After making new Index stock available today after more than a month of the hardware being sold out, most regions saw the headset and other hardware quickly backordered by eight weeks or more.

Update #3 (March 9th, 2020): Shortly after new Index stock became available today, the headset and accompanying hardware quickly became backordered in most regions. Many packages are estimated to ship in eight weeks or more, though some say “8 to 10 weeks” and others “4 to 6 weeks.”

Orders can still be placed to allow customers to get into the queue, though shipping and billing info won’t be gathered until the order is ready to ship; Valve advises purchases will be filled in the order received.

Valve confirmed last month that, in addition to high demand for the headset ahead of Half-Life: Alyx, the supply of Index hardware was constrained by the Coronavirus outbreak due to interference with manufacturing operations.

Update #2 (March 9th, 2020): Valve has confirmed the return of Index stock on Monday, March 9th. Here’s the full text given to Road to VR.

“Valve Index VR kits will be available for purchase this Monday (March 9th) starting at 10 AM PDT (5 PM UTC).

Due to high demand, we expect available stock to sell out on Monday. All purchases beyond this initial quantity will be fulfilled in the order in which they are received, as supplies increase over the coming months.”

Update #1 (March 4th, 2020): The Valve Index order page now shows ‘Coming Soon’ instead of ”Notify Me’, further lending credence to the rumor.

Original Article (March 4th, 2020): In the video (linked below), VNN’s Tyler McVicker claims to have seen the contents of a leaked Valve press email which maintains Index stock will return on Monday, March 9th at 10 AM PT (local time here).

The alleged email says that Valve expects stock to sell out immediately on Monday. If the email can be believed, this will very likely be the case, as the enthusiast-level headset has been sold out globally since January due to high demand.

We’ve reached out the Valve to verify the authenticity of the email, and have yet to hear back. We’ll update when/if we hear more (see update).

Index Will Return to Stock Ahead of 'Half-Life: Alyx', but "far fewer units" Due to Coronavirus

Lending credence to the claim, Valve told Road to VR in a statement last month that the company would indeed be made available before the launch of Half-Life: Alyx. 

Here’s the statement Valve gave us last month:

“With Half-Life: Alyx coming March 23rd, we are working hard to meet demand for the Valve Index and want to reassure everyone that Index systems will be available for purchase prior to the game’s launch,” a Valve spokesperson said. “However, the global coronavirus health crisis has impacted our production schedules so we will have far fewer units for sale during the coming months compared to the volumes we originally planned. Our entire team is working hard right now to maximize availability.”

Provided the leak is authentic, this may be the last big chance to get some of the only guaranteed stock of Index before the launch of Half-Life: Alyx on March 23rd. The purchase of Index includes the game for free, a potent incentive if there ever was one.

McVicker has also been the conduit for several other leaks, including the very leak that basically outlined the entire HL:A project. As with all rumors, we’re remaining skeptical until proven otherwise.

Stay up to date with further developments of COVID-19 by visiting the World Health Organization’s website.

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  • asdf

    Everyone with an index right now feels like theyre holding a golden ticket.

    • Immersive Computing

      I’m ignoring the previews until the game is activated in my account, and minimising Pavlov time so my left controller is available for Half Life Alyx.

      • asdf

        haha 100% what im doing as well.

    • Harmoniser

      I just had to RMA mine, I send it back yesterday, I have feeling they don’t keep any back to deal with this :(

      • That’s a thought. I wonder too if during such a high sales orders and struggling to manufacture enough to keep up with demand that pressures to ‘cut corners’ in areas such as quality control and other manufacturing metrics might result in higher than average faulty products and an increase in the average number of RMAs?

    • Bob Smith

      Not just people with an Index. I don’t have one. I have a Pimax 5k. But I do have Knuckles. So I get a free copy of the game too.

  • rfanck

    who cares ? Like it was the only way to play half lihe alyx ! especially for that price ! And the specs of that hmd is just 1.3

    • timtime

      It seems like a lot of people care

  • rfanck

    second generation ? small fov , vive pro resolution ( april 2018) , this is no 2.0 ( 2.0 is the hp reverb 4k resolution ) 2.0 would be a 140>150° FOV. the pricing is 2.0 that’s all, the controllers are not that great and the compatibility is unsatisfactory.

    • Immersive Computing

      Paper specifications don’t designate 2.0, what is the human experience of “presence” anchoring you inside Virtual Reality?

