PSVR 2 Hub
Image: Sony, MIXED
When will PSVR 2 be released? Will there be a new tracking system and new VR controllers? Here are the latest answers.
In this information hub you will learn
- when Playstation VR 2 will be released,
- what resolution, tracking & controllers PSVR 2 will offer,
- and what Playstation VR 2 will cost.
Playstation VR is a very successful VR headset: Sony has sold more than five million units, and even if that seems rather low compared to the sales figures for Playstation 4 units (more than 102 million), the headset is not a flop.
This is partly due to the excellent comfort of PSVR, which can be worn for a long time like no other VR goggles. Although the resolution of 1,920 x 1,080 is comparatively low, the subpixel count (three per pixel, about the same as Oculus Rift S) ensures a surprisingly clear picture – depending on the software, of course.
The VR games are another big plus, some of which came exclusively for Playstation VR. You can scare your way through Resident Evil 7 in VR, explore Skyrim, play Doom VFR or experience great games like Moss, Astro Bot: Rescue Mission and Blood & Truth.
However: The tracking system with the Playstation camera is pure horror, the Move controllers an imposition and the cable far too stiff. This is why we need a new VR headset for Playstation – which Sony announced recently. In this article, we will tell you everything you need to know about Playstation VR 2.
What does Playstation VR 2 look like and how comfortable will it be?
- The design will be modernized compared to PSVR.
- The comfortable halo head mount will retain.
- The “accordion” face mask could be responsible for the haptics.
Sony has shown Playstation VR 2 in another blog post with various render images. It is positively noticeable that Sony has modernized the VR headset in terms of design, but they have also adopted good and important elements from PSVR.
Playstation VR 2 retains PSVR’s convenient halo head mount. | Image: Sony
PSVR’s comfortable head mount is still present. In addition, the front of the headset will once again be slidable, i.e. it can be pushed back and forth and thus guided to the face without contact pressure. A rather voluminous “accordion” face mask ensures the exclusion of light, and could transfer the haptic vibrations to the face.
What resolution and field of view will the Playstation VR 2 have?
- PSVR 2 will have two 4k HDR OLED displays.
- The resolution will be 2,000 × 2,040 pixels per eye.
- The field of view will cover 110 degrees.
Currently, we have experienced Playstation VR only in Full HD. Due to the already mentioned distribution of subpixels, the picture is usually quite clear, but we would still like to see an improvement in the display technology and thus also in the resolution.
Varjo Aero has currently the best display with 2,880 × 2,720 pixels per eye, but it is also the most expensive VR headset for home use at the moment. Sony’s new headset is below that, but still in the upper range of current VR glasses. The Playstation VR 2’s 4K HDR OLED displays resolve at 2,000 x 2,040 pixels per eye.
Playstation 5 already supports virtual reality by its basic design, such as the chip architecture. Thus, no additional hardware will be necessary between PSVR 2 and Playstation 5.
Note: Using PSVR with PS5, on the other hand, still requires the additional hardware of PSVR, including processor box and cable clutter. A camera adapter is also required.
During a presentation at CES 2022, Sony announced the specifications of PSVR 2:
- 4K HDR OLED displays with a resolution of 2,000 × 2,040 pixels per eye.
- Fresnel lenses (not confirmed, information from a leak) with a field of view of 110 degrees.
- Eye tracking and foveated rendering for added VR performance and social interaction.
- Haptic feedback in or on the goggle frame, which should improve immersion and reduce the risk of motion sickness.
- Capacitive sensors in the new Sense controllers. The sensors, which can detect how far away the fingers are, will only be used for the thumb, index finger and middle finger. The Sense controllers will be included with PSVR 2.
Will the PSVR 2 come with eye tracking and face tracking?
- Eye tracking: Yes
- Foveated rendering: Yes
- Face tracking: No
Sony researchers consider eye tracking and the associated “foveated rendering” (maximum graphics details are only calculated at the point the user is looking at) to be particularly important for the future of Virtual Reality.
Of course, the Playstation 5 console would benefit enormously from this because computing and graphics power could be used for a considerably smaller display part and thus save compute while improving the image at the same time.
HTC Vive Pro Eye and Varjo Aero (review) are using eye tracking (even including Foveated Rendering). PSVR 2 also comes with eye tracking and could thus use Foveated Rendering. Only the image in focus would always be rendered at full resolution, while the peripheral image would be rendered at reduced power. For each eye, an infrared camera is responsible for tracking.
The Playstation VR 2’s lens distance to adjust the interpupillary distance (IPD) will probably be configurable via a setting dial.
Will there be an inside-out tracking system for PSVR 2?
- Yes, Playstation VR 2 relies on optical inside-out tracking, similar to Meta Quest (2).
- However, PSVR 2 will not be standalone.
Tracking is the biggest obstacle of PSVR. Fortunately, this changes with PSVR 2: Four cameras in the VR headset are responsible for spatial tracking and tracking of the new Sense controllers.
Wireless PSVR 2: Will PlayStation VR 2 come without cables?
- No, PSVR 2 will have a single cable to the Playstation 5.
- This will be a USB-C cable, similar to Oculus/Meta Link.
For Sony researcher Mallinson, the comfort of VR headsets is a decisive factor. PSVR is way ahead in terms of wearing comfort; there are hardly any VR headsets that are more comfortable to wear. Nevertheless, the user comfort can still be improved, for example, by eliminating the stiff cable and the complicated connections.
