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OG Samsung Odyssey vs. the Rift S

Both these headsets are packed with features, each with their own ups and downs.

Overall, both headsets are prime examples of the state of tethered consumer VR today. We tested them side by side so you can get a better idea of which one is better for you.


Samsung HMD Odyssey (OG) - The Old Guard.

The Samsung Odyssey is a Windows Mixed Reality headset that uses inside-out tracking so that it doesn’t require any external sensors. WMR headsets introduced inside-out tracking, which was a big deal in 2017 and a standard today among other headsets. We've done an in-depth review of the Odyssey here.

Setup is super simple. You simply plug it into your HDMI and USB 3.0 port and the Windows Mixed Reality portal launches automatically.  From there, you can launch Steam VR games and apps. Note that you need to have the latest version of Windows 10 for best compatibility, plus the Mixed Reality Portal itself will be downloading it's own updates.

The Windows Mixed Reality Enthusiast Guide walks you through the entire process, which is in general quite simple provided you have the right hardware spec.

This Odyssey competes with the newly-released Oculus Rift S, which also uses inside-out tracking.  However, the Odyssey only has two cameras while the Rift S has five cameras for better tracking of the controllers when they’re off to the side or above the headset.   

I compared the Rift S with the original Odyssey, which doesn’t have the anti-alias filter of the Odyssey+ but is otherwise identical.

Compatibility and apps

Both Samsung Odyssey+ and Oculus Rift S are natively compatible with SteamVR and its library of hundreds of VR apps.  In addition, Oculus Rift S is natively compatible with the popular Oculus platform, and doesn’t require an additional layer of software to use Oculus apps, unlike the Odyssey+ which requires the [free] Revive software to run Oculus apps.  On the other hand, Rift S uses Displayport instead of HDMI, and may not be compatible with older laptops.  Odyssey+ can also run on more modest hardware (at a lower framerate), and can even run on 7th gen Intel Core processors without a dedicated graphics card.

Both ran fine on our test machines, we'll be running a review of how they handled the Intel NUC portable computing device.