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Thread: Tried VR Elite for first time at the Frontier Expo - now thinking of getting a headset

  1. #1

    Tried VR Elite for first time at the Frontier Expo - now thinking of getting a headset

    The place I work for does some limited AR and VR development (eg 360 live video streaming), but we have only really tested the Samsung Gear and Hololens to date. Never had a chance to try a Rift or Vive, plus being a server admin and not a dev means I'm not involved that much.

    So I queued, for a long time I really enjoyed the brief opportunity and miraculously I didn't get motion sickness. Originally before trying it I thought, 'one day when the v2 versions come out it's all cheaper, lighter, and higher spec and I have a new PC etc'. But I guess no one knows if newer versions are 6 months or 6 years away, and I'd like to get into it sooner and enjoy some Elite time with a setup.



    So I'm reading around, checking the stickies etc but forgive my ignorance it's all brand new to me. A few questions for those with the direct experience...

    1. It seems the Vive is arguably slighter better / comfortable overall, esp for glasses wearers. But it's also significantly more expensive with the extra additions (which don't seem to any use for Elite) - is there a cut down version with just the headset for sale in the UK?

    The Rift comes in a standalone cheaper version, which is quite a selling point to me. Does the Vive justify its extra cost in the context of Elite? I think they had Rifts at the expo and didn't have a problem with my glasses.

    2. I have a decent GFX card (Nvidia 980 Ti) in an old gaming PC (old i5 with PCI 1.0 motherboard, 20Gb RAM, SSD, water cooling unit etc) - currently running at 1440p / 2k res at 144FPS (in space) with Gsync monitor etc. Do you think this spec would be acceptable to use the Rift at 1080p with a reasonably consistent framerate eg ~80FPS+? Or is a new motherboard likely to be a must for the minimum acceptable performance?

    3. There seems to be a fair bit of manual config, use of Profiler app etc. Not a problem, but has the setup improved over time or does it still take a lot of work to get VR running decently in Elite? In this regard, is there much difference between the Rift and the Vive?

    4. I have Steam but I run a standalone copy of Elite. Prefer not to run Steam at the same time if possible. Sounds like Steam is essential for the Vive, but I guess not for the Rift?

    Thanks in advance and sorry for the dumb questions. Will voraciously read any good links
    STATUS: ISSUES DETECTED
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  2. #2
    2. If you can run 1440p at 144FPS you should be fine for VR. Additionally the Rift has something called "Spacewarp" which can fill in frames if your rig can't quite push the required 90fps in VR.

    3. You only need the profiler if you're planning to regularly switch between VR and monitor. Having said that, it's not so painful as it sounds.

    4. No need for Steam but you need to run the Rift suite to run ED in VR (even if you don't launch it from there). There's a pretty impressive-looking software update for Rift called "Dash" coming in December which will hopefully make the VR experience for Rift a lot more compelling, including being able to easily switch between apps and adding overlays into your game. Watch here (starts at about 46m in) : https://www.engadget.com/2017/10/11/...te-livestream/

    No such thing as a dumb question. We were all n00bs once.

    EDIT: PS, there's a new VR headset coming next year, the Pimax 8K, which promises to have a lot better display quality than current headsets. Time will tell.

    - Micha |CMDR Myshka Kronosky|Asp Explorer "Alacritious"|Distant Worlds CMDR #254|

  3. #3
    Originally Posted by Spruxxx View Post (Source)
    So I'm reading around, checking the stickies etc but forgive my ignorance it's all brand new to me. A few questions for those with the direct experience...

    1. It seems the Vive is arguably slighter better / comfortable overall, esp for glasses wearers. But it's also significantly more expensive with the extra additions (which don't seem to any use for Elite) - is there a cut down version with just the headset for sale in the UK?
    You could always look at getting special lenses for the Oculus from VR Lens Lab ..

    https://vr-lens-lab.com/product/ocul...-lens-inserts/

    Oculus Touch bundle price is now permanently reduced to $400 so you'd probably still be saving, even with the special lenses.

    The Rift comes in a standalone cheaper version, which is quite a selling point to me. Does the Vive justify its extra cost in the context of Elite? I think they had Rifts at the expo and didn't have a problem with my glasses.
    Oculus and Vive are pretty equal for Elite. Many people say the Oculus actually has the edge in terms of quality and comfort (I've got the Oculus and love it) but I reckon it's about 50:50, pro's and con's for each.

