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Not what I expected


nandrews

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I attended a demo of the Vive at PCWorld Croydon (UK) yesterday. I am already convinced on VR in general, but was concerned for the fit with spectacles that I wear.

But I was rather disappointed with the resolution of the headset video. I had expected it to be clear, but there was a large degree of 'fuzziness' to what I saw. I could read the menu text OK although as I say it wasn't sharp.

I was even more surprised when I tried adjusting the focus moving the lenses backwards and forwards or the IPD(?) moving the lenses apart left and right. I assumed they would make a difference to my perception of  the 'fuzziness', but in fact they didn't seem make any difference at all, good or bad!

So I am a bit puzzled now. I see lots of enthusiasm from other people using the Vive, but can they all be accepting the lack of sharpness to the video. The VR aspect is certainly convincing, so maybe for that, people are willing to sacrifice something.

For me, unless I got a bad demo, I will wait another year for things to improve.

 

Nigel

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I don't know what demo you have played but i can tell you this.

Some games are sharper than others and some games have supersampling setting in the menu for you to adjust. Supersampling helps alot! You can adjust supersampling yourself in steam vr settings so everything you see or play looks sharper but you need a beefy pc!

In the beginning the pixels bothered me but when you get into a game you don't even notice it anymore exept for looking at things far away or small text.. This is first generation hardware. In a few years we will have a bigger field of view and resolution! But for now i am more than happy with it..

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While there is some fuzziness.. usually noticed while reading text or looking at objects in the distance.. for most people it isn't that bad. As mentioned above, you can mess around with super sampling, etc.. to improve it.  But at the end of the day, due to current affordable display tech limits, it is what it is. Oh, and I would recommend trying the demo again without your glasses. Many people find they don't need them in VR since it is all close range. I can easily see how some glasses could become super magnifying glasses in a VR headset.

 

Most likely, I am thinking the headset just wasn't adjusted correctly for you. If you get another demo and it looks wonky.. try with your hand just pushing the headset tight against your face. That should give you what the optics should look like at it's best. Then adjust the straps until you get the same look without holding it with your hand. It is easy for it to be too lose or not put on correctly and get bad optics. 

 

 

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Thanks to you both for your replies.

I am glad it works well for you.

I guess I had gone in with an expectation of the clarity that I have been used to on a 1080 PC screen. When of course this res has to stretch to fill the entire field of view in the headset.

So I was wrong to expect more.

The PCW guy doing the demo wasn't 100% clued up on it, so I may well have not seen it at it's best.

But I doubt I will drive the 40miles back to the store to give them another chance.

I wear specs for both distance and reading, aswell as an intermediate pair for PC screen. So I am probably expecting too much.

I am still surprised that adjusting the distance of the lenses and the IPD (seperation) didn't make any noticeable difference! Using binoculars as an similar experience I would expect adjust the IPD to make a big change aswell as adjusting difference would make it go from out of focus, thru' focused to out of focus.

As you may be able to tell, I did want the headset to look good and I was close to saying "I'll take it". But I felt the fuzzy appearance would become a bigger disappointment once I got it home.

The PC I have for it has rated high on the Steam VR evaluation test.

I will look again in a year and hopefully the perfomance will have improved.

Thanks

Nigel 

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In a year or so, I am 100% sure their will be products with improvements in headset display resolution.

 

The part though that some people forget, is that it is highly likely your current PC probably won't be up to the task to run it. If you've been a PC gamer for any length of time, your most likely aware of that and accepted that fact. But to non-PC gamers, they tend not to realize newer tech often require newer pcs as well. 

 

Just letting you know, so you remember to save up for a new PC too in that time. It's the same boat we are all in for the next VR upgrade when it does come.

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Nigel,

Do you know what demo you were watching so we can compare apples to apples? I have found, in the games, that objects with text, for example a menu, look pretty bad off center. Usually if I move over directly in front of them they improve a lot. This is also true if I display my computer desktop within Vive, and it is running at 1920x1080.

 

I'm nearsighted by 1 or 2 D in both eyes plus another couple D of astigmatism (which is quite a lot) and I have an add for reading. My glasses frames do not fit well within the headset so I have been playing without them and I really haven't noticed any problems seeing things. Even on something like Audioshield wher the orbs start out far away, they don't really look blurry to me. As for far away mountains, etc. like you said, I think the images are not 100% clear anyway so I probably don't notice.

 

I will find out soon how important my visual component is. I have oredered a pair of prescription lenses from the company VR Lenses and I'll see if that improves anything. They were only about $100 which isn't much in the total of my great "Wow-VR-looks-really-cool" idea. :-)

 

-Marty

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Hi  - sorry to hear it was a less than impressive experience for you.

 

As a general note, the 'fuzziness' probably isn't going to improve depending on the distance of the lenses or the IPD. It can make a slight difference, but not much. What you're (probably) referring to is what we usually call 'screen door effect', ie the feeling that you're looking through a finely-meshed screen door. It's not really something that's easily solved. As others have mentioned, supersampling can help.

 

Generally, the better the VR experience, the more this effect won't be noticeable. In a strange way it's sort of like sitting too close to an old CRT TV or monitor - you'll see the pixels. Get a bit further away, or essentially get involved in the content, and it ceases to be a major problem.

 

In a year, I have no idea what tech advances may have happened, but any serious boost in resolution will mean a serious boost in PC power too. Remember your PC is essentially powering two monitors at once, each running at 90FPS - that's serious output. So if you do come back to VR in a year, make sure you have the funds for that PC upgrade too. :D

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wrote:

...

essentially get involved in the content, and it ceases to be a major problem.

...

Remember your PC is essentially powering two monitors at once, each running at 90FPS - that's serious output. So if you do come back to VR in a year, make sure you have the funds for that PC upgrade too.

The "two monitors" refers to one for each eye in the headset right? (as opposed to one for the headset, one for the actual monitor sitting on the desk).

 

I think you're right on the first point. IIRC, when I first put my headset on after a week of frustration/disappointment, I don't think I noticed the screen door for very long before I started getting into the demo and either forgot about it or just wrote it off as not bad enough to let it ruin whatever virtual experience I was having. I mean, in that one demo where the floating eyeball robot is the guide, when the floor suddenly opened up I almost fell down the stairway that wasn't there!

 

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