Back in August we uncovered what appeared to be an updated version of Samsung’s Odyssey Windows VR headset. Now a listing on Samsung’s official website confirms the  Odyssey+ and its price, suggesting that a launch is soon at hand.

Update (October 22nd, 2018 – 10:52PM PT): A press release from Samsung today serves as the official announcement of the Odyssey+ and confirms availability in the US starting today from Samsung and Microsoft. The headset will be available “soon” in Korea, China, Hong Kong, and Brazil. To the dismay of enthusiasts, Samsung didn’t sell the prior iteration of the Odyssey in Europe, and the Odyssey+ seems destined for the same.

Beyond the details already gleaned from the headset’s product page, the announcement confirms that the headset has built in Bluetooth, meaning that the controllers will connect directly to the headset instead of relying on the host PC’s own Bluetooth connection (which required an additional dongle in the case of most desktop PCs). The controllers are “pre-paired” out of the box, Samsung says, making setup a bit easier still.

The announcement also indicates that the anti-SDE technology is “exclusive” to the Odyssey+. Samsung supplies displays to other VR headsets like the Rift and Vive, and this particular line makes it sound like the company plans to keep the anti-SDE diffuser for their own headsets.

Original Article (October 22nd, 2018): Spotted by Reddit user MasterTentacles, a listing on Samsung’s Hong Kong website shows the consumer-facing listing for the Odyssey+ Windows VR headset. We found the corresponding US listing for the headset, which confirms a $500 price, the same as the original Odyssey.

Despite the listing, Samsung has yet to officially announce the headset or a release date. Although there’s a ‘Where to Buy’ button on the product page, no retailers are listed; it’s unclear when the headset will become available for purchase.

In addition to the price, the Odyssey+ product page reveals some interesting details. The headset has what Samsung calls an “Anti-SDE” display. It’s the same 1,440 × 1,600 (per eye) resolution as the original headset, but “effectively delivers over twice the pixel count,” according to Samsung. Fine print further specifies this claim (though not quite to our satisfaction):

Samsung Anti-SDE AMOLED Display solves SDE by applying a grid that diffuses light coming from each pixel and replicating the picture to areas around each pixel. This makes the spaces between pixels near impossible to see. In result, your eyes perceive the diffused light as part of the visual content, with a perceived PPI of 1,233PPI, double that of the already high 616PPI of the previous generation Samsung HMD Odyssey+ [sic].

It sounds like Samsung has embedded the displays with a diffuser which is designed to let light spill into the the unlit gaps between pixels, thereby hiding the screen door effect. We believe PSVR has used the same approach to great effect.

Image courtesy Samsung

However, Samsung’s claim that it doubles “user-perceived resolution” sounds misleading. The diffuser may reduce the screen door effect to a point that it looks similar to what would be seen from a display with twice the pixel density, but as far as we can tell, the perceived sharpness of the display (the aspect most associated with resolution) cannot be increased with this method. Hopefully Samsung will offer more specificity about what their anti-SDE tech does in the near future.

SEE ALSO
Understanding the Difference Between 'Screen Door Effect', 'Mura', & 'Aliasing'

Aside from the anti-SDE display, the Odyssey+ also boasts improved ergonomics. In particular, Samsung notes that the nose guard has been widened to 40mm (from 32mm), and that the facial interface has been widened to 146mm (from 138mm). Both changes could help the headset fit more faces, and might make it easier to fit glasses inside. Samsung also says that new foam padding will make the headset more comfortable and help prevent fogging of the lenses.

Image courtesy Samsung

It seems likely that Samsung will want to launch the Odyssey+ ahead of the holidays. The company’s developer conference coming up at the beginning of November seems like a likely time to do so, if not sooner.

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  • Fluke

    People were modding their DKs using a similar method back in the day: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t0xaMIyUGfk

    • saintkamus

      yeah, that method of diffusing sucked though, because it applied the filter to everything.

      Samsung claims to be using a grid, which hopefully means, it won’t have the same “blur everything” drawback.

  • JesperL

    What is the FOV?
    Because the 110 standard is just not interesting anymore.
    Go at least 150 FOV or go away!

    • johnny

      It’s 110, and it’s good enough, I’m OK with my odyssey but will sure upgrade to the + when it’s available and sell my “old” model.

      • Maki RinPana

        it good enough,because you never tried headset with higher FOV.

        • saintkamus

          But you have?

          • cirby

            Now that the Pimax is finally being delivered, the most common comment is “never going back to narrower field of view.”

