7 VR rivals to give Oculus Rift a virtual reality check
Oculus has just announced the latest version of its Rift virtual reality headset – Crescent Bay.
It may have kickstarted a virtual reality revival, but Oculus isn't the only game in town; we take a look at its biggest challengers.
Early Oculus Rift units used AMOLED screens taken from Samsung Galazy S4s - but the vrAse takes the concept further. The screen and processing power of the headset is a Galaxy S4. Or an HTC One. Or an Xperia Z- any smartphone with a screen between 3.5 and 6.3in, although between 5 and 6in is best. Inside the headset are lenses, which take any side-by-side signal on the phone and split it for each eye.
While most VR headsets require a PC to munch through the binary, or a smartphone to be slotted in the front to also provide the visuals, GameFace's effort is a combo of the two. The 5.5in 2560X1440 display (2K resolution) is built-in but it also does grunt work onboard with a Qualcom Snapdragon procesor, console-quality Tegra K1 graphics and Android Jelly Bean OS.
Cmoar’s modular make-up means you can change the lenses inside depending on what you’re using it for. The VR lenses offer a 95º field of vision provided by whatever phone you’ve positioned in the front section. The other lens sets are for movies: one offers the equivalent of an 80in 3D screen from two metres away and another mimics a standard, 125in full HD screen from the same distance.
True Player Gear Totem
True Player Gear Totem
While VR isn’t necessarily all about graphics, if your computer’s struggling to push the required number of pixels the experience will suffer. So Totem might be the VR headset for you. It has hardware acceleration onboard, relieving some of the strain from your computer to make sure there’s no lag. It also has a pair of cameras that look like eyes. Eventually they’ll also be used for positional tracking.
Altergaze’s headset doesn’t look like this picture. At least, it doesn’t have to. While it requires a smartphone to provide the pixels and power, the chassis itself is 3D-printed and can be customised via the company’s website, with a whopping 8.4 million possible combinations. It comes with a set of lenses that always provide a Rift-beating 110º field of vision, no matter which phone you’ve got inserted.