Valve expands playable area with SteamVR 2.0

By Greg S ยท 5 replies
Oct 11, 2017
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  1. Virtual reality headsets are steadily improving and Valve has shared a significant breakthrough that will be making its way to SteamVR 2.0 within the next year. The tracking system used for Valve's virtual reality platform will be able to detect user input covering nearly 1,100 square feet of floor space using four base stations.

    Valve states that at launch in early 2018, SteamVR 2.0 will be limited to using two base stations but plans to expand to four base stations to reach the maximum coverage. The company is looking into the possibility of supporting more than four base stations but isn't yet sharing details.

    Compared to the HTC Vive and Oculus Rift, the SteamVR 2.0 is leaps and bounds ahead in usable tracking area. The Vive is rated for use in a 15 x 15-foot space while the Rift is good for use within an 8 x 8 -foot area if three tracking sensors are used. A massive increase from the first generation SteamVR's 11.5 feet squared limit gives Valve a lot more room for development and gameplay.

    The improvements are partly thanks to a new ASIC chip. Unfortunately for existing HTC Vive owners, the new TS4231 sensor used is responsible for much of the range increase and will not be able to provide any benefit for older Vive owners. Valve is currently only accepting bulk orders of 45 or more base stations at a price of $60 each plus shipping with shipping expected in early 2018.

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  2. Kotters

    Kotters TS Maniac Posts: 318   +218

    Oculus tracking works great in my 9x11 space with 3 sensors, and worked fine with 2 sensors.
    ghostf1re likes this.
  3. Trillionsin

    Trillionsin TS Evangelist Posts: 1,689   +302

    Hmm... does anyone have more space than that in their house, WITHOUT having to move stuff around?

    I had to rearrange my living room. Small house... but really, I don't think we need MORE tracking space. Who am I to say though.... I just got an HTC Vive 3 weeks ago and have already knocked over all kinds of shiiit.
    kapital98 and Reehahs like this.
  4. Reehahs

    Reehahs TS Guru Posts: 614   +346

    I know what you mean. The first time I fired up the Wii, I smashed the light fittings clean off the ceiling, including the ceiling rose.
  5. kapital98

    kapital98 TS Maniac Posts: 252   +192

    I never use full size. I had to drastically change my living room to get ~2/3rds of the possible area. People walk in and wonder why all the furniture is on one side. Plus, it takes work for other stuff to not slowly, but surely intrude on the Vive's space.

    I think it may be useful for commercial (arcade) or industrial purposes. I have a mathematics program I bought to conceptualize calculus. I'd *love* to use that in a bigger space. And, with future development, have a 3D program on par with something like Mathematica or Maple.
  6. JamesBrunk

    JamesBrunk TS Rookie

    You're missing the point, this is a play toward House Scale VR. Think of the VOID but in your house, at arcades, and enterprise solutions.This will ultimately lead to an Augmented Reality solution.

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