          • Evernessince

            No thanks, horror games are trash on an LED panel. FOV is great but the Pimax makes too many trade-offs.

          • Kev

            Except you don’t have godrays, mura and all the visual artifacts you are used to with an LED panel. It is only fair to point out there are positive aspects to that sort of panel too. Also the Vive and Rift and tiny sweet spots.

          • Charles

            Lack of “god rays” is a huge feature that’s rarely talked about. Possibly even more important than the wider FOV.

        • MosBen

          Sure, but then again, a higher FOV just increases the hardware requirements, which are already too high for most people.By the time the Rift 2 releases in 2020 or 2021, the average computer will likely have become more powerful, making it less of a burden to increase the FOV.

        • johnny

          I did, I own every major HMD (vive, rift, psvr) and tried the pimax, the WMR technology is the best in my opinion, ease of use and setup, and it’s working great, inside-out tracking is the future and Samsung is doing another step forward, it’s great. also I think we need more content, not hardware right now… we don’t have right now enough pc graphic power anyway to use ultra high fov+res hmd’s anyway. so a Samsung odyssey+ will keep me satisfied for a long time :)

      • Kev

        Honestly the immersion on a high fov device is stunning. You should try it before such a judgement.

        • brandon9271

          God rays have nothing to do with the type of panels used. It’s the shitty fresnel lenses

    • MeowMix

      Go away !

  • Tommy

    One more reason not to buy a Vive Pro…

    • dogtato

      so money is first reason and now “it doesn’t have anti-sde” is second. but once the knuckles come out, money will be the only compelling reason again

      • Les Vega

        maybe they will ship Knuckles with a free copy of Halflife3 and portal3 since they seem to all be coming in valve time.

        • dogtato

          nah, valve actually talks about knuckles and more to the point is shipping them in increasing numbers to devs

      • Tommy

        The first reason is plenty reason enough.

    • Alan Dail

      sure, if you don’t want accurate tracking. I have both vive and odyssey. I would never pick odyssey as my primary VR system because the tracking issues impact playability.

      • Bruce Banner

        If you have both Vive and Odyssey, you can use your Vive wands with the Odyssey. The Vive headset only uses the USB cable, the Odyssey uses both USB and HDMI The Vive headset is only for communicating with the controllers. You then you add ” “activateMultipleDrivers” : true, ” to “steamvr.vrsettings”, and install “OpenVR Imput Emulator”, where you choose your HMD. You need to calibrate the positioning of the controllers, but it works as it should after that. SweViver on youtube put out a video showing how it’s done. Apparently he tried with the Rift’s Touch controllers with the Odyssey as well, but the controllers stopped tracking after a few minutes. My guess is it’s because the sensor in the Rift isn’t being covered, so it’s registering as being removed from the player’s head, thus stopping the game. I’m planning on getting the Odyssey+ in 2 more weeks to test with my own Rift. I’ll get it at the Microsoft store so I can return it just in case.

  • Bob

    Interesting technology at work here. If it works as intended then I could see this being a problem for other HMD’s that would be released in the near future i.e. Oculus Quest. Going back to SDE from a headset with seemingly no SDE at all would be difficult.

  • Nobody55

    with a perceived PPI of 1,233 PPI… using a 616 PPI pen tile display…
    Err, sorry I don’t buy it… Especially with commercial screenshot like the one shown below.

    • Tomas Sandven

      Yeah it reeks of marketing bullshit.

    • dk

      they had a better visualisation where u can see it’s a filter on top ….with dots between the pixels ….so some sort of pattern reducing the effect….I’m guessing it will be pretty neat if not quite so great

      • Nobody55

        It is surely a brilliant idea IMHO ! Screen door effect really kills the image quality. But saying that you get a 1,233 PPI display with this “advanced diffusion filter” is utter bull-crap.
        And for me it’s a shame to have RG/BG sub-pixel arrangement instead of full RGB sub-pixels for a new headset… Come on Samsung, you can do better!

        • Darshan

          Yes ..we are waiting to see this tech implemented on RGB Strip Oleds..

    • harrisonisdead

      If it’s basically the PSVR display but higher resolution then I am sold, no matter how they market it. 1,233ppi is marketing BS for people who don’t understand what the numbers mean anyways.

    • Fam Wired

      Yeah, they should specify the number of subpixels used instead.

  • Firestorm185

    Honk Kong! Beep Beep!

