Best VR Headset for Microsoft Flight Simulator (2021)

MSFlightSim

The 2020 Microsoft Flight Simulator is perhaps the most ambitious and revolutionary flight sim of our generation. The technology it uses to simulate the entire planet in such detail, along with weather and other effects is truly remarkable.

When combined with a good, VR headset the sim truly comes to life. This combo of a VR + MS Flight Sim is without a doubt, the closest you can come to  real life flight outside of an actual plane!

However, not all VR headsets are created equal. For example, the Index is a great  VR headset but almost 40% of its price is the lighthouses and controllers which you don’t really need for MS Flight Sim or any flight sim for that matter.

What you need for MS Flight Sim is a headset that:

  • Has the maximum possible resolution
  • Exceptional lens quality
  • Comfortable enough to be worn for long flight sessions

Things like hand controllers are completely irrelevant for flight sims since you would be using a HOTAS/ Joystick anyway. Tracking quality is also not that important since you won’t be jumping around in your cockpit.

With all of this in mind, here are my top VR headset recommendations for the new Microsoft  Flight Simulator.

1. Best VR Headset for MS Flight Sim (Premium Option)

The Reverb G2 has a beautiful 2160×2160 screen for EACH eye. This is significantly higher than what any of the competing headsets have as you see in the following table. The FoV, sweet spot etc. are all good. Nothing groundbreaking but pretty much all VR headsets are in the same ballpark on these metrics . One unique advantage of this headset is that it is a Windows Mixed Reality headset and WMR is Microsoft’s technology. Which means Microsoft Flight Sim has been built to work best with WMR headsets and technology. The sim is optimized around WMR so the Reverb G2 does have another small but welcome advantage there compared to non-WMR headsets. You can use OpenXR which gives you a small performance boost. 

Its high resolution is what makes the Reverb stand apart from the crowd. I have been using it for a while now and it offers the best clarity to read your gauges and instruments in flight sims. It doesn’t not have the best controllers, but you don’t really need them for a flight sim. My controllers are still inside the box!

Headset Resolution (per eye) Total Pixels (both eyes)
Reverb 2160 x 2160 9,331,200
Quest 2 1832 x 1920 7,034,880
Index 1440 x 1600 4,608,000
Cosmos Elite 1440 x 1700 4,896,000
Vive Pro 1440 x 1600 4,608,000
Rift S 1280 x 1440 3,686,400
Vive 1080 x 1200 2,592,000

2. Best VR Headset for MS Flight Sim (Mid-range Option)

Oculus Quest 2 — Advanced All-In-One Virtual Reality Headset — 256...
  • Next-level Hardware - Make every move count with a blazing-fast processor and our highest-resolution...
  • All-In-One Gaming - With backward compatibility, you can explore new titles and old favorites in the...

The Quest 2 is the best mid-range option for not just MS Flight Sim, but for almost every VR game. It is the quintessential jack of all trades headset that won’t break the bank. It has good resolution, good tracking, good value, good comfort, good build quality and good everything really. Not necessarily the highest resolution, but close enough to be viable in flight sims. Which is what makes it an absolute work horse for VR gaming.

Get this headset if you are new to VR and want something that is good with all games, not just flight sims. It is the safe option. I was actually surprised with the amount of goodness packed into this headset while still maintaining such an attractive price.

3. Best VR Headset for MS Flight Sim (Budget/ Entry Level)

SAMSUNG HMD Odyssey+ Windows Mixed Reality Headset with 2 Wireless...
  • 3K anti-sde AMOLED display (2880x1600) with wide 110O field of view
  • Direct Full Array Backlight 4X: Concentrated Zones of Precision-Controlled LEDs Auto-Adjust Contrast...

Odyssey+ still punches above its weight, especially given it price point. If you are looking for value, nothing else comes close.

It was considered revolutionary when it came out because of how it reduced SDE so much. However, its limited marketing and even more limited availability meant it did not receive the popularity that it deserved.

It is still a solid entry point for Microsoft Flight Sim if you can get one. There is certainly no other headset that I feel deserves the top spot in the budget category.

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About the Author

Gary (Flanker)

Gary has been "hard landing" into runways and driving his Mitsubishi Evo off of cliffs since the early 2000s. These days, he spends most of his precious hobby time with his favorite flight, racing and space simulations in VR. He also has an Engineering Degree in Computer Science which helps a lot with his obsession with optimizing PC hardware like CPUs, Graphics Cards, VR Headsets, HOTAS, Racing Wheels etc. for high end sims.