Starbreeze, the company behind the 210 degree FOV VR headset StarVR are to work with large-scale cinema specialists IMAX to create “premium location-based VR” experiences “worthy of the IMAX brand”.

It seems IMAX, the brand known for their huge, immersive cinema experiences and high resolution cameras, are doubling down on virtual reality. We heard yesterday that the firm is to become part of Google’s 360 video platform Jump, announcing it’s to supply cameras as part of a high resolution, VR film rig.

See Also: InfinitEye 210 Degree VR Headset Reborn as ‘StarVR’ with 5K Display
See Also: InfinitEye 210 Degree VR Headset Reborn as ‘StarVR’ with 5K Display

Today, Starbreeze have announced that they are to partner with IMAX on a new initiative that aims to bring “premium” VR film experiences to public locations, all powered by Starbreeze’s high-FOV virtual reality headset headset StarVR. According to a press release, under the agreement, IMAX will create a “premium VR experience” that will leverage Starbreeze’s headset technology, StarVR, which provides a 210-degree full peripheral field of view, with the resulting experience being “worthy of the IMAX brand.”

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See Also: StarVR Detailed Hands-on: Big Field of View, Even Bigger Potential

“As technology and entertainment options evolve, we continue to innovate and find new platforms to extend The IMAX Experience,” said IMAX Corp. CEO Richard L. Gelfond. “We believe VR is an area that holds tremendous promise and is a natural progression for IMAX given our established worldwide brand presence, our immersive entertainment technology know-how, and strong industry relationships with filmmakers, studios and exhibitors. Just as IMAX provides the best cinematic experience, Starbreeze is a pioneer in the burgeoning VR market and its headsets will deliver a wider, “IMAX-like” field of view to allow consumers to see, feel, move and play in new worlds in a powerfully immersive and realistic way. While our partnership with Google puts IMAX in the VR capture business, Starbreeze brings the capabilities in content distribution and delivery that, when combined, help us to establish a complete offering across the VR ecosystem.”

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It looks as if the plan is to have StarVR headsets installed at locations with high public footfall, so Malls, Cinema Multiplexes etc. What’s not clear from the release is whether this will be focused as a way to market and promote IMAX and Starbreeze content or that consumers will be charged for the privilege. What we do know is that the initiative will feature both interactive VR gaming content, provided by Starbreeze and 360 VR cinematic content filmed using the aforementioned, recently announce IMAX Google VR camera.

Starbreeze also announced recently its intention to partner with electronics firm Acer to manufacture the StarVR headset itself. Up to now we’ve only seen StarVR, an evolution of the InfinitEye project, in prototype form – perhaps with Acer on board and with this new content announcement out there, it’s an indication the StarVR team are closing in on a final design. We’re certainly looking forward to once again experiencing that 210 degree FOV, and will keep you posted once we learn more.

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  • OhYeah!

    Not premium, sacrificing pixel switching time and refresh rate and resolution for extra FOV, a net loss.

    • Bryan Ischo

      So you’ve tried it? Tell us more. How were the lenses? Small sweet spot? Large? Was the resolution visibly bad?

      • Alexander Vaught

        IR tracking will be built in the next StarVR prototype. Can’t wait for Starcade this year.

      • Brent Flynn

        Hello, the lenses must be adjusted by how you put the mask on your face and i have a slightly crooked nose which is why i have a very little trouble with adjusting it on my face… but other than that it looks fairly good. Resolution quality can depend on how close you have to magnify your screen. But watching cartoon like movies i could see pixels that weren’t very attractive. Other than that playing games and watching YouTube was pretty nice. Just like watching it on a high def. Tv or 3d tv or whatever. It’s very entertaining and i enjoy it.

  • ampao

    must be getting real old. i prefer the old 2d movies.

  • Foreign Devil

    smart move. VR will compete directly with IMAX experience. Better join them if you can’t beat them.

  • victor

    I am REALLY rooting for starbreeze with their 210 FOV. I have both oculus and vive and as much as I do LOVE them both right now and cannot ever go back to normal monitors anymore for gaming, I find the very limited peripheral horizontal FOV(“goggle vision”) to be the biggest issue, even moreso than resolution.

  • WhiteSkyMage

    Aren’t you going to sell this thing to consumers? I know very well that there is no GPU right now to do 5120x1440p @ 120FPS for gaming. But just make it available…

    • meraxus .

      They will

    • Richard Schmidt

      4K is roughly the same number of pixels as this (2.25x1440p vs 2x1440p), so if someone hits that target at 90Hz eventually, you could see this as a future-proof device.

      • WhiteSkyMage

        They need to hit that in SLI/CrossFire and I doubt that future Vega or Big (Real) Pascal will not deliver this performance in dual-GPU configuration for optimized games aimed at VR. You need 1 card to do 2560x1440p at 120FPS minimum (not 90FPS, which is for OR and Vive). I don’t see this being that big of a challenge if you lower those settings a little bit.

  • Not too sure how “VR Films” are going to work out. You can get stereoscopic 360 videos in computer generated media, but not in the real-world. One of the cameras would always end up seeing the other. Seems like their work is going to be trapped in the “Animated” genre. I love animation, so that doesn’t seem too bad, it’s just limiting.

    Also, well 360 videos are novel, am I the only one that finds them a bit annoyed, constantly wondering if I’m looking the right direction? I always feel like I’m missing the “Good” stuff.

    • JrSlims

      I shoot stereo 360 and no, the cameras don’t see each other (170 degree FOV prevents this but requires more cameras). Only issue is the monoscopic nadir and zenith.

  • ipgara@blueyonder.co.uk

    I have just watched Mad Max and the Good Dinosaur in 3D in a 4D cinema (Cienveo and Oculus Rift), my mind was blown. A very good experience. 3D Movies do not seem to suffer from the glare issue that 2d movies do :)

    • Richard Schmidt

      didnt know cineveo allowed you to watch 3D movies natively. What about ‘cardboard’ style 3D videos?

      • ipgara@blueyonder.co.uk

        What do you mean by cardboard style?

        • Richard Schmidt

          HI, I meant Google Cardboard SxS (side by side) instead of alternating frames