PSVR 2 connects to the Playstation 5 console with a single, more flexible cable than the current system. It is still unknown whether this is a custom-made cable similar to the official Oculus/Meta Link cable. A wireless variant is not yet off the table, but it is highly unlikely.
Will there be new PSVR controllers?
- Sony announced new VR controllers for PSVR 2, they are called Sense controllers.
- The Sense controllers get DualSense technology and are much more ergonomic than the PS Move sticks.
Let’s be honest: VR enthusiasts only use the Move controllers, which are more than ten years old, when they absolutely have to. Their tracking is too unreliable, and their operation is too awkward and unintuitive.
Fortunately, Sony announced new VR controllers for PSVR 2. The Sense controllers are reminiscent of the touch controllers of Meta Quest 2 (review), but the tracking ring goes around the VR user’s wrist.
So, you reach into an implied sphere and embrace the controller grip there.
The tracking rings use infrared technology, so they are no longer based on the light ball tracking of the first PSVR generation. The new system should allow accurate tracking similar to Oculus Touch.
Similar to Touch or the controllers of the Valve Index (review), it detects the thumb, index, and middle finger positions via capacitive sensors without the need to press buttons. Thus, gestures can be implemented with the virtual fingers, such as operating switches with a stretched index finger.
The DualSense technology of the PS5 controllers is also integrated into the VR controllers. The excellent haptic feedback, for example the resistance when pulling a trigger, will make a clear qualitative difference to the competition.
The controllers come with the following buttons and sticks:
Left PSVR controller: Playstation button, Create button, action buttons (Triangle / Square), L1 button, L2 button, left analog stick / L3 button
Right PSVR controller: Playstation button, Options button, action buttons (Circle / Cross), R1 button, R2 button, right analog stick / R3 button
What audio solutions may we expect?
- Integrated microphone
- 3.5 mm jack (or jacks) for headphones
The biggest disappointment of PSVR 2 is the absence of an integrated sound solution. We will have to connect headphones or use the speakers of our sound systems if necessary. The latter usually has too much spatial distance to the action in VR, the former increases setup times and lowers comfort.
We hope that there will be different head mounts for the Playstation VR 2 as accessories (similar to the Elite Strap for Meta Quest 2, for example), offering an integrated or over-ear solution.
Playstation VR 2: Datasheet
PSVR 2 Release: When is Playstation VR 2 coming?
- Playstation VR 2 is expected to hit the market in 2022.
- A report puts the release date at Christmas 2022.
- According to a leak, Sony wants to discuss the release date in early 2022.
In February 2021, Jim Ryan announced in an interview that the first dev kits of the new PlayStation VR headsets will be shipped “soon”. Shortly after, the official announcement appeared on the PlayStation blog – without pictures and without a video, just a short text. Regarding the release date, it says that PSVR 2 won’t be released in 2021.
We currently still expect a release in the third quarter of 2022. A report from Bloomberg, on the other hand, moves the release to the fourth quarter of 2022. A new rumor, however, talks about a postponement to the beginning of 2023.
What VR games will be released for Playstation VR 2?
- The first officially announced VR game is Horizon Call of the Mountain.
- Rumors suggest that studios such as Naughty Dog (The Last of Us) are working on next-gen VR games for Playstation 5.
- According to one report, Sony wants to focus more on AAA titles for PSVR 2.
- Some PSVR games are said to be remastered for Playstation VR 2.
Horizon Call of the Mountain was announced as part of the announcement of the technical details of the new Sony VR headset. This is a VR spin-off of the successful action adventures Horizon Zero Dawn and its sequel Horizon Forbidden West.
In Horizon Call of the Mountain, we won’t play Aloy, the heroine from the flatscreen games. However, we are supposed to meet her in the VR game, as well as other familiar characters. Unfortunately, the announcement trailer is absolutely meaningless and only shows a short scene from the upcoming VR game at the end. There’s nothing known yet about the gameplay. Release date and playing time are also unknown.
Blood & Truth developer London Studio is apparently working on a next-generation VR blockbuster. Naughty Dog is also said to be working on a VR game – at least that’s what rumors claim.
Another good sign is that Sony’s Astro Bot team is now an independent studio. Moss 2 will certainly be released for PSVR 2 as well.
And maybe a studio will finally dare to develop role-playing milestones like Pillars of Eternity, Dragon Age, or Divinity: Original Sin for VR? I’m also convinced that a FIFA in VR would be a revelation.
Where can I find a Playstation VR 2 review?
- We will publish a detailed PSVR 2 review in 2022 just in time for the release.
- Currently, there are no PSVR 2 tests.
How much will PSVR 2 cost?
- MIXED suspects a starting price of 350 to 400 US-Dollar for PlayStation VR 2.
PlayStation VR 2 is not yet available, and it will take some time until the release. Regarding price, we expect it to be in similar regions as PSVR at market launch. Its price was around 400 Euros in 2016.
Unlikely, but not yet ruled out: Perhaps there will be a wireless version, i.e., without a cable connection to the console. This version would certainly be much more expensive. In any case, additional headphones will be required.
At least the current PSVR is compatible with PlayStation 5 (but a camera adapter is needed) and is definitely worthwhile as a stopgap.
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