Stealth start-up Varjo teases VR headset with 'human eye-resolution'

Shawn Knight

Posts: 13,062   +130
Staff member

A mysterious start-up by the name of Varjo has emerged from the shadows with a “human eye-resolution” virtual reality display that looks to put current solutions like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive to shame.

Resolution is a major shortcoming with today’s VR headsets. The Oculus Rift, for example, offers a resolution of just 1,080 x 1,200 pixels per eye. While the pixels are packed into a relatively small space, the fact that they sit so close to your eyes makes it easy to discern individual pixels – the screen door-effect – which ultimately lowers immersion.

Varjo, which means “shadow” in Finnish, looks to solve this issue with a headset that offers resolutions more than 70X beyond anything that is currently shipping or has been announced (including Magic Leap). The start-up says its patented tech replicates how the human eye naturally works to create a super-high-resolution image in the users’ gaze direction.

According to the company, its headset – codenamed 20|20 – will deliver an effective resolution of 70-megapixels. For comparison, the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive offer 1.2-megapixels. All three solutions afford a 100° field of view.

Combined with video-see-through (VST) technology, the headset will allow for not only virtual reality but augmented reality and mixed reality experiences, we’re told.

Varjo says its prototype was developed by a team of creatives, developers and optical scientists that formerly held top spots at companies like Intel, Nokia, Microsoft, Rovio and Nvidia. It plans to ship its technology in branded products beginning in the fourth quarter of this year.

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Posts: 3,603   +3,525
70 megapixels, huh? Good thing I've been hoarding Titan XPs in a warehouse


Posts: 1,868   +900
Sounds too good to be true... but we can hope.

Honestly 8K (or 4,800 "tv lines") would probably be pretty decent for a VR headset display and blow Oculus' 1200 tv lines out of the water. Dot pitch also has a lot to do with it.

Current graphics cards can't even really handle current games in 4K at the desired frame rates for VR headset use. Having some crazy high resolution display is wonderful but the rest of the tech around can't make use of it.

How about some baby steps here instead of reaching for the stars right out of the womb?


Posts: 370   +183
They obviously haven't developed a 70K display. I'll bet what they're doing is using eye tracking to present each eye with a small but extremely high resolution part of the overall image at any given time, and the brain composites all the imagery within a certain time frame into one, which gives the impression of complete vista, which is how the eye works.


Posts: 370   +183
Or, more accurately, it would have a sharp central area of the image, with the rest of image being progressively more fuzzy as it nears the periphery.