OSVR’s new headset ups the hardware, goes toe-to-toe with Rift and Vive

osvr hdk2 headset improved resolution osvr2
The second generation of the OSVR developer kit headset has been detailed by third-party manufacturers like Razer, which plan to have the new headset and its various components available for purchase by July. OSVR, which stands for Open Source Virtual Reality, is an initiative which, as its name more than implies, is seeking to bring open-source software and hardware to the virtual reality development community. The upgrades are designed to bring the headset in line with the specifications of both the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive headsets — though it does still lack room-scale tracking and motion controllers.

Termed the OSVR Hacker Development Kit 2 (HDK2), the headset sports a new pair of low-persistence OLED panels, with a combined resolution of 2,160 x 1,200p (the same as both aforementioned commercial headsets). They also operate at 90Hz, meaning the headset can support that 90-frames-per-second minimum that most developers are targeting with their VR experiences.

The field of view is listed by Engadget as 110 degrees.

We’re also told that it uses Image Quality Enhancement, or IQE, to help reduce what’s known as the “screen door effect.” That’s when the lines between pixels become visible due to the proximity of the user’s eyes to the displays, materializing much like the view you get when looking through a screen door. This was almost eliminated by both HTC/Valve and Oculus with their headsets, so likely much the same has happened with the OSVR headset.

Related: Acer puts its bets on open-source VR, touts support for Razer’s OSVR in latest gaming PCs

Everything else with the HDK2 is the same as the previous developer kit, though if you bought one a year ago it may be that the stock configuration has been upgraded by this point. It comes with version 1.4 of the infrared Faceplate which, when combined with the 100Hz infrared camera, allows for positional tracking and multi-directional movement. It can also be combined with a Leap Motion to add hand-tracking as well.

The HDK2 also comes equipped with the ability to adjust focusing for each eye to make it easier to customize the experience for the user, catering to between +4.5 and -2 for those who are long- or short-sighted.

Although not available just yet, the HDK2 will go on sale in July priced at $400. The OSVR face-plate upgrade with Leap Motion will set buyers back a further $75.

The developers hope that with the new HDK2 and an influx of $5 million in development funds from the likes of Razer, more companies will begin producing their own OSVR headsets, making virtual reality a much more open platform for development and innovation.

Mobile

From the road to your wrist, see how Android has evolved over the past 10 years

Android started out as just a mobile operating system, but 10 years in it's pretty much everywhere. Check out our round-up of all the different Android variations that have cropped up so far, and what might be coming in the future.
Virtual Reality

Oculus Rift vs. HTC Vive: Prices drop, but our favorite stays the same

The Oculus Rift and HTC Vive are the two big names in the virtual reality arena, but most people can only afford one. Our comparison tells you which is best when you pit the Oculus Rift vs. HTC Vive.
News

Listen up! White noise device may make VR motion sickness a thing of the past

A simple device that sends white noise vibrations to the inner ear could be all it takes to fix the long-running problem of nausea in virtual reality. The developers are now seeking FDA approval.
Product Review

The Black Shark gaming phone takes a big bite out of your free time, but the software sinks it

The world is being treated to an ever-increasing number of high-powered gaming phones. With so many great options already out, is there room for another? The Black Shark thinks so. But is it any good? We find out.
Computing

Hololens 2 could give the Always Connected PC a new, ‘aggressive’ form

Microsoft is said to be leaning on Qualcomm to power its Hololens 2 headset. Instead of Intel CPUs, the next Hololens could use a Snapdragon 850 processor, allowing it to benefit from the always-connected features.
Computing

Oculus VR could upgrade the Rift with a new display in 2019

Oculus could be set to release a new version of its Rift headset in 2019, but it will be more of a modest upgrade than a true sequel. The Rift S, as its purportedly called, will have a new display, and inside-out tracking.
Mobile

Google awarded patent for using eye tracking to detect expressions in VR

Google was awarded a patent that involves using eye tracking to infer facial expressions using machine learning in virtual reality. The tech could help make virtual reality a whole lot more immersive than it already is.
Gaming

Immerse yourself in a new universe with these incredible PSVR games

The PSVR has surpassed expectations and along with it comes an incredible catalog of games. There's plenty of amazing experiences to be had so we've put together a list of the best PSVR games available today.
Virtual Reality

Prototype Valve VR headset leaked: HTC Vive challenger confirmed?

Leaked images revealed that a Valve VR headset is in development, even amid Valve's partnership with HTC for the HTC Vive. Sources confirmed the device, which may be bundled with a Half-Life VR game.
Virtual Reality

Is the Vive Pro better than the original Vive? Our answer might surprise you

HTC Vive vs. Vive Pro, which comes out on top? That's the subject of our latest comparison, which looks at everything from tracking solutions, to controllers, and the brand new headset that could set a new standard for VR.
Gaming

The best HTC Vive games available today

So you’re considering an HTC Vive, but don't know which games to get? Our list of 25 of the best HTC Vive games will help you out, whether you're into rhythm-based gaming, interstellar dogfights, or something else entirely.
Computing

A Google patent shows a way to make VR even more immersive

Virtual reality can be a really immersive experience, but it does sometimes it does have boundaries. Google has addressed this problem by patenting shoes with a flexible region on the bottom.
Virtual Reality

Think virtual reality is just for games? These awesome apps will change your mind

Virtual reality isn't all about gaming. Swim with turtles, paint in 3D, and immerse yourself in some unique experiences the platform has to offer with our curated list of the best VR apps.
Gaming

Dive head first into the best experiences available now on the Oculus Rift

The Oculus Rift brought back virtual reality and put a modern twist to it. Grab your Touch Controllers, put on your VR headset, and jump into the fun with some of the best Oculus Rift games available now.