HP and Microsoft have joined forces in order to develop the HP Reverb G2 VR headset. The combined effort of those two tech conglomerates has gained both success and criticism. In the highly competitive field of VR headsets, the Reverb G2 has maintained a fairly decent reputation. However, better alternatives are prying to take its place in the sales charts.
- The HP Reverb G2 comes with a comprehensive set of requirements and accessories, including a VR headset, motion controllers, cables, and adapters.
- The headset is designed for comfort, with features such as increased cushion size, flexible material, adjustable eye relief, and magnetic detachability.
- The display features high-resolution LCD panels, providing 2.5x more pixels than the Oculus Rift S, with a 90Hz refresh rate and a wide field of view.
- The audio capabilities of the HP Reverb G2 offer a full range of sound, including hi-res audio, 3D spatial sound, and an external noise-canceling microphone for clear communication.
Our opinion in short
Some of the first impressions of the Reverb G2 almost every user will have are the amazing image quality and instant integration with SteamVR. The price of $554 is also more manageable compared to the cost of the Valve index ($999). The gaming experience is more pleasant thanks to the extra padding and the adjustable face gasket. But it could easily be replaced by the Oculus 2, which is a cheaper standalone headset and much more convenient to use.
What we really liked is that the HP Reverb G2 is really comfortable, even in long gaming sessions. However, our team had serious issues at the beginning with fixing the tracking of the headset, but after a few hours of tweaking in-game settings, Windows Mixed Reality, drivers, and even Steam VR, we finally made it work. Other than that, the gaming experience with Reverb G2 was really nice, and it felt like a high-end headset for a mid-range budget.
|Visual clarity is top tier, with Retina display level clarity and minimal screen door effect. |
High resolution per eye (2160 x 2160).
Comfortable and lightweight, suitable for extended wearability.
IPD adjustment range is 60 to 68 millimeters.
Nose blackout rubber increases immersion. Windows Mixed Reality Environment is a great home base for the headset.
Great value for money, being $400 cheaper than the Valve Index.
|May need to tweak hardware and settings for optimal performance. |
Reverb controller has a bendy part.
Tracking blind spots and controller occlusion can occur when blocking the view of one controller with the other. Windows Mixed Reality lacks updates
What is in the box?
See what’s included in the box when you unbox the HP Reverb G2:
- VR headset
- 6M cable
- 2 motion controllers
- DisplayPort™ to mini-DisplayPort™ Adapter – allows you to connect to a wide range of monitors and displays.
- USB-C to A Adapter
- Power adapter
- Setup documentation
To get the most out of the HP Reverb G2, you’ll need a system with certain requirements:
- GPU: An Nvidia 1080 or AMD Radeon RX 5700 is recommended.
- CPU: Intel Core i5, i7, Intel Xeon E3-1240 v5 or an equivalent AMD Ryzen 5 processor is recommended.
- RAM: 8 GB of RAM is necessary for optimal performance.
- Connectivity: Your system will need to have a DisplayPort 1.3 and 1x USB 3.0 Type C port.
- OS: Windows 10.
For maximum performance, the following GPUs are recommended:
- For desktops: RTX 2060
- For laptops: RTX 2070
- For maximizing performance, RTX 3080 and 3090 are the best options.
The retina display level clarity, adjustable IPD settings, and comfortable lightweight headset design of the HP Reverb G2 improve the gaming experience tremendously.
Design & Comfort
Experience the comfort and custom fit of the HP Reverb G2 headset, thanks to the following features:
- increased cushion size – enables even weight distribution
- flexible material
- Adjustable eye relief facemask – the magnetic detachability of the facemask ensures a perfect fit, no matter your face shape or size.
Enjoy crystal clear visuals with the HP Reverb G2’s 2160 x 2160 LCD panels per eye and full RGB stripe. At 9.3 million pixels, this headset offers 2.5x more pixels than the Oculus Rift S.
The 90Hz refresh rate and the recommended system specs make your experience that much smoother.
The field of view is 114 degrees, thanks to the Fresnel-Aspherical lenses designed by Valve. You’ll also appreciate the Interpupillary distance (IPD) adjustment, which allows you to customize the headset for a perfect fit.
The combination of the resolution and lenses makes the HP Reverb G2 a great choice for immersive visuals.
The HP Reverb G2 features Hi-Res Audio, thanks to the 3D spatial sound. With its external noise-canceling microphone, you’ll be able to chat without background noise interference.
Controllers and Sensors
With four cameras and internal sensors for position detection, the controllers provide superb tracking performance. The smaller size and the ergonomic design make them comfortable and natural to hold. They also feature 30% more vertical area coverage for improved tracking below the waist. Plus, they require only two AA batteries per controller and can connect through Bluetooth.
Compatibility and setting up
The HP Reverb G2 is compatible with both Windows Mixed Reality and Steam VR.
It comes with a 6-meter cable, which is thinner, lighter, and longer than before, which enables connecting the PC to the headset.
