What Is The Best VR Headset For Watching Movies?

With so many different types of VR headsets for watching movies, it can be hard to decide. Read our reviews to help you decide which VR headset.

Girl with VR headset

Seeing as how people started enjoying 3D movies at home, it makes sense that VR headsets are used for watching movies.  Although the headsets are mostly used for playing games, virtual reality is not limited to that.

Watching movies can be quite immersive, especially if you have the illusion that you are there, in the movie. So a big part of the VR audience uses the headsets to watch Netflix or Youtube.  That’s how I know that some of you are looking for a VR headset to watch movies on.

Here, we’ll go over a list of some of the best VR headsets for watching movies. I’ll also explain the differences between types of headsets and leave a buying guide. I’ll start with my best recommendations but I’ll also offer budget options. Let’s go.

Best Headphones For VR Table Comparison

ProductFeaturesCheck out the price
- High Sceen Resolution - 1832 x 1920 per eye
- Library For VR Games
- Standalone VR Headset
- Adjustable IPD
Oculus Quest 2
- Wide Field of View
2560 x 1440 Screen Resolution
- 72 Hz Refresh Rate
- Wireless, Smartphone-Based
Samsung Gear VR
- Crystal Clear Optics - Personal Theater
- Access To Live Music With MelodyVR
- Standalone Wireless
- Affordable
Oculus Go
- 2880 x 1600 AMOLED Display
- Built-in Headphones
- Adjustable Headband
- Windows-Based Virtual Reality
- High-Resolution Display
- All-in-One VR
- Adaptive to your position
Oculus Quest
- Rich VR Gaming Library
- 2560 x 1440 Display Resolution
- Oculus insight tracking
- Ergonomic Design
Oculus Rift S
- High-Resolution Display
- Sound Isolation Built-in Headphones
- Rich Content Library
- Flip-up Display
- OLED 1080p Display
- 3D Audio Technology
- 120 Frames Per Second
- Field of View - 100 degrees
Sony PlayStation VR
- VR for Android and iPhone
- Google Certified
- Cardboard Box
- Very cheap
Google Cardboard VR
- Cheap VR Headset
- Can be used with most smartphones
- Impressive display quality for the price
- Free Gaming Library
- Improved Performance Option For Gaming
- Comfortable For Children
Heromask PRO VR Gaming

Best Overall

Oculus Quest 2 – All-in-One Headset

Highlighted Features

  • Wireless Standalone 
  • Oculus Touch Controllers
  • Compatible With Old Oculus Library

We’re starting with the absolute best. The truth is, no matter what you’ll be using the VR for, the Oculus Quest 2 is the best right now. It’s Oculus’s latest product i.e. the most advanced VR technology.

This is a standalone headset, you don’t need a PC to use it.  You only need to download the app to get VR content from Oculus. The content is limited but there are a lot of new things with Quest 2.

Especially good for gaming because of the improved processor and integrated graphics card. It comes with 2 Oculus Touch controllers.

It’s not explicitly designed for watching movies but it’s better than any VR headset. The high display resolution provides for an immersive movie experience. You’ll be able to focus on some details unlike with some other VR displays.

  • High Screen Resolution – 1832 x 1920 per eye
  • Library For VR Games
  • Standalone VR Headset
  • Adjustable IPD
  • Expensive accessories
  • Only Oculus Content

Best Budget

Samsung Gear VR

Highlighted Features

  • Wide Field of View
  • 2560 x 1440 Screen Resolution
  • 72 Hz Refresh Rate
  • Wireless, Smartphone-Based

I would recommend the Samsung Gear VR as a starting option for anyone. It’s affordable, under $100 VR option that you use with your phone. Although this product is discontinued, it’s still available on Amazon and other stores, there’s a demand for it.

This headset is quite old, it came out in 2016. So, there are some compatibility issues. You can only use it with Samsung Galaxy S7, Galaxy S7 Edge, Galaxy Note5, Galaxy S6, and Galaxy S6 Edge.

The gaming content is nothing special, it’s quite outdated, to be honest. However, rich content for movies and TV shows. You can watch Netflix and Hulu on the Gear VR.

  • Quite affordable
  • Netflix and Hulu are available
  • Easy to use, no wires
  • High-Res Display
  • Outdated gaming content
  • Limited compatibility
  • Outdated VR technology

Best VR Headsets Under $300

Oculus Go Standalone

Highlighted Features

  • Viewing With Friends
  • All-in-One VR
  • Built-in Audio

The Oculus Go may be a more reasonable option for movie watching. It’s more affordable and not that targeted at VR games. Portable, easy-to-use standalone VR headset for everyone.

It doesn’t feature a big screen, only 5.5 inches. The display resolution is 2560 x 1440, and 1280 x 1440 per eye. However, the display is top grade, one of the clearest VR screens.

