Are you looking to buy a VR Headset ? Do you know what to consider before buying one?
Choosing a VR headset can be so confusing and tricky, if you are not familiar with VR Headset specifications and terminologies associated with them.
Resolution per eye, Field of View, Fresnel Lens, OLED Microdisplays, 6DoF, IPD Adjustment, Motion Blur, etc are some of VR Headset specifications and the list goes on.
In this blog post, I will deep dive into the common VR Headset specifications and terminologies mentioned on the VR headset spec sheet. You will also get to know how these VR Headset specifications and terminologies can affect your overall VR experience.
VR HEADSET SPECIFICATIONS
VR Headsets are gaining popularity among the common masses . The VR Headset specs and terms are quiet confusing. So, I have listed the most essential specs you need to know before you buy one.
- Refresh Rate
- Field of View (FOV)
- Tracking System
- Eye Tracking
- IPD Adjustment
- Pixel Per Degree (PPD)
All these VR Headset specifications will be explained in the upcoming sections.
Resolution is the first thing mentioned in any VR Headset specifications sheet. Resolution is not a new concept in the field of technology.
Resolution is the number of pixels a screen can display. Resolution can be broken down into three (3) components.
- Horizontal resolution
- Vertical resolution
- Diagonal Resolution
So, generally resolution is written as horizon resolution x vertical resolution. For example 1920 x 1080. This means the screen can display 1920 pixels horizontally and 10180 pixels vertically.
In VR headset specifications sheet resolution is usually mentioned in any of the two types.
- Resolution Per Eye (RPE)
- Total Resolution (TR) / Combined Resolution (CR)
RESOLUTION PER EYE
VR Headset has 2 lenses. Resolution Per Eye (RPE) is the resolution supported by one of the lenses or eyes. Some of the companies like Oculus or Meta specify the resolution per eye in the Oculus VR Specification sheet.
For example Oculus Quest 2 has 1832 x 1920 Resolution Per Eye.
TOTAL RESOLUTION | COMBINED RESOLUTION
On the other hand if the specification of VR headset doesn’t mention anything after the resolution, it means it is the total resolution of both the lenses.
For example, the Pico Neo 3 link has a resolution of 3664 x 1920. This is the total resolution of both the lenses.
RESOLUTION AND VR HEADSET
Now, you have got the basics of resolution of a VR headset. But, how to choose a VR headset based on resolution? Here is a quick hack to do so.
Higher number of pixels = Higher Resolution = Higher Clarity or Sharpness
Higher the number of pixels higher the resolution and higher the clarity or sharpness. So, better choose a VR headset with higher resolution.
When consumer headset was released in 2016, the resolution was relatively low but the standard of VR headset has been steadily increasing.
There are many types of display used in VR headsets. Display technology for headset is rapidly advancing but in this blog post, I will stick to the most 3 types of commonly used displays.
The most common types of displayed used in VR Headset are
- OLED Microdisplays
LCD displays are the most common types of displays used in modern VR Headsets like Oculus, HTC Vive, Valve Index, etc.
Refresh Rate is the number of times a display refreshes per second is known as refresh rate. The most common refresh rate of VR headset is 90 Hertz (Hz) but it is changing now.
VR headsets available today have 2 types of refresh rate.
- Fixed/Locked Refresh rate
- Switchable Refresh Rate
You can find the following refresh rates mentioned in VR Headset specifications sheet.
- 60 Hz
- 75 Hz
- 80 Hz
- 90 Hz
- 120 Hz
- 144 Hz
Higher the refresh rate smoother you will experience the Virtual reality (VR). Higher refresh rate VR headsets will be essential requirement in fully immersed metaverse.
Lenses in VR headsets allow you to focus your eyes on the display of a VR headset which is a few centimeters away.
There are 4 main types of VR headset used nowadays.
- Fresnel Lens
- Aspheric Lens
- Pancake Lens
- Prism Lens
Fresnel lens is the most common type of lens used in VR headsets.It is prominently used because these lenses can be made thinner and lighter than other types of lenses.
FIELD OF VIEW (FOV)
Field of View or FOV is the amount of natural vision available in any VR headset. The field of view is measured in degree. The limit of Field of vision of the human eye is 220 degrees.
The field of vision of a VR headset ranges from 90 degrees to 170 degrees. Oculus VR Headsets have around 90 degree field of view.
There are 2 types of Field of View
- Vertical Field of View
- Horizontal Field of View
- Diagonal Field of View
Usually the greater the Field of View (FOV) the better immersive experience you will feel while using the VR Headset. VR Headset with larger Field of View is best suited for metaverse.
It is one of the important VR Headset specifications. Tracking Systems tracks the various movements of a VR headset user. It allows the VR headset software system to render the next image based on the movement.
Based on the rendering of movements and position, the Degree of Freedom (DOF) concept is used. 2 DOF are employed in VR headsets nowadays.
There are 2 types of tracking system used in the VR headset nowadays.
- Outside In Tracking System
- Inside Out Tracking System
VR Headsets with 6DOF and Inside Out tracking system are more preferable.
Eye Tracking is advancing and now becoming available in more and more VR headsets. Integrated eye tracking will help in immersion and social experience in many metaverse projects.
Eye Tracking in VR headsets is very useful for Dynamic Foveated Rendering. Sony PSVR 2 will come with integrated eye tracking.
3D Audio or Spatial audio is generally the standard VR headset specification. Usually you will find 2 types of Audio system in VR headset
- Integrated Headphones
- Non-Integrated Headphones
Headphones provided HP Reverb G2 and Valve Index VR headsets have the best audio. Many VR headsets also provide a 3.5mm audio jack to use external headphones.
IPD or Inter Pupillary Distance is the distance between the center of the pupils of our right and left eye. IPD differs from person to person and the distance of the object you are looking at.
The average IPd of normal human eyes is taken as 55 mm. So, in VR Headsets the IPD Adjustment is an important specification.
IPD adjustment is the ability or functionality present in a VR headset to adjust the IPD. Usually IPD adjustment in VR headset are done through
In software adjustment, software allows images to be moved on the display to adjust the IPD. But in hardware adjustment there is a switch or button in the VR headset to control the distance between the 2 lenses thus adjusting the IPD.
These are some of the important VR headset specifications you should know before buying one. I will be updating in depth terms related to VR Headset specifications in this blog post. So, keep visiting metavetsetrooop.com where we share everything about metaverse and its related technologies.