      Presence is what I am here for, and Index delivers the strongest sense of presence I’ve yet experienced since first using VR in 1991.

      Index with Ultra low persistence display, higher frame rates, excellent clarity with geometric stability across the entire field of view. Very impressive, breathtaking on a high end system (8086K/2080Ti here).

      Agree controller are problematic (on my 5th pair since launch) and compatability has been a pain at times. But it’s also been a blast!

      • Zantetsu

        LCD screens ruin my presence :(

        But I think we’ve already hashed this out here before so …

        • Immersive Computing

          I agree about the downside of LCD and your comments are validated by many.

          On Index the LCD combined with lens glare (Achilles heel of index) means it’s not great for some “experiences”.

          I found Titans of Space and Conscious Existence affected, and stopped using them on Index (they looked great on CV1 and Vive Pro).

          But for pure VR applications, for example Pistol Whip or Pavlov, it’s very impressive. Some experience like “The Crow” work great on index, it depends on colours and light.

          • R3ST4RT

            Not to mention that beat saber looks amazing. While the blacks are grey, the rest of the color spectrum looks great. Running at 144Hz with all the settings turned up in beat saber really gave me that next gen feel.

          • Immersive Computing

            I was playing Beat Saber all afternoon on 144hz, 120% SS and display brightness at 160%. Absolutely breathtaking presence.

        • R3ST4RT

          Yeah, thats the only thing that makes my quest better than the index. The inky blacks are to die for and the washed out grey-black on the index is distracting. I noticed this heavily on the second half of BoneWorks when you are in the medieval tunnel system. The positives of an LCD are great, but the negatives are terrible lol.

          • Harmoniser

            It’s a subjective thing I prefer no SDE to worrying about blacks looking greyish. But I’m one of those who gives up FPS on non-VR games for higher resolutions. I really can’t cope with aliasing. I have a problem!

          • Cobsad

            The wireless capabilities are what set the Quest apart from the Index, been loving Alyx wire free via Virtual Desktop.

      • R3ST4RT

        I can agree with Immersive Computing, I have an HTC vive, quest, and index. Index feels by far a gen 2.0 product. The audio, low persistence, controllers, high frame rate, and general comfort makes the experience 2.0.

        I run on an RTX2070 Super and Core I5 7700K and it still feels breathtaking.

        • Cobsad

          The Index is not a gen 2.0, it’s a 1.5.

      • Bob Smith

        That all does sound very impressive. But you’re leaving out one tiny detail.

        I was as excited as you sound now when I decided to buy an Index. So many reviewers, etc, said it was the best consumer-grade VR system available, so it just had to be true. Right?

        And when I decided to demo one before buying–just to be sure–I thought it was a mere formality. Of course I would like it! It’s the best available.

        And I was impressed by the comfort, the clarity, etc. Much nicer than the CV1 I’d been using for years. Yep, just gotta go buy one now.

        And then I saw what black levels looked like on that TFT LCD screen.

        This was not at all something I was thinking about before actually trying an Index. I hadn’t bothered to consider what black levels might look like on an LCD screen, compared to the OLED screen of my CV1.

        And then I tried the first level of Arizona Sunshine, set in a dark cave, and I saw what a dark environment actually looked like on the Index. And I couldn’t believe it. Couldn’t believe that a thousand dollar HMD system, heralded by pretty much everyone in the VR press, was completely unable to convincingly render a dark environment.

        What I saw instead of darkness, was a murky gray fog that revealed a vaguely uneven pattern on the screen.

        I still find it hard to believe that so many people seem to find this completely acceptable, that they just accept this shift away from OLED to cheaper TFT LCDs.

        Not me. As long as there are OLED competitors to the Index (and there are), I’ll stick with an HMD that can render day *and* night, instead of just one side of the equation.

    • NooYawker

      Every one who has all the headsets, or produces VR content for a living have basically stated the Index is hands down the best VR setup available. The Quest is best for portability. Rift S is just there if you can’t afford the best.

      • Bob Smith

        It’s not at all the best when it comes convincingly displaying a dark or even semi-dark environment. In fact it completely fails at this, because of its TFT LCD screen. Black levels on the Index are severely limited. We would never accept an HMD that couldn’t depict a bright environment in anything close to a believable way. It should be the same for dark environments, night, etc. You need both. Not just one half of the day/night cycle. I’m not a fan of Facebook at all but at least they went with an OLED screen for the Quest. I wouldn’t accept anything less.

