Having launched its first VR headset in late 2017, alongside a handful of similar headsets as part of Microsoft’s Windows Mixed Reality platform, HP is preparing to take its next step with the launch of a new headset that diverges from the pack. Road to VR got an exclusive preview of the so far unannounced and unnamed headset which the company hopes will raise the bar on clarity and comfort.

It was a seemingly fitting day—unusually dreary weather for California’s Bay Area—to find myself in the basement of HP’s Palo Alto headquarters, safe from the wind and rain. After being led through secure doors, down an elevator, and along a maze of white hallways, I found myself inside a windowless bunker of a room: HP’s VR Lab, I’m told.

Inside, past a row of computers with various consumer headsets attached, I see two identical laptops sitting on a table off to the side. They’re powered up, with a long tether leading to a headset sitting in front of each. The first I recognize: Samsung’s recently launched Odyssey+. The second easily could’ve been mistaken for a Rift at first glance, but upon closer inspection would prove to be something much different.

Microsoft launched its Windows Mixed Reality platform back in late 2017 alongside a salvo of VR headsets from partner companies (HP, Acer, Dell, Lenovo, and Samsung) which work with the platform. Among that initial set of headsets, all but Samsung’s was built to nearly identical specifications, apparently based around a reference design primarily developed by Microsoft. That left little to differentiate the launch headsets (other than Samsung’s) beyond aesthetics.

This time around, HP is owning the design of its next-gen headset from the ground up. It’s still a Windows Mixed Reality headset—which means it retains the same quality inside-out tracking and ease of setup which the platform is known for (thanks to not needing any external trackers)—but beyond that, HP has crafted a significant departure from its first headset.

‘Copper’, as it’s codenamed, has a distinct Rift-like look to it; a slim, top-strap design with sleek headphones attached to the headband. Upon closer inspection, the rear of the headset sees the top and side straps culminate in a circular structure (designed to cup the back of your head), while the front is encompassed by a heathered material into which the front-facing cameras are embedded.

I wasn’t allowed to take any photos—after all, HP has yet to officially announce the headset; the company would only share a single untextured rendering. But the headset I saw already looked and felt nearly market-ready, despite still being under wraps.

Image courtesy HP

That’s because the device I tried is the very first tooled prototype, said John Ludwig, Product Manager for VR at HP, which means the company is already well on its way to doing production runs of Copper.

Ludwig, who has been closely involved with the development of the headset, walked me through a demo where I strolled around a real-time pre-visualization of an architectural design. Confident in the clarity I’d see through Copper’s lenses, he offered up the Odyssey+ as a side-by-side comparison (currently the highest res WMR headset on the market at 1,440 × 1,600 per-eye). Indeed, Copper’s clarity blew it away.

That’s no doubt primarily driven by Copper’s 2,160 × 2,160 (per eye) displays, which have more than twice the number of pixels as the Odyssey+, and more than three and a half times as many pixels as first-gen headsets like the Rift. Looking through Copper’s lenses, sharpness is a drastic step forward over Odyssey+. And while the Odyssey+ uses a diffuser on the screen (which sacrifices some sharpness in an effort to hide the screen door effect), Copper hardly has a need for a diffuser as the pixel dense RGB-stripe displays make the screen door effect vanishingly apparent.

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Copper, Luwig told me, is the direct result of feedback from HP’s enterprise and commercial customers who were already using the company’s existing headset. Overwhelmingly that feedback, as Ludwig said, was “resolution, resolution, resolution,” followed secondarily by “comfort.”

The former is quite satisfied by the new displays (which offer surprisingly vibrant colors for LCD). And while there were a few visual artifacts seen through the lenses (notably a diagonal array of greyish dots across the display, as well as some mura), Ludwig assured me these would be fixed and improved, respectively, as the displays get tweaked before mass production.

Ludwig said that HP’s customers were not nearly as concerned with expanding the field of view as they were with seeing resolution move to the next step. As such, Copper’s field of view is in the Rift/Vive class, though the headset is using all new Fresnel lenses.

