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Displays Games

A 2560x1440 VR Headset That's Mobile 135

New submitter oldmildog writes: "GameFace Labs may very well be the furthest along in the quest to create a mobile VR headset. It's based on Android, and their latest prototype is the first VR headset (mobile or tethered) to include a 2560x1440 display, with 78% more pixels than 1080p based VR headsets like the Oculus Rift DK2. CEO Ed Mason said, 'The upgrade to 1280 x 1440 per eye is monumental. Individual pixels are hard to detect at first glance, making it a more immersive and comfortable experience in every single game and experience that we've tried. A lot of the ‘presence’ described by devs at the Valve [prototype VR headset] demonstration can be attributed to their use of higher resolution (and lower persistence) panels, which has a noticeable impact in suspending disbelief and tricking the brain."
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A 2560x1440 VR Headset That's Mobile

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  • Transparent OLED (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Charliemopps ( 1157495 ) on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @08:31PM (#46700577)

    These things really aren't going to hit their stride until they start using Transparent OLED displays so instead of cloaking you in VR it's overlays info on the real world.

    • Re:Transparent OLED (Score:5, Informative)

      by ensignyu ( 417022 ) on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @08:43PM (#46700641)

      Then it'd be Augmented Reality (AR), not Virtual Reality (VR).

      • Would be cool to have them combined. Flick a switch on your AR headset and the outside world is blocked out (with a change in optics?) turning it into a VR headset.

        (Don't know how enough about the implementations. I expect they work very differently. But still, it would be cool if they could be combined.)

        • by drkim ( 1559875 )

          Would be cool to have them combined. Flick a switch on your AR headset and the outside world is blocked out (with a change in optics?) turning it into a VR headset.

          (Don't know how enough about the implementations. I expect they work very differently. But still, it would be cool if they could be combined.)

          Not particularly hard. Flip an opaque sheet down into the field of view. (This could be display tech dependent, of course..)

        • Already done :)
          http://technicalillusions.com/... [technicalillusions.com]
      • Not to be confused with Pirate Reality (ARRR).

    • by catmistake ( 814204 ) on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @09:03PM (#46700739) Journal

      These things really aren't going to hit their stride until they start using Transparent OLED displays so instead of cloaking you in VR it's overlays info on the real world.

      Nope... that's not going to help them "hit their stride," or become the next radio, TV, iPod, etc. No manufacturer of HMD has yet figured out what they have. They are getting hints from their R&D, but they, and everyone, are so excited about how cool VR is that they are ignoring the mechanism that allows immersive VR to occur, and it has nothing to do with the resolution of the display components. It has to do with the human brain, our capacity for the suspension of belief, not of our conscious mind only, but of the semi-conscious awareness of what ALL our senses (not just the regular suspects) are reporting. In the research and science of brain and mind is where the breakthroughs will occur. Also, as in all technology weighted heavily towards vision, gaming will not drive this forward to manufacturers hopes of a regular, ordinary consumer device that everyone will soon have just like a TV. Only the pornography industry will do that, as only it always has and and only it always will.

      • \o/ internet pr0n is going to be even better!

      • Film: Not popularized by porn
        TV: Not popularized by porn
        8mm movies: Not popularized by porn
        VCRs: Not popularized by Porn
        Beta: Yes it also had porn just as much as VHS
        Video Games Machines: Not popularized by porn
        DVDs: Not popularized by porn
        Online Streaming Video: Not popularized by porn
        Blu-Rays: Not popularized by porn
        Bittorrent pirating: Not popularized by porn
        Streaming Devices: Not popularized by porn (are there even any legit porn channels, at all, for any device?)

        Porn was basically the only thing to use

      • not of our conscious mind only, but of the semi-conscious awareness

        what you're saying is that subliminal advertising is where its at :(

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Your comment shows a complete lack of understanding of the differences VR and AR. You're asking for AR - things like the Epson Movario Bt200 (which is pretty much the product you're asking for) and Google Glass. VR are things like Occulus and this.

      The problem with AR are several, but chief among them are:
      - Latency. For your eyes to be fooled into correctly overlaying things, the camera needs to capture the image (let photons accumulate on a sensor), then move the image to RAM, the CPU then needs to proce

      • I suspect AR will initially come in the form of laser-projected image on the retina that is currently being worked on by the military. Seems like I've heard some pretty impressive things out of that corner. Expensive, but it actually monitors your eye and adapts to keep the image always in focus. Then there's the interference-pattern based lenses, of which I remember almost nothing except that I'm pretty sure they had something to do with letting your eye see the focused image at a completely different d

    • by Xicor ( 2738029 )
      that wont happen for a while. the pattent owner for oleds is being paid to hold onto his patent and not let anyone do anything with it.
    • by mellon ( 7048 )

      Unlikely. Easier to use video cameras to do the overlay. Less worry about matching light levels. It would certainly be cool if we could get a version of this that was more like a pair of Oakley shades than a giant set of opaque goggles, but I'm skeptical that such a thing will be useful.