    Note: although it's not used in Elite don't dismiss the Touch controllers - they're an absolute revolution in VR gameplay (just won a VR Hardware of the year award, as did the headset) and well worth getting.

    2. I have a decent GFX card (Nvidia 980 Ti) in an old gaming PC (old i5 with PCI 1.0 motherboard, 20Gb RAM, SSD, water cooling unit etc) - currently running at 1440p / 2k res at 144FPS (in space) with Gsync monitor etc. Do you think this spec would be acceptable to use the Rift at 1080p with a reasonably consistent framerate eg ~80FPS+? Or is a new motherboard likely to be a must for the minimum acceptable performance?
    Sounds OK to me. I ran it with a 970 + i5 (although I later upgraded to a 1080) and it was fine. Note: resolution of the Rift is fixed so it doesn't actually make much sense to talk about running the Rift at 1080p. With Oculus' ASW technology, you'll either get 90fps or, if your GPU can't keep up, 45fps and then ASW will emulate 90fps (which it does excedingly well).

    3. There seems to be a fair bit of manual config, use of Profiler app etc. Not a problem, but has the setup improved over time or does it still take a lot of work to get VR running decently in Elite? In this regard, is there much difference between the Rift and the Vive?
    Aside from tweaking graphics settings to get a nice balance between framerate and quality (single best thing for this is drkaii's EDProfiler) the Oculus is an absolute doddle to setup. The Vive used to require a bit more tweaking to get it to work well but I believe this has been fixed now.

    4. I have Steam but I run a standalone copy of Elite. Prefer not to run Steam at the same time if possible. Sounds like Steam is essential for the Vive, but I guess not for the Rift?
    Totally not necessary for the Oculus, don't know about Vive - almost certainly essential I'd have thought. I run mine from standalone.

    Thanks in advance and sorry for the dumb questions. Will voraciously read any good links
    Ask away, we like answering questions. There's loads more useful links in the VR section down the bottom of my Best of Forum thread.

    (new Buckyball race from 21 - 29 October : click banner for full race details)

  4. #4
    On the subject of glasses in VR, I forgot to say - if you're long sighted (i.e. if you only have to wear glasses to read or to use the computer) then you probably won't need them (I can't read this screen I'm typing at without my glasses but in VR I can happily read the forums using a desktop app' such as Bigscreen Beta without needing them at all - weird huh?).

    (new Buckyball race from 21 - 29 October : click banner for full race details)

  5. #5
    Originally Posted by Micha View Post (Source)
    2. If you can run 1440p at 144FPS you should be fine for VR. Additionally the Rift has something called "Spacewarp" which can fill in frames if your rig can't quite push the required 90fps in VR.

    3. You only need the profiler if you're planning to regularly switch between VR and monitor. Having said that, it's not so painful as it sounds.

    4. No need for Steam but you need to run the Rift suite to run ED in VR (even if you don't launch it from there). There's a pretty impressive-looking software update for Rift called "Dash" coming in December which will hopefully make the VR experience for Rift a lot more compelling, including being able to easily switch between apps and adding overlays into your game. Watch here (starts at about 46m in) : https://www.engadget.com/2017/10/11/...te-livestream/

    No such thing as a dumb question. We were all n00bs once.

    EDIT: PS, there's a new VR headset coming next year, the Pimax 8K, which promises to have a lot better display quality than current headsets. Time will tell.

    Originally Posted by Alec Turner View Post (Source)
    You could always look at getting special lenses for the Oculus from VR Lens Lab ..

    https://vr-lens-lab.com/product/ocul...-lens-inserts/

    Oculus Touch bundle price is now permanently reduced to $400 so you'd probably still be saving, even with the special lenses.


    Oculus and Vive are pretty equal for Elite. Many people say the Oculus actually has the edge in terms of quality and comfort (I've got the Oculus and love it) but I reckon it's about 50:50, pro's and con's for each.

    Note: although it's not used in Elite don't dismiss the Touch controllers - they're an absolute revolution in VR gameplay (just won a VR Hardware of the year award, as did the headset) and well worth getting.


