Pimax Teases ‘Next Generation’ Accessories for Its 8K VR Headset

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Pimax, the Chinese VR headset manufacturer, released a teaser video showing a number of high-tech accessories that clip onto the company’s upcoming 8K VR headset—a headset that boasts a staggering 200 degree field of view (FOV) at 3840×2160 per eye resolution via its dual LCD displays.

In the video, we see some pretty ‘next generation’ clip-on (and screw-on) modules; eye-tracking, inside-out hand-tracking, scent enabling module, wireless transmitter, prescription glasses frame, cooling fan, and both a halo-style headband with integrated audio and traditional headstrap—everything you might consider ‘the future’ of VR.

image courtesy Pimax

The video doesn’t go exactly how some of the less obvious, and decidedly more exotic accessories work, the most curious being the scent module, which if like others on the market, acts essentially as an oil diffuser with built-in fan. If it works like the similarly-sized scent unit from Japanese startup Vaqso, it contains a small number of ‘scent cartridges’ that activate during specific points during the VR experience, including an integrated battery and Bluetooth radio. This is uncertain however.

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What’s also striking is how thin the wireless transmitter appears. It remains to be seen whether the company’s transmitter features an integrated battery like industry stalwart DisplayLink, or requires an external powerbank like TPCast.

image courtesy Pimax

Pimax is staying mum on any of the specifics, and only currently offers an info signup sheet. We can only speculate at this point how good both the eye and hand-tracking are (so we won’t).

Road to VR’s Frank He went hands-on with a prototype of the 8K headset at this year’s CES, saying the headset’s 200 degree FOV was “impressive,” and that resolution-wise, he couldn’t discern sub-pixels “no matter how hard [he] looked.”

SEE ALSO
Pimax Kickstarter Nears $3.5M With Less Than a Week Left, Free Eye-tracking Module Unlocked

In the following months since CES, Pimax has also integrated Valve’s Lighthouse positional tracking to go along with its own optically-tracked system, making it one of the first headsets outside of HTC to do so. A pair of Lighthouse-enabled controllers come in the package, which look like a mashup of the Vive‘s own motion controllers and Oculus’ Touch contollers.

image courtesy Pimax

There’s no launch date in sight for the company’s 8K VR headset Kickstarter, but we’re hoping the headset delivers on everything its promised so far in the video.

8K VR Headset Specs

image courtesy Pimax

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  • SamuelThomas

    Jizz in my pants.

    • Sandy Wich

      Don’t tell my friends or i’ll call you a slut, it was your fault you were rubbin my butt and then I

  • ShiftyInc

    This thing makes the HTC Vive model look like a pretty thing.

    • VRfreaker

      It makes the HTC Vive look like something from 1999. 4k per eye @ 90hz, 200 degrees FoV, that’s a revolution.

      • RFC_VR

        It’s a rad piece of kit no doubt. What is “brainwarp”?

        Where can we demo one?

      • ShiftyInc

        That all sounds well for $800 but you will need a beast of a pc to run anything smoothly in 8K. There is a reason why all those other hardware companies are not using 8K or better yet dual screen 4K. Only a small portion of people will be able to enjoy this as it is intended. And unless you just bought a new PC for $3000+ you won’t get those smooth frames. And that is what is most important in VR, the frame rates.

        • Xron

          What pc will be able to run game like fallout 4 2x4k res with decent frames? without using low/medium settings?

        • NooYawker

          It’s like Crysis all over again!!

        • Tyler Soward

          maybe my math is wrong, but if one 1080ti can push fallout 4 at 4k then couldn’t 2 of them handle 2 x 4k images?

          • Lucidfeuer

            Combining GPUs combine power but not graphic memory or CPU availability and connectics/drivers.

          • Tyler Soward

            oh that’s a good point – I tend to want to over simplify things. I still want one. Just need a $10,000 – $15,000 PC to push the pixels LOL

          • ShiftyInc

            Does not work like that sadly. But even if it did work, VR is even more complex then a normal monitor. and asks even more power then a normal monitor.

        • jimh54

          Why don’t you guys do a little research by going to their forums before you spout off nonsense.

          • ShiftyInc

            Why do we have to go to their forums. Unless they made something that magically makes 8K work on old system, nothing on their forums will change what we all have said here before.

