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Is the Pimax 4K VR headset worth buying in 2022?

Even though the Pimax 4K VR headset has been discontinued officially, it's still available on Amazon and third-party websites. Is the headset worth buying in 2022?
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  • Background
  • Price and market positioning
  • Functionality and features
  • Technical characteristics
  • System requirements
  • Review of main elements
  • Overall 2022 opinion and concluding thoughts

Background

The Pimax 4K is a virtual reality headset from China first released in 2016. If you search for “virtual reality headset” on Amazon, the Pimax 4K and its variants appear prominently next to the Oculus Quest (depending on your region, of course). The model has been discontinued by the company on its website, but you can still purchase one on Amazon or from third-party websites.

It’s been designed and positioned for everyday use. You can watch movies or play video games in them. Judging by the name, it’s not surprising that the device aspires to produce an image in full 4K quality. Upon release, Pimax attempted to break the monopoly of Oculus and HTC, releasing the first device with a 4K screen and built-in headphones with surround sound and that can connect to a PC.

That was 6 years ago. The big question in this case: Is the Pimax 4K VR headset worth buying in 2022? Let’s find out.

The Pimax 4K is currently available on Amazon with our Evolvera affiliate-link here.


Pimax 4K VR headset as seen from the front. Photo credit: Pimax

Price and market positioning

The Pimax 4K is an old headset and the company has released an 8K version since then, which goes for roughly $1,500. The Pimax 4K, on the other hand is a cheap variant with a price tag of lower than $300. Despite this, the company maintains updates and access to game content and there’s plenty to choose from a list of more than 150 titles. The library also includes support for Oculus and HTC headset titles.

Pimax is already a household name in Asia. The headset won the “Best VR” award at CES Asia 2016, but it is not as popular in Europe, US and the West. But that is slowly changing with its rankings on Amazon that generate interest and curiosity when they find it through search. VR enthusiasts and regular consumers are increasingly looking for reviews of the Pimax models, notably the 4K variant.

The Pimax 4K is an all-rounder that was significantly cheaper than its competitors upon release. Cheaper than HTC, Sony and Oculus, despite providing a 4K image. You may be wondering why that is.

It has nothing to do with quality.

Functionality and features

The market positioning in this case is one of basic features and absence of tracking. The headset simply has no external tracking system. That is, the headset does not track body positioning and the controllers as a Windows Mixed Reality device. The Pimax 4K headset is designed for use in a static position, in fact with little movement at all. You do not need to lean forward or backward as the helmet does not know how to do this on its own.

Well you can, it’s just that you have to buy additional accessories to really bring the Pimax 4K up to standard of the current market, i.e. you would need to purchase an additional system to track movements in the game space. You could use the Pimax 4K, for instance, with the Nolo CV1 and the player would then be able to track hand and body positions.

Pimax 4K headset from different angles. Photo credit: Pimax.

If you’re looking for a standalone headset that can do it all-in-one, then this headset may not be the one for you. Hence, Pimax may have noticed this and released its successive 5K and 8K models.

This is a headset that really requires you to manually bring it up to speed and to customize your preferences. For example, it requires installation of apps and programs and you would definitely need PiPlay. With this program, you can browse video games and there is a move theater function on the side. The problem with this is that there is not much content to enjoy.

Technical characteristics

The screen resolution is ultimately the winner here. The device uses a 3840 x 2160 4K UHD panel with a pixel density of 806 PPI.

  • Field of View (FOV): 110 degrees
  • Eye spacing: 58-71mm
  • Resolution: 3840 x 2160 4K UHD with 8.29 million pixels and 806 PPI
  • Sensors: acceleration, magnetometer, range, light with 18ms MTP
  • Lens: 53mm large aspherical optical;
  • Refresh rate: 60 Hz
  • Connectivity: HDMI 1.4B, USB v2.0
  • Audio: Virtual 5.1

System Requirements

The following PC requirements were available on the official Pimax website, but since the Pimax 4K is discontinued, you may only find it on Amazon.

  • Operating system: Windows 7, 8 and 10 64-bit. MacOS is not supported.
  • Video card: NVIDIA GTX 960 or AMD R9 290 or higher.
  • Processor: Intel i5-4590 or AMD FX 8350 or higher.

Review of main elements

  • Resolution – 4K (obviously) and the resolution itself really does not lag behind, even in the year 2022.
  • Price – You get what you pay for (and then some). In terms of price, despite the year being 2022, there are few alternatives in the VR headset market for this price. With a slight bump in price, the closest would be Pico’s Neo.
  • Packaging – The packaging is aesthetically pleasing. It does not look like something made from cheap materials and looks rather stylish.
  • Strap – Easy to remove and adjust the size. No questions there, really.
  • Audio – The sound quality is great and goes directly through the HDMI cable. Headphones can be flipped on and off rather smoothly without any problems of adjustment. Audio balance is great for full VR immersion.
  • Level of immersion – The helmet sits tightly and the edges of the screen are not visible. The level of immersion is great, especially for movie-watching.
  • Watching movies – This headset should really be considered as a small VR home theater and is ideal for such a purpose, especially when it comes to 3D movies.
  • Tech support – After a few months, there were a couple of issues when it came to connecting the audio and the company was quick to promptly responds to our questions and even offered to replace the headset. Since the year is 2022, and as the Pimax 4K headset is discontinued, it’s uncertain whether tech support is offered for this particular model.

Overall 2022 rating and concluding thoughts

If you’ve never tried VR and want to get your hands on something that could provide you with a great level of immersion when watching movies, for example, this is the ideal headset. Without tracking, however, it remains limited as some would argue that tracking is the most important component of a VR setup. It rests comfortably on the head, however, allowing you to watch for hours on end. For movies – fantastic. For gaming, you’d have to pair it up with other accessories. But for the price that is set on Amazon, as it has been discontinued on the Pimax website, it’s difficult to go wrong with the 4K model.


If you want to support us while trying the Pimax 4K headset, we have provided an affiliate link here.

Do you currently have a Pimax headset? Leave a comment with your experience below.


For our other VR headset reviews, check out:

Varjo Aero

Pico Neo 3

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