A company called Avegant, a name that you might not heard of yet, has just announced a beta consumer concept of what the call a Virtual Retinal Display called Glyph. The Glyph headset integrates a brilliant, vivid video display and premium audio experience in a unique flip-down form factor looking just like a pair of headphones that double as a HMD. Prototypes of the Glyph Beta will be featured at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas from January 7-10, 2014. Consumer units will be available for purchase through a Kickstarter campaign that should start on January 22 and backing it up with $499 will secure you a kit that will ship later in the year.
Key to the innovative nature of Glyph is its optical engine called a Virtual Retinal Display (VRD). Using a low powered LED, a series of custom optics and a micromirror array, the visuals produced by the headset are supposedly crisper and brighter than those from conventional display technologies – think in the lines of using micro projectors that project the image directly on your retina. There will also be an integrated head tracking for more immersive and responsive gaming that should be compatible with all of the latest consoles and games according to Avegant and in order to achieve this you should most likely be able to map it to other controls. The shipped version will have one HDMI/MHL cable, onboard battery power and a thinner, narrower display band than the Glyph Beta shown at CES.
A Virtual Retinal Display uses a micromirror array and a combination of optics to reflect an image directly onto your retina, effectively using the back of your eyeball as a screen. The resulting picture is extremely sharp and vivid, unlike anything a conventional display can produce. In particular, the 3D images are exceptionally clear. The people that have tried the prototype from Avegant report that even though it had lower resolution of 1280×800 pixels the image quality looks really great and better than what a similar resolution HMD device using LCD displays can provide. You will also have an option to adjust the diopters in the Glyph to accommodate a wide variety of prescriptions and pupillary distances, so no need to wear prescription glasses while using it.
The Glyph is made to be media agnostic, meaning that it can plug into any HDMI source and display any current content natively. The beta headset will have one MHL/HDMI cable that will plug into any HDMI source and for the 3D is should be based around the HDMI 1.4 frame packaging format. According to Avegant the beta headset should have enough battery life to power a full-length feature film, or about two to three hours. The Glyph headset should have a 45 degree field of view, so this makes it more like an alternative solution to devices such as the Sony’s Personal 3D Viewers, Carl Zeiss Cinemizer or the Silicon MicroDisplay ST1080 than the Oculus Rift for example.
The idea and the technology seems very promising, and Avegant is reporting that many users who experience eye strain or nausea in looking at a conventional display feel no similar effect using this technology. The price also seems just about right and much lower than other higher priced solutions such as some of the HMD devices already mentioned aside from the Rift, but the Glyph will be a competitor for that device anyway. What bothers me a bit actually is the headset design that places the video part on the top of the headphones frame, meaning that if not used for video the optics will be sitting on top of your hair. The concept also shows no means to block external light are available, something that can kill a bit the sense of immersion at least for LCD-based HMD devices, it is possible that with this projection technology that might actually not be a problem, but it is something that needs to be checked. Anyway, I’ll be keeping an eye on the Glyph as more information becomes available about the device, and so should you if you are interested in VR and HMD devices.
- Visit Avegant’s official website for more information about the company and the Glyph…
Tags:3d hmd·Avegant·Glyph·hmd·stereo 3d·Virtual Retinal Display·VRD
DDD has released the new version 6.0 of their TriDef 3D software, bringing official support for 64-bit games (previously only available in beta) as well as updating the list of game profiles, so now the new version comes with support for over 850 games. Another interesting development with the release of the new version 6.0 is that the beta TriDef 3D’s Oculus Rift support does not require you to install a beta version of the Ignition part of the software – it is now available in the form of an add-on that you can install along with the latest official release of the software. Have in mind that the Oculus Rift add-on has much more limited number of games support.
- To download the latest version 6.0 of the DDD TriDef 3D 6.0 software…
- To download the TriDef 3D Oculus Rift Add-on 1.0b7 for DDD TriDef 3D…
Tags:64-bit support·ddd·ddd tridef·Oculus Rift·stereo 3d·tridef 3d
If I did not read that an update for the beta of the VorpX 3D driver for Oculus Rift has been released I probably would not notice (the update is available for people that bought a beta license). According to the developers of the software should update itself automatically when you start it, but in my case it was not updating itself or at least it did not give any indication of downloading and installing an update. Fortunately after running the small executable setup file that I got when I purchased my license it downloaded and installed the update, though the control panel remained absolutely the same and since there is not even an about box or check for update option (there should be) the only way I could see that I have the update version 0.6.4 installed was the files dated 15.11.2013 and the text file containing the changelog mentioning what was changed in version 0.6.4, so below you can find the full changelog of the vorpX beta 0.6.4:
- Experimental 64bit support
- Added NullTracker to disable tracking completely
- Various Windows Vista related installer changes/additions
- Various changes to avoid startup crashes with Steam/Origin/UPlay games on some systems
- VR Keys mapping not working
- Gamepad mapping not working
- Default Eye Separation twice as high as intended in Geometry 3D
- Keyboard focus ‘ding issue’ with various games
- vorpX Control does not start in Windows Vista
- Disabling vorpX freezes screen in Geometry 3D (DX9)
- Disabling vorpX causes black screen in Z-Buffer 3D (DX9)
- Headtracking activates vorpX option freezes rendering under certain circumstances
- DX9 render time handling in Geometry 3D
- Potential crash issues while loading Oculus profiles
- Geometry 3D Draw Exception DeusEx HR and possibly more games (DX9)
- ARMA III (Z3D)
- Battlefield 4 (Z3D)
- Bioshock 2 (G3D, Z3D)
- Call of Duty: Ghosts (Z3D)
- Dead Space 2 (G3D, Z3D)
- Dead Space 3 (G3D, Z3D)
- Outlast (G3D, Z3D)
- Q.U.B.E (G3D, Z3D)
- Splinter Cell Blacklist (Z3D)
- Battlefield 3: no 3D after ALT-TAB/Resize
- Deus Ex: Human Revolution: Support for the Director’s Cut added
- Elder Scrolls: Oblivion: nightsky/stars look weird with Geometry 3D
- Elder Scrolls: Skyrim: nightsky/stars look weird with Geometry 3D
- Fallout 3: nightsky/stars look weird with Geometry 3D
- Fallout NV: nightsky/stars look weird with Geometry 3D
- X3: Should now support X3: Albion Prelude in 3D (untested)
The most notable changes are the improvements for games that had problems running due to some sort of launcher as well as the official support for Battlefield 4, Call of Duty: Ghosts and Splinter Cell Blacklist. There is also an experimental support for 64-bit game executables, though there are still not many games that come with a 64-bit version along the 32-bit executable. And while we see good improvements in the compatibility of the software and new features, the most basic things that are a must have are still lacking like for example a proper and complete list of games that are officially supported with information what 3D mode they support, more detailed documentation about the various features and options of the software… and even a simple About option giving you the version number would be nice.
Tags:Oculus Rift·stereo 3d·vorpX·VorpX Beta