If you unwrapped Oculus VR gear this holiday season, I have no doubt you’ll end up like me: Fully committed to a virtual lifestyle. You’re also probably wondering what else you need to buy. Sure, you can play a Quest 2 naked (so to speak) — it’s complete and ready-to-go out of the box — but the device is designed to be customisable.
You can swap out the head-strap, add a battery pack, snag some new controller covers, and on and on. Whether this is an awesome opportunity to make your VR gear uniquely your own — or a chance to sell many after-market products — depends on your point of view. Having said that, some third-party accessories can greatly improve your virtual reality experience. Therefore, we offer you our guide to essential, non-essential, and just plain silly Oculus Quest 2 accessories.
Most essential Oculus Quest 2 accessories
A cleaning kit
Like all your electronics, you need to keep your Oculus clean. But you especially need to keep the all-important lenses of the Oculus spotless. According to Oculus’s support page, you should “use a dry optical lens micro-fibre cloth to clean your headset lenses. Don’t use liquid or chemical cleansers.” So at minimum, get some micro-fibre cloths to keep your lenses schmutz-free. At maximum, they make cleaning kits for the Oculus, or you could opt for a camera cleaning kit.
VR games are often movement- and sweat-intensive, so if you’re going to be passing your gear from person to person, it’s imperative that you get something to make the thing less sweaty.
The Quest 2 comes with a silicone cover that prevents the padded face guard from becoming a sweat sponge, but if you want to be extra hygienic, you could get a second or third one and swap them out. (Check out VR Covers for a nice selection.) Honestly, though, all you really need is a sweat wicking skull cap or a sweat band. I recommend this red, white, and blue one because I love America.
Prescription lenses (for glasses wearers)
Out-of-the-box VR for the bespectacled is not great. Even though the Oculus Quest 2 comes with a snap-in spacer for glasses, my chunky, black specs were just too large for the headset. I used an older pair of glasses, but they fogged up frequently and I was constantly banging my glasses against the delicate VR lenses. Not good. The solution: Prescription VR lenses.
Frames Direct will grind lenses for your eyes (as will other retailers) if you send them 80 bucks and your prescription. From there, you just snap them over the lenses of your Oculus and you will be troubled by your glasses no more.
Important (but not vital) accessories for your Oculus Quest 2
The Quest 2 contains everything you need to get virtual right out of the box, but if you want to take it even further and hook your Oculus up to your PC, you’ll need a link cable. According to Oculus, you need a “high-quality USB cable capable of supporting data and power.” They sell one for $US80 ($111), but that seems a biiiit steep for a cable. There are cheaper, third-party USB-C cables available that will work with the Quest 2, from this 12 dollar job to one for $US26 ($36) bucks, and everything in between.
The battery life on the Oculus is about two hours, which is fairly paltry, but there are a range of battery-extenders out there. They range from the $US80 (A$111) VR Power 2, a massive battery that connects to the head strap and extends the battery life to 8 to 10 hours (and provides a counterweight to make the headset more comfortable) to this adorable little pill that snaps into the power port like R2-D2 snaps into an X-Wing. It extends your playtime to 3.5 to 6 hours.
A better head strap
Personally, I haven’t had any problem with the Oculus’s head strap — it keeps the thing affixed to my face securely — but it’s fairly primitive, and there are better alternatives. I like the design of this Kiwi strap; instead of the fiddly little “bars” of the default headpiece, it uses a tightening dial, like a good bike helmet, plus it’s hinged so you can just flip your gear off and on your head quickly. There’s also this Eyglo strap; it has a dial and hinge, too, but it’s apparently designed for bigger skulls, so if you’re a pumpkin-headed motherfucker, you might need this one.
Non-essential Quest 2 accessories
A carrying case
I guess if you’re going to be taking your Quest 2 on a world walking tour, you might want to pick up a travel case. Or you could just hold onto the box it came in, a free alternative where each component is protected in its own little vacu-formed container.
The straps that come with the Quest 2 controllers are just fine for keeping them from flying across the room. They do make better ones, but it seems like a lot of money for something so inessential.
The Oculus Quest 2’s audio is not great, so they make a ton of different headphones and ear-buds specifically to work with it. But since the headset is compatible with any 3.5mm or USB-C headphone, Oculus-specific ear-goggles are getting into “are you serious?” territory.
Maybe I just have an unusually strong neck, but it wouldn’t have occurred to me that the Oculus needs a counterweight if they didn’t sell them — although using a battery to balance your VR load is brilliant.
Just plain silly Oculus accessories
Why would anyone need a cover for the outer part of the headset? Are people throwing their VR gear around or something? Walking into walls? (Wait, maybe it does make sense.)
Beat saber handles
You know, light doesn’t weigh anything, so adding these foam blades to your controller to play Beat Saber actually makes the game less realistic (in a reality in which swords are made of light, anyway) and extending your reach by a couple of feet will result in a broken lamp.