Though HTC touts Vive Cosmos as its best PC VR headset yet, the headset is getting tanked so far in online customer reviews, making it far and away the lowest rated HTC headset by that metric yet.

While Oculus also ran into some less than stellar customer reviews when it launched the Rift S earlier this year, making it the lowest rated Oculus headset on Amazon at 3.7 of 5 stars, Vive Cosmos is truly taking a beating by comparison.

While HTC has set up Amazon to combine all of its headsets into a single product listing, with each headset as a separate ‘style’ (which lumps reviews together), we can sort customers reviews for only those submitted for the Vive Cosmos ‘style’.

Looking at ‘verified purchaser’ customer reviews for Vive Cosmos only, we find just 17 reviews so far, with an average rating of 2.1 of 5 stars. That’s compared to an average score of 3.8 of 5 stars based on reviews of the entire Vive PC lineup (which also includes the original Vive, Vive Pro, and Vive Pro Eye.

Over at Best Buy we only see four ‘verified purchaser’ reviews for Cosmos, all of which are 1 of 5 stars.

This is only a small sample size at this point, and to what extent Amazon reviews are truly representative of a product’s desirability or value is surely up for debate (fake reviews notwithstanding). But at a minimum we could surmise that it functions as a ‘first impression’ for potential buyers of the world’s leading online storefront, which makes it an important metric no matter how you slice it.

Looking through the Amazon reviews for Vive Cosmos, some common themes emerge. Tracking (specifically relating to light sensitivity), ergonomics, a small sweet spot, and controllers were all commonly cited as downsides, while a handful of reviewers said the headset’s $700 price was too high. On the plus side, some reviews mentioned that Cosmos offers good visual quality (as long as you’re within the sweet spot) and some found the halo-style head-mount to be comfortable.

This mirrors much of what we found in our own Cosmos review, as well as the common complaints that HTC addressed shortly after the headset launched.

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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."
  • MW

    Really? Headset is ok. For 300usd. For 700 it’s offense to humanity:)

    • Ratm

      Now you are unfair ,2 nice lcds are close to 140$ with small profits its ~500$ headset.

      • MW

        Two words for you: Rift S. Or one word:)? Same experience. Better lenses (no Ray’s, big sweet spot), better tracking, better battery life. Half of the price. And… that’s all about that.

        • Ratm

          Wish they hadn’t a profit alliance with valve and an oculus high end device was out there :(

      • Andrew Jakobs

        I think they had to release it at this point for some reason, it would also explaim why we never really had any details about it up till the day of release..

  • gothicvillas

    Cosmos HMD just feels forced on the market. Just pretty much everything about Cosmos is not great, starting from specs + performance + price. HTC dropped a ball.

  • Joe Pineapples

    OMG!!! Its not that hard. What we consumers need is
    1. higer resolution screens, (preferably amoled over lcd like the xtal)
    2. wide FOV (like pimax / xtal)
    3. comfort, ( like rift s or index)
    4. ease of use/set up, (preferably inside out tracking, but with good tracking like rifts s / quest)
    5. generous sweet spot, (preferably non fresnel lenses like pimax / xtal).
    6. good controllers, (like valve index)
    7. decent afordable price point ($500 – $800).
    I’m mean its not hard!! If some company came up with a headset with all the positive features of other headsets it would sell like hotcakes.

    • Ratm

      If it wasnt for bill not liking monopols we would only had first gen headset’s on the market.
      Btw comfort in the headsets you mention is just a parrots word .There are one two comfort headsets,but not those :p
      +Xtall is a 1.2 kgr fail using almost two clocked S7 screens(and maybe the rest of the phones) Why you want that? Just mound two 60″ screens on a backed at 1.5 mt away from you and you are done cheaper.(no lenses needed.)

