Virtual reality has long been the holy grail of technology. With a functional virtual reality headset consumers can visit new lands, engage in fully immersive game play, interact in a lifelike manner with other human beings no matter where they are on the planet and even perform remote surgery. However, virtual reality headsets have been plagued by a variety of problems such as choppy image delivery and lag. Many of the sets have, in the past caused users to quickly become disorientated and nauseous.

However, there is a new headset that claims to been the next step in the evolution of virtual reality – Oculus Rift. This headset is said to eliminate lag and deliver crisp clear images, eliminating nausea and fulfilling the promise of VR for the masses. So just how good is Oculus Rift?

Boy_wearing_Oculus_Rift_HMD

By Skydeas (Own work) [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Features of Oculus Rift

Oculus Rift did not appear overnight – it is the result of many years of painstaking research and the incorporation of cutting edge technology as it became available. The result is a device that is at the very forefront of the VR revolution.

1. It delivers a steady 60 frames per second.

For gaming the launch of Oculus Rift has changed the way that games are designed. Blurring, long a way to show speed has had to be dropped, as have static camera angles in cut scenes. Both of these have been shown to cause nausea. Oculus Rift delivers a steady 60 frames per second, eliminating stutter which has also been implicated in producing nausea.

2. It is equipped with a microphone shaped motion tracker.

Oculus Rift comes complete with a microphone shaped motion tracker which keeps tabs on your body and head position as you are engaged with your virtual world. This is an essential component of the system.

3. Users can see a 360 degree view of the virtual world.

Add the LED’s that can be found on the back of the Oculus Rift headset and users can now get a complete 360 degree view of the virtual environment.

4. Its display can be adjusted to your face to suit you.

The headset itself is a marvel of engineering. With a variety of lenses and an a display that can be adjusted to suit the individual face via a dial set into the headset Oculus Rift promises to be comfortable to wear and allow the user to make adjustments so that the image fills the entire field of view – which (it is claimed) goes a long way to eliminating nausea.

5. It has an Adjacent Reality Tracker.

The headset features what the developers are calling an ‘Adjacent Reality Tracker‘ which (in the latest version) allows the hardware to track even the smallest movement of the head in three dimensions – up to 1000 times a second. This is at the heart of the Oculus Rift experience and delivers an immersive VR experience that at this point is the most advanced in the world.

6. It allows you to have two separate screens. 

Another feature of the Oculus Rift experience is the inclusion of two separate screens – one for each eye. These screens run at a very high total resolution of 2160 x 1200.

Conclusion

If the promise of Oculus Rift comes true then consumers will very shortly be able to experience the first VR headset that actually delivers a usable and enjoyable VR experience – and that will revolutionize how we experience the world.