The techies at iFixit have torn-down an Oculus Rift CV1 virtual reality headset, and have rated it a surprisingly friendly 7 out of 10 on the fixability scale - putting many far simpler consumer electronics devices to shame.
Beginning to ship out to customers now, the Oculus Rift CV1 marks Facebook-owned Oculus VR's first entry into the consumer electronics space. While the company's previous developer-centric devices were well received, competition is heating up in the VR market with HTC's Vive headset going head-to-head and Sony's PlayStation VR gathering steam ahead of a launch later this year. The one thing all these devices have in common is complexity: each includes built-in displays, head-tracking capabilities, and a series of lenses designed to create the immersive 3D virtual reality experience technology has been promising yet not quite delivering for decades.
With such complexity, it's something of a surprise to find that iFixit's tear-down
of the Oculus Rift CV1 has concluded that it is surprisingly repairable. The team at the site was able to completely dismantle the headset with nothing more than a pair of screwdrivers - a Phillips #1 and a Torx T3 - and some plastic opening tools. Improvements noted over the Developer Kit releases include better cable management with an easily-removed and sturdy mating connector, easily-removed earpiece speakers, and a simple removal mechanism for the face-pad.
Not everything was easy, however: the site docked points for hidden internal clips making removal of the dust shield a tricky process, a head-strap which cannot be removed without slicing through the headset fabric, and an intricate layout which makes it difficult to remove the lenses, display, and motherboard. Even with these in mind, though, the Oculus Rift CV1 scored 7 out of a possible 10 points on the site's repairability scale - the same score as Apple's iPhone 6, and far in excess of other popular devices such as HTC's One M8 smartphone.