      • Joe Pineapples

        My point being; its not that hard to now figure out what combination of “ingredients” make up a good/great VR headset. Each company seems to have implemented some part of the desired requirements, however, no manufacturer seems to be able to tick all the right boxes for a completely desirable consumer VR headset. I’m saying the answer is right there. Now all we need is a manufacturer to make it, set a new standard and if they did that, Oh boy! that, in my opinion, would sell. Perhaps I’m being naive be me, personally, I’m just waiting to hand out my all my hard earned cash and trade in my Samsung Odyssey plus for the next level HMD. So far nothing that’s out there in the market right now, motivates me to fork out more money for only a slight upgrade over what I currently have and its sad to see headsets like this come out with little to no improvement over previous generation headsets.

    • Pulstar44

      Pimax has fresnel lenses. PlayStation VR is the only one that doesn’t. And it’s super clear, no God rays, and huge sweet spot. I don’t know why any of the companies use Fresnel anymore…

      • Kevin White

        Also the only one I know of that has OLED with non-Pentile sub-pixels. PSVR has its own set of issues, of course, and is showing its age on top of that, but Sony did a good job selecting screens and optics.

        • Pulstar44

          True. I recently heard that the display runs at 120 hz too.

      • johann jensson

        Fresnel lenses are thinner and weigh less. But the material is plastic, so i don’t think the weight difference would be that big.

        • Pulstar44

          Yeah there can’t be much of a weight difference. It blows my mind every time a new headset comes out with fresnel lenses. I don’t see the need for them.

      • Arek A

        Because pf screen door effect and blur !!!

      • Fresnel lenses are for weight reduction.

    • grindathotte .

      There is a reluctance to increase resolution because of the higher GPU power needed (not everyone has a 2080 Ti, so it would be a restricted market). But valve demonstrated that much more mileage can be obtained with the current resolution (or slightly above) with appropriate lens design. TTL pictures of Index vs HP Reverb show only a marginal difference in clarity. Valve also managed to up the FOV with the combination of angled displays and that ability to move the lenses in close. If someone can do that, add inside-out tracking and lower the price they’d get my vote (money).

      • Joe Pineapples

        Yeah, as you say, there does seem to be a reluctance to increase resolution, and yet, that seems to be one of the very things that almost everybody seems to want more of in a HMD. At least all those with whom I have spoken to on the topic. And I understand the point, I do, but that argument, I believe, is flawed and doesn’t make much rational sense. I don’t see any reason why they can’t release HMDs capable of higher resolutions and then for those who cannot run the higer resolution natively, allow them to render the game/experience at a lower resolutions and have the HMD upscale to its native res. Like, say, gaming at 1440p on a 4k monitor, or the exact opposite to the current super-sampling options that are available to headsets today. Plus doing something like this would provide a level of future proofing to the HMD. Its just so frustrating, especially when the tech is there.

        • Cl

          Im not sure if they make much higer resolution panels right now and if they do, theyre probably expensive. Could be wrong. There is also more requirements to make a good vr panels than just resolution.

        • johann jensson

          HMDs don’t use native resolutions anyway. The right approach is to use higher pixel density to hide the screen door effect, and scale resolution appropriately to your PC power.

          It’s the bean counters at the manufacturers that stand in the way.

          • Joe Pineapples


    • Lulu Vi Britannia

      – Higher resolution and bigger FOV increase the need of power.
      It’s pointless to raise those specs if little to no PC on the market can run them. That’s the mistake Pimax made with their headsets, and that’s the mistake that the others did not do.

      – Comfort is widely subjective.

      – Ease of set up already exists with i-o tracking, the problem comes from the tracking quality. And that, that’s definitely NOT an easy task to achieve. It seems Oculus did a fairly good job with the Insight tracking though.

      – Optics, that’s also NOT a problem that we can solve in a blink of eye. It’s a complex engineering field.

      – You want the best specs possible but you want it at an affordable price. You literally want both the cake and eat it, buddy ^^’. Raising specs will obviously raise the price. They can’t deliver a product at any price they want, you know…
      Gotta feed the people behind the product!

