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VRmark’s new Cyan Room test will put your computer through the wringer

Software benchmarking company Futuremark announced a new addition to its collection of colorful scenes in a virtual reality-centric test, VRmark, known as the Cyan Room. With lighting that inspired its name, the new test is DirectX12 compatible and features complex scenery with a number of eye-catching — and demanding — effects that will test if your system is ready for top-tier VR.

Making sure your system can handle virtual reality is as simple or as complicated as you like. You can look at the basic requirements of each headset, or you could run several benchmarks to test them. Although Valve offered one of the earliest VR benchmarks, several others have since stepped up to fill that niche and Futuremark, as always, is one of the front-runners. Its VRMark benchmark is set to get that bit better on Wednesday, November 22.

A key component of the Cyan Room is that it supports the latest version of DirectX, which much like the Vulkan API, is much smarter with how it handles draw cells and multiple CPU cores. This VRMark extension will help show developers the benefits of supporting these kinds of APIs in virtual reality.

As part of the settings menu for VRMark, there will be options for adjusting resolution and detail levels, letting users find that sweet spot between beauty and performance. You will be able to analyze your system’s performance frame by frame using the software’s reporting system too.

For those looking to see what it is actually like to experience the Cyan Room in VR, you can put your headset on and use the “Experience mode,” function. That will not only give you an up-close-and-personal look at the new benchmark, it will also engage any necessary frame-rate-saving technologies like Oculus’ asynchronous spacewalk.

Non-VR users can have a go with it too, which might be a good idea before putting money down on a new headset.

Although the requirements for PC-based virtual reality are lessening all the time as companies like Oculus and HTC optimize their hardware and software, it’s good to see companies developing tests for much more demanding experiences. The current generation of headsets is soon to be supplanted by much higher-resolution alternatives like Pimax’s 8K headsets, so it won’t be long before the requirements for top-tier VR are much, much more strenuous.

Whatever headset you’re running, or even if you’re not, the VRMark Cyan Room benchmark scene will be available to all on Wednesday, November 22. VRMark Basic Edition is available now for free, while those who want the Advanced Edition will need to shell out $20.

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Jon Martindale
Jon Martindale is the Evergreen Coordinator for Computing, overseeing a team of writers addressing all the latest how to…
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