Skip to main content

The cheapest VR headset deals in August 2022

HTC Vive VR headset and Oculus Quest 2 VR headset on a orange background
(Image credit: Future)

Cheap VR headset deals are not always easy to find - even if the tech is now more widely available and affordable compared to previous years. Depending on the model, though, you can sometimes save money throughout the year or during major sales events.

Competition has shrunk, too, with the Meta Quest 2 (previously the Oculus Quest 2) now firmly established as the go-to option for those looking to get into VR gaming. It has just received a substantial price hike of $100 / £100, though, so it's not as good value as before. We'll have to see if there are any good discounts around Black Friday.

Still, we've gathered all the best VR headset deals you can find today on the Meta Quest 2, HTC Vive and PlayStation VR right here. We've also included some of the cheapest headsets that only require your phone in order to function. The possibilities with this are limited but it can be the least expensive way to try out VR for yourself before taking the plunge on some more expensive kit.

Cheap VR headset deals

If you just want to dip your toe in the world of virtual reality, you don't need to spend too much. VR headsets that run off your smartphone or a cheap display cost as little as $20 / £20 and give you a basic experience without breaking the bank. Specific apps available on the Google Play Store or Apple App Store give you the chance to see if virtual reality is for you before investing in a more advanced system like the Oculus Quest 2.

Meta Quest 2

Meta 2 VR headset with two controllers

(Image credit: Oculus)

Meta Quest 2

The best VR experience on the market

Wired: No | Minimum specs: NA | Resolution per eye: 1832 x 1920 | Refresh rate: 72Hz | Field of view: 90° | Storage: 128GB / 256GB

Impressive wire-free VR
Accessible all-in-one device
Strong portfolio of games
Just got more expensive

The Meta Quest 2 is the most approachable VR headset on the market for first-time buyers, but it's now less attractive after a recent $100 / £100 price hike. That means the recommended price for the standard option with 128GB of storage is $399 / £399. 

Even though it's more expensive, it's still likely the best option for beginners right now. There's some significant power under the hood without paying extreme enthusiast prices - and you don't need a turbo-charged gaming PC to make the most out of it either. This all-in-one headset operates completely wire-free (but the option is there to plug it into a gaming PC for certain games) and offers an incomparable experience for the price. 

The Meta Quest 2 has been incredibly popular since launch and stock has flown off the shelves, to the point where it was difficult to buy one throughout most of last year. However, that's now settled down significantly. You still won't find it for cheap, though, as there are rarely any discounts outside of the big sales events like last year's $50 / £50 voucher during Black Friday.

If you buy direct from Meta you tend to get the best offers, which include bundles with discounted accessories. For the rest of the month, though, the VR headset comes with a copy of Beat Saber to try and dull the sting of the price increase. It doesn't help much, so keep an eye on our hub dedicated to all the latest Meta Quest 2 deals to ensure you don't miss out on the next saving.

HTC Vive

HTC Vive VR headset

(Image credit: HTC)

HTC Vive Cosmos

A mid-range PC headset

Wired: Yes | Minimum specs: i5-4590 or FX 8350 / Nvidia GeForce GTX 970 or AMD Radeon R9 290 / 4GB RAM / DisplayPort 1.2 / USB 3.0 | Resolution per eye: 1440 x 1700 | Refresh rate: 90Hz | Field of view: 110°

Powerful VR headset
Larger library of games and software
Improved motion controls
A little pricey

The HTC Vive Cosmos range has all but replaced the original line of 2016 headsets. Aimed with a slightly lower price tag, this is a headset designed for mid-range PC use - so perfect if you're looking for a good quality VR experience but don't want to delve into the enthusiast's world of $1,000+ price tags. 

You're still paying a good wad of cash here, however, but with a solid performance and some fairly low required specs there's a strong proposition here. Plus, you can pick up separate accessories to enable the level of external tracking available in the Cosmos Elite headset below.

With its first birthday behind us, however, you'll be able to find more VR headset deals on this particular model available.