One of the features that make it great for movie watching is Viewing With Friends. Here, you can connect with friends, or create a movie party.  You can watch live stuff or TV shows and movies.

The Oculus Go is rich in content. Just download a few apps and you can enjoy games, social media, and entertainment platforms. You can watch Hulu and Showtime.

  • Crystal Clear Optics – Personal Theater
  • Access To Live Music With MelodyVR
  • Standalone Wireless
  • Affordable
  • Not Compatible With New Oculus Content
  • Overshadowed By New Technology

Best VR Headset Under 1000$

Samsung HMD Odyssey+

Highlighted Features

  • 2880 x 1600 AMOLED Display
  • Built-in Headphones
  • Adjustable Headband
  • Windows-Based Virtual Reality

I would include this in “best overall” too. The Samsung HMD Odyssey+ has one of the best content for gaming. But the high-quality display performs well with movies too. The experience may not be that immersive but you can see more details.

This headset features a direct full-array backlight which makes it really easy to focus. The concentrated zones of precision-controlled LEDs do not put a stray on your eyes when you’re focusing on details. This feature makes gaming and movie watching better.

For content, you access the Windows Store or Steams Library. Here, you can find VR content. You’ll need a PC for this, of course, this is a PC VR. Fortunately, Steam has some great content.

  • Anti-Screen-Door Technology
  • OLED Display
  • Not expensive
  • AKG Headphones
  • Access To Steam Library
  • PC-based
  • Overshadowed by new technology

Oculus Quest All-in-One VR

Highlighted Features

  • Standalone VR
  • 1440 x 1600 Display Resolution Per Eye
  • 72 Hz Refresh Rate
  • Oculus Touch Controllers

We’ve seen Quest 2 but we can’t forget about its predecessor. The original Oculus Quest is also a good option to watch movies on. In VR games and movies, the viewer experience is exceptional.

This headset is a slightly worse Quest 2. But that doesn’t mean that it’s not better than most headsets. Even though it’s not produced anymore, people still prefer it over the PC-powered Rift S. The beyond room-scale is what most people like, you can use it anywhere.

It includes all the usual Oculus features: Oculus Insight which tracks your movements, Oculus Touch controllers, and Oculus content. The Quest still holds as a good VR option, so consider it if you didn’t like what you found so far.

  • High-Resolution Display
  • All-in-One VR
  • Adaptive to your position
  • Limited Content, not compatible with new content
  • Quite Expensive

Best VR Headsets For PC

Oculus Rift S – PC Powered VR

Highlighted Features

  • Rich VR Gaming Library
  • 2560 x 1440 Display Resolution
  • Oculus insight tracking

Now, you may be surprised to see the Oculus Rift S on this list. I know this is mostly a gaming VR headset. But these are the best headsets available right now. It doesn’t matter if it’s for gaming, it’s still better for movies than most headsets.

The Rift S has a quality display. Mostly praised for the improved optics which include: next-generation lenses and crystal clear display. What people got excited about is anti-screen-door technology which neutralizes the screen-door effect.

If you’re looking for a headset that you can also play games on, this is the right choice. It’s very comfortable to use, Halo headband for secure placement. The VR includes two Oculus touch controllers for immersive gaming.

  • Ergonomic Design
  • Smooth Gaming Experience
  • Improved optics
  • Adjustable IPD
  • Quite Expensive
  • Limited Content

HTC Vive Cosmos

Highlighted Features

  • 2880 x 1700 Display
  • 90 Hz Refresh Rate
  • Steam Library Access
  • Integrated Audio

If you want to watch movies on a big resolution, the HTC Vive Cosmos is a good option. Again, primarily made for gaming but okay for movies too. Basically, the most important thing for movie watching is the resolution, so you’re set on that.

All in all, the display quality is what makes the Vive Cosmos excellent. With adjustable IPD, 90 Hz refresh rate, and high-res. These are the features you look for, no matter if you want to play games or watch movies.

It’s really comfortable and easy to use. The headset is balanced and it’s light in weight. There’s also protection from sweating, the faceplate is ventilated.

  • High-Resolution Display
  • Sound Isolation Built-in Headphones
  • Rich Content Library
  • Flip-up Display
  • Wired, expensive attachments to make it wireless
  • Quite expensive for what you’re getting

Best VR Headset For Consoles

Sony PlayStation VR

Highlighted Features

  • OLED 1080p Display
  • 3D Audio Technology
  • 120 Frames Per Second
  • Field of View – 100 degrees

People watch movies on consoles nowadays, so the Sony PlayStation VR can be included in this list. The truth is, there are so many good VRs out there, that we can’t be picky. If you already have a PS 4, or you’re thinking about buying the PS 5, I recommend the PS VR.

