The complete HTC Vive setup, including motion controllers, base stations, and headsets, is an impressive collection of hardware. It works well on its own, but it can also benefit from a wide range of accessories made specifically for VR. Unfortunately, a lot of accessories demand a high price, which is why we rounded up here a dozen of the best options that won't cost more than $20.
Hyperkin's purpose-made skins for the HTC Vive add an extra layer of protection, while also coating them with a personal flair. Made out of thick silicone, the skins should help prevent any surface-level damage, including bumps and scratches. Special cutouts ensure that no sensors are blocked from view of the base stations.
Don't drill holes in your walls
Yes, this is a $40 purchase, but it includes two light stand kits that are compatible with your Vive's base stations. These are ideal if you'd rather not drill holes in your walls for the base station mounts, and they even come with a handy travel bag. They extend up to 7.5 feet, meaning they should work with just about anyone who wants to give the Vive a try.
There's nothing worse than foggy or dirty Vive lenses. They obstruct your ability to focus on the action in the headset properly, and frankly, they're just gross. These cloths from SecurOMax won't scratch your Vive's lenses and you'll be glad you have them on hand after a couple of sessions.
Dealing with foggy Vive lenses is a serious pain and a problem that affects a large majority of VR users. Heading into the Vive can be a physical endeavor, and having what is essentially a hot mask over your face doesn't lend itself well to ventilation. To help cut down on the fog that ruins games and causes frustration, try applying some anti-fog spray to your lenses once in a while.
Get your cables off the floor
If you're sick of tripping over your VR cables — especially if you've added extensions — this cable management system from KIWI can help. You stick retractable cables to the ceiling and feed your Vive cable through the eyelets, and from there it's on autopilot. You'll still have enough slack to move around, but not enough so that the cables are in your way.
This silicone skin wraps around the front of your Vive, protecting it from scratches and bumps lest you run into a wall or drop it on the floor. It also adds a bit of style. Precise cutouts for all sensors on the headset ensure that they can see the base station's IR output at all times for uninterrupted tracking.
Extra length for power cables
The Vive's Lighthouse tracking system includes two base stations that must be plugged into a wall outlet, and the cable included might not be ideal for everyone. If you don't have a wall outlet nearby, you can grab this thin and light 5-meter cable extension. It's not nearly as bulky as a standard extension cable, and it matches the rest of the hardware.
Facial comfort and hygiene
The foam facial gaskets that come with the Vive quickly get gunked up with sweat and oil, and transferring a headset back and forth between players can be unhygienic. This two-pack of PU-leather foam replacements won't soak up sweat, they're comfortable, and they let you get closer to the display. The only thing to keep in mind is that glasses might not work well with these.
Stylize your Vive
You might not care what your Vive setup looks like once inside, but for everyone else to see, there are vinyl decals from MightySkins. There are plenty of designs to choose from, and each purchase includes wraps for controllers, base stations, and the headset, giving you a matching VR setup.
Keep base stations adjustable
Most of the inexpensive light stands you come across won't include ball joints at the top, which can be an issue for those attaching Vive base stations. You always want to have the best angle on the action, which this affordable product can provide. Each pack contains two ball joints, and installation is about as easy as possible.
Clamp your base stations anywhere
To keep things extra portable, consider these base station clamp mounts from Hyperkin. The Vive base stations screw on and can be adjusted thanks to a ball joint, and the sturdy spring keeps things in place. If you'd rather not carry around light stands, these are a great alternative as long as you can find a place to clamp onto.
Easier use of your Vive's USB-A port
Most Vive users agree that this cable should be bundled with the Vive; alas, it is not. If you plan on using the USB-A port on your Vive's headset for just about anything (perhaps a mic or Leap Motion?), this 17.7-inch male to female USB-A extension will make your life much easier. It's built by HTC, so you know it's compatible.
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All of the above accessories can benefit your HTC Vive, and though they're all relatively affordable, you're probably not looking at a bulk buy. If you're wondering where to start, we recommend checking out Hyperkin's silicone Vive controller skins (opens in new tab) for that extra layer of protection against bumps and scratches. These should lengthen the life of your controllers and provide a better grip when games get frantic. We also recommend checking out Fovitec's collapsible light stands (opens in new tab). They're a $40 buy, but you get two stands and a carrying case, which purchased separately would be a lot more. They're an ideal alternative to putting a bunch of holes in your walls, and they make it easy to set up your Vive temporarily, whether at home or at a friend's party.
For a bunch of other Vive hardware that doesn't necessarily fit into the spending limit, be sure to check out our roundup of the best overall HTC Vive accessories.