As for comfort, HP has completely redesigned the headset’s ergonomics, ditching the ‘halo-style’ headband shared by all previous WMR headsets, and moving instead to the top-strap approach. Copper has a fit and feel that’s much like the Rift, with a velcro side-strap on either side of the head, as well as the top strap, and rigid spring-loaded struts which make it easier to put on and remove the headset without re-adjusting the fit every time.

HP isn’t ready to share details on weight, but Copper sure did feel light, something which Ludwig says that the company focused heavily on.

Offerings from Z by HP, soon to include Copper | Image courtesy HP

Copper, HP says, is being positioned as a professional product, but they plan to make it openly available for purchase by consumers and companies alike. Price has yet to be specified.

The company is primarily pitching Copper as part of a “solution stack” for enterprise and commercial customers which are served by the ‘Z by HP’ brand, said HP’s Sean Young, the Global Lead of Industry Segments at ‘Z’ focuses on professional products and solutions, including VR Ready workstation-class desktops and laptops and a dockable VR backpack. In 2018 the Z group began offering the ‘HP VR Launch Kit’, a kit of VR Ready hardware and software designed to help businesses quickly and easily integrate VR into their product design workflows. The kit will eventually offer Copper in place of the existing HP Windows Mixed Reality headset.

With the upgrades, HP believes that Copper will answer the needs of enterprise and commercial customers who want to use VR for applications where being able to see textures up close, text at medium distances, and objects furthest is important. Specifically, the company expects that training, architecture, and VR LBE customers, among others, will benefit greatly from the improvements.

Young says that, beyond the capabilities of a given product, reliability, serviceability, and global availability are key for larger organizations before they’ll consider integrating new products into their workflow. Copper will embody those aspects right alongside the rest of Z’s offerings.

As for Copper’s launch: HP isn’t ready to say, but 2019 seems like a strong bet at this point. The company is planning a full reveal of the headset in the future where we’ll learn even more. In the meantime, feel free to drop questions in the comments below and I’ll answer what specifics I can about my time with the headset.

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  • Towfiq I.

    Any info on FOV?

    • Terrence Giggy

      Ludwig said that HP’s customers were not nearly as concerned with expanding the field of view as they were with seeing resolution move to the next step. As such, Copper’s field of view is in the Rift/Vive class, though the headset is using all new Fresnel lenses.

  • 3872Orcs

    So it still uses the same windows mixed reality tracking. And the same controllers I guess? And no increase in FOV. Not for me then. Still waiting for Valve to unveil their headset.

    • Kevin White

      Yup, same frustrating tracking range, probably still have to use Bluetooth adapter, still wired, still same FOV, same lackluster controllers, now with Rift CV1 form factor. Nice resolution bump.

      • spaceman1980

        not just nice, crazy high res change. 27% more pixels than the PIMAX 5K+. Literally no GPU on the market currently is able to maintain 90FPS on that resolution. This headset is too good for its time. Foveated rendering is needed so it can be less to render, but it seems this doesnt have eye tracking

      • benz145

        Bluetooth is built in, so users won’t need a BT adapter. The headset will support the WMR controllers, but that doesn’t preclude them from making their own custom set, though they haven’t confirmed anything like that yet.

  • Bob

    It seems all HP have done here is taken Rift’s design and upped the resolution. There is nothing new here; no eye tracking, no new tracking solution, no paradigm shift in compute design for standalone VR solutions. Basically this is the Oculus Rift 2.

  • gothicvillas

    Really?? No one moaned about the FOV? They must have asked wrong people then. Guys, back to drawing board.

    • That’s not at all what the article says.

    • Who’s this?

      Nah, it’s all about priority. You see, we all want more but we have to tradeoff certain things for what we want now. So resolution and comfort are #1 and I don’t VR. Maybe I will finally be able to code and write up emails and such in VR. That would be an absolute wonder and an extremely important step towards the metaverse.

    • Andrew Jakobs

      I don’t think so, I too don’t really care about a higher FOV, yes that would be great, but it would not be the most important thing to me.

