Last week a colleague brought his Samsung Gear VR to work. I tried VR for the first time and really liked it so I considered buying one. Unfortunately it turned out that my Samsung Note 4 doesn’t fit in it though (only the Note 5 or the latest S models do). To make it fit I would need to break out four plastic pieces. I realized that Samsung has a pretty unique app ecosystem but thought that Google Cardboard should have the same. Instead of ordering the cheap looking Cardboard I got a set of VR glasses by Shinecon and a mini gamepad for the controls.
- I have been surprised to find out it’s not really Google Cardboard compatible because it doesn’t have the magnet button that is necessary to press buttons in the virtual reality environment.
- The mini gamepad is not configured to act as a left mouse click by default. I had to reboot the gamepad by pressing reset with a nail on the rear side and pressing the upper start and lower A (circle) button simultaneously. The gamepad switch on the side has to be set to key as well.
- It’s almost impossible to play games that rely on precise head movements when sitting. I found myself looking to the side after starting in a straight forward looking head position while I should be looking still straight forward according to the virtual space. The Google Cardboard VR apps are using the built in phone’s sensors and have much worse head tracking in the sense of drift, lag, and jitter compared to a Samsung Gear VR.
- The sound comes out of the phone and is in a strange non centered position. It’s for sure no stereo.
- The picture is very sharp in combination with my Note 4. On the Samsung Gear VR I experienced a certain blur that didn’t go away by adjusting the focus.
- There is no ghosting. On the Samsung Gear VR I had ghosting effects.
- VR video on YouTube is really fun to watch. I especially enjoy roller coasters 🙂
- There are some games like Deep Space VR that work well even with the sluggish head tracking.