Why am I getting a Rift HDMI error?

Some Rift users have run into a problem where the HDMI cable running from the headset isn't being picked up by their PC. Here's how to fix this problem so that you can get back to virtual reality.

How to check for an HDMI error

Diagnosing the HDMI cable as the problem with your Rift requires completing a few steps.

  1. Launch the Oculus app from your Start menu, desktop, or taskbar.
  2. Click the gear button at the top-right on the window.
  3. Click Settings.

    Click the gear button. Click Settings.

  4. Click Devices.
  5. Click Configure Rift.

    Click Devices. Click Configure Rift.

  6. Click Run Full Setup.
  7. Click Rift or Rift and Touch based on your setup.

    Click Run Full Setup. Click Rift or Rift and Touch.

  8. Click Next.
  9. Click Next.

    Click Next. Click Next.

You will now see which connections are working and which connections are not working. As you can see here, the HDMI cable isn't reading.

An HDMI issue.

Leave this window open as you complete the steps below.

Check all connections

First thing to do is check to make sure your Rift's connections are in working order.

Ensure you aren't using an HDMI splitter

One problem we've seen arise has to do with using an HDMI splitter on the back of your PC. Your graphics card (GPU) should have a few ports on it — likely DisplayPort, HDMI, or DVI — and if your PC monitor doesn't use DisplayPort or DVI, you'll have to invest in an adapter or a new cable for your monitor. Do not use a splitter, as it will not work with your monitor and Rift at the same time.

For a great DisplayPort cable to run from your monitor to your PC, have a look at this one from Cable Matters. It is six feet in length, supports up to a 1,920 x 1,200 resolution, and only costs about $11.

See at Amazon

Would you rather just pick up an adapter and stick with the HDMI cable you currently have running from your monitor? No problem. Cable Matters also makes a low-cost adapter (about $10) that lets you plug your monitor's HDMI cable into a DisplayPort on the back of your PC.

See at Amazon

Check your PC

If the HDMI cable is currently plugged into your PC, unplug it, check the end for any damage, and plug it back into the HDMI port on your GPU.

Make sure it's not plugged into the HDMI port on your motherboard. If you're not sure which HDMI port is which, open up your case and have a look inside.

Check the Oculus app to see if your HDMI cable is now reading.

Check your Rift

HDMI cable still isn't showing up? Time to check the end plugged into your Rift.

  1. Remove the facial interface — the part with the foam — by pulling it gently away from the rest of the headset.

    Remove facial interface.

  2. Unplug the cable from the Rift once the facial interface is removed.

    Unplug the cable.

  3. Check for any damage to the cable before replacing it. Make sure it is securely plugged in.

    Check the cable's health.

  4. Replace the facial interface by aligning it with the head-mounted display and pressing gently until it clips in.

    Replace the facial interface.

Check your USB connections

Problems with the USB cable coming from your Rift is sometimes misconstrued as an HDMI problem.

First, unplug your USB cable and plug it into a different port. If you're currently plugged into a USB 2.0, try a USB 3.0 and vice versa.

The Rift has known USB compatibility issues that can be solved with either a new motherboard or with a USB expansion card. For more info, check out our guide to fixing Rift USB issues.

More display problem troubleshooting

For more help with display problems in your Rift, check out our complete Oculus Rift troubleshooting guide.

Updated January 3, 2018: We've added a bit of information to ensure you're still getting accurate information when it comes to fixing Rift HDMI issues.