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24 hours with the new Meta Quest Pro

After much anticipation, Meta (finally) introduced their new top-shelf virtual reality headset, the Meta Quest Pro. After 24 hours of testing, these are our thoughts.

It arrived, we unboxed, most oohed, some frowned, and before we knew it, we couldn’t find it.

We’re talking about the new Meta Quest Pro of course, and unbeknownst to us, our CTO had swiped it and was knee-deep in putting the latest $1,500 virtual realty headset through a proper testing that only a seasoned XR veteran can. While we’re still waiting for his exhaustive review, we did manage to garner his first takes, which we’re delighted to share with you below. Let’s start with the positive.

The good

It’s a well-built device with a real premium feel to it. It feels like enterprise-grade quality that can endure daily wear and tear. The screen and especially the new pancake lenses make for an impressive visual experience. The narrow focal point and slightly blurred image created by traditional Fresnel lenses are gone, and the user is left with a very pleasing viewing experience.

The comfort of the device is vastly improved. And even though the headset is heavier than the Quest 2, the device is better balanced since the battery is placed behind the user’s head. And the fact that the device rests on the upper part of your forehead, makes for a very comfortable wear. Eye and facial tracking is impressive when used in conjunction with the Meta avatar system.

The bad

The screen resolution is not improved compared to the Quest 2. The slight flickering (aliasing) of, for example, the edges of UI elements experienced on the Quest 2 is still present. Moreover, a lot of your peripheral view is not covered by the light blockers that come with the headset.

This unfortunately results in a lot of light bleeding. And since you tend to look more around with your eyes (due to being able to focus on the entire screen) you often see your real surroundings when looking down which breaks the immersive experience.

The price

$1,500 is an appropriate price point for a quality device with an enterprise focus that offers a lot of wiggle room for future capability improvements.

The battery

The battery holds up quite well and is not an issue for most use cases, where you will jump into VR for 30–60-minute sessions. Using the headset for 1 hour left 65% battery life, pushing the total battery life to 3-hours.

The color passthrough

There’s been a lot of hype about this but I experienced a grainy image quality and low resolution, making it more a feature to understand your surroundings than for actual AR/MR use cases.

The verdict

The Meta Quest Pro is a device for enthusiasts, prosumers, and larger enterprises wanting a durable quality device with future proof sensors and features. That said, most people will be content with what the Quest 2 has to offer.