    • mirak

      The pricing is 1.0

  • Julianjscvc

    As much as I want non-Facebook alternatives in the VR hardware sector, Valve has been pretty poor with their job even before coronavirus. Why did they decide to manufacture head-tracking modules in US and cause it to be so expensive (decent open sourced OSVR camera head tracking and Oculus camera head tracking existed before Lighthouse 1.0)? Why did they go with a professional-grade expensive head tracking most users won’t appreciate anyway? Why did they go with such expensive default controllers which are still far from good finger tracking? Why did they add a “frunk” that just wastes spaces for most people and makes the device bulky? Why didn’t they handle hardware manufacturing better, why the constant delays, controller failures (it’s not like they are manufacturing millions of these)? Valve should step up their game, either hand over the hardware to a 3rd party hardware firm like they did with HTC or do it properly. Every hardware Valve has made to date before the Index including their Steam consoles and controllers have been a commercial failure and have been abandoned, do they not learn? The success of Steam gives them zero experience here.
    I swear it feels like every firm in this sector is goofing around and facebook is treated as the golden standard for merely making something just decent.

    • Immersive Computing

      Interesting comments. steamVR tracking is still best for active gaming and bow/gun games. Controllers yes I’d be happy with simpler CV1 Touch clone with steamVR tracking diodes.

      Thinking about the Frunk and dual cameras, the cameras still don’t work properly, the Frunk is….I plug in my Xbox controller receiver but that can be plugged into the PC no problem.

      Cost and weight /bulk reduction with cameras and Frunk missing would be a different headset = lighter, less bulk, lower cost?

    • NooYawker

      Valve gave away their patents royalty free, VR gear isn’t profitable. FB has an advantage because their main goal is to scrape personal data so they can take a hit on sales of their hardware and pay devs to make games for their store.
      Valve was also the one who worked with Lucky early on before FB bought them. Valve has done everything they could for the VR community short of giving away VR kits to everyone.

      • Immersive Computing

        Valve even installed a “Steam sight” VR room at Oculus? Which Zuckerberg tried…the results are well known.

        • Bob Smith

          Care to explain for those who don’t know that which is well known?

          • Immersive Computing

            The story goes that Valve installed Steamsight room at Oculus HQ because they were assisting Oculus on the hardware side; Valve to provide store front and Oculus the hardware.

            After Zuckerberg visited January 2014 and used the Valve hardware he bought Oculus, the partnership ended, HTC came onboard with the Vive (originally called Re Vive). From my understanding Zuckerberg didn’t know Valve provided the hardware, which led to some accusations.

            You can try the Steamsight room in “The Lab” if you enter the secret demo rooms using the valve on the postcard experience.

            This is the only known image of his visit.

      • Julianjscvc

        so? they still suck at manufacturing

    • mirak

      They had the roomscale tracking working years before Oculus, that you said should have been an easier job with the existing solutions, but it wasn’t apparently.

      • Julianjscvc

        Maybe they valued accuracy more than ease, I think they valued the diminishing returns a bit too much.

  • R3ST4RT

    HL:A can be played with any VR headset. It’s not a $1000.00 fee

  • kuhpunkt

    Why do you behave like that?

    • Bob

      Ignore this person. He’s clearly a nutter.

      • Zantetsu

        Whoever he is, I have him blocked so can’t see what he said … so I guess I must have agreed at some point …

  • mirak

    so fracking pay it

  • User With No Name

    Back at it again with more misleading comments with the same unoriginal joke, I see?

  • NooYawker

    I was stressed when my order said processing, then shipping soon, then a shipping date.. this Friday, then it switched to Saturday… I’m not going to breathe until it’s in my hands.

  • cirby

    “Less than a day?”

    Less than an hour, you mean. I logged on 40 minutes late and missed it.

  • Deal w/ it, child.


    Funny how you neanderthals assume you need $1000 w/o lookin into it :D

  • Valve are screwing up with all this ‘sold out’ supply failure. I just checked my local computer hardware specialist store and they have plenty of products in stock from HTC and Oculus, who don’t seem to be failing with supply even throughout this Corona virus era. So, Valve loses its fight for the contents of my wallet and HTC win.