We are always excited to get new tech in the Devika office and this week we have been lucky to receive the new Dell Visor; the creation of the company's partnership with Microsoft.
With Microsoft standardizing their mixed reality technology, companies have worked to add a series of new products to the marketplace, with entries from Acer, Dell, HP, Lenovo, and Samsung.
Within the last month, Microsoft’s Mixed Reality Headsets have been released, which at the moment only have virtual reality capabilities. The capabilities of the Mixed Reality Headsets are similar to the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, the main difference being that Microsoft’s headsets do not require external sensors.
These headsets offer positional tracking to allow six degrees of freedom (6DoF) without traditional sensors having to be placed throughout the room. Instead, Mixed Reality Headsets have two cameras on the front of the headset to track the position of the headset and the motion controllers. This is helpful for plugging your headset into a laptop and making it more portable. However, the lack of external sensors means Mixed Reality doesn’t do a great job of picking up movements when you place your hands close to your headset or behind your back. This problem can be overcome during the planning and design phase of a project when this is taken into account.
The headset offers a resolution of 1440x1440 per eye with a 706 PPI which is presented through its 2.89 inch LCD panel. This includes a refresh rate of 90 Hz, through a fresnel-type lens. The field of view for the visor is 110 degrees, which features 6DoF inside out tracking. The Dell Visor contains these features inside a nice looking design, which has a comfortable fit. The Dell visors name comes from is its flip-up hinge which creates its visor effect. From our experience wearing the visor is a comfortable experience, however, the hinges can be rigid when moving the visor.
Much like other VR headset on the market, it utilizes two handheld controllers which allow the participants to engage with active experiences. The controllers are standardized across all Microsoft headset which can feel a bit awkward on first use. The controllers also are not rechargeable but instead require AA batteries which can make consistent use more difficult.
In regards to setup, this is a fairly convenient model with an easy setup of using just one cable (USB + HDMI). This means that transport is easy, which is helpful if you need to move your headset to multiple locations. However, this cord is a bit short which reduces its ease of access.
From our experience, the visual quality looks good when using it for VR experiences. This is due to the above-mentioned refresh rate of 90 Hz, and is 2.89 inch LCD panel. A downside of this experience, however, is that peripheral vision can be blurry. Overall, The experience is comparable to HTC Vive or the Oculus Rift.
For a first addition to the marketplace of VR headsets, its design and comfort stand out. While It can improve its peripheral vision, and improve some of its structural features like a longer cord and smoother hinge. Overall it’s a strong entry of comparable quality to its competitors that deserves consideration.