HTC Vive Cosmos Elite

(Image credit: HTC)

HTC Vive Cosmos Elite

External tracking for your Cosmos headset

Wired: Yes | Minimum specs: i5-4590 or FX 8350 / Nvidia GeForce GTX 970 or AMD Radeon R9 290 / 4GB RAM / DisplayPort 1.2 / USB 3.0 | Resolution per eye: 1440 x 1700 | Refresh rate: 90Hz | Field of view: 110°

SteamVR external tracking
New controllers
Accessories available for Cosmos

The HTC Vive Cosmos Elite is a strange one. It's the same headset as the HTC Vive Cosmos, but with tracking base stations and controllers for extra precision in matching your movements. If you're looking to grab these accessories for your Cosmos headset, then, you might as well grab an Elite bundle - as you'll likely also receive some free software goodies at the same time. We haven't seen too many VR headset sales hitting this bundle, but it's worth keeping your eye out for HTC Vive deals because they can appear during larger discounting events.

PlayStation VR

PlayStation VR headset

(Image credit: Sony)

Since it originally launched for the PS4 back in 2016, PlayStation VR offered one of the more affordable ways to get into VR gaming. Today, however, the production of Sony's VR headset has slowed so it's almost impossible to pick up a new one. It's also a challenge to find a second-hand PSVR for a reasonable price, so hopes of any deals are slim.

The good news, though, is that PSVR 2 is on the way. Sony hasn't announced a specific release date for the next-generation VR headset just yet, but the current expectation is that it will launch between late 2022 or early 2023. We do know that it will work exclusively with the PS5, so you'll need to upgrade to Sony's latest console before you can make use of it. Our PS5 restock live blog can help you with that. 

More information is released about the upcoming tech all the time so stick with TechRadar for all the latest updates. You can already take a look at our PSVR 2 vs PSVR comparison to see what major differences to expect between the two headsets and browse through our list of the best PSVR games so you know what you need to play when the VR headset is available to buy.

Once it's out in the wild, we'll also be on hand to bring you all the best PSVR deals as well as assist in the hunt for a PSVR 2 pre-order amidst all the inevitable stock issues.

VR headets: FAQs

VR headsets come at a range of price points, with the more high end options sometimes running you close to $1,000 / £1,000 and cheap VR headsets costing as little as $10 / £10. That means it's difficult to work out exactly what you should expect for your cash, but there are a few key requirements you'll want to check for before picking up your new toy. 

Cheap VR headsets under $50 / £50 will likely use your smartphone for content and, in most cases, controls. You'll be playing small movement based arcade-style games or making the most of the 3D VR content that's filling YouTube and other apps these days. That's where you should start when making sure your VR headset is worth the cash - will it run a good selection of apps on your smartphone. Not only does that mean making sure you can use Android and iOS apps with your device, but also ensuring that the headpiece itself will fit your smartphone. 

If you're stretching up to $150, you might find an included screen and processing unit on board. This won't be up to the standards of the Oculus or HTC just yet, but with some controllers included you might get a better variety of proprietary apps like we saw on the Oculus Go. 

Beyond that, you're moving into Oculus Quest territory, with the $150 - $300 bracket offering a step up in peformance. If you're not opting for an Oculus Quest headset, ensure you're still getting that 70 - 80Hz refresh rate, and a resolution at around 1832 x 1920.

Moving to the $300 - $600 bracket you're likely in the world of the PC headset. That means you'll likely find refresh rates of 90Hz and higher, extra tracking features like the SteamVR external sensors with the Vive Cosmos Elite, and you'll want to ensure you're getting access to a substantial game and app library like that of Steam as well.

We've put all the best VR headsets to the test, so if you're really looking to spend some cash check out our roundup.

James Pickard
James Pickard

James Pickard is a Deals Editor at TechRadar. After many years of scouring the net for the cheapest games and tech for his own personal use, he decided to make it his job to share those bargains with you. James also has over five years of experience covering some of the biggest sales events of the year at Eurogamer and VG247, including Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Amazon Prime Day. When not deals hunting, James can be found on the PS5, watching a classic film noir or cheering on the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.