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IMU Comparison

The community has been hard at work testing various IMUs for DIY SlimeVR trackers. A survey was held within the DIY community for a clearer picture of the current state of available IMUs. This page is based on user feedback and weighed against the survey, with scores showing the average answer given to the chip.



We rank these chips in the following categories: Reset Time, Cost, Availability and Build quality. These factors are meant to give a quick indication as to what to expect from various IMUs, your mileage may vary. For clarification purposes: If 3 out of 10 chips are dead on arrival or die during early use, we refer to that as poor build quality.


This is the IMU used in production slimes. They are reliable and stable chips, but at the time of writing they are impossible to find.

Please note these boards are both hard to get and may cost up to $80.

Reset time Cost Availability Build quality
30 - 60 min ~$60 Insufficient Excellent


Pros Cons
Accurate High price during shortages
Reliable Extra wiring required compared to MPUs
Smooth Expensive

Comment: Due to the chip shortage these are near impossible to find, please do not buy these at the listed prices.


Earlier version of the BNO085 without stabilisation firmware.

This chip does not have sufficient test results for a conclusive summary.

Reset time Cost Availability Build quality
1 -10 min ~$50 Mediocre Good


Pros Cons
Build Quality Expensive
Available Can supposedly lose tracking with rapid motion
Smooth Insufficient testing

Comment: Insufficient testing for a accurate description, but cannot compete with BNO085.


The MPU6050 is the current go-to alternative for DIY SlimeVR. Whilst being less reliable than BNO chips they offer a great value for money proposition and will get you started with SlimeVR for cheap.

Reset time Cost Availability Build quality
1 - 10 min ~$1.15 Sufficient Poor


Pros Cons
Cheap Higher drift rate
High availability Older technology
Smooth High failure rate

Comment: Order more than you need because of the higher failure rate, it is not uncommon to find 2 to 3 bad chips in a batch.


The MPU6500 is the middle ground of the MPU chips available. Even though it is a 6DOF sensor (same as the 6050), the drift time of the chips is a slight improvement over the MPU6050.

Reset time Cost Availability Build quality
5 - 10 min ~$7 Sufficient Mediocre


Pros Cons
Affordable High drift rate
Available More expensive than the 6050 counterpart
Smooth Failure rate inconsistent

Comment: Tracking slightly better than the MPU6050.


The MPU9250 (currently ran in several modes) is a newer installment of the MPU lineup. Whilst the MPU9250 does have a magnetometer, it is currently not being utilised.

Reset time Cost Availability Build quality
10 - 40 min ~$7 Sufficient Mediocre


Pros Cons
Affordable Prone to clones/counterfeit units
High availability Potentially sensitive to bad magnetic enviroments
Decent tracking Magnetometer not currently utilised

Comment: Some sellers sell clones which do not work, check reviews and place orders with care.


The ICM 20948 is a comparatively modern chip. While initial testing seems positive, this chip has not had enough field time for conclusive results.

Reset time Cost Availability Build quality
15 - 60 min ~$15 Sufficient Good


Pros Cons
Accurate Currently still in testing
Reliable Sensitive to bad magnetic enviroments
Smooth Availability is not guaranteed

Comment: Prone to some drift when moving really fast (in 6DoF mode).


The BMI 160 is a relatively new chip and has yet to be properly tested chip. The chip’s ratings could potentially improve with more testing.

Reset time Cost Availability Build quality
1 - 10min ~$2.50 Sufficient Good


Pros Cons
Cheap Currently still in testing
Reliable Equal to the MPU6050 with better Build quality

Comment: Still in very early stages of testing.


Created by Smeltie#1999, edited by #calliePepper#0666

A big thanks to everyone who took the time to fill out the survey.

Icons used in this document are provided by fork awesome.