When most people think of their ideal VR system, they think of the HTC Vive. This system allows for full-room motion tracking, so you can physically move around as you interact with VR. As one of the most expensive systems on the market, the HTC Vive is mostly just used among hardcore virtual reality enthusiasts. If you are wondering whether or not the HTC VR headset lives up to the hype, keep reading this article! We will take an in-depth look at the specs and design of the Vive, to see if it is as good as some people claim.
HTC VR Headset: Specs
|Resolution||1080×1200 per eye|
|Field of View||110 degrees|
|Sensors||Gyroscope, Accelerometer, front-facing camera, and Lighthouse laser tracking system|
|Controls||HTC Vive motion controllers, PC compatible gamepad|
|Platform||VivePort, Steam VR|
Display specs for the Vive are quite similar to other VR headsets, but its vast amount of sensors, and its powerful tracking and physics software are the truly unique aspects of Vive. The price might seem a bit overwhelming, but keep in mind that you do get the full system, instead of having to buy each sensor and controller as a standalone product. The complete Vive system includes a variety of sensors and controllers that track your motion as you move through the room.
Everything for the system is run by your computer, so the visual performance really depends on your PC. For optimal performance, Vive recommends that users have at least an i5-4590 or AMD FX 8350 processor, 4 GB Ram, and a graphics card of NVIDIA GeFOrce GTX 1060 equivalent or better. Without a good computer, the display may lag slightly.
Pros & Cons
HTC VR Headset: Design & Requirements
Most of the components of the Vive, including headphones, sensors, controls, and the headset, all come in the package, but you will need your own computer that is powerful enough. The computer will use the Vive software to track the 32 motion sensors located on the headset. This headset is a thick, curved piece of black plastic that contains a camera for augmented reality, and a button to adjust the distance between the two lenses on the inside. It uses a three-strap design to position the visor over the head, and then a cable connects it to the computer.
HTC VR Headset: Controls & Display
Vive’s display features a pleasantly crisp resolution, and a smooth refresh rate, but it is nothing unique. The most innovative aspect of the HTC Vive is really its controls and sensors. Roughly 70 sensors in the headset, controls, and standalone sensors work to track the user in a roughly 30 square-foot area. In addition to head and body movements, the user gains more precise control with the 9-inch long wands that they hold in each hand. These wands are topped with a circular touchpad, and they also contain several triggers, menu buttons, home buttons, and other controls.
HTC VR Headset: Setup
Setting up the system can take half an hour the first time you do it. Users start by installing the Vive software on their computer, which will walk them through the steps. You will need to connect the headset and link box to your computer before syncing the controllers. The next step is setting up two “base stations” that serve as a reference point while the user moves about. These stations should be positioned diagonally to each other, at a distance of no more than 16-feet apart. Once this is ready, you simply need to adjust the headset straps.
HTC VR Headset: User Experience
Most users are quite enthusiastic about the Vive. This HTC VR system creates a virtual reality experience that seems more realistic than other available headsets. Users find that being able to move around within the game space allows them to feel completely immersed. The software uses very realistic physics that help to further improve the realism. There are plenty of games available for HTC Vive, so users do not get bored. The only issue that seems to bother most users is the headset cable. When actively moving around, it can become a tripping hazard, but most find that they get used to it, eventually.
Despite its hefty price, the HTC VR headset definitely lives up to the user expectations. Being able to walk, run, and jump around in a completely virtual world is an incredible experience. Purchasing and setting up the system is a huge commitment, but if you want the most innovative VR gaming technology available, the Vive is the right choice. It does more than any other virtual reality system, and has a decent amount of content for it. How do you feel about the HTC Vive? Let us know in the comment section below!