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WWGriphos

Coming over to the dark side...

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I finally caved.  I just ordered the new Rift S, released today.  It will be here Thursday.  Guess I'll see what all the fuss is about.  Since I spend almost all my gaming time in racing or air combat sims, it seemed time to finally give it a try.  

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Looking forward to hearing your thoughts Griph!

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If i ever get around to pulling my trigger on a drone, the vr headset that comes with the package is suppose to work well with gaming.  

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On 5/21/2019 at 10:39 AM, WWGriphos said:

I finally caved.  I just ordered the new Rift S, released today.  It will be here Thursday.  Guess I'll see what all the fuss is about.  Since I spend almost all my gaming time in racing or air combat sims, it seemed time to finally give it a try.  

 

Congrats.  Literally a game changer.  There's no going back.  Just curious, what made you go with the Rift S?

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The higher resolution for one.  Also, the single usb connection, and passthrough+ feature that shows me the actual world through the sensor cameras when I want to see it.  Also the sensor cameras, built into the headset, so no external sensors needed for tracking.  That is should work fine on my system.  Cheaper than most alternatives, and Rift seems to be pretty much plug and play and pretty trouble-free out of the current options.

  

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Brinson, can you help me a bit with game settings to get the FPS I need to have the best (smoothest) experience?  

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Someone should submit something to one of the companies saying the squad will test and review their VR goggles as a group if they will provide one for each pilot. :paper:

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LOL, oh I'm sure, I'd love to read the rejection letter, wait, they don't send those anymore. I like that VR setup in the pic, the one I made had a garage door opener, when I looked to the left, my neighbor on the left garage door would open, same when I look to the right, so I had to stop using it. The worst was looking forward tilting my head up and down, my garage door kept opening and closing. Back to the drawing board. :giggle_grin:

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Posted (edited)

Okay, I've had some time to play with it.  Here's the report:

There are drawbacks, and there are distinct advantages.  Primary drawback is resolution.  I have a beautiful 1440 32" BenQ monitor.  I love it.  It's so sharp!  The VR resolution is not.  Sometimes, depending on the scenery, it's a distinct screen-door effect.  That's aptly named.  It's just like looking at a world through a screen door.  Other times, I don't really notice it.  But always everything is a bit indistinct.  A bit blurry.  This would normally bother me.

BUT, it is offset by the single most important aspect of VR.  It puts you in a 3D world.  I've said this before above.  The best way I can think to describe it is that on a normal monitor, you're looking at a picture (a 2D representation of the world).  That picture can move around, and you can move the picture around.  TrackIR is really a mouse, controlled by your head rather than your hand, for moving the picture around on the screen.  It fools you into thinking that you're "looking around" a world.  But the "world" is a 2D picture.  Everything in that picture always stays in the same relation to everything else in it.  It gets bigger or smaller or points a different way, but it's always a picture.  You're always somewhere else in space looking at a picture.

With VR, because each eye has its own monitor, you are no longer looking at a picture.  You are IN a world.  The space of that world is 3-dimensional, not 2D.  Things in that world change their relation to each other depending on your position in that world, just like in our world.  And you can change your position in that world just like you do in the real world.  You're not moving a picture when you move, You're moving yourself inside a world.  The plane you are IN or the car, or whatever, is itself no longer a picture, but a 3D world object you can be inside or outside as you choose.  

This difference is everything.  As I've already said, judging movement and distance is so natural, because you're not interpreting movement and distance from clues you read off a 2D picture.  You are simply moving and at some particular distance from things, because those things live in a virtual world that has depth as well as height and width. 

So, flying against enemy aircraft just feels so very, very different.  Not only is it easier to keep track of them because you're moving your head 1:1 with your view in this 3D world, but the world itself is continuous, so that predicting the movement of the enemy aircraft even when it moves out of your sight is just natural and easy.  You don't have to interpret where it might be.  You just see where it will be because of where it just was and because the world it's moving in is the thick and 1:1 world you also are in.  

I flew some one-on-one dogfights yesterday.  It was child's play.  They didn't have a chance!  I picked them up earlier, and never lost them.  And their distance from me was a thing of space, not the size of the image of them.  Even the enemy planes themselves had a kind of "thickness" or roundedness to them.  They weren't images which changed aspect.  They were objects, moving around.  Just like the cockpit around me.  

