Best VR Ready Prebuilt PCs

Best VR Ready Prebuilt PCs

Over recent years, the refinement of virtual reality has caused a massive surge of entry level enthusiasts willing to buy VR headsets on the market. Due to the advanced ergonomics of modern day GPU’s, gamers and businesses alike are finally able to achieve a seamless VR ready experience on prebuilt PC’s that are valued around $1,200.

Through this article we will show you what to consider when shopping for a PC capable of running titles such as Half Life Alyx, Superhot VR, BeatSaber, and others.

Minimum Requirements for VR

Before starting your search, You should consider the entry level requirements that headsets like the Oculus Rift and Vive operate on. Below is a chart provided by Oculus and HTC on the specifications for the requirements.

Oculus Rift Requirements

Component

Recommended Specs

Minimum Specs

Processor

Intel i5-4590 / AMD Ryzen 5 1500X or greater

Intel i3-6100 / AMD Ryzen 3 1200, FX4350 or greater

Graphics Card

NVIDIA GTX 1060 / AMD Radeon RX 480 or greater

NVIDIA GTX 1050 Ti / AMD Radeon RX 470 or greater

Alternative Graphics Card

NVIDIA GTX 970 / AMD Radeon R9 290 or greater

NVIDIA GTX 960 4GB / AMD Radeon R9 290 or greater

Memory

8GB+ RAM

8GB+ RAM

Operating System

Windows 10

Windows 10

USB Ports Rift

3x USB 3.0 ports, plus 1x USB 2.0 port

1x USB 3.0 port, plus 2x USB 2.0 ports

Video Output (Rift)

Compatible HDMI 1.3 video output

Compatible HDMI 1.3 video output

HTC Vive Requirements

Component

Recommended Specs

Minimum Specs

Processor

Intel Core i5-4590/AMD FX 8350 equivalent or better

Intel Core i5-4590/AMD FX 8350 equivalent or better

Graphics Card

NVIDIA GTX 1060 / AMD Radeon RX 480 or greater

NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970, AMD Radeon R9 290 equivalent or better

Memory

4 GB RAM or more

4 GB of RAM or more

Operating System

Windows 10

Windows 10

USB Ports Rift

1x 2.0 USB or Newer

1x 2.0 USB or Newer

Video Output 

Compatible HDMI 1.4 video output, DisplayPort 1.2

Compatible HDMI 1.4 video output, DisplayPort 1.2

Apex Gaming PC's Recommendations

At Apex, we want to give you the best performance between you and your equipment. We have a multitude of VR ready builds that have customization and upgradability in mind. We will be showing you our picks for a budget, mid-tier, and high end VR ready PCs.

Apex Gold (Budget)

Apex Gold Gaming PC

Our Apex Gold offer is an entry level build into the world of VR with older headsets such as the Oculus Rift and Vive. With this machine you can expect to hit 80fps on medium to low settings with some slight dips depending on whether you get the Oculus rift or HTC Vive. The graphics card has picked to perform optimally with headsets like the Oculus Rift/Quest and the HTC Vive

PRICE FOR CONFIGURATION: $1,284.95

Stock Option

Apex Recommendation

Intel i3-10100f

Intel i5-10400f

Intel stock cooler

Cooler Master Hyper 212

GTX 1650s

GTX 1660s

240GB SSD

500GB SSD

Apex Alpha (Mid-tier)

Apex Alpha Gaming PC

An appealing feature about our Apex Alpha series is its usability in many applications from run of the mill video games to a VR ready experience with only a few upgrades. This type of PC caters to the mid tier of VR ready builds sporting both its GTX 3060ti and an intel 10400f running the latest VR headsets such as the Valve Index able to push max framerates on medium to high settings.

PRICE FOR CONFIGURATION: $1,648

Stock Option

Apex Recommendation

intel stock cooler

Cooler Master Hyper 212

GTX 1650 Super

RTX 3060ti

8GB DDR4-3000

16GB DDR4- 3000

240GB SSD

500GB SSD

Apex Platinum (High-End)

Apex Platinum Gaming PC

The Apex Platinum is one of our flagship PC’s that breaks into the high tier of computer configurations for VR ready PCs. With options for all in one liquid cooling and access to Nvidia’s 3070 and 3080, it has the potential to be the best option for those wanting to spend 2,500$ on a high tier VR gaming rig able to run the most demanding headsets to date and in the future.

PRICE FOR CONFIGURATION: $2,578

Stock Option

Apex Recommendation

intel i5-10600kf

intel i7-10700kf

Cooler Master Hyper 212

EK-AIO 240MM

ASRock B460M-HDV

MSI Z490-A Pro

GTX 1660 Super

RTX 3070

No Hard Drive

1TB HDD

450W

750W

Breaking down each component in a VR ready PC

GPU

A GPU (graphics processing unit) is the heart of what drives a VR headset. In order to project video into the lenses of the headset, imagine squeezing an entire 1920x1080 (or in some headsets even more) resolution monitor into a 7 ½ by 4 inch space that you put on your head. In order to generate that much pixel density and rendering, a dedicated GPU is needed in order to produce this effect. When considering a GPU, we first have to see the specs of our selected headset.