    • Let me know when someone starts making OLEDs.

      They've all but stopped production. My guess is that there are far too many LCD panels sitting in warehouses to change the tech to OLED.

      • by Guspaz ( 556486 )

        Huh? Most mobile phones use OLED displays, most upcoming VR headsets (including the Oculus Rift DK2 and consumer version and Sony's Project Morpheus) use or will be using OLED displays, and you can now buy OLED TVs at various sizes (cost still hasn't come down to consumer levels yet).

    • How would you keep the overlay in focus while you are concentrating on objects in the distance?
    • Why transparent? Add camera and present image on the screen

  • I don't think this headset is first. I think I recall palmer or cormack talking about 4k when they discussed the headsets they tried prior to developing the rift. That 4k was one of the requirements for some defense application. I suppose this might be the first prototype 2.5k display whose parts cost less than 10 grand.
    • Didn't Oculus say the DK2 was 1080p, and that specific substantially higher-resolution hardware had already been selected for the commercial version? Seems to me that implies at *least* 2.5k, and presumably they have actually tested the hardware in their own labs and are just keeping quiet about the details, which would put them at least on par with these guys, who it sounds like are only at the early internal prototype stage themselves.

      • Yes, Oculus isn't stopping at 1080p, they said they need at least 1440p, but might go higher, and might possibly have multiple versions that are more expensive but have higher resolution.
      • by Guspaz ( 556486 )

        There are no 4K OLED displays of the appropriate size in existence, let alone ready for integration into a product (Palmer's said this on Reddit to boot), so it's likely that CV1 will be 2.5K.

  • by mgemmons ( 972332 ) on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @08:45PM (#46700651) Homepage
    Display resolution is not the hard-to-solve problem. This quote from John Carmack sums it up best:

    The latency between the physical movement of a users head and updated photons from a head mounted display reaching their eyes is one of the most critical factors in providing a high quality experience. Human sensory systems can detect very small relative delays in parts of the visual or, especially, audio fields, but when absolute delays are below approximately 20 milliseconds they are generally imperceptible.

    According to the article

    [...]the latest GameFace SDK significantly reduces latency to a point that it is easily comparable to the DK1. The company plans to benchmnark their latency soon to get a quantitative latency figure.

    Notice that is DK1 latency, not DK2. DK1's latency was notoriously bad and made many people nauseous. So, while I'm happy to see competition in this space, as far as GameFace is concerned, there is not a lot to see here yet.

    • Wouldn't the refresh rate be the greater factor over resolution in reducing latency? I don't see the connection with resolution and latency.

      • by Immerman ( 2627577 ) on Wednesday April 09, 2014 @12:10AM (#46701763)

        I think that's exactly what they said. Resolution is an easy problem to solve. Lots of high-res screens out there. Latency is a far more challenging problem as it involves the entire system from head tracking, to rendering, to projection. And even just for the screen's contribution to latency, refresh rate is only a small part of the equation. A 60Hz panel refreshes 60 times per second (~17ms), but there may well be substantial internal latency between receiving the new frame and actually updating the image.

        Think HD TVs where the refresh rate may be even higher at 120Hz, or even 240Hz (4ms), but you may see several hundred ms of latency between when an image change is sent to the TV and when the change appears onscreen - hence the need to calibrate the Rock Band, etc. timing-based games to your TV. That latency is mostly in the image-processing circuitry rather than the screen itself, but it illustrates the point.

        And then there's ghosting to consider as well - just because the screen refreshes once every 17ms doesn't mean the previous image is completely gone yet, you may actually see the "remains" of several previous frames on screen at any given time, especially where there's sharp changes in brightness. And that latency in removing previous images can be nauseating as well, even when gaming on a normal monitor.

    • by Twinbee ( 767046 )
      Finally. Something that gets hardware and software devs to care about latency. For too long, software, mobile phones, games, monitors and tons of other gadgets have often exhibited latency above 50-100ms. I'm hoping the tech will trickle down from VR headets to other devices so we can end the madness once and for all.

      10ms would be better by the way as even 16ms can be perceptible [music.tuc.gr] by many.
    • Human sensory systems can detect very small relative delays in parts of the visual or, especially, audio fields

      Funny, I'd have thought the auditory systems were less sensitive to delays. You only have to be 13m away from something for the audio to be "delayed" by one video frame (1/25 of a second) in real life.

  • by DMJC ( 682799 )
    Resolution is pretty much everything with VR headsets. The only problem I see with this headset is that it won't have much content for a long time. Unless they can port CryEngine 3 for example, there won't be a copy of Star Citizen running on it. It's big-name PC titles that are going to drive VR. This headset needs to support getting content from a PC. Not just it's own Android based content.
    • by Osgeld ( 1900440 ) on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @09:21PM (#46700865)

      resolution is really not even that big of a deal (course you would know that if you have used one... ever) its input lag, poor focus, weight, cables and refresh rate.