        • RFC_VR

          Exactly what I’m currently building – a new HEDT – specifically for the next generation of PC VR

        • Arashi

          It can upsample from 2*1080p (or 2x1440p) to 2x4k. Now 2x1080p is only slightly more pixels than 1440p, so an GTX 1070 will be a nice starting point.

  • mellott124

    But I always hear or read that image quality isn’t very good.

    • Where?

      • mellott124

        You can read Road to VRs own review where they talk about the display issues that cause it not to be immersive. It’s linked in this article..

    • jimh54

      I have the 4k and it looks far better than either the vive (have one) or the rift.

      • mellott124

        Ok interesting. Maybe I’ll try it.

  • OhYeah!

    I will wait on the 8k until we get good foveated rendering. This will take too much processing power for me!

    • Arashi

      It can sample up from 2x1080p to 2x4k. Still you’d need quite some GPU power indeed. NVIDIA where are you with Volta ???

      • RFC_VR

        Yes, where is my Volta??

        • Xron

          They sold it to Raja… So he can make decent gpu’s atlast… -.-

    • Lucidfeuer

      See you in 10 years then. This is not how it works anymore, and indeed until we have FvR resolution there will be no point in outputting higher than 4K resolution since we will supersample then hypersample.

      • J.C.

        I’m confused…”this is not how it works anymore”. What are you referring to? And yeah, without foveated rendering, VR is gonna be stuck at the resolutions we currently have with Rift/Vive. The cost of the hardware required to run a Rift/Vive isn’t reasonably available to most customers…people have laptops more than desktops anymore. Upgrading would be abysmally expensive to them, or useless outside VR if they built a tower for it.

        Basically, VR needs to have cheap headsets that run on garbage computers before it can get HUGE, because that’s what the uninformed general public wants.

        • Lucidfeuer

          You mean like mobile VR which is already at 3K and will be at 4K soon? Outputting raw resolution with GPUs is not where the battle is at anymore: with supersample we can easily double the resolution, with a more computing intensive hypersample we will be able to quadruple resolution in a coherent way. In either case, VR or smartphone screen will probably stop at 4K (5K+ unless mobile VR has taken-off would be useless).

          So before FvR it won’t be a matter of GPU or headset, but rather how screens can evolve to accommodate for dynamic resolutions and latencies, and how GPUs can manage super/hypersampling as well as the usual RP (retroprojections) asynchronous methods, which are forcing graphics devs and researchers to rethink not just VR but graphics in general.

          Then there’s a point where it’ll be worthy to have a 8K, like maybe a dual-layer 4K screen to accommodate for these easily produced higher resolutions, from which point there’s no much else to go but FvR, IF we actually manage to get a higher FOV optics because it’s also dependant on that.

          • Muzufuzo

            We desperately need both 8K per eye and FvR. Also much much higher GPU performance, in petaflops I mean.

          • OhYeah!

            The foveated rendering drops the need for high end GPU’s. That is why we need FVR nailed first and then we can scale up the resolution with very little processing hit. I would much rather have the current resolution at higher refresh rates as that makes it feel more “real”. Then tack on resolution and extra fov.

          • Muzufuzo

            No. FvR is not enough in itself. For convincing VR we need at least 5-10 petaflops in my opinion. Think, just going from 2xFHD to 2x8K is 16x resolution. If it means a need for 10x processing power, we would need 100TF instead of today’s 10TF cards just to boost the resolution. Today’s top cards struggle in 1440p 144Hz.

          • OhYeah!

            Yes FVR is enough because it cuts the workload by an incredible amount. You only need perfect resolution in a small circle wherever you are looking, everything else can and should be blurry and doesn’t need to be rendered hardly at all.

          • Muzufuzo

            No. FVR can at maximum cut the workload by 7x which is not enough as current VR games are too simplistic. Also you need 120 megapixels, 210 degrees FOV and at least 250fps to match human eyes. No, you just can’t do that with a GTX 1080Ti and foveated rendering. It’s not enough. Mobile computers are even slower, topping at 0.6 teraflops.

          • OhYeah!

            Yep, you keep reiterating why we need FVR first so we can get a 7x or whatever savings so we can push up the frame rate, resolution and fov.