  • jean thompson

    How disappointing. Not next gen at all

    • brandon9271

      They lost me at fresnel lenses… But maybe these aren’t garbage like the ones in Rift CV1

      • FireAndTheVoid

        From what I’ve seen, Pimax 5k/8k fresnel lenses are pretty amazing. I think it is possible to have good fresnel. Still, I would prefer a non-fresnel solution, even if it made the headset heavier.

      • sfmike

        The Fresnel lens on the Oculus Go are an improvement over the awful Rift. Pimax’s lens are far superior leading me to really wonder why more effort hasn’t been put into lens technology from ALL manufacturers? I mark it up to laziness.

        • brandon9271

          Yeah, i can honestly say of all the HMDs I’ve used, CV1 has the worst lenses. Samsung Odyssey has fresnel and they’re much better but still suffer from god rays like every fresnel lens. I’m really hoping to see improvement in the optics department because so far it seems to be neglected.

  • FireAndTheVoid

    Not sure why everyone is really disappointed in this. I think they made it pretty clear that they designed this headset specifically for enterprise customers based on feedback they received. It’s not designed for gamers even though they are making it available for general consumers to purchase.

    • MosBen

      Yes, and if HP can do some successful business with this thing in the commercial/enterprise space, then that’s great. The worst thing for VR would be for major players to start racking up losses on failed products. Still, it’d be nice to see more ambition in new products, and basically making a Rift with a higher res screen and inside out tracking isn’t very ambitious.

  • impurekind

    The image just looks like an Oculus Rift.

  • James

    This is actually pretty exciting news, can’t wait to hear more. A lot of people are saying its not what they want, but more diverse products are good for the industry (as opposed to all WMR being roughly the same before). Hopefully WMR improves to 4+ cameras and the different WMR companies go different routes

    • Baldrickk

      Agreed.
      For those people complaining that it’s not what they wanted – that’s because it wasn’t designed for you. They have obviously positioned themselves to target a specific segment of the market, in this case the high end commercial/enterprise market, just like the current stand-alone devices target the casual market.

      I’m really waiting for more news on the Valve HMD, I had my hopes up last year when the Ultragear seemed to have an announcement just around the corner (I thought it would have something to do with Google’s high resolution screen announcement) but we’ve heard nothing from it yet.
      That’s where I’m looking right now, and while there is a little disappointment that there is another device coming out that I’m not really interested in (I’d like a little more FOV, though not necessarily needing Pimax width) it’s not something to get hung up on.

    • Tesla

      Yes, four cameras would be great. There should be 5th camera on the back of head strap, pointing down 180″ to see your hands at all times

      • Moe Curley

        I don’t want to seem unsympathetic but where exactly on your body are your hands located? From your description they seem to be on the wrong side ;)

    • Andrew Jakobs

      the fact you only see one camera on the bottom (so a second on the otherside) would suggest this HP headset only will have 2 camera’s.

  • MosBen

    I mean, it’s good to see new entries that make improvements on old entries. But while the first generation of WMR headsets seemed like they came too late in the generation cycle without offering enough improvements over the Rift and Vive to really get excited about, this one seems like it’s coming too early, or maybe just that it isn’t super ambitious. Making a Rift but with higher resolution screens is nice, I guess. But I have a Rift that I’ve owned for two years and which continues to see use. If I were recommending an HMD to a non-techie friend or family member, I’d still recommend that they wait for the Quest. If I was recommending an HMD to a techie friend that doesn’t own one already, I’d recommend that they wait for the next gen Rift or Vive. The only person that I’d recommend this to is someone that absolutely was going to buy an HMD in the next several months and it had to be PCVR. Even then, I’d probably recommend that they look at the Cosmos before making a purchase.

    That said, here’s a question: WMR headsets had good inside out tracking, but not perfect, and notably inferior to the tracking in the Rift and Vive. Has tracking improved at all?

    • MosBen

      Yes, I know that this is targeted at enterprise/commercial customers. If that’s what they wanted, then I guess that’s cool for them.

      • sfmike

        I hope for their sake there is enough money in that market to make these “enterprise” headsets profitable. Unfortunately I doubt it.

        • Jistuce

          Enterprise is far more profitable per-unit than the home user market. I’m reasonably sure HP has, in fact, verified the market is there.

