With the Chromecast update that started rolling out back in July, Samsung made it easier than ever to show off gameplay on your Gear VR to friends. Of course, you've got three different options when it comes to Chromecast and picking the best one for the job doesn't have to be difficult. Chromecast Ultra delivers a superior experience, and we've got the details on why!
Is what I have now good enough?
That depends on which Chromecast you are using. If you have a current Chromecast, then you're going to run into a few issues, but they really aren't dealbreakers. However, if you're still using a first generation Chromecast, there are some definitely some quality issues while casting to be aware of.
The first generation Chromecast isn't available for purchase anymore, which means the only reason you'd be using it is if it's already in the house. That's why it's unsurprising that the casting quality was so low, we are after all, talking about a years old accessory. While casting there was a noticeable audio delay of about 2 seconds and it was inconsistent. By which I mean that the sound jumped around a bit while casting. There were also issues with the screen freezing and some visual artifacts cropping up. For as old as the first generation Chromecast is, it did fairly well, but compared to the other Chromecasts we tested it performed the worst.
Chromecast and Chromecast Ultra
If you don't already own a Chromecast, then walking into a Best Buy will give you two options. A current generation Chromecast, or a 4K capable Chromecast Ultra. The regular Chromecast will run you $35 while a Chromecast Ultra is available for $69.99. This of course begs the question whether it's worth spending the extra money to pick up a Chromecast Ultra, or whether the regular Chromecast can get the job done.
The current generation Chromecast performed noticeably better than the first generation, but still suffered from some of the same issues. The audio delay was still present at about 2 seconds, but at the very least was consistent. While the screen did freeze a few times, it happened far less frequently, and there were no visual artifacts on the screen. It provided a much more stable casting quality, although it was still pretty far from ideal.
In juxtaposition, the Chromecast Ultra performed admirably while casting. The audio delay is still present, but it's cut down to only about a second, which syncs up much better to the action on screen. Likewise the issues of screen freezing has been completely eliminated. So it's easy to say that the Chromecast Ultra is definitely worth the increased pricetag for the superior quality of casting.
Chromecast Ultra is the best Chromecast for streaming
It's easy to see why Chromecast Ultra is the best for casting with Gear VR. It's lack of screen freezes, or visual artifacts means that when you cast your friends will be able to clearly see everything that is going on. The audio delay is also slight enough that it almost syncs up with what is going on onscreen. These two aspects together easily make the Chromecast Ultra the best for casting your Gear VR adventures.
Of course it is a bit pricier than a normal Chromecast at $69.99 but for the increased stability and quality when casting, it's well worth the price difference. This is also the only Chromecast that can currently cast in 4K, with a faster processor.
Which is your favorite?
Have you been casting to the television with your Gear VR? Have you been considering picking up a Chromecast Ultra? Let us know in the comments below!
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