HTC Vive Pro Announced with Higher Resolution Displays and Other Improvements

Posted on 12 Jan 2018 by
Nail Garejev

At CES 2018, HTC has announced an updated version of their VR headset – Vive Pro. One of the major improvements is the increased resolution – 1440×1600 per eye, while original had 1080×1200. The field of view and refresh rate remain the same, 110 degrees and 90 Hz respectively. Thus the perceived linear pixel density has increased 37%, while the total amount of pixels is up 78%. The proper utilisation of the improved resolution will require more powerful GPU. While the increased resolution will reduce the visibility of pixels, the same Fresnel lens seem to be present in Vive Pro. Unfortunately, that means that god ray artefacts still remain during bright scenes.

Other major improvements are in additional functionality and usability. Vive Pro now has two front facing cameras that can provide stereoscopic view of the surroundings. It is likely, that we will see a more advanced Chaperone system. There is also more potential for developers to created mixed reality games. On audio side, Vive Pro comes with integrated headphones, which they are detachable if you want to use different ones. Multiple microphones are present in headset to subtract background noise. HTC strongly advertises the improved comfort. They claim that Vive Pro is lighter and more adjustable. It is hard to verify how comfortable it is until enough people had time to try it properly. If those claims are correct, it will be an important improvement over the Vive, which was considered less comfortable than Oculus Rift.

Finally, there are new accessories. Vive Pro is fully compatible with the current Lighthouse tracking system and controllers and will initially only be sold as headset only, without any bundle. Vive Pro also supports the version 2.0 tracking stations with up to 10×10 meters playing area, which is expected to be in the future bundle. However, it is not yet clear what controller the bundle will use, as current controllers are not compatible with future tracking stations. HTC is also creating the wireless VR adapter, using 60 GHz WiGig line of sight connection.

Vive Pro is planned for release this quarter, the pricing has not yet been announced.

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