An Impressive HTC VIVE Virtual Reality Headset
The HTC VIVE Virtual Reality Headset is all that and then some! To say that it packs one wallop of a punch would actually still be an understatement as it’s more akin to a full-on knockout—of the virtual variety. It’s safe to say that this bad boy is clearly ahead of its competition in the current wave of virtual reality headsets. Let’s delve deeper and take a closer look at the features that set it apart.
What exactly is the HTC VIVE Virtual Reality Headset?
The headset is one of the premier choices for high-end VR products currently available in the market—the other being the Oculus Rift. It boasts an OLED display with an impressive 2160 pixel resolution and an equally notable refresh rate of 90Hz. It offers a field of view of 110 degrees with a tracking area of 15 x 15 feet to round off the virtual experience for its users. As for its sensors, it features all the necessities: an accelerometer, a gyroscope, a front-facing camera, and a Lighthouse laser system for good measure.
All these features aren’t for everyone, however, as they come at quite a price. For you to strap on this dream machine, you’ll need hardware specs that include either an NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970 or AMD Radeon RX 480, or greater. You’ll also need to be powered by an Intel Core i5-4590, an equivalent, or an even stronger processor. You’ll also need a compatible HDMI 1.3 video output as well as a 1x USB 2.0 port to hook it up into your system. As for RAM, you’ll need at least 4GB. Lastly, it requires either a Windows 7 SP1 operating system or something newer.
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How does it stack up against the competition?
Quite well, actually, as it can stand toe-to-toe with its direct competition—the Oculus Rift. Sure, there are certain aspects that may need improvement (the lack of a functional headphone for one), but it does offer the VR faithful with unique features you just can’t get anywhere else. One such example of this is the pass-through camera located at the front of the headset that allows users to “step back” into reality at any time at all. This can be a welcome breath of fresh air from the virtual realm, especially after extended usage time, as you won’t need to constantly take your headset off just to peek back into reality.
While some folks may be put off by the fact that it commands a hefty price of over $499, it is actually quite a steal when you consider the value you’ll be getting in return. Just as it is with other virtual reality hardware that comes along, its ultimate success (or untimely failure) will greatly depend on the titles that will be available on it for the (virtual) viewing public’s enjoyment. It’s in this aspect that you’ll realize that the VIVE VR headset’s future is actually in the hands of the developers.
Is it worth the lofty price tag?
In one word: Yes. That’s not to say that it isn’t without its fair share of drawbacks, of course. As it was with its predecessors in the virtual reality industry, the HTC VIVE VR headset can somewhat leave much to be desired in aspects such as ease of use, practicality, and product reliability. You’ll also need to remember that the reason for buying a VR system is the experience itself. If you’re in it for the titles, you most likely will end up disappointed as you’ll find the selection a bit lacking. That being said, the pros of this VR system definitely make it a worthwhile purchase. You just have to take the good with the bad.
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Your Virtual Dreams Have Become a Reality
Virtual Reality, in general, has had a long and winding story that’s filled with ups & downs. In fact, it has had numerous iterations where it crashed and burned (Note: the Virtual Boy that was launched by Nintendo back in the Nineties) only to be revived once again after a couple of years. From its humble (and unassuming) beginnings to its ambitious resurgence in recent years, it has been one roller coaster ride.
These days, however, VR capability is a different story altogether. With the technological advancements of VR tools, fans of the medium can readily indulge in unrivaled virtual experiences. And with the HTC VIVE Virtual Reality Headset, aficionados of the immersive experience have perhaps the most capable VR platform to date!
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