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Oculus CV1 Review

Oculus CV1 Review

Well after months of waiting it is finally here! My Oculus CV1 arrived last week while I was in NYC. I pre-ordered on January 6th and my CV1 arrived May 24th. Well, it was worth the wait.

The packaging

Compared to the DK2 the packaging is beautiful. The box was sturdy and very functional. The presentation of the device is very Apple like. The CV1 comes with: A headset, position sensor (for head tracking), a Xbox one controller and a small remote.

Setup

Set up was fairly smooth. The CV1 contains a very nice set of built-in earphones, which freed up a USB port since it replaced my existing razor set. I honestly could have done without the Xbox one controller. I already had the same setup using a Xbox 360 controller, the Xbox one controller adds nothing over its predecessor.

After getting everything plugged in I did notice one odd issue. My Logitech wireless keyboard no longer works and my wireless mouse is now sporadic. I have not been able to get they keyboard working so I had to revert back to an old wired one. The mouse is rather frustrating to use. From what I've read on the oculus forms, there is some driver conflict between the Oculus and Logitech.

First impressions

The CV1 feels so much lighter on you head than the DK2. The new strap design feels much better than the ski goggle strap the DK2 used. The earphones built into the headset are surprisingly powerful. The audio is crisp and clear and the design breaths better than my previous headset. I haven't done any 2-3 hours sessions yet in the CV1, but the feel of the new device makes me think I easily could.

Bundled software

The CV1 is bundled with Oculus Home, Lucky's tale, EVE:Valerie and Farlands. I have not tried out Farlands yet, but I can cover everything else.

Oculus home is a launcher for your VR games as well as a store. Think of it as 'Oculus' version of Steam. The library is pretty small but helpfully it will begin growing soon.

Home does include 'Oculus Dreamdeck' which has some great demos that show off VR. If you are introducing someone to VR I suggest starting here. Nothing makes you believe in VR like getting chased by a T-Rex or landing on an alien world.

I almost didn't install Lucky's Tale. It's a 3rd person platformer (think Mario clone). Not a game I'd ever go out and purchase, but since it came for free I installed it.

I'm really glad I installed it. The experience is much more compelling that I could have imagined. Hovering over you character and navigating from above feels more natural that I had expected. This game has me craving more like this. Please Nintendo: Mario 64 VR remake! You have to!

EVE:Valerie is still amazing, they've polished it quite a bit since the beta. This game in CV1 fulfills my childhood fantasy of being a spaceship pilot. With the CV1's better resolution and 90hz refresh rate you are pulled into the experience. In the middle of a dogfight you might forget you are just in VR. Since I had previously played this with the DK2 it make a nice experience to show off the advantages of the new headset.

Other software

I also tested out Assetto Corsa. If you've read my blog you know I'm a huge fan of sim-racing. Assetto Corsa is not my favourite racing game, but when testing its the only one that currently supports the CV1.

The CV1 again shines over the DK2. In the DK2 the resolution did make it often hard to find decent break markers. The increased resolution makes fine details a bit easier to pick out. The resolution could still be improved but I no longer feel at a disadvantage to the non-VR racers on the track.

God rays

If you've been following the rather messy launch Oculus is having you are wondering about this. Some users are reporting that when UI's have white on black there is some haze or light tearing in the lenses. My headset does also seem to have this issue. I'm not bothered by it. It only happens in very specific circumstances. It's a bit disappointing that this issue exists, but all in all I can work with the device as is.

Conclusion

I recommend the CV1. If you are into VR in any capacity this is a great headset. Be warned: If you start gaming in VR you might not be able to go back!