          And honestly, I’d bet the enterprise division has actually sold more headsets than the home division has.

    • Who’s this?

      Well considering Valve’s HMD, Vive Cosmos, and the Rift S all launch this year, I think it’s perfectly timed to compete.

      • MosBen

        Do we know what the FOV on the Cosmos and Rift S are yet? But good point.

        • Mei Ling

          No we don’t but in terms of the Cosmos I’m pretty sure it will have exactly the same FOV as the HTC Vive product line because if they improved on it then this would have obviously been highlighted or “hinted” in some shape or form with their initial marketing of the product (CES 2019 reveal and their product page) but it isn’t.

          Rift S is designed to be a refresh much like the console systems (PS4 Pro and Xbox One X). The FOV will most likely be exactly the same as the original Rift because it will use the same lenses and OLED panel as the Oculus Quest. The other differences would be slight modifications to the ergonomics to be more in line with the Oculus Go and of course built-in inside out tracking using Insight and including the updated Touch controllers that come with Oculus Quest. It will require a PC to run so that will not change hence the name of Rift S.

          It’s clear to me that Oculus have paid attention to the HTC’s reveal of their Cosmos product and are preparing a hardware refresh on the Oculus Rift in order to compete with this new HTC product. They are fully aware that a refresh is needed in order to stay technologically relevant within the PC VR market.

          • MosBen

            Good, interesting points. Another argument in favor of the Rift S being essentially the same as the Rift, with a few minor updates, is that they probably don’t want to have to change any recommended PC specs until the next generation. They’re still working with a product that doesn’t work with most people’s PCs; they don’t want to create even more confusion about that issue. And I’m still convinced that the Rift 2, or whatever it’s called, still won’t see a huge leap in system requirements, maybe a bump up to something in the 10 series of Nvidia gpus, but not beyond that.

          • daveinpublic

            Rift 2 will probably use foveated rendering to allow both a resolution and FOV jump without any increase in graphic card requirements.

          • MosBen

            That seems likely. I do wish that someone at Oculus would give a more frank discussion of what their plans are for the development of their next generation HMDs. I know that we’ve gotten little bits and scraps, like the statement that the Quest is the last of their first generation hardware (though the Rift S probably qualifies as well), and discussions about the prototypes they’re working on. But it’d be nice to know what the current challenges in VR hardware are that the various players are working on. Sure, they don’t want to give away too much to their competitors. But at the same time, it feels like in the 2d gaming space we pretty much know what’s coming in the next generation or so of hardware: better graphics, as always, a possible elimination of physical media, more options for streaming and media playback, etc. Maybe there will be a few surprises, but in VR the only sure bet is that any new HMD is likely to have somewhat higher resolution display panels. Beyond that, it’s anyone’s guess.

      • Mei Ling

        All the one’s you listed are consumer focused devices (very certain that Valve is primarily targeting the consumer market). Apparently this device from HP is primarily enterprise so we’re talking different markets here and for this reason I don’t believe that HP are directly aiming to compete with the devices you’ve just listed. More appropriate products would be the Vive Pro/Pro Eye, Varjo and other enterprise focused HMDs.

      • G-man

        you dont know any of those are coming out this year.

        • Who’s this?

          Yes, yes I do. They all are announced/leaked in timeline for a launch this year. If they leaked around Thanksgiving time, that would mean it’s a 2020 launch. But they didn’t. They all leaked/announced at the end of last year or the beginning of this year.

          • G-man

            we know fuck al about the valve headset. and we also know fuck all about the rift s. the one we know the most about says the release is aimed for early 2019. when we havent even seen a owrking version of it yet. so yeah. you dont know anything for sure.

          • daveinpublic

            Rift S could be 2020, and Valve’s HMD could be 2021. Hopefully they’re this year, but not sure.

    • Proof XR Lab

      This is the big question for 2nd generation of WMR, has the controller tracking improved enough to be equivalent to Vive and Rift? Does it require 4 camera on the headset similar to new Quest? Does WMR accomodate 4 cameras or limited to 2?