      After all that you dont give a shit if the image is a bit grainy

      • by DMJC ( 682799 )
        Actually I did use one last year in July, it was an oculus Rift V1 devkit, and for me it WAS the resolution. seeing large black bars, and not enough detail sucked, Frankly I didn't care about the motion tracking/depth of field stuff because my eyes were too busy trying to get around the giant freaking pixels. They really need to fix the pixel density which is the easy part. The latency and refresh stuff they will naturally solve over time. But if they can't get the pixel density high enough in the first pla
    • Latency counts: People were happily fragging cyberdemons back in the Doom days; and you could practically cut your wrists on pixels that size; but a nontrivial portion of the population can't, even with nontrivial effort of will, suppress the nausea and sometimes vomiting associated with mismatches between motion perceived by the inner ear and motion inferred visually.

      More resolution is better, and with smartphone screens locked in an arms race it can't be all that expensive to provide; but the product t
    • If a personal gaming device, like a PSP or Genesis, was released built into a VR headset people would buy it. I don't know if it would be the next big thing; but, I can see it being sufficiently successful.

  • by Osgeld ( 1900440 ) on Tuesday April 08, 2014 @09:19PM (#46700859)

    I hate it when I have to bolt my VR helmet to the floor, now I can get a neck-ache with 78% more pixles while it runs on a phone that has about the same horsepower as a decade old computer!

    the future is finally here!

    • The next version will have 47% more than 26% neck-ache annually. That's down from last year - hold your applause.

  • Low motion latency (not above half the frame interval) is far more important than resolution. None of these headsets are there yet.
  • Lol, Zuckerberg bought the wrong one.
  • Excellent idea making a headset with a Display that is HD-res or better per eye, however very bad idea including the computer in the headset too. I wish they would have just made it a display device that had good tracking.

  • What's "mobile" about it? Runs on batteries? Plays crappy cellphone games? No. It's cordless.

    That's good, but it has nothing to do with mobile phones. Even GameFace uses the term "cordless", not "mobile".

    The site is kind of vague on what processing takes place in the headgear, and what takes place on the external WiFi connected device where, presumably, the game is playing. This thing is only worth the trouble if the game behind it is rendering very fast and has very high resolution content, and the lat

  • The resolution of these types of devices is a huge factor in whether or not I would find them acceptable to use, but the field of view they have is an even bigger factor. With very inexpensive monitors I can have a combined display that takes up a very large portion of my horizontal vision. I currently have three 24" monitors that give me a combined field of view of 123 degrees in their current configuration, with a 5760x1080 resolution also being a plus. Going to a VR headset with a FOV of only 90 degre

    • by Guspaz ( 556486 )

      Having experienced both VR headsets (with 90-110 degree FOVs) and the surround-yourself-by-lots-of-2D-monitors approach, throwing LCD monitors at the problem doesn't hold a candle to the immersion/presence the VR headset gets. There's more to experiencing presence than a big horizontal FoV. A VR headset also gets you the horizontal FOV, gets rid of gaps between monitors, blocks out stuff outside the monitors, provides you with stereoscopy, the head tracking gives you the possibility of parallax, etc.

      • A larger field of view by turning your head is not the same thing as a larger field of view at once. If I can't have both, I choose larger field of view at once. And, btw, you can do 3D with monitors. And I don't notice the bezel gaps while I'm racing on iRacing. I notice the track in front of me and the large FOV means I can see the cars beside me. It would be great to be able to turn my head to see even better beside me, but most of the time peripheral vision is enough for that use. But that absolut

        • by Guspaz ( 556486 )

          I'm not talking about enhanced field of view by turning around (although that's definitely a bonus), but about the subtle sensations that enhance presence by having the small movements of your head reflected in terms of parallax changes and such.

          3D displays work poorly for the use case that you describe, because they all assume that your head is perfectly still, facing the monitor, dead-centre. It doesn't account for any movement or different position of your head whatsoever(so it probably doesn't work for

          • Plenty of 'iRacers' have multiple 3D monitors. It works fine.

            I have no doubt that your 'sense of presence' might be better with a VR headset, but to say I will not get a sense of presence with three monitors in front of me is ridiculous. You say don't discount VR's VRness. I say don't discount wide FOV for vastly improving the immersiveness factor, too. My view of the race track in this particular sim (thanks to its display calculator in the graphics options) gives me a 1:1 view of the sim world. It wo

  • And here I feared for a second that Facebook killed VR.

    This is good news.

  • Wow, that's neat, can I buy it and add to my existing collection of VR and AR gear I've been using since Quake and Descent came out about two decades ago?

    I mean, I have mobile ready VR already, it's pretty cool, and doesn't have to look like I've strapped a toaster to my face... [vuzix.com] That high resolution is nifty, but how is it on battery life? That's the main thing for me, FoV isn't really that big of a deal since most receptors are concentrated in the center of your visual field anyway. Also, in my albeit li

  • Can't wait for my Bike HUD headset with rearview camera, speed, gps, heart rate, RPM, and automated machine gun targeting display!

    That will be SO cool!

Research is what I'm doing when I don't know what I'm doing. -- Wernher von Braun