They were also fairly blurry.  Not up close.  I'm still unsure whether it is harder to ID them now, or even though they are blurrier, maybe somehow easier to ID them.  I need more time to tell.  

When not fighting them, just flying around in the world is a pure delight.  Regardless of how blurry it is.  And it's not THAT blurry.  The clouds look great.  The lighting is great.  The landscape is pretty good.  And the fullness of being in space in relation to the ground and everything is simply wonderful.  The wings are just right there!  They extend out from me.  I can see if my flaps are down with a mere glance.  I can read all my instruments as easily as you look at your dash while driving.  There's no "edge" to what I'm looking at.  Seeing a different part of it requires the mere desire to do so, without thought, really.   

And it's hard not to understate the value of a real FOV.  It's not some approximation, where the "world" has to be placed in some fishbowl reduction to accommodate a wider view of things.  It's just 1:1 world.  So everything is where it should be and you see the world at full size.  This is crucial in racing, and makes a big difference when flying.  

I had a chance to fly XP11 this morning on my monitor around the same part of England that I flew yesterday in VR.  First, flying a chopper in VR is an epiphany.  SOOOOOOO much easier!!   And the world on my monitor wasn't significantly sharper than in VR.  I enjoyed both flights.  But the VR flight was a FLIGHT.  The other was a nice simulation in 2D on a nice monitor.  

It's even more incredible in racing sims.  I've tried rF2, iRacing, and AC so far.  I'm not sure why but the resolution of VR is less an issue there.  The cars seem sharper than the planes, and the world also seems pretty clear.  Being able to drive naturally, and simply look where I'm going and where I want is SOOO much more natural and comfortable.  I knocked seconds off my usual fast times in cars on tracks that I know well.  I'm going to enjoy racing in VR a great deal.

So, that's my report.  I'm still not crazy about having a big, goofy goggle on my head.  It might get sweaty this summer.  There are trade-offs in sharpness and clarity.  A rich and 3D world means a blurrier world for now.  But, man, having a 3D world is pretty incredible.  The Rift S is truly plug and play in pretty much everything I've tried it in so far.  Dial in a few settings, and you're golden.  Pretty trouble-free tech, it seems.  

I think I'll keep it.  

Now, about that VR sailing sim I saw something about.... (and using a bow by holding the bow with one hand and pulling the string with the other....so much fun!)

 

Edited by WWGriphos
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Posted (edited)

That is one of the best, balanced reviews of VR that I have ever read, Griphos. Really well written and is 100% aimed at the end-user. Thank you!

Also, once the tech gets there as far as resolution goes, there will be no reason for simming on any other platform besides VR. You’re so on point in regards to how monitors work. 

Seriously, great review!

Edited by WWChunk
Simming, not winning

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Yeah, I was kind-of "ho-hum" about VR headesets. Expensive and not really sure how well they'd actually work. But that review is stunning. Thank you, Griph ... And, damn you! 😄

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Great review... 

I wonder if you had VR prescription lenses how much of a difference it would make in what's blurry. I know my progressives would need to be swapped out for non progressive lenses, standard computer glasses might work. Someday, can't wait. I actually checked around to see if I could rent goggles for a weekend, no dice. 

Anyway to read notes in VR? Like view a note pad or something? Always wondered how I can read my flight notes. 

Excellent description Griphos...! 

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Posted (edited)
On 5/26/2019 at 7:46 PM, WWGriphos said:

Brinson, can you help me a bit with game settings to get the FPS I need to have the best (smoothest) experience?  

Absolutely, Sir.  I'm sorry I missed your post.  And great review you posted above.  I literally giggled and cried out, "I'm flying!" the first time I fired up DCS, hopped in a UH-1H and took off.  I did quickly notice that settings needed to be tweaked for optimization and to minimize the screen door effect.  Like the little rotating NVIDIA logo in the video card settings that has the "performance/quality" slider bar, there is a balance that you gotta find.  I set the VR settings up in both the VR application and then go into the games and down grade the video settings.  It is a pain if you're switching between using VR and not  from session to session (on the same game), and I can't ever seem to remember what I had the other set to, so I started using my phone to take pictures of my video settings.