      I was impressed with headset tracking on my Lenovo Explorer, in an artificially lit room with window blind closed (to remove daylight variable) it was solid. Controller tracking in forward pose – Space Pirate Trainer and Beat Saber, was very good. Any game requiring more extreme pose, like bow game “In Death” i found completely unplayable.

      Haptics are another challenge for WMR controller, i suspect greedy power consumption from the tracking lights limited their choice of actuator, i found the haptics very soft compared to Rift Touch or Vive Wands.

      Controller tracking in extreme pose and strong haptics are of course for gaming crowd, not for enterprise market, so it depend on target customer. HP new headset should be big improvement over WMR halo design which was unstable, some owners adding top strap and one company offers a padded velcro strap.

    • motowntom

      Who cars what you’d recommend, now go back to your over priced, under performing Rift.

      • MosBen

        Cool comment. You’re obviously a master at interacting with humans.

      • daveinpublic

        I care. :)

    • benz145

      WMR tracking is good, I think it’s the coverage of the tracking which is the biggest bottleneck. As far as Copper goes, it’s still just two cameras and they look to be angled in pretty much the same orientation as the first WMR headsets. HP told me the cameras were “very similar” to their first headset, so the performance is likely to be the same.

  • Who’s this?

    That resolution is exactly what we need, however we need to see if they will get a reasonable price on the table. I know: enterprise pricing for an enterprise market, but as long as it’s sub $$600 for the whole combo, it’ll be reasonable.

    If they go above that, the Valve HMD, Cosmos, and newer WMR headsets will outclass them.

    Either way, that resolution is something I *really* want.

    • Ausiàs March

      I really doubt it will be sub 600$ (or even sub 1000$) being marketed for business. But… fingers crossed!

      • sfmike

        “Professional/corporate use” is the kiss of death for a reasonably priced HMD.

    • benz145

      Yeah I think their pricing and how it relates to the Vive Pro will be the big question, it’s certainly the closest competitor given it’s pro-focus, comfort, and resolution. No to mention… HP resells the Vive Pro as part of some of its existing VR solutions.

  • Tiago Russolo

    Is it possible to adjust the IPD for the lenses?
    I had to return my Lenovo WMR because of its fixed IPD setting. Even the IPD setting of the Rift don’t fit my eyes very well. The only one that was good enough for my 73mm IPD was the Vive.

    • Proof XR Lab

      Very important to have adjustable IPD, they should not be selling PC VR headsets with fixed IPD in 2019 going forward.

      My Lenovo Explorer caused eye fatigue because of this issue and I was only a couple of mm off.

      • Andrew Jakobs

        Yep, I think hardware IPD is even more important than higher resolutions, as being able to really set the IPD correctly makes motion sickness even less.

    • benz145

      No hardware IPD adjustment unfortunately : (

      • Who’s that?

        Is that a potential future addition or just something not in this revision?

  • zarelion

    What about the FoV clarity? The article makes no mention of it. Can you read text near the edges or do you still have to maintain your gaze in the middle and move your head around?

    • spaceman1980

      called sweet spot, has to do with the lenses and how close you are/angle

    • benz145

      I didn’t have enough time to get a feel for the sweet spot, but my bet would be that it’s pretty typical, though the three-strap design makes it much easier to achieve optimal positioning of the eyes and lenses compared to the halo strap used on other WMR headsets. However there’s no IPD adjustment at this stage, which means that those on the edges of the IPD range could have issues either way.

      • Who’s this?

        Did they say it will have no IPD adjustment either way? Doesn’t make sense. Premium price for non-premium features? Also, what’s your IPD if you don’t mind me asking. It would give us a bit of indication as to the edges if yours is far from average.

  • Those 2,160 × 2,160 (per eye) LCD displays are the same of the Acer prototype showcased at CES…uhm…

    • FireAndTheVoid

      That’s what I find most interesting about this. Since HMDs tend to use the same displays (i.e. Vive Pro and Samsung Odyssey), this could mean that other HMDs will use these higher res displays.

