Black Friday is nearly here, and while the stores are soon to be jam-packed with people hoping to get a great deal on this year’s must-buys, online sales have already begun for the newest entries into the world of VR hardware. Microsoft’s Windows “Mixed Reality” headsets are now on sale for up to $100, bringing the cheapest among them to just $300.
The sale is going on until 11:59 PM PST on November 27, 2017 (your local time), and is only available in Microsoft retail and online store in the US and Canada. The deal includes both the headset and wireless motion controllers.
- Acer Windows Mixed Reality Headset –
- Dell Visor Windows Mixed Reality Headset –
- HP Windows Mixed Reality Headset –
- Lenovo Explorer Windows Mixed Reality Headset –
- Samsung HMD Odyssey Windows Mixed Reality Headset –
Besides the Samsung Odyssey, which features higher resolution displays and integrated audio from AKG, every headset listed above is basically the same in terms of specs, save a few ergonomic and aesthetic differences. We’ve listed the basic specs and also Samsung Odyssey specs at the bottom of the article.
What sets these apart from other VR headsets on the market though is the ability to do inside-out positional tracking, which means you don’t have to put up sensors or basestations to have a room-scale VR experience. Not only that, but Microsoft says the headsets work on integrated graphics cards, albeit for less intense functions like using your standard Windows-flavored productivity tools, or watching a video in your own private cinema.
If you’re looking to use the headset for gaming though, you’re in luck. Microsoft recently pushed support for SteamVR compatibility, so you can buy and play VR games from VR’s largest digital marketplace, Steam. Remember, you’ll need a sufficiently powerful computer to run more graphically intensive applications though, so you might want to at very least have a computer that meets these specs published by Microsoft.
Oh, and don’t be confused by the “Mixed Reality” naming scheme. These are definitely VR headsets with no appreciative use for augmented reality (AR) like the company’s HoloLens headset.
Basic Headset Specs
- Two high-resolution liquid crystal displays at 1440 x 1440
- 2.89” diagonal display size (x2)
- Front hinged display, so you can flip the headset up while working
- Up to 105 degrees horizontal field of view
- Display refresh rate up to 90 Hz (native)
- Built-in audio out and microphone support through 3.5mm jack
- Single cable with HDMI 2.0 (display) and USB 3.0 (data) for connectivity
- Inside-out tracking
- 4.00m cable
Samsung Odyssey Specs
- Resolution: 2880 x 1600
- Display: AMOLED
- Refresh rate: Up to 90Hz
- Field of view: Up to 110˚
- Integrated AKG headphones and dual array mics