Czech-based virtual reality (VR) startup VRgineers specialises in producing high-end head-mounted displays (HMDs) for enterprise, having started with the VRHero 5K Plus. Now the company has unveiled a successor, XTAL, a pro headset with unique features.
The XTAL headset has been built around the needs of professional designers and engineers – so don’t expect to see on in Best Buy or PC World – boasting a 5K resolution, 170º field-of-view (FoV), and patented non-Fresnel lenses.
“Over the last year, we’ve invested hundreds of hours talking to our enterprise users across industries, gathering feedback and learning what makes VR usage in professional applications difficult,” says Marek Polcak, VRgineers CEO in a statement. “Then we put all our passion into creating the next generation VR headset that addresses these issues. We firmly believe XTAL will become an indispensable component of engineering, manufacturing, designing, and training processes, and enable you to do more while saving resources, money and time.”
Two built-in features VRgineers is heavily promoting are AutoEye and Leap Motion. AutoEye is the company’s proprietary interpupillary distance (IPD) technology that automatically aligns lens positions with the user’s eyes. This is especially useful when the headset is swapped between users. While Leap Motion integration means customers can use their bare hands to interact with virtual worlds.
During development VRgineers focused on providing a full hardware-software stack for users by cooperating with specialised software companies such as Autodesk, Dassault Systemes, and ESI. For professionals using the latest PC hardware, XTAL has been optimised for NVIDIA Quadro professional GPUs.
“VR for professional use is broadly gaining traction,” says David Weinstein, Director of Enterprise VR at NVIDIA. “When creating a product prototype or architectural plan you really need to see the details in your design, and that precision and clarity really comes through in the VRgineers headset’s high- resolution display combined with NVIDIA Quadro professional GPUs.”
So how much does pro gear cost? Well the VRgineers XTAL headset is available now for purchase in the US for $5,800 USD with shipments beginning in September 2018.