    • jimh54

      Read the specs. it says gtx 980/1070. they use a shuttering to get to 8k. so no real processing hit is required. I have the 4k version and it works slendidly.

      • Nimso Ny

        Ok let’s figure how that shutter system works.

        It renders once for half the screen, then renders again for the other half.

        So it’s rendering half the resolution, but also results in half the framerate on each screen.

        That means that if you want 60 fps you need to render 120 frames every second (60 on your left, and 60 on your right, 120 frames in total) More importantly, if you want 90Hz on each screen, you need to render 180 fps.

        Performance increase? I don’t see it… Can system truly render games at half 4k but at 180fps?
        Maybe in Minecraft yeah, mine can do Minecraft at that framrate and I have a GTX650ti… But beyond that?
        The shutter idea is good on paper, but it solves nothing.

        • Muzufuzo

          In VR you can clearly differentiate between 60fps and 120fps. For 8K 120fps you need processing power that doesn’t exist at consumer level now. No clever techniques, shuttering or whatever won’t do. At least with proper game complexity.

      • Jay Tea

        It never gets to “8K”, they’re just calling it 8K because 2×4=8. It’s 2 4K screens and it accepts 4K input. There’s an “X” version of it coming too but the company themselves don’t even think a 1080 Ti will technically be enough for that version.

        Yours isn’t 4K either, it’s just a name.

  • Rayza

    WANT

  • Lucidfeuer

    Do we know if the headband is compatible with the wireless component? Also is it single or dual-band wifiAD and what codec do they use (never get around to be able to compare TPCast’s DL3 codec with VP9 for example)

  • Jean-Sebastien Perron

    Come to me baby.

  • Piotrek

    Meh. LCDs

    • jimh54

      they will offer a 5k version that uses OLEDs. this version uses something new. not standard led. they call it CLPL. I dont remember what that stand for though but it is something they have partnered with a supplier to make for them.

  • Foreign Devil

    No current consumer video cards can run 8K FPS type games at playable framerates. I’m glad they are pushing the edge though. Consider that an 8K PC monitor costs several thousand right now. . . and any price below 1K will be great for this.

    • Andres Velasco

      Under sampling

    • Meow Smith

      They probably going to use the eyetracking for the foveated rendering to help with that.

    • vince71

      8K divided by 2 is equal to 4k, LOL

      • Foreign Devil

        Processing power required for 4K X 2 (which different images on each 4K screen) is probably pretty similar or greater than power needed for a single 8K screen. Glad I gave you a laugh though.

        • Muzufuzo

          No. 8K is most demanding. We need much much faster GPUs for 8K, unfortunately. Current ones can only work with 4K 60fps while VR requires 90fps+.

      • Jay Tea

        No it’s not lmao. 8K is 4 times 4K…7680×4320

    • Xilence

      It upscales automatically. A chip is built in.

  • Renegade X – Red Alert 2 Mod

    For a detailed analysis of the 8K headset(s) go here:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BTRoIN24r9A

    • vivid

      A bit too detailed for my taste.

      • vince71

        Just kidding : detailed anal-ysis.

    • Ted Joseph

      What detail? Didn’t say a word. I would like a professional review of this technology please!

      • elev8d

        you have to click the link and read the description of the video for the review.

  • Muzufuzo

    It is not 8K. 8K is 7680×4320 not 7680×2160.

    • Hivemind9000

      Not this old chestnut again. 4K is a group of resolutions – the 4K refers to the number of horizontal pixels. The vertical pixels depend on the aspect ratio of the screen. So it is 8K (well, really it’s 2 x 4K which is something else again).

      • Nimso Ny

        You’re right but so is the OP.
        The fact remains that calling this 8K is just a straight up lie.

        It’s 2 4K screens, that’s half an 8K in total.

        Either way it doesn’t matter, 4K per eye is pretty much reaching much closer to perfect resolution for VR, but at 60Hz it’s still pointless.

        • Arashi

          LOL so he’s right but it’s STILL a lie ? :) And again, it’s not 60 hz, it’s 90 hz.

          • Muzufuzo

            Honestly, I would probably be satisfied with 4K per eye but current 2560×1440 is not enough. Screen door effect is unfortunately clearly visible.

  • VR Geek

    What is the weight?