I don't know what video card you're running, how much RAM, CPU, etc...  so I really cant give you specific settings to try.  Also, I have a Vive Pro, so I'm unfamiliar with the Rift S settings interface.  That aside, the biggest thing I've found that effects performance is the 'Supersample' setting in the VR settings.  I think that in the Rift it is called 'SS' or 'Global Super Sampling'.  My default was 1.0.  The higher you set it (1.2, 1.5, 2.0) the better the world is going to look.  That comes with a big cost though as your frames will drop, so you'll have to tinker with it (set it, launch game, see how it works, change accordingly). 

In the IL2 settings, if you're getting a bit stutter/fps drops, I'd first turn off the SSAO.  Other settings I'd lower is the Shadows quality, Mirrors, and Grass quality.  I remembered reading an article on settings back in the day so I dug it up again to see if it is still relevant.   I think it is and they go over specific settings.  Anddddd as a result, I'm going to go back through mine.  sigh....

https://steamcommunity.com/games/307960/announcements/detail/230089263631126778

 

Onto DCS!

This one is where I really take the pictures of my settings because I will still fly with trackir.  The Devs there have been claiming to have made a big leap in optimization lately but I don't know if they've rolled it out yet.  I noticed a marked difference in performance between single/multiplayer modes and where I'm flying so I have 2 sets of settings depending on which server/mode I'm going to use.  In single player things run smooth.  Regardless, flying over airports and cities gets choppy (as there is more stuff to render).  In multiplayer, everything gets choppy so I really have to dumb the settings down almost to the point where I can barley read gauges.  I did a bit of google-fu and found this for you:

https://thefraternitysim.com/how-i-setup-my-gaming-system-for-dcs-world-in-vr/

I did set the preload up to as far a possible, sure the mission takes a bit longer to load, but I think it reduces the load on the CPU and GFX card while the sim is running.

I gotta go get the teen from school now, but if can think of anything else, I'll add an edit.  If you have any questions, please 'ding' me and I'd be more than happy to help.

Heh... Check out Google Earth VR.  You'll feel like godzilla walking around cities. 

S!

ps @Driftwood....  Most VR sets have enough room or are adjustable so that prescription glasses can still be worn.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by WWBrinson
more stuff to type.
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Question.  When I was mulling over a Drone (still am), looked into the compatibility of both other vr headsets with the drone, and the drone headset with a PC

Turns out you can not use a Rift with a DJi drone, but you can use a DJI vr with a gaming computer.

I know the Drone VR is more expensive, but it looks like the specs on it are much better.  Should I hold off on considering a VR till I am ready go get a drone, and get the drone goggles (700 bucks...)

Quote

DJI GOGGLES RE

Weight (Typical)DJI Goggles RE Body: 502 g; 
Headband: 500 g

DimensionsDJI Goggles RE Body: 195 × 155 × 110 mm;
Headband (folded):255 × 205 × 92 mm

Screen Size5-inch × 2

Screen Resolution3840 × 1080 (single screen: 1920 × 1080)

Transmitter Power (EIRP)2.4 GHz:
25.5 dBm (FCC); 18.5 dBm (CE); 19 dBm (SRRC)
5.8 GHz: 
25.5 dBm (FCC); 12.5 dBm (CE); 18.5 dBm (SRRC)

Live View Modes1080p30, 720p60, 720p30

 

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12 minutes ago, WWSittingduck said:

Question.  When I was mulling over a Drone (still am), looked into the compatibility of both other vr headsets with the drone, and the drone headset with a PC

Turns out you can not use a Rift with a DJi drone, but you can use a DJI vr with a gaming computer.

I know the Drone VR is more expensive, but it looks like the specs on it are much better.  Should I hold off on considering a VR till I am ready go get a drone, and get the drone goggles (700 bucks...)

 

Interesting thought.  I would do a bit more research because I don't know if tracking is implemented.

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Not sure I know the answer to that, but do know you can steer the drone just by looking in a direction with the goggles, or you can fly the drone, and have someone else wear the goggles (wireless to boot), and they control the camera on the drone, but not the drone itself.

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I'm betting that unless they plug into the computer, they don't have the GPU power in their built-in GPU to get good performance on the sims.  I know nothing about these drone VR headsets, though.  I'd certainly research it thoroughly.

As for glasses, I tried my progressives, and that was a bad idea.  I'd need standard prescription glasses, and I'm betting they'd need to be set for close vision.  The screens you're actually looking at are only an inch or so from your eyes.

Thanks for that info, Brinson.  I think I have IL2 dialed in (and am using 1.5 SS in the Rift software).  But I haven't even touched DCS yet.  Maybe tomorrow.  

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