    Sounds OK to me. I ran it with a 970 + i5 (although I later upgraded to a 1080) and it was fine. Note: resolution of the Rift is fixed so it doesn't actually make much sense to talk about running the Rift at 1080p. With Oculus' ASW technology, you'll either get 90fps or, if your GPU can't keep up, 45fps and then ASW will emulate 90fps (which it does excedingly well).


    Aside from tweaking graphics settings to get a nice balance between framerate and quality (single best thing for this is drkaii's EDProfiler) the Oculus is an absolute doddle to setup. The Vive used to require a bit more tweaking to get it to work well but I believe this has been fixed now.


    Totally not necessary for the Oculus, don't know about Vive - almost certainly essential I'd have thought. I run mine from standalone.


    Ask away, we like answering questions. There's loads more useful links in the VR section down the bottom of my Best of Forum thread.

    Hey thanks to you both for taking the time to answer my questions, really helpful! It appears Chrome won't let me 'Go Advanced' on MultiQuote any more, it says there is unusual code in the site. So am peering at Quick Reply

    The Rift is quite tempting from what you say, but I'll go and do some more research. The frame rate boost and application overlay capabilities sound very interesting indeed.

    Re Rift resolution, sure - I only mention it because my current spec can drop down to as low as 75FPS at times on certain planet surfaces - but I'd hope at 1080p it should be able to keep a steady rate - 90+ as you say.

    Ah yes thx I did spot the Pimax yesterday, certainly curious about that as we start to look at 8k video delivery at work

    And Alec thanks, will check the latest on your thread!
    STATUS: ISSUES DETECTED
    https://www.intergalactic.fm/ Intergalactic FM Music For The Galaxy

    \\LIVE LONG AND EAT BISCUITS//


  6. #6
    Originally Posted by Spruxxx View Post (Source)






    4. I have Steam but I run a standalone copy of Elite. Prefer not to run Steam at the same time if possible. Sounds like Steam is essential for the Vive, but I guess not for the Rift?
    For the Vive you do not need steam running. When you start Elite from the Frontier client it will start steamVR automatically.

  7. #7
    Originally Posted by Full_Ninja View Post (Source)
    For the Vive you do not need steam running. When you start Elite from the Frontier client it will start steamVR automatically.
    Steamvr also require steam running in the background.

    As for vive there are few draws compared to rift.
    The controllers are considerably better for the rift, the vive wands feel clunky and unwieldy in comparison.

    If you upgrade to a third sensor the roomscale stuff might only favour the vive if you have an area later than 4x4m, I hardly know any who have that, I didn't even get that when I setup my vive in a classroom for a vivecraft demo.

    And the new price just blows the vive out of the water.
    according to roadtovr it's being lowered to $399 again.

    Only thing that has me looking towards something else would be the pimax 8k, and since I already have the lighthouse units from the vive....

  8. #8
    Your PC spec is fine - mine is lesser spec than that (GTX 970) and the Rift works great for Elite. You'll inevitably have to do some graphics settings tweaking to get it 'just right', but that's half the fun of being an HMD owner!

    Oh - I'd recommend the Rift, even before the recent price cut. I sometimes wear glasses with mine, and it works fine other than taking a bit more care and time to get it on and off your face (tip, put the glasses into the HMD first, then put it all on your face)

  9. #9
    Originally Posted by Full_Ninja View Post (Source)
    For the Vive you do not need steam running. When you start Elite from the Frontier client it will start steamVR automatically.
    Originally Posted by TorTorden View Post (Source)
    Steamvr also require steam running in the background.

    As for vive there are few draws compared to rift.
    The controllers are considerably better for the rift, the vive wands feel clunky and unwieldy in comparison.

    If you upgrade to a third sensor the roomscale stuff might only favour the vive if you have an area later than 4x4m, I hardly know any who have that, I didn't even get that when I setup my vive in a classroom for a vivecraft demo.

    And the new price just blows the vive out of the water.
    according to roadtovr it's being lowered to $399 again.

    Only thing that has me looking towards something else would be the pimax 8k, and since I already have the lighthouse units from the vive....
    Great thanks for the info. It's not a huge problem to run Steam at the same time where needed, but I always like to run with the least amount of overhead possible

    $399 is great, it's now £399 here in the UK now which is not as good value of course, but still competitive against the Vive. That's all UK tech prices though!
    STATUS: ISSUES DETECTED
    https://www.intergalactic.fm/ Intergalactic FM Music For The Galaxy

    \\LIVE LONG AND EAT BISCUITS//


  10. #10
    maybe wait a little bit for new Pimax HMD will rule all.