    • Arashi

      Supposedly less than the Vive.

  • Nimso Ny

    Firstly I’ll get this part out the way, 2x4K is NOT 8K… That’s a lie by any definition, and is false advertising.

    Right that’s done, now then, all this talk about performance… People saying how can you run games at “decent” framerates, if you think “decent” is all you need then you miss the point of VR.

    It’s not about just running the game on screen, there is a bottom limit to framerate where VR goes from being believable to just another screen. If you haven’t got higher than 60-70 fps then you haven’t got believable motion, it’s not true VR without that framerate, which is why the high end headsets push 90Hz… This thing runs at 60Hz, making it already broken for VR.

    This is very much just a big marketing ploy, or at the very least an experiment, even if you have a super computer capable of running anything at the full 60fps, it will still be worse than Vive or Rift.

    I’ve been working on VR game development for over 2 years now, and I notice when the framerate dips below 75 easily.

    • J.C.

      The specs say 75/90 for refresh rate.

      Not that I think there’s any hardware on earth capable of running at that resolution/frequency.

      • Nimso Ny

        Nice, I’ll be surprised if they manage to keep that 75/90 spec on the list when it comes closer to a release, if they ever do intend on releasing this and it’s not just prototyping.

        • J.C.

          Well, wasn’t this thing meant entirely for VR movie watching? Playing a video feed is a pretty low-stress thing for a VR setup. It could easily hit that 90hz for that. Gaming? No way. Not on any hardware available today.

        • Hivemind9000

          It’s just the screen’s refresh rate(s) – just like a monitor. There’s no reason why this won’t be in the final release. LCD/OLEDs can have refresh rates much higher (>144Hz).

          I think you’re confusing it with what CPU/GPU hardware will be required to render games at 2 x 4K @ 90Hz. By the time these actually ship perhaps the top high-end systems should be capable of this. If they have eye tracking, then foveated rendering would enable less capable systems to hit the 90Hz mark.

      • Ghosty

        If it has eye tracking and foveated rendering than it could not only hit that target but perhaps push it to 120hz… There’s at least a 60% reduction on hardware using FR…

    • Arashi

      8k refers to the horizontal amount of pixels so it’s NOT a lie at all. Second of all, the 8k version has 90 hz, not 60hz like you claim. Third, it can upsample from 2*1080p or 2x1440p. Now 2x1080p that’s only slightly more pixels than 1440p, so if your GPU can run 1440p@90hz you already can enjoy this headset.

      • Jay Tea

        8K resolution is 7680×4320. This is not 8K, it’s 2 4K screens. There’s a huge difference.

  • DaKangaroo
    • yag

      IKR, my S&M gear looks exactly the same

      • Mr. New Vegas

        Hmm is that dual ballz crusher?

  • DaKangaroo

    It is misleading to call this headset ‘8k’..

    • Meow Smith

      Yeah i wish they would just stop that bs non sense, it detracts from their image it makes them look dishonest.

      For wow factor 4k is perfectly fine there is no real need to go over board
      and make false claims.

  • Ted Joseph

    Damn.. I just wanted 200 deg FOV.. 8K on top of that! Take my MONEY!!!

    • Jay Tea

      It’s not 8K, it’s 2 4K screens. The name is just marketing fluff to make it sound better. Just like the “5K” version, it’s 2 1440p screens.

  • Adrian Meredith

    When something sounds too good to be true it probably is. These guys don’t have a great track record for quality but I can’t help but admire their ambition. This will certainly help spur on the big guys to get next gen out hopefully early next year

  • theonlyrealconan

    I have the Vive. This looks like a worthy upgrade!

  • If they’ll make it, they’ll win. But I have some doubts… and other people too, as I’m reading in the comments.

  • victor

    I was sold as soon as they said it had 200deg Fov!
    Please take my money!

  • vince71

    The future of VR has never looked so bright, congratulation to all the diverse people all over the planet making this possible.

    • Muzufuzo

      what about processing power?
      vega is crap and volta won’t really be that much faster from pascal

  • Rook

    Unity and Vulkan games, yeah I can see me getting to the full specs…
    Cryengine and unreal? Forgetabout it

    This will be some mad stuff for videos and 360 pictures tho,

  • Rafael

    Is Oculus & HTC soft compatible?