  • wheeler

    Sounds amazing but I just hope they’ve fixed the lenses. That was the “problem” with the Odyssey

    • Icebeat

      the lenses were better than Vive and Rift IMO

  • sirlance

    Needs valves lighthouse tech to go along with their headset, the odyssey’s weakest point is there tracking

    • Dylan

      controller tracking on wmr is actually pretty good now since the latest update. There’s something like less than 45deg behind your head since both front facing cameras are 180deg. There’s also a noisy 9dof IMU in the controllers, so as long as you’re moving fairly fast they’ll still track. It’s only when you have a hand occluded and you’re not moving much that it’ll “freeze” in place, and even then, it’ll still move in 3dof at whatever position it lost tracking in. As for head tracking, it’s actually superior to the vive and rift now.

      • brandon9271

        Back when I owned an Odyssey i couldn’t play archery games for crap. Tracking up close or overhead was garbage. Not sure how software could fix that but I’d love if it did

  • Graham

    Be interesting to see if they are going to really push this version and sell it to us in Europe. Still not sure why they never did for the original one.

  • Andrew Jakobs

    But still not able to flip up the vizor .. hope this time it comes to the EU.

    • Hymen Cholo

      With flashlight in WMR you don’t really need to flip the visor up as much.

  • Master

    Actually Resolution is part of the sharpness but the GearVR is actually super sharp compared to the 1st Gen Odyssey. hope they improved the lenses. Test some 6k xxx files and youll see how much sharper the gearvr is even thought the ppi is lower.

  • Trenix

    This headset has nothing going for it. It’s design is so terrible in so many levels. It’s uncomfortable, heavy, and not properly secured whatsoever for long term use. Even if it had the best controller and tracking, I still wouldn’t purchase it.

  • Gary

    While I do believe the SDE will almost be non-distinguishable, but that inflated PPI number is pure marketing bs lol.

  • Jerald Doerr

    I’m sold!! Finally!!! A VR unit that will fit my big black nose!! Jk…

  • MW

    “It’s the same 1,440 × 1,600 (per eye) resolution as the original headset, but “effectively delivers over twice the pixel count”… Whaaat? Same res, same FOV, same (high) price. Wow… Stop me from storming the shop…

    • brandon9271

      Same crap controller tracking that doesn’t work well up close or overhead…

  • crim3

    I don’t get it. In a globalized world, how can a product be launched in one continent and not in another, especially when online orders are so common? What’s the difference between ordering online from USA or Europe from the stand point of the company offering the product?
    If someone knowledgeable on the topic could explain, I’d genuinely be glad to learn.

    • Pasi Ripari

      The difference is, “globalized world” is a fairytale spread by idealists while the real world cares not of ideologies but of money. When you hear “global something” you’re probably being bullshitted.

    • Miqa

      I agree that it seems weird but there are valid reasons. Not sure if any applies here though. Examples being laws, but there could also be patent issues stopping them from selling.

  • KOSTANTINOS KOD

    The first odyssey was designed by someones child or smt?,i haved found a person that will fit with no problems, i had to mod it to release some weight from the forehead.And wow that nose press….I think the child used his basket ball for a model ,no nose, huge head..I hope they use a human this time.

  • Mr. Moon

    It’s better to wait the second generation sometime 2020, we are just 18 months away so it’s not worth it to buy any VR headset at the moment.

  • Charles

    But has it fixed the edge warping on the lenses? That was the main reason I returned my Odyssey.

    • jj

      My odyssey doesnt have edge warping

      • Charles

        I hope you’re right and they fixed it, but I’ve discussed it before and there are a lot of people who aren’t sensitive to it. You may have just not noticed it.

  • Nicola Casali

    This could actually be better than my Vive Pro for sim games.

  • Peter Hansen

    Great! Now the only thing missing is a wireless solution, and my Vive goes to ebay.

  • Darshan

    Oculus Quest need these display… On Day1.. FB must do it.

  • Darshan

    Samsung Should put ANTI SDE film on every upcoming Galaxy S10 that will improve quality on Gear VR.

  • Icebeat

    now the real question, when we will see the new Vive Pro with this screen?

  • The Anti-SDE technology seems very cool… I wonder how it compares to the one of PSVR

  • REP

    Well, now that they have anti-SDE, why settle for 1600×1400 (whatever resolution) they have on the specs…why not go for 4K!! Also, this can’t still beat Pimax 5K+ though because the big FOV is a game changer to those that tried it. Nobody wants to look through a goggle or toilet paper once they tried the wide FOV.

  • Callsign Vega

    This is marketing BS. The only thing this filter could do is make the display even blurry’er.