      It’s not that hard? On the contrary, mate. It’s VERY hard. We’re talking about a tech that requires innovative work in complex fields (namely computing and optics). Or, it you really think it’s that easy, why don’t you do it yourself? xD

      • Ratm

        Did you just said that vr devices cant be scalable?
        Comfort is subjective but psvr(most common headset) had the less complains for a reason.
        They can be many adjustments in a more halo headset to make it real comfy and make use of a headset to the max. Htc did a copy paste there,cant get cheaper than that..Oh wait wrong..pimax used to send G-strings…
        We are forced ,to buy recycled tech for 5 years, because thats the way marketing works. Thats just it.

      • Joe Pineapples

        I ain’t your “Mate” nor I am your “Buddy” Guy!

        • Charles

          I see you’re a South Park fan.

        • Lulu Vi Britannia

          Oh, did you want me to insult you as a retarded? Those were just expressions to be more friendly, but I guess some people just prefer negativity…
          EDIT : That, or it’s a reference I did not get. If that’s the case, sorry buddy xD.

      • Charles

        “increase the need of power … no PC on the market can run them”
        Why do people keep repeating this myth no matter how many times it’s corrected? People have been supersampling at 4K and higher since the original Vive. Increasing the display resolution does not require to further increase the supersampling – no increase in GPU power is necessary. Lots of people are running the 4K Reverb right now.

        Yes, if you were chugging along on a GTX 970 at 1200p with no supersampling, you’re obviously gonna need a new GPU for 4K. But that does not apply to most VR fans.

        • Lulu Vi Britannia

          Because it’s not a myth… The people you’re referring to are those with GTX 1080s or better. Just take a look at Steam hardware survey to realize how few there are.

          Lots of people haven’t bought the Reverb, tell me how there can be many people running it.
          And all the technical reviews say it’s very power hungry.
          And it’s totally obvious when we have just a little bit of knowledge in computers…

          • Charles

            You said “no PC can run them” (then edited it to “little to no PC can run them”). Many less graphically-intense games can be run at 4K on even a GTX 970. Even more games can be run at 4K on a GTX 1080, which is a mid-level graphics card today (you can get one on eBay for under $300).

            Aside from running at 4K, anyone can run at less than 4K (for example, 1900p) and upscale to 4K, which has the benefit of reducing SDE.

          • B mill

            Not me, I only have a 1070 and that’s because someone gave it to me. Had a 1060 before that. I stopped looking for GPUs because the miners ruined the market years ago and 1080tis were going for $1,200 regularly. Turned me off so much I don’t even bother looking anymore. Anyway, do the majority of people use 4k in VR? I doubt it. I believe it’s possible to make a fantastic VR system, but nobody could afford it so who’s going to be the sucker that invests the money to make it happen and gets nothing out of it? That’s the problem. If OP could find some idiot investor with tons of money who isn’t expecting much of a return then sure, but that’s not going to happen. Even if it did happen, it certainly wouldn’t be “Not that hard”.

    • Arek A

      And you are not aware of consequences. right? 2080ti as a minimum specs? and 500-800$ is a joke because of AAA titles sold like 10000 copies instead of milions. Land on ground dude.

    • Andrew Jakobs

      it’s not that hard? It is hard due to your price constraint… But as mentioned by others, GPU’s are the biggest bottlenecks at the moment, and therefor it’s no use to design a highend headset which will have a hefty price if it has all the options you mention, that’s just not feasible at an $800 pricepoint at this time, add at least a 1 in front…

      • Joe Pineapples

        To be honest I’d pay the $1,800 if it ticked all the boxes.

        • Andrew Jakobs

          Yeah I can understand you might do it, but the mainstream consumer won’t..

          • I agree. I usually buy the latest GPU’s when they come out. But then NVidia doubled the MSRP and I refuse more out of principle. My £699 1080 Ti’s are still great. Higher end VR pushes that need but then there is not enough VR content yet to justify for me.

            Will probably get a Quest this Christmas just for its wireless portable ability. And now they are releasing a cable for PC vr for it makes it much more interesting.