Each headset has a specific output that it can manage. You may have seen advertisements referring to “60hz/144hz/165hz refresh rates” when looking at monitors. Hz is an abbreviation for Hertz which transitions into FPS (frames per second).

This applies to VR headsets all the same. Depending on the type of headset you want, the graphics card will offer a performance relevant to that headsets’ maximum refresh rate. Let's take a look at the most popular headsets in the market and the amount of FPS you need to push these headsets to their limit.

VR Headset

Refresh rate

Oculus Rift

80Hz->80FPS

HTC Vive/Vive Pro/Decagear

90Hz->90FPS

Valve Index/Oculus Quest 1/2

120Hz->120FPS

You can check out benchmarks of the Nvidia GTX 1660 Super card and its performance against its counterpart, the AMD 590, both released as a price to performance card for the lower spec VR ready builds.


The Index and Oculus quest are designed for more modern hardware compared to the 1660 Super and 590. A card in the 2000/3000 series such as the RTX 2060 or 3060ti will have no problems hitting the max refresh rates in most VR games.

CPU

The 2nd most important component in a VR based computer system is a good CPU that helps alleviate bottlenecks between itself and the GPU. While a GPU does the heavy lifting for producing images, a CPU geared towards VR gaming helps alleviate frame tearing, stutters, and general instability when playing demanding games that require a lot of 3D input such as movement, flying debris, or anything intensive happening on screen.

The development of CPU’s has come a long way since the dawn of VR gaming allowing for the previous 3-4 generations of CPU’s to run the newest VR titles. This means that Ryzen and Intel CPUs released from 2017 are still viable for modern VR games this year!

Motherboard

An important factor in choosing a motherboard for VR gaming is the amount of unused usb ports that come with the board and case.

According to Oculus, the Rift needs three USB 3.0 ports and one 2.0 port to operate its lighthouses and headset. Add whatever mouse and keyboard and other electronics you may plug into your pc and you will find that USB space is a precious commodity when attempting VR gaming. Cheap solutions like USB 3 hubs and pcie usb extensions can save you the headache of having to compromise USB space.

While this may be a problem for the original Rift, Competitors like the Valve Index and later variations of the Oculus only need one dedicated USB 3.0 to run. Overall depending on your headset you should adjust your USB availability accordingly.

RAM

While not as important as GPU and CPU the RAM follows suit with its ability to manage whatever demands the game throws at the system.

The recommended amount of RAM for a gaming system should be 16GB. There are instances of 8GB being fairly acceptable at the cost of system stability and a poorer VR performance. RAM clocked at 3000Mhz running in dual channel(ie. 2 sticks of 8 gb ram in two slots on motherboard) or quad channel (4 sticks or 4gb ram on motherboards supported).

Storage

Storage is dependent entirely on your needs. While most VR titles in the past few years have come out of indie game studios pioneering the technology. Content and storage space was not so imperative as VR titles took up a few gigabytes in size.

However, with the advent of Triple A titles done in VR, the amount of storage requirement for these games has gone up tremendously. Below is a graph of the most popular indie and Triple A VR titles. Depending on if you would like to play those games, an extra SSD or hard drive couldn't hurt.

Games

Storage Space

Half Life:Alyx

67GB

Beat Saber

200MB

Hotdogs Horseshoes and Handgrenades

20GB

Star Wars Squadrons

80-100GB

SuperHot VR

2GB

Elite dangerous

25GB

Star Trek bridge crew

8GB

Arizona Sunshine

1.5GB

Power Supply

Power Supply Units (PSU’s) are important for their prospect of supplying the system with the amount of electricity needed for the entire system under workloads and most importantly its peripherals.The general rule for picking power supplies for a system is to have what is called an “overhead” in your watt requirement.

For example, if a system has the ability to run at 450Watts of power under workloads then it would be advantageous to invest in a 550 or 600 Watt power supply to spare for any unforeseen stresses on the system. This will overall increase the durability and health of your PC mitigating the risk of a failure due to a faulty power supply.

In VR gaming, this rule should be followed and not viewed as a suggestion. A sturdy PSU to base your system configuration will allow any peripherals you may use to operate. Stick to brands that are trusted and have a good reputation with their build quality and customer assurance.

Apex uses EVGA, Cooler Master, Deep Cool, Antec, and Thermaltake Power supplies in all of our premade build configurations. These brands are our circle of brands that we trust to give the best performance to all components of your PC.

Conclusion

Configuring a PC capable of VR is no longer a pipe dream compared to the pioneering days of early VR system requirements. PC’s with fairly lower specs in this market can still run with caveats like 8GB of RAM and graphics cards like the 1650/1660 super.

Apex Gaming removes the concern that your PC might not be VR ready. Don't worry about dealing with scalpers or PC component shortages. As a system integrator, we do all the work for you ensuring your build comes ready to play your favorite VR titles.

Check out our selection of custom gaming PCs for options in VR ready and other high-end builds.

 

Written by Will Wilson


Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published