The 1080 x 960 per eye screen resolution is not ideal for movies. However, with the Virtual Theater option, watching movies is quite immersive. You may not be able to catch some details like you can on the Samsung VR but you’ll be focused alright.

Sony incorporated the PS gaming headset audio technology into this VR. With the 3D audio, you’ll be able to hear where the sounds are coming from. This is very useful for gaming, and just entertaining for movies.

  • Quite affordable
  • OLED Display goes great with Blu-Ray
  • Rich Gaming Library
  • PS is a requirement
  • The display resolution is not that high

Best VR Headsets For Smartphones

Google Cardboard VR Box

Highlighted Features

  • VR for Android and iPhone
  • Google Certified
  • Cardboard Box

If you want to know about the VR experience for $15-$20, Google Cardboard VR is the way to go. That’s what this headset is made for. Originally made by Google but many brands started making this since it’s so easy to make.

VR glasses are placed in a cardboard box which limits your view. You use this VR with a phone. Get content from Google. Don’t worry about the size of the phone, most devices fit because the foam is adjustable.

  • Cheap and worth it for the price
  • Easy to use
  • Fits with any phone
  • Limited content
  • Not really a VR


Highlighted Features

  • Compatible With 4.7-6.53 Phone Screens
  • Anti-Blue Light Lenses
  • Field of View – 90-100 degrees

We’re ending this list with an unknown brand. The VR SHINECON Headset is a good starting place. The thing is, you don’t spend too much money and you get what a real VR looks like. You will find many headsets from unknown brands like this one but I think this is the best.

Phone-based VR often causes eye strain. This headset has protection against that. The lenses are adjustable and have blue light protection. Clean display with sharp HD and a wide field of view. All of this makes for an immersive movie experience.

  • Cheap VR Headset
  • Can be used with most smartphones
  • Impressive display quality for the price
  • Limited content
  • Mostly suited for kids

Heromask Pro – Android and iPhone VR

Highlighted Features

  • Free Gaming Library
  • Improved Performance Option For Gaming
  • Comfortable For Children

The Heromask Pro has been quite popular among families. It’s an inexpensive, smartphone VR that even children can use. It mainly targets the USA audience, that’s why it supports most iPhones, old ones too.

Quite comfortable to wear. The VR holds on tight to your head but it’s not too tight such that you can get a headache. The strap is adjustable which is great for children.

There’s not much content when it comes to movies, but there’s a rich library with 360° videos. The headset is mostly for gaming, all of its best features are gaming related. Gaming mode option, free games, rich gaming library.

  • Can be used with glasses
  • Compatible with most iPhones
  • Adjustable strap
  • Details are not clear but still immersive
  • Not exactly good for movies

What To Look For In A VR Headset – Buying Guide

I listed what I consider to be the best VRs you can find nowadays but that may not tell you much. You may be having a hard time choosing between some of the products. That’s why I’m here, I’ll help you with the selection process too. Think of this as a buying guide.

Display Resolution

The most important feature you need to look out for, especially if you want to watch movies is the display resolution. Basically, the higher the resolution the better the headset. The VR screen is close to your face, so you can only see so much.

With low-resolution screens, you can hardly notice any details. Of course, you will still be immersed in virtual reality but it’s better if you can focus on details. What’s worse is that low-res screens put a strain on your eyes. So, after a gaming or watching session, your eyes will be really tired. Most likely, you’ll have to take breaks.

Therefore, a high resolution is a feature you should pay attention to. If you’re going to be using the headset strictly for watching movies, then aim for the highest resolution. I recommend the Samsung Odyssey+ or the HTC Vive. Remember, anything below 1440 x 960 per eye is unacceptable.

Focal Distance & IPD

People with impaired vision have to make some adjustments if they want to use VR. The headset tricks us that the screen is far away from us. This also tricks our eyes. So, if you’re nearsighted, you’ll have to use lenses, otherwise, everything will be blurry.

That’s why VR manufacturers started to work around this problem. With adjustable IPD, you can switch the lenses to accommodate your eyes. Not every headset has this, and the adjustable IPD is limited but most people don’t need glasses with the IPD. Those that wear strong lenses may have to wear glasses.

Some of the headsets that have adjustable IPD are the Rift S, the Standalone Go, the HTC Vive, and the Quest 2. Consider these if you have impaired vision.

As for focal distance, it’s only important for smartphone-based headsets. VRs with integrated screens don’t have adjustable focal distance, the distance is fixed. However, VRs that use smartphones have an adjustable focal distance. Make sure that the smartphone-based headset has an adjustable FD.

Available Content

VR content is not universal. Oculus has its own content, Windows-based headsets have their own content, etc. You don’t want to buy an expensive headset but be disappointed with the content.