        • B mill

          You would be the minority willing to pay $1,800 for a toy like this. The majority of consumers would laugh at a ripoff price like that. So this would be like cancer to investors, they wouldn’t touch that shit with a ten foot pole because it’s a guaranteed money pit with almost no ROI to speak of. They don’t want to appeal to the 1 in 2 million who spend like they have more money than sense because that demographic is too small to chrun a profit from. YOU are the minority, most people would not even consider paying $1,800 just to play VR.

          • Joe Pineapples

            Be quiet you pesant!

          • B mill

            The pesant’s have the money in volume, so they’re catered to. No company with sense is going to make an $1,800 VR set.

    • care package

      At least you’re not entitled lol, oh and it’s a ‘need’ now?. Like you have a clue dude.

      • Joe Pineapples

        Go suck an egg fat head! I know what I and others that I talk to about this subject, “need” in order to shell out more money for a VR headset. What’s out and available on the market at the moment ain’t it. Got it?

    • Charles

      “preferably amoled over lcd”
      Not just preferably – necessarily. LCD is a giant leap backwards in contrast and black levels.

    • Trenix

      Yeah not most of this.
      1) High resolutions mean you need stronger computers.
      2) FOV is the same problem as above.
      4) Definitely not, that is the worst tracking available and it messes up with lighting where most users usually play at night.
      6) Valve index is not a good controller. It doesn’t track your fingers properly at all and occasionally it does actions that you never wanted to do. Like having a gun drop or grabbing something you never sought to grab.
      7) So this vr headset was reasonable?

      I think most of you guys are missing the mark entirely.

      We need…

      1) Wireless
      2) Disposable lenses
      3) Better lens cleaning solutions

      You know what’s not fun? Spending 1k on a headset only to realize that after the first time you wipe the lens, it will never look the same.

      • B mill

        My CV1 lenses are perfect still and I bought it in 2016. It had peel off stickers that said to never use any cleaners on the lenses so I didn’t because I thought it would ruin them. Instead I used a microfiber cloth that came with my Oakley sunglasses to clean them. No problems whatsoever. Did you ignore that warning on the lenses? Or do other manufactures not warn people?

    • Mradr

      Oculus did and they are the only ones doing it right atm base off the requirements. I would assume it is not that easy if only one company is doing it. There is a LOT of research and base off the companies you pointed out – it shows what research what company went into doing for their headset/release.

    • asdf

      I MeAn ItS NoT HaRd!!! dude shut the fuck up…. unless you can do better, stick to your moms sofa and stop telling people how to do their jobs when you couldn’t do any better. And if you could, then whats stopping you?

      • Joe Pineapples

        Balling your hoebag of a mother all the time is a real time consumer. Can’t keep the Fúcking bitch off my dick!
        Don’t tell me to shut the fuck up you Cunt! This is a pubilc open discourse where people can express their opinions!

  • mepy

    Seems to be the five people that gave i 1 Star that drags it down, while 56% actually gave it 5 stars and a further 12% gave it 4 stars, so 68% in the 5-4 star range. From the written reviews of the 1-star people they seem to think the incompatibility with the some of the games are tracking issues, while it’s probably just that those Vive-games aren’t inside-out tracking compatible (yet). While one of the 1-star reviewers complained a graphics card was needed (?).

    • Joe Pineapples

      LOL! requires a GPU. That’s so funny…some people are just dumb and then they broadcast their stupdity by writing a bad product review for a supposed flaw, which is ultimately due to their stupdity…That’s double stupid!

      • gnuneo

        Yes, I always carefully read the reviews. Some 1 star votes on products are truly classic morons. They often make me like the product more in sympathy. :)

        “The lawnmower worked good until I had to unplug it to reach the bottom of the garden. Then it broke and refused to work! Very bad product, and the support staff laughed at me! Same thing happened with the free replacement! DO NOT BUY THIS ITEM!!”.