  11. #11
    Originally Posted by Red River View Post (Source)
    maybe wait a little bit for new Pimax HMD will rule all.
    Do we know that this unit will definitely be compatible with Elite et al? Assuming that it will require a significant improvement in GPU and CPU power to run at higher res.

    Do you think that the 'Santa Cruz' could spawn the Rift 2 within 6 months?

    http://www.techradar.com/news/oculus...ews-and-rumors

    Again sorry if this is old news, but it's all new to me

    Also, the recommended Rift spec states 3x USB 3.0 and 1x USB 2.0 ports - pretty sure I don't have any USB 3.0 ports as my desktop is too old. What's that needed for - do the headset, controllers and IR sensors each need their own port?
    STATUS: ISSUES DETECTED
    https://www.intergalactic.fm/ Intergalactic FM Music For The Galaxy

    \\LIVE LONG AND EAT BISCUITS//


  12. #12
    Originally Posted by Spruxxx View Post (Source)
    Also, the recommended Rift spec states 3x USB 3.0 and 1x USB 2.0 ports - pretty sure I don't have any USB 3.0 ports as my desktop is too old. What's that needed for - do the headset, controllers and IR sensors each need their own port?
    Exactly that.

    This is worth watching if you're considering buying more USB slots ...



    I actually have the Inatek card and it works fine (as long as I spread my Oculus connections around a bit and don't plug everything into that card).

    (new Buckyball race from 21 - 29 October : click banner for full race details)

  13. #13
    Originally Posted by Spruxxx View Post (Source)
    Do we know that this unit will definitely be compatible with Elite et al? Assuming that it will require a significant improvement in GPU and CPU power to run at higher res.

    Do you think that the 'Santa Cruz' could spawn the Rift 2 within 6 months?

    http://www.techradar.com/news/oculus...ews-and-rumors

    Again sorry if this is old news, but it's all new to me

    Also, the recommended Rift spec states 3x USB 3.0 and 1x USB 2.0 ports - pretty sure I don't have any USB 3.0 ports as my desktop is too old. What's that needed for - do the headset, controllers and IR sensors each need their own port?
    The usb demands on the rift is honestly insane.
    And probably one of the largest drawbacks on the whole system.
    One rift camera is almost so demanding on the usb interface, it's not really enough to just give it a usb 3 plug, but it uses up almost all the bandwidth of the usb controller.
    In many boards and motherboards one controller is often split into at least two ports if not four, That's ok when you plug in a harddrive that only needs intermittent use.
    And for my two sensor I have found two usb 3 inputs on my mobo not on the same controller and use an expansion usb 3 board for the rift itself.

    The vive on the other hand uses only a single usb 2.0 connection, the tracking for valves system are jot camera based and beamers all work wirelessly with the headset (they use a wall socket for power).
    The usb connection for the headset is for audio in the hmd, the Tron camera in vr, and general Bluetooth for communicating with controllers and base stations.
    But when you have the rift working it works, mostly...

    The pimax are going to use the valve tracking system, so same as the vive.
    considering I have a vive and rift I could buy the cheaper 8k pimax package and use my existing base stations and vive controller so that is becoming rather tempting.

    The 8k pimax is having an estimated delivery for January 2018.

  14. #14
    Originally Posted by Alec Turner View Post (Source)
    Exactly that.

    This is worth watching if you're considering buying more USB slots ...

    https://youtu.be/qKLkj3nfd9U

    I actually have the Inatek card and it works fine (as long as I spread my Oculus connections around a bit and don't plug everything into that card).
    Originally Posted by TorTorden View Post (Source)
    The usb demands on the rift is honestly insane.
    And probably one of the largest drawbacks on the whole system.
    One rift camera is almost so demanding on the usb interface, it's not really enough to just give it a usb 3 plug, but it uses up almost all the bandwidth of the usb controller.
    In many boards and motherboards one controller is often split into at least two ports if not four, That's ok when you plug in a harddrive that only needs intermittent use.
    And for my two sensor I have found two usb 3 inputs on my mobo not on the same controller and use an expansion usb 3 board for the rift itself.

