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Pico 4, The best alternative to the Oculus Quest 2 is real and it’s already here!
But who or what are Pico
Pico was acquired by social networking giant Tik Tok in August 2021, and while they have so far failed to garner enough attention, it looks like this could change very soon with their new VR headset Pico 4.
Pico 4 Headset for VR
The Pico Neo 4 VR headset is the predecessor of the Pico Neo 3 Link, headset released on May 20, 2021. This model was not very successful mainly due to the monopoly that Meta already had.
Despite having everything against, the new Pico 4 have been presented as a very good alternative to the Quest 2, and it seems that the Tik Tok company has focused on improving the points where the alternative had cheapened or neglected details.
Among some of the most interesting improvements we find a 16MP RGB front camera, highlighting the color passthrough that will allow us to have a clear and colorful image without removing the VR headset, unlike the Oculus Quest 2 that have a camera that only shows grayscales and with a lower resolution.
Ergonomics – Getting it right from the start
Another point where Meta leaves something to be desired is the ergonomics, the Oculus Quest 2 are not known to be exactly comfortable for long sessions and for this reason there are many external head strap models for sale, Pico on the other hand has designed a much more comfortable and pleasant system for the head.
With its new virtual reality headset, Pico has managed to reduce the overall weight to 295g.
This reduced weight together with an even distribution throughout the headset makes it probably the most ergonomic VR headsets to date.
Lenses & Image Quality
As for the lenses, Pico has opted for a Pancake type lenses against fresnel lenses used by rival headsets, the reason is simple, Pancake type lenses are half the size of fresnel lenses, and this has allowed them to create a VR headset of reduced size and therefore weight.
But there is still more to talk about, the resolution, something so important in a VR glasses could not be missed and Pico Neo 4 has 2 LCD screens with a resolution of 2160×2160 per eye, offering a clear and smooth image.
Although we have gained in sharpness, we have lost in fluidity and is that the maximum refresh rate will be 90Hz compared to 120Hz of Quest 2.
One point where Pico has not managed to stand out is the battery, we find a 5300mAh battery with 20W fast charging that will give us about 3h of gameplay, little if we consider that Meta only has 3640mAh and its battery life is only half an hour less.
But not everything could be perfect, let’s talk about the few negative points
It was almost impossible for everything to be good and nice with the new Pico product, and we are going to find a couple of details that although for many will not be relevant, depending on the person can be.
It does not have any DP or mini-DP connector, so for PCVR (play in VR using our PC) we will have to use the wireless mode using WiFi and if we are not too close to the router or a repeater the experience might not be the best, another option is to use the USB-C connector but this will give us less quality than if it were DisplayPort.
We lose the Jack 3.5mm audio output compared to the previous model, so if we want to use our own headphones we will have to do it wirelessly or with a Jack 3.5mm to USB-C adapter.
Finally, regarding software, games and applications we must know that if we decide to go for the Pico option we are accepting to have a much more limited catalog than in Quest 2, where we find a store with a multitude of titles and applications and, although we know that Pico is working and making sure that this is not a problem, it is a fact that at first it will be, and it is in your hands to decide.
One of the most important things, the price, Pico 4 is 20€ cheaper compared to the Quest 2 on both 128GB versions and the Pico 256GB version is 50€ cheaper when comparing it to the Quest 2’s version.
Comparison chart between Pico Neo 4 and Oculus Quest 2
|Pico 4||Oculus Quest 2|
|CPU||Snapdragon XR2||Snapdragon XR2|
|Resolution (per eye)||2160×2160 LCD||1920×1832 LCD|
|Refresh Rate (Hz)||90Hz||120Hz|
|Weight||295 gr.||470 gr.|
|Jack 3.5mm Port||NO||YES|
|DisplayPort (PCVR) Port||NO||YES|
~3h / ~2h 45min
~2h / ~2h 30min
|Price||429€ – 128GB|
499€ – 256GB
|449€ – 128GB|
549€ – 256GB