      • cataflic

        They must put two of them per side per eye to make a fov that have sense.
        18:9…160/180° fov …eye tracking, foveated rendering.
        …1 year to fuse 2 of that stuff….1 year for a working eye tracking…the turtle and the rabbit

    • benz145

      Yup, seems quite possible that they’re from the same display maker, but I’m not entirely sure.

  • Erik Middeldorp

    What does “vanishingly apparent” mean?

    • G-man

      they noticed that its wasnt as noticeable? who the heck knows

    • benz145

      Ha sorry, I had a hunch that might come off as confusing. It’s very minimal — not invisible, but a huge improvement over first gen headset, not just because you’ve got way more pixel density, but also because (if you’re coming from a PenTile headset) the fill factor is way better for RGB stripe.

  • Patrick Hogenboom

    Got confused there a minute, thought it was Joe Ludwig from Valve who was being mentioned.

  • mellott124

    Resolution is still the greatest limit on current consumer HMDs. FOV is nice but not at the sacrifice of resolution. I think they made the right decision here. Let’s hope it has a longer cable then other WMR HMDs.

    • MosBen

      I disagree. The only time that I’ve been overly concerned enough about the Rift’s resolution was when I tried to watch a movie on it for the first time. It was ok, but the resolution definitely made the movie look worse than it should to a degree that I didn’t continue watching. But in games, it’s never bothered me. Sure, higher resolution would be nice, but the population of people that are holding off on buying HMDs because of the lack of resolution is likely tiny. The biggest limit is probably either cost, complicated/non-mobile setups, and lack of compelling software. FOV and the need for a wired connection are probably after that, but I’d guess that all other factors, including resolution, are a pretty big drop from that first tier.

      • sfmike

        I’m a big enthusiast and resolution is at the top of my list. Almost every person I have shared VR with has complained about blurry images and I can’t blame them. We live in an HD world now and VHS quality images even if they are 360 or 180 doesn’t cut it. And I know the games are different but viewing movies and pictures are still a big part of the usefulness of a HMD.

        • MosBen

          I mean, I also want higher resolution, though it’s not the top of my list, but then, I’m also an enthusiast. And it’s important to keep in mind that the things that enthusiasts care about are not necessarily the things that non-enthusiasts care about.

        • Jistuce

          The one person I’ve had complain about blur on my Rift had the headset at the wrong position on their face. That “adjust it up and down to change the lens focus” mechanism is not readily-apparent.

          Also, Rift is so much nicer than VHS.

          I’d definitely like to see a higher resolution. I’d also like to see a wider field of view. But more than either, I want to see something glasses-friendly. I cannot use a headset without glasses, my glasses don’t fit comfortably inside my Rift.

          I checked this before I bought it and everyone told me glasses fit fine inside a Rift and Oculus was selling a replacement face piece that had glasses space anyways. I was lied to on both fronts, and it is a testament to how good VR is that I use my Rift anyways and put up with the bruising on my nose from the headset mashing my glasses back into my face.

    • Brian Wright

      I think cables are the bigger issue. Resolution is annoying, but for many games it works. Cables are a constant frustration in game and I’m lucky enough to be able to have an overhead management solution. If you’re still dragging a wire around everywhere… ick.

  • Sofian

    I am done with 100° FOV, it’s ok for watching movies but not for gaming.
    Waiting for my Pimax right now and won’t consider any other headset below 140° FOV.

    • motowntom

      See Ya!!!!!!

      • Hivemind9000

        Not if I see you first numbnut

    • Andrew Jakobs

      I hope for you you have a powerfull GPU, 1080ti isn’t gonna cut it..

      • Hivemind9000

        1080ti does cut it for many games (with some tweaking). There’s plenty of reviews around (especially Sweviver and Mrtv testing on various games).

        Pimax have also just released Smart Smoothing, Refresh Rate Switching and Fixed Foveated Rendering which will all help improve the situation further. FFR is currently only available for RTX cards, but they are working on a release for 10xx cards presently.

        So, who knows, maybe even a 1070 might “cut it” soon…

        • Peter Hansen

          Not really “released” unfortunately. It is a beta version, and they pulled it again after a very brief time.

