Last week Oculus has announced that they are starting with the shipments of the second version of their Development Kit named DK2. It seems that some people already have received their units, including iFixit who were fast to disassemble the unit and show us what is inside and what components are used.
The Oculus team has announced that they have “joined forces with Facebook to create the best virtual reality platform in the world” in their blog, but the truth is that Facebook is going to be buying Oculus for approximately $2 billion USD. According to the official press release the transaction is expected to close in the second quarter of 2014.
The 25th annual meeting of the Stereoscopic Displays & Applications (SD&A) conference, part of the IS&T/SPIE Electronic Imaging 2014 symposium, brought together researchers and practitioners of 3D capture, display, processing, and perception from around the world. Topics of the more than 75 oral and poster presentations spanned: the design and applications of stereoscopic 3D displays, autostereoscopic displays, quality assessment, depth map processing, and human factors. Of particular interest were two keynote presentations. Jeff Joseph, producer of World 3D Film Expo, discussed the history and lineage of numerous early stereoscopic films. Gordon Wetzstein of the MIT Media Laboratory offered inspirational recommendations for new directions in 3D display research, grounded in the combination of fast computation, optics, and mathematical optimization.
Nvidia has made available the G-SYNC DIY Upgrade kits for the ASUS VG248QE monitor available in their store, unfortunately they can be ordered only by people living in the US or Canada (as previously announced). The kit is being sold for $199 USD and you need to already have the monitor available in order to upgrade it to support the new G-SYNC technology. According to Nvidia the installation process should take approximately 30 minutes and it essentially covers the complete replacement of the LCD driver board and the power supply that the ASUS VG248QE uses with the ones included in the Upgrade kit. – You can order the G-SYNC Do-It-Yourself Upgrade Kit from Nvidia here… – Download an installation guide for the G-SYNC Do-It-Yourself Mod in PDF format…
Not only ASUS announced their new ROG SWIFT PG278Q G-SYNC monitor at CES 2014, but other Nvidia partners that are expected to launch monitor with built-in support for the G-SYNC technology have shown their upcoming products. The ASUS ROG SWIFT PG278Q however remains the most interesting product as it is the first one with official support for 120Hz resolution on a panel that goes beyond Full HD resolution, even though not 3D Vision support for it has been announced. All other announced models are in the form of 24-inch and 27-inch models with 1080p resolution and apparently only BenQ’s products will have support for the 3D Vision technology, or at least only that company is talking about 3D Vision support on their upcoming G-SYNC products. List of Upcoming G-Sync Monitors: ASUS ROG SWIFT PG278Q – 2560
Here comes the announcement of the first Nvidia G-SYNC enabled monitor at CES 2014 fromm ASUS – the ASUS ROG Swift PG278Q. The monitor supports WQHD 2560
It seems that Steam has added a category in their search that allows you to easily see what games are available in the platform that have support for the Oculus Rift 3D VR HMD and even though the category is called VR Support it essentially means Oculus Rift support for now. And while we may see other games supporting different VR platforms as they become available in the future, at the moment Steam has listed 14 titles in the VR Support category though the number of games is actually a bit different. You can see the list if you open the search on Steam and go to the advanced search where you have the option to select category and at the bottom of the category list you will see the new VR Support category. We mentioned 14 titles available under the VR Support category, but the number is actually a bit different as the list includes Team Fortress 2 two times and it is also included in the Valve Complete pack where other Valve games with Oculus Rift support are only available
Soon after the announcement of the new 27-inch BenQ XL2720Z 3D-capable monitor, the company has just announced two new 24-inch 3D-capable displays that essentially bring the new features of the larger model to the smaller 24-inch ones. The new BenQ XL2411Z and BenQ XL2420Z essentially will replace the older XL2411T and XL2420T/TX series, but the not so good news is that these two new models expected early next year will not feature support for the new Nvidia G-Sync technology. Nvidia has promised us the G-Sync DIY upgrade modules before the end of the year, but we are still not seeing these available, and availability of models with G-Sync support built-in early next year, but it seems things may get delayed a bit. BenQ XL2411Z and XL2420Z are suppose to be available in early 2014 and probably not too long after their release on the market BenQ may also announce new series that are supposed to provide G-Sync support as well as the company is an Nvidia launch partner for the G-Sync technology. Enough with G-Sync for now, the BenQ XL2720Z and the new smaller BenQ XL2420Z and XL2411Z monitors that will feature 3D Vision support with an external 3D Vision kit (including IR emitter as it is not built in) as well as 3D LightBoost technology
An interesting new project in the form of a VR game with Oculus Rift support intended to help people with depth perception issues such as amblyopia (lazy eye) or strabismus (crossed eye). The game Diplopia takes advantage of the wealth of new information in scientific studies that have come out in the past couple of years to create an experience that will effectively train people who have a suppressed eye to use that eye in conjunction with their good one. Evidence shows that with a simple well designed game it only takes 1-2 hours a day for 2-3 weeks for a person to get measurable improvements in their vision. The game is inspired by Breakout and DX Ball, where you bounce a ball around a room with a paddle to destroy blocks, unlocking power ups. By manipulating the contrast of game elements such as the bricks, ball, and paddle you can force the brain to integrate the two images.