The most important thing to consider is: What will you be using the headset for? For instance, if you’re going to play games, you want a rich library with games. If you’re going to be using the headset as a 3D theater, you need Netflix, YouTube, Hulu, etc.

Also, you need to make sure that the headset you’re buying is compatible with old and new content. Some headsets are stuck with the old content, and there’s nothing new to do. What I’m saying is: check what’s available for the VR that you want to buy.

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VR headsets have a cool, aesthetically pleasing exterior. They may look comfortable but that is not always true. Some headsets can be a weight on your head. Seeing as how you’ll be using the headset for watching movies, you want the headset to be as comfortable as possible.

Therefore, I recommend choosing the headset most comfortable for you. Some of the most comfortable headsets are the Standalone Go, The Quest 2, and the HTC Vive Cosmos. Look for soft cushions, headbands that are not fixed, stuff like that.


The last thing I want you to keep an eye on is the price. Most VR headsets are relatively expensive, some more than others. And the best headsets are all expensive but that doesn’t mean you have to overspend.

What I’m trying to point out here is that you don’t want to pay for something you won’t be using. For instance, if you don’t think about ever playing games, it doesn’t make sense to buy the Rift S. But it makes sense to buy the Oculus GO.

So, think about how you’re going to be using the VR headset. Then, think if the headset on your wishlist fits your needs.

Related Questions And Other FAQs

What Are The Differences Between The Types Of VR Headsets?

As you may know, not every headset is the same. Some have an integrated graphics card, and some rely on the card of other devices. That’s the difference between all of the headsets. Is the VR using an integrated GPU or does it use GPU from a PC or a smartphone?

The headset that uses an integrated GPU is called a standalone headset. The Standalone Go and The Quest 2 are an example of a headset like this. You don’t need anything else to use the headset. With headsets like these, you just put them on and choose your content.

Smartphone-powered VRs on the other hand, don’t have a screen nor a GPU on their own. The smartphone acts both as a screen and as a GPU. An example of a headset like this is the Samsung Gear VR.

We are left with PC-powered VRs. These headsets have an integrated screen but they don’t have an integrated GPU. So, either a PC or a console GPU is used. These are far better for gaming than any other type of headset. The standalone headset can never have a GPU that PCs use.

Interesting read – Why Do VR Headsets Cause A Headache?

Are Gaming VR Headsets Good For Watching Movies?

It may be confusing, but, the best gaming headsets are also the best headsets for movies. The same technology that makes a headset good for gaming also makes it good for 3D theater. As you can see from the list, most gaming headsets have a high display res which was crucial for movies.

Is Smartphone-based VRs Good For Watching Movies?

VRs that use smartphones are not especially good to watch movies. Mostly because of the bad resolution. Smartphones are small in size which makes them quite terrible for watching movies.

However, people still like to use them for movies. It’s an affordable option, more so, it makes more sense to buy a cheap VR, if that’s what it’s going to be used for.

Another problem with smartphone-based VRs is that they have limited content. The movies you’ll be able to find are limited in number.

Related article – Is There A VR Headset That Can Fit A 7 Inch Tablet?

How Long Can You Use The VR In One Sitting?

As I said, virtual reality is a strain on your eyes, so you won’t be able to use it excessively. The rule you should try to follow is 10-15 minutes per session. And take 30-minute breaks before sessions. If you don’t follow this rule, you may feel nauseated and disoriented.

Can VR Headsets Damage Your Eyes?

No, VRs can’t damage your eyes. There isn’t any evidence that virtual reality can harm your eyes. The only side effect of VR is that you get motion sickness. This happens because your mind is telling you that you are still but your eyes tell you that you are in motion. It’s similar to seasickness. If you have a headache, and you feel disoriented, you have motion sickness.

Virtual reality can be bad for the eyes only if you have impaired vision. That is if the screen is blurry and you continue using it.

Can I Wear Glasses With VR Headset?

Yes, you can wear glasses while you are using the headset. Most prefer to not use the glasses because it’s not comfortable with them. But the adjustable IPD doesn’t fit everyone, so some people must use their glasses.

If you really hate that your glasses are in the way, look for additional equipment for your headset. There may be customized lenses that you can order.


Well, here’s where we end this post. I hope you found what you were looking for on the list. Just follow the buying guide and you should be fine. My advice to you is: think about what you need exactly. Once you’ve figured out how you’re going to be using the headset, it’s easy to choose a headset.

For movie watchers, I recommend the Odyssey+ or the Oculus Go. Those that would also like to play VR games, consider the Rift S or the HTC Vive Cosmos.  If you’re new to VR, and you just want to try something, I recommend the Samsung Gear VR or the Google Cardboard VR.

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