I can’t put Meta Quest Pro down. Since I first put the headset on for testing, I’ve been blown away by its performance, and my Quest 2 — once the best gadget I’ve ever owned — is now gathering dust because I ignored it and Support this new champion virtual reality. Yet even as I sit here, impatient and eager for the Quest Pro on the charging station, I know the truth of the situation: I don’t like the Meta Quest Pro. I fell in love with the Oculus Quest 3 hidden in it.
Meta Quest Pro is Meta’s super premium upgrade for Oculus Quest 2. The old white plastic-clad front-heavy design has been replaced with a sleek black shell with better weight distribution and padding for more comfort. Inside, the Quest Pro also improves specs with its new Snapdragon XR2 Plus chip and a pair of Mini-LED display panels, which deliver 50 percent more sustained power than the Quest 2’s regular XR2. Each screen offers 1800 x 1920 pixels per eye, 37 percent more pixels per inch and 10 percent more pixels per degree than the panel in the Quest 2.
And if that wasn’t enough, Quest Pro also features improved controllers that charge and use cameras for more accurate tracking, as well as brand new features like color passthrough, hand tracking, and eye tracking.
The end result is a bag that blows the Quest 2 out of the water. But there’s a catch: The Pro costs a lot more than the Quest 2, and it just isn’t good enough for the price.
too many good things
Meta’s enhanced headset is priced at $1,500/£1,500/AU$2,450 – almost four times the base Quest 2’s $400/£400/AU$630. Even when you’re comparing the Pro to the more expensive 256GB Quest 2 model, which costs $500/£500/AU$790, the price difference shouldn’t be overlooked.
The price hike is to be expected when you consider the Quest Pro’s massive upgrades over its predecessor, but what makes the price unpalatable is the fact that the headset’s most unique feature now feels like a gimmick.
Face tracking is fun, but not so useful if you don’t spend much time in Horizon Worlds or other Horizon apps. Also, while I’m impressed with the eye tracking, the only thing it can really do right now is help make sure I’m fitting the headset properly and guide me through adjustments. Color pass-through also lacks a meaningful mixed reality experience — most apps that use it offer very good pure VR options.
Over the next year, I expect Meta and its collaborators to build a case for why users should care about face tracking and color passthrough, but for now the only real benefit it offers is its better chip and display. While these improvements are noticeable, it’s not worth paying an extra $1,000/£1,000/AU$1,820 or so for the Quest 2.
That’s where Quest 3 comes in.
Quest 3 is the right VR headset for me
Meta (and leaked designs) suggest that the Quest 3 will be an improvement over the existing Quest 2, but won’t be as feature-packed as the Quest Pro — likely missing face/eye tracking and offering more basic passthrough functionality. Instead, we’re likely to see it pack just a powerful chip and a better display than its forerunner.
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What’s more, Quest 3 may be available at a more affordable price. Meta previously explained that the regular Quest line is aimed at more casual VR fans, while its Quest Pro model will be aimed at prosumers and professionals after the next level of experience (and are willing to pay a higher cost of entry).
But I’m not after higher-level tracking and mixed reality experiences. I just want a device that makes the best Oculus Quest 2 games run better. So if the Quest 3 can match the Quest Pro in the way that matters most to me – the Meta Quest Pro minus the eye and face tracking – and it sells for $500 or less (about £500 / AU$790) Then when a VR headset launches, it’s definitely a must-buy.
We won’t know what Meta has in store until later this year when it launches for Quest 3 at Meta Connect 2023 (scheduled for around October), but I’m already counting down the clock. If you can’t wait, then Meta’s Quest 2 will certainly serve you well – and if you can afford it, Quest Pro too – but given how close we are to the Quest 3 launch, I highly recommend Hold off until you see incredible Quest 2 deals, like the Black Friday 2022 deals. If the performance of the Pro is any guide, Quest 3 looks like the Quest 2 successor I really want.