        Probably spelled badly as well. Awww, people. ;)

    • Nick Wallace

      mepy, you need to check the reviews for JUST the cosmos. The site is a little misleading as that 56% is actually across all the headset types, there are currently only 3 x 5 Star reviews out of the 18 verified purchases, the rest are mostly 1s with a couple of 2s and 3s

  • AU

    Amazon shouldn’t allow HTC to display their different headsets all in the same listing as different “styles”. Doing so defeats the customer review system as Vive Pro is obviously very different from the Cosmos; displaying 4 stars for all of them is deceptive.

    • Andrew Jakobs

      But then again, the amazon reviewsystem is shit anyway, when i check a bluray, it has reviews for a dvd or sometimes even VHS…..

    • kimikay

      Exactly, it seems fraudulent. I wish it were illegal

  • johann jensson

    Yep. You put out half-baked products at double the price, the market will show you the middle finger.

    All we wanted is 2k per eye with Rift S quality lenses and hardware IPD adjustment.

    Now we know why the CEO (?) stepped down. :)

  • This thing would not have passed even the most rudimentary quality checks before being approved for release. No way.

    Some people at HTC need to go. Out the door. This is a punch in the face to the customer.

  • Probably HTC should have delayed the launch of Cosmos until all problems had been fixed, at least on the sw side

    • Erilis

      I think they should have had all their peripherals ready at launch, so you could pick the right bundle: wireless, and base station tracking, so it looks like they are offering something other than just a flip up display

  • happyhamster

    The cosmos (I haven’t used one myself yet) has its place in the VR world. In theory it seems to be the perfect match for those who don’t have a 1080GPU, which most still don’t have according to Steams hardware ranking. It seems to have nice inside out tracking, nicer controllers than the Vive and most important imo is the mechanically adjustable IPD. So its not as high end as the index in terms of image quality, but should be superior to the RiftS….. The downside is: They came too late. Index, Quest.Rift S and eaven the sideload Querst announcement hit before the Cosmos release….. And The price is out of this world…. Someone who spends 800$ on an HMD will propably already have a 1080ish GPU and will then spend a couple dollar extra and get a Index. The improvemnets that the Index brings are nice, but it should be more in the 400-450$ range. Another things is the missing exclusive titles. I am not a oculus guy, but they have some badass exclusives. I sometimes use Viveport, but lets be honest, it is a total mess. They have a bad library, a bad rating system, a bad return policy, no friends list and many more. Its just a terrible expirience comapred to steam and oculus store. To sum it up: The Cosmos could work, especially as an uprgade alternative for those who have a WMR first gen headset or an first gen Rift or Vive. But not for that price.

  • Yan Briot

    A french website take all your article, translate it and use it without asking anything to ROadtoVR i think so…

    • benz145

      Thank you @yanbriot:disqus, we’ll look into this.

  • Trenix

    Either this is the first time people are customers, or they’re extremely stupid. You see the same issues with games and other new tech devices before they release. This is usually why you DO NOT buy the moment something new comes out no matter how bad you really want it. Why do you think they offer you things for preordering? Anyway, eventually it’ll fix itself and you will get more reliable and honest reviews. It’s hard to predict a release and sometimes it’s release can ruin it’s reputation forever.

    People should actually read the reviews, some are extremely dumb. Like complaining about unboxing, setting up, and dealing with bugs. Very few reviews actually mention things that matter, like that it’s very hard to obtain the sweat spot.

  • Ardra Diva

    graphic quality is not all about pixels. Read up on Varjo’s units, made currently for industry, with breathtaking graphic fidelity. We need to hope they will decide to make a consumer version that’s more affordable, because they are the gold standard.

    • Nick Wallace

      No way they’ll make a consumer version of the Varjo. It’s nice to see them pushing the boundaries but it’s a very dead end headset that will be quickly overtaken with better eye tracking we’ll start to see being implemented and Foveated Rendering.

      • Kim from Texas

        After watching Carmack’s keynote speech at Oculus Connect 6, eye tracking and foveated rendering are not the answer. The eye simply moves too quickly for the computer graphics to keep up.