Oculus revealed what it calls Oculus Ready rigs that are bundled with the virtual reality headset.
The PC units come from Asus, Alienware and Dell, and they have all been tried and tested with the Oculus Rift. The bundles start out at $1,499 for a “limited time only,” and the price goes all the way up to more than $3,000.
The virtual reality headset is pegged at $599, and a PC that can provide a smooth VR experience doesn’t exactly come cheap. In other words, these bundles offer customers the Oculus Rift plus a PC that can render virtual reality at discounted prices.
Oculus Ready PC Bundles
The Asus G11CD is the most affordable out of the bunch. It’s powered by the Skylake Intel i5-6400, an Nvidia 970 and 8 GB worth of RAM. Storage-wise, it packs a 1 TB hard disk.
Bundle Price: $949
Asus ROG G20CB Model 1
The Asus ROG G20CB is fitted with the same sixth-generation processor and GPU as the previous entry, the Intel i5-6400 and Nvidia 970 respectively. The difference is that it comes with 16 GB of RAM and a 512 GB SSD.
Bundle Price: $1,349
Asus ROG G20CB Model 2
This second model is one step up compared with the first one. It’s crammed with an Intel i7-6700, an Nvidia 980, 16 GB of RAM and a combo of 256 GB SSD plus 1 TB hard disk.
Bundle Price: $1,599
Alienware Area 51
Now, the Alienware Area 51 is the priciest unit in the list, and it comes with an Intel i7-5820K, and Nvidia 980, 16 GB of RAM, 128 GB SSD and a 2 TB hard disk.
Alienware X51 R3 Model 1
The Alienware X51 R3 sports an Intel i5-6400 along with an Nvidia 970, 8 GB of RAM and a 1 TB hard disk.
Bundle Price: $999
Alienware X51 R3 Model 2
This one is virtually the same as the first model, except that it comes with an Nvidia 980, 16 GB of RAM and a 256 GB SSD.
Dell XPS 8900 SE
The Dell XPS 8900 SE shares the same hardware specifications as the Asus G11CD. Simply put, it’s just from a different manufacturer, and it’s a little bit more expensive.
Bundle Price: $999
What’s In The Box?
Aside from the PC and the virtual reality headset itself, the bundles will come with everything else that an independent preorder of the Oculus Rift has to offer, including a sensor, a remote, an Xbox One controller and two games: EVE: Valkyrie Founder’s Pack and Lucky’s Tale.
Building Your Own
Of course, virtual reality enthusiasts have the option to build their own rigs instead of availing one of the bundles that Oculus brought to the table.
According to the company’s recommended specs, computers will need at least an Nvidia GTX 970 or AMD 290, an Intel i5-4590, 8 GB of RAM and an updated operating system of Windows 7 SP1 or later under their hoods.
To break the components of the cheapest bundles – the Asus G11CD and Dell XPS 8900 SE – in the lineup down, an Intel i5-6400 is approximately $190, an Nvidia 970 around $300, a 1 TB hard disk about $50, 8 GB of RAM at $60, a copy of Windows and a decent case and motherboard are at roughly $100 each. That comes to a total of $900. Add $599 more to that figure for the Oculus Rift, and it goes up to the same $1,499 starting price.
What people can do here is to bump up to the $500 Nvidia 980 for an overall better virtual reality experience while keeping the price from skyrocketing, not to mention that the makers of Elite: Dangerous say that this GPU is a minimum requirement to run the game.
More to the point, gamers who keep their rigs in tip-top shape might not need to dish out some cash, though, as their units could already be capable of handling the Oculus Rift. To let people test them out, Oculus rolled out a compatibility tool.
Best Buy, Amazon and the Microsoft Store will begin accepting preorders for the Oculus Ready bundles on Feb. 16. The Oculus Rift will hit the shelves on March 28, and the bundles are expected to start shipping out on April 23, according to Best Buy and Amazon.