version of the controllers.
Oculus says the move from trackpads to thumbsticks and buttons was based on overwhelming developer feedback; developers wanted a common input paradigm between Rift and Quest in order to make it easier to make games work on both platforms.
The design of the headset has also been polished to be ready for consumers, now with a similar cloth exterior to the Rift, some more subtle curves, and improved audio (with speakers hidden in the headband), which is said to have more bass than before.
We also get a look at the final ports, buttons, and adjustments on the headset, and can spot a power button, USB-C port for charging, and 3.5mm headphone jack if you want to use your own headphones.
On the bottom of the headset there’s an IPD adjustment slider (which changes the spacing between the lenses) and volume buttons. And it appears that there is a microphone on the front top of the headset, possibly for noise-canceling against another mic hidden on the bottom.
Oculus confirmed that Quest is using the same lenses as Oculus Go, which they say are their best to date. Although it’s using a 1,600 × 1,440 resolution per-eye, which is different from the LCD display used in Go, which has a 1,280 × 1,440 per-eye resolution. Despite this, we’re expecting more or less the same ~100 degree field of view, although we’re awaiting confirmation on those details.
We’ll be going hands-on with Quest soon to see how it fares when put to the test in a live setting.