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Oculus Quest 2 is getting a faster default refresh rate

Oculus Quest 2 is set to feature a faster default frame rate, as Meta says 120Hz VR headset mode will soon ditch its experimental status

Oculus Quest 2 with two controllers and lightspeed style backdrop

Oculus Quest 2 refresh rate changes are coming, as Meta is about to make 120Hz a default setting. While the performance option currently exists as an “experimental feature,” it looks like it’ll become the primary way to enjoy apps and games on the VR headset.

According to Oculus Quest 2 chief tech officer and Id Software founder John Carmack, the company will soon switch 120Hz mode to “default-on.” The programming veteran also expresses support for the change, stating that it “avoids the flicker of 60fps display and makes imperfect release tempo less harsh.”

Naturally, ramping refresh rates up to 120Hz could, in theory, affect Oculus Quest 2 battery life. However, Carmack says it’ll actually only kick in when “apps explicitly ask for it.” In other words, you’ll still need to play a supported game like Superhot VR to benefit from faster visuals (and sap the headset’s juice).

Oculus Quest 2 tweet by John Carmack that reads "120 fps has been an "experimental feature" on Quest 2 for a long time, and we are finally going to make it default-on. Any app that plays 60 fps video should consider 120 fps display -- it avoids the flicker of 60 fps display, and makes imperfect release tempo less harsh."

Making 120Hz a default on Quest 2 is probably a no-brainer, as it’ll save players from having to seek the experimental option out within settings. It also means apps won’t jump to 90Hz if users haven’t opted in – something that can cause the flickering mentioned by Carmack.

The Meta’s best VR headset has improved tenfold since its 2020 debut, and this latest refresh rate tweak should help refine the experience further. That said, Steam VR players are seemingly dropping the Oculus Quest 2 for a mystery alternative, which could be linked to either a recent price increase or the company’s decision to drop the Oculus brand.

Alternative VR headsets like the Pico 4 may challenge the Quest 2’s dominance soon, but Meta is also set to reveal Project Cambria – an augmented reality headset that might arrive with a Quest Pro label. In line with metaverse ambitions, CEO Mark Zuckerberg says the headset is more of a work PC replacement than gaming tech, so we’ll need to wait and see whether it’s a true Quest 2 successor.