    The vive on the other hand uses only a single usb 2.0 connection, the tracking for valves system are jot camera based and beamers all work wirelessly with the headset (they use a wall socket for power).
    The usb connection for the headset is for audio in the hmd, the Tron camera in vr, and general Bluetooth for communicating with controllers and base stations.
    But when you have the rift working it works, mostly...

    The pimax are going to use the valve tracking system, so same as the vive.
    considering I have a vive and rift I could buy the cheaper 8k pimax package and use my existing base stations and vive controller so that is becoming rather tempting.

    The 8k pimax is having an estimated delivery for January 2018.

    Thanks, really useful to know. Just acquired a new work laptop with plenty of USB 2.0, 3.0, and C connections, but it will be one controller and def not a gaming spec gfx card, and unfortunately my gaming rig is now very old school in this regard
    STATUS: ISSUES DETECTED
    https://www.intergalactic.fm/ Intergalactic FM Music For The Galaxy

    \\LIVE LONG AND EAT BISCUITS//


  15. #15
    Originally Posted by Spruxxx View Post (Source)
    The place I work for does some limited AR and VR development (eg 360 live video streaming), but we have only really tested the Samsung Gear and Hololens to date. Never had a chance to try a Rift or Vive, plus being a server admin and not a dev means I'm not involved that much.

    So I queued, for a long time I really enjoyed the brief opportunity and miraculously I didn't get motion sickness. Originally before trying it I thought, 'one day when the v2 versions come out it's all cheaper, lighter, and higher spec and I have a new PC etc'. But I guess no one knows if newer versions are 6 months or 6 years away, and I'd like to get into it sooner and enjoy some Elite time with a setup.



    So I'm reading around, checking the stickies etc but forgive my ignorance it's all brand new to me. A few questions for those with the direct experience...

    1. It seems the Vive is arguably slighter better / comfortable overall, esp for glasses wearers. But it's also significantly more expensive with the extra additions (which don't seem to any use for Elite) - is there a cut down version with just the headset for sale in the UK?

    The Rift comes in a standalone cheaper version, which is quite a selling point to me. Does the Vive justify its extra cost in the context of Elite? I think they had Rifts at the expo and didn't have a problem with my glasses.

    2. I have a decent GFX card (Nvidia 980 Ti) in an old gaming PC (old i5 with PCI 1.0 motherboard, 20Gb RAM, SSD, water cooling unit etc) - currently running at 1440p / 2k res at 144FPS (in space) with Gsync monitor etc. Do you think this spec would be acceptable to use the Rift at 1080p with a reasonably consistent framerate eg ~80FPS+? Or is a new motherboard likely to be a must for the minimum acceptable performance?

    3. There seems to be a fair bit of manual config, use of Profiler app etc. Not a problem, but has the setup improved over time or does it still take a lot of work to get VR running decently in Elite? In this regard, is there much difference between the Rift and the Vive?

    4. I have Steam but I run a standalone copy of Elite. Prefer not to run Steam at the same time if possible. Sounds like Steam is essential for the Vive, but I guess not for the Rift?

    Thanks in advance and sorry for the dumb questions. Will voraciously read any good links
    1) Last year when I made my decision, everything I read pointed to the Vive and Rift being of equal quality but the opinion on these boards at the time was that Elite was better on the Rift. Since then, I think the attitude has changed and now it seems they both work well with Elite.

    I will say I'm a big fan of the Rift's Touch Controllers, not for Elite (I use an XBOX controller) but used with other Touch games they are very cool

    2) As others have posted, you may want to run the "compatibility" programs to see if your system is powerful enough. If not, consider a Gen7 i5 with 1050ti at a minimum, or i7 with 1070 for a mid range build.

    4) When I bought Elite from FDev for PC they gave me a Steam and Oculus key too, and I've tried all three on the Rift and for the casual player there's really no difference. By that I mean I make all my VR settings inside Elite using all three, so no difference as far as I'm concerned.

    Z) Looks like ALL of the new VR headsets coming this fall are not gen 2 :-( With the inside out tracking they could be considered Gen 1.5, but the display resolution is roughly the same :-( Except for the Pimax 8K but it's not shipping yet.

    Also looks like the new Oculus HDMs are +6 months way?

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