        • dk

          youtu.be/FFuEY-MUTdc?t=999 sure it sort of works ….but not quite …depending on how much fps u r ok with

      • doug

        That’s what I thought at first, but then I remembered what a blast Fallout 4 VR is, even with the action at 45 FPS, as long as reprojection keeps the head tracking at 90 FPS.

    • Justos

      Im glad their product works for you, but I wont go near pimax until they are proven in the field. Their delays, shady marketing, and cheap looking HMD doesnt inspire confidence to the average consumer.

      But im glad they exist, for people like you who are willing to give them a shot and raise the bar for VR.

  • doug

    It’s going to need a next-gen video card to run all those pixels. It has 27% more pixels than the pimax 5k plus, which fails to maintain 90fps on a 1080ti with most games, according to this review @ 23:26: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BeWQVd9_2jE

  • Tesla

    It was all amazing till I saw “LCD” and ~110 FOV. Having OLED devices (Odyssey+, Galaxy S9) I can’t imagine going down to grey LCD crap quality. Let’s wait till Samsung releases its 180 degree flexible OLED VR headset. IT will be the revolution we all wait for.

    • benz145

      It’s a trade off for sure. RGB stripe is way better for fill factor, but yeah typically OLED is going to have much better darks and generally richer colors. That said, I was pretty impressed with the colors on Copper’s LCD (though I didn’t get to see any dark scenes), but it’s hard to say if they just boosted the saturation or of the color reproduction is actually better than prior LCDs used in VR headsets.

      • Mei Ling

        Ideally in the future the perfect display for VR would be some sort of “fast switch” microLED panel layered with quantum dots. You would have low persistence, infinite contrast ratio and rich colors and no risk of potential image retention that comes with OLED.

    • Andrew Jakobs

      what samsung 180 degree flexible OLED VR headset? dreamin again are you?

  • Tesla

    Yes, weight is super important. The current VR headsets are too heavy. In 5 years I expect these curved VR headsets to be as light as 250-300 grams. It must be flexible OLED or similar tech, then it decreases the weight.

    • Who’s this?

      Samsung Curved OLED Odyssey @ 150-180 FOV and 4k x 4k per eye within the next 5 years? I’m willing to bet on seeing something like that by 2024. $5 sound good? lol

  • Tesla

    About the “professional/corporate use”. It is a misunderstanding in thinking. Once we have device that is connected via a cable to high end computer costing thousands of dollars, there is no “consumer” quality. It is not a mobile vr, but EXPENSIVE eco-system.
    HP and others should never say they direct this to “pro” and “corporate” etc. EVERYBODY here is PRO and want 4k pey eye and 180 FOV. There is no compromise here.

    • Andrew Jakobs

      Are you serious? they say they target enterprises, but are open to anyone buying it, so it will have a much higher price as their current WMR headset. Ofcourse people want 4K/210degree headsets, but at this point in time it’s not really practical as it would need a very powerfull GPU, even with foveated rendering, and it will be a high price, so you propably won’t buy it anyway.

      • Tesla

        No, no. Look at that curved Samsung VR/AR headset coming in 1-2 years. It has transparent front panel like TVs. It can act like VR and also like AR. A dream to become reality. I wonder if Odyssey 2 is what we see bellow. Flexible phones, flexible AR/VR OLEDs are here. Shouldn’t be hard and amazing technically for lenses (2 panels like Pimax are problematic)
        https://uploadvr.com/samsung-wide-fov-patent/

        • Andrew Jakobs

          ah, didn’t see that news coming along. Well, it would be great, but only time will tell if they actually gonna release a headset with a curved display. Curved is propably the best way to go in regard to wide fov. but again, at the moment it would require a very powerful GPU to drive a headset like that, and with that it would not seem very interesting(as in profitable) to release a headset within a year or so.

          • Tesla

            From my experience I can tell you that 2080 RTX is a super powerful card (even without DLSS turned on) which can easily drive such resolutions and way higher. with my Odyssey+, i6700k at 4.5GHz I oversample 3D games all the time to 200-300% , which is 2500×3000 per eye (per eye!). This is 5000 pixels by 6000 pixels total, which equals 30 mega pixels at 90 fps. So that curved OLED installed in VR headset with resolution like 2000×3000 should be an easy task for 2080 RTX, not to mention for 2080 Ti card. Also, add foveated rendering which will bring down GPU stress from 80-90% to 20%. Ad DLSS. Other than that many people will just play high resolution videos in 8k (which is even easier for GPU as it is not 3d scene) .I think the time for high resolution OLED VR is now.