Windows Mixed Reality
The Windows Mixed Reality Environment acts as a home base, allowing you to control the computer with a keyboard and mouse. It’s also customizable for other applications, like SteamVR and other games in the SteamVR ecosystem. Additionally, it can be customized for future use with other headsets.
To set up your Reverb G2 with SteamVR, simply plug in your headset and controllers and then launch the SteamVR application. Once the SteamVR app is running, you’ll be able to access the software’s library of games and experiences.
You can also access the SteamVR settings menu to adjust various parameters such as the field of view and the tracking accuracy.
First of all, the price of $554 makes it hard to compete with other headsets, especially standalone ones like the Meta Quest 2, which is cheaper.
The system requirements may be hard to fulfill, especially if you’re a casual gamer, and the purchase of a more powerful PC can be an unnecessary financial burden.
The Windows Mixed Reality platform could be considered dead at that point in 2023 as Microsoft has decided to take a different approach when it comes to developing AR and VR technology and has currently taken a step back from this niche.
The HP Reverb G2 headset costs $554 or £675 in the UK.
Where to buy HP Reverb G2?
This HP headset is available for purchase on Amazon, Hewlett Packard’s official website, and even Walmart’s website.
The most popular games for HP Reverb G2
The Reverb G2 stands out as one of the few devices that is instantly compatible with both SteamVR and Windows Mixed Reality games. This is made possible, in part, by HP’s decision to partner with Valve and Microsoft.
These are some of the most played VR games on the Reverb G2:
The plot of the game is set between the events of Half-Life and Half-Life 2. The main character, Alyx, is set to save humanity from a race of evil aliens called the Combine. This game is developed by Valve and is the most popular one on SteamVR.
The Elder Scroll V: Skyrim VR
The game features an open-world environment with various locations and a fast-travel system for quick navigation. Combat involves the use of weapons, armor, enchantments, and magic spells. Interaction with non-player characters (NPCs), quests, and exploration are key aspects of the gameplay. The game is set in the cold and mountainous region of Skyrim, 200 years after the events of The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. The player character, known as the Dragonborn, can recruit followers and join various factions. The plot revolves around the Dragonborn uncovering the prophecy of Alduin’s return and ultimately defeating him.
Star Wars: Squadrons
The game is played from a first-person perspective and allows players to control starfighters from either the Galactic Empire or the New Republic Navy. Power management between weaponry, shields, and engines is crucial for victory, and players can unlock weapons, shields, upgrades, and cosmetic items through experience. Stars Wars: Squadrons was nominated for Best VR/AR at The Game Awards 2020 and won the Music of the Year award at The Game Audio Network Guild Awards.
HP Reverb G2 Alternatives
Here are a few examples of HP Reverb G2’s greatest competitors and, thus, obvious alternatives:
Meta Quest 2
Meta’s Quest 2 is the most affordable yet decent in specs headset on the market. The price of only $299 makes this standalone VR headset the best option for beginner users who want to experience VR gaming without breaking the bank. The 4K graphics and the optional PC connection are also great advantages of the Quest 2.
HTC Vive Pro 2
The Vive Pro 2 is a powerful headset that runs on a Snapdragon 888 processor. With its 120Hz refresh rate, it provides an immersive gaming experience. The headset also boasts a 5K resolution display, dual front-facing cameras, and a built-in microphone. Moreover, it is compatible with the Viveport subscription service, allowing gamers to access a wide range of titles. But it is more suitable for advanced VR gamers.
Valve released their second generation headset, Valve Index, in 2019. The headset boasts impressive tech specs, including a resolution of 2880×1600, an IPD adjustment option, and 8 GB of RAM. One of its most notable features is the inclusion of the popular game Half-Life: Alyx, which is a favorite among Steam users. However, it is significantly pricier ($999) compared to HP Reverb G2 ($554).
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is the Refresh Rate of the HP Reverb G2?
The HP Reverb G2 has a refresh rate of 90Hz, which is comparable to the Pimax 8K X. The combination of its high resolution and refresh rate offers excellent visuals and clarity, providing a sharp display with minimal screen door effect.
Can I Use the HP Reverb G2 With a Laptop?
Yes, you can use the HP Reverb G2 with a laptop. It requires examining power requirements and adjusting settings, but mid-range gaming laptops should be sufficient.
How Long Does the Battery Last in the HP Reverb G2 Controllers?
The HP Reverb G2 controllers have impressive power efficiency and battery life, lasting up to 4 hours on a single charge. The ergonomic design helps keep them comfortable during long gaming sessions.
Do I Need to Purchase Any Additional Hardware for the HP Reverb G2?
You may need to purchase additional hardware for the HP Reverb G2, such as a USB-C to DisplayPort adapter to avoid potential connectivity issues. Additionally, check audio quality to ensure a smooth experience.
Is the HP Reverb G2 Compatible With All VR Games?
Yes, the HP Reverb G2 is compatible with most VR games, but its tracking accuracy and sound quality may vary depending on your hardware setup.