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HTC and HP team up for Vive starter kit, complete with gaming laptop

HTC and HP want to make it easier for people without a gaming PC to jump on the virtual reality bandwagon. The two companies have announced a bundle that pairs a Vive headset with a gaming desktop, giving newcomers just about everything they need to get started with VR.

The bundle will contain a HTC Vive headset and its accompanying peripherals, as well as a HP Envy gaming laptop. The package will retail for $1,500 when it’s made available in time for the holiday season.

The rig boasts an Intel Core i5-6400 processor, 8GB of RAM, and an AMD Radeon RX 480 graphics card. In terms of storage, there’s a 128GB SSD as well as a 1TB hard drive, and a Windows 10 Home licence is included as standard. Two games are also included; Valve’s compilation of room-scale VR experiments The Lab, and the first episode of the underwater exploration experience theBlu.

Related: Master virtual reality with these tips and tricks for the HTC Vive

These specs meet the minimum requirements for experiencing VR content using the Vive headset, even if they’re not particularly impressive in their own right. There are perhaps some questions to be asked about whether the system will still be capable enough in a couple of years time, but at the price point, it’s not a bad deal.

The Vive headset itself costs $800 at retail, which sets the asking price for the Envy desktop at $700. The components used cost around $800 without factoring in any assembly costs, according to a report from Tech Spot.

All in all, the bundle is a straightforward way of getting VR ready if you don’t already own a capable PC. It’s perhaps possible to get more bang for your buck by assembling a system yourself, but the simplicity of buying a prebuilt desktop will no doubt appeal to many.