  • RadRAW

    Did the headset have a VirtualLink connector or maybe (still) standard HDMI + USB?

    • benz145

      I didn’t get a look at what connector was being used, but considering it was connected to a laptop, I doubt it was VirtualLink (since VL supported laptops only just launched in the last two weeks).

      • Andrew Jakobs

        But was it an existing laptop or maybe a special yet to be released laptop they were showing the demo on?

      • RadRAW

        Thus, people intending to buy a new GPU in the coming days may not focus on RTX cards. The new version of the MSI RTX Ventus 2080 does not even have a VL connector (which first revision had)…

  • Karol Gasiński

    2160×2160 with default scale of “1.0” means (2160*1.4)^2 = 3024×3024 render target per eye. This means raw shading rate of 3024x3024x2x90 = 1646023680 texels per second => 1646 Mega Texels per second!

    1.6GT/s!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ej9B99P3lq0

    For comparison:
    VivePro: 2016x2240x2x90 = 812.8 MT/s
    Vive: 1512x1680x2x90 = 457.2 MT/s
    Rift: 1344x1600x2x90 = 387 MT/s

    This doesn’t include MSAA, shadow maps generation, post processes, etc. (but also optimizations that can be applied).

  • Peter Hansen

    Raise the bar on comfort…
    Ok, then it needs WIRELESS SUPPORT.

    I can’t believe there still aren’t more solutions on the market than TPCast and the sub-par supra-price Vive Wireless Adapter.

  • Pulley

    “Ludwig said that HP’s customers were not nearly as concerned with
    expanding the field of view as they were with seeing resolution move to
    the next step. As such, Copper’s field of view is in the Rift/Vive
    class, though the headset is using all new Fresnel lenses.”

    As someone who primarily plays Car Racing Simulations that bit disappointed me greatly, a wider FOV is a must for these types of games, the current Gen 1 FOV is simply too small.

  • Panzerlang

    As one who uses a Rift for combat flight simming I have to say both resolution and FOV are critical. But it’s apparent the ideal solution is still a ways beyond the current GPU ability to drive it. I might be dead before the perfect hardware becomes available.

  • mfx

    I feel my visa getting hot..

  • daveinpublic

    Nice to see some higher resolution screens make it into a real product. Maybe we’ll start to see more actual improvements in VR hardware. PSVR 2 is being worked on, Hololens 2 will be announced at the end of February, Quest is coming in a couple months. Facebook will probably have Rift S this year or next. We’re finally coming to the end of the VR 1.0 lifecycle. Almost there!

  • Thomas Clay

    So i’m curious about the fit. Did it offer better expandibility than Rift or Vive?
    For those of us with large heads the rift is horrible.

  • theonlyrealconan

    I will stick with my plus until: wider fov, non-Fresnel lenses, and better res.

  • Wow! How did I miss this post?? Way to go HP! I might have to upgrade to Windows 10 and get in on some of that WMR action!

  • Gnoll

    Any headset that improves the resolution and/or the FOV is a good thing.

    It’s taking a while but eventually we’ll get to a point where
    – resolution is high enough to prevent screen door effect (like this headset)
    – screens can cover most of our peripheral vision
    – graphical power is strong enough to do 90fps on most content
    – the headsets can operate untethered (like Quest or Magic Leap)

    We are already accomplishing some of these items so once we can iterate to a point where all of these things are true for every headset then VR will really have a chance to shine. I’m happy about the progress the industry is making. I don’t have any doubt that VR and AR are going to be woven into all of society in about 10 years. I’m guessing AR is going to be the driving force of mass adoption but eventually AR/VR will be the same hardware which is why VR plays such a vital role in creating the standards, content tools and cutting-edge tech that much of AR will use to quickly accelerate their progress.