What is VR Ready PC?
A computer is said to be VR ready when it can support different virtual reality gears such as VR goggles and several other applications.
Previously, these computers needed a lot of ports to function. Apart from the HDMI port, the computers then needed to have at least four USB ports. Now, however, there are the latest versions and models of computers that have only one USB port that makes them VR ready.
- A VR ready PC is designed to handle Virtual Reality accessories such as goggles, headsets and others to offer a better gaming experience.
- A VR ready PC comes with a faster processor and high end graphics card along with motion-tracking device and lenses to create a virtual or digital environment.
- The three specific systems that make a VR ready PC work are head tracking system, eye tracking system and motion tracking system.
Understanding VR Ready PC
A computer that is capable of supporting virtual reality goggles and applications.
In short, a VR ready PC is one that can handle VR accessories like headsets and goggles.
The components in it, especially the processor and the GPU, in these PCs have enough capacity to power the VR gadgets and provide the users with the most immersive gaming experience.
A VR ready PC can support all types of VR apps, videos and games, including 360-degree games.
These computers will have particular specification which you should check while buying a VR ready computer. These are:
- Intel Core i5-6300HQ processor
- A GTX 980, 1060, 1050 Ti, 1070, or 1080 GPU
- HDMI 1.4
- Two USB 3.0 ports
- 8 GB RAM
- 4 GB VRAM
- 1920 x 1080 display and
- Windows 8 or 10 operating system.
Another important specification that you should also look for in a VR ready PC is whether or not it comes with a mini DisplayPort.
Anything less than these specifications will not be able to provide you with the VR experience that you are expecting. For additional assurance, you must also check the keyboard, the display and the size of the computer.
There are also some lower-end and low-cost VR ready computers that may not be ideal but will at least allow a VR setup up and keep it running.
Now, all PCs available on the market are not VR ready. You will need to make sure that it is, by running some simple tests.
These tests will help you to ascertain different aspects of the computer apart from its VR capabilities. These aspects are its:
- Battery life
- Display and
- Heat management.
You can convert a 4K video into a 1080p resolution and run it on the computer or even duplicate multimedia files of 4.97 GB.
You can also play a 15-minute video on the computer to measure the temperatures in different sections of the computer.
Importance of VR Ready
A VR ready computer is an essential thing to have in different fields and areas of project designing and management, apart from gaming.
- Panning and design:
During, planning and design, a VR ready computer will help right from the earliest phase. It will help the team members of the project to:
- Gain insight from the users and
- Perform a study on the end-user.
This information can then be incorporated into the project design and drawings.
This will also help in changing the moods of the spaces and other layouts of offices, rooms and lobbies by using furniture and other interior décor items. A VR computer will also help in:
- Designing hospital layouts
- Determining safety aspect and accessibility
- Assessing workflow of staff and more.
With help of the data extracted from the metadata, the VR PC will help to ascertain the footfall by using heat maps.
This will further help the designers to create patterns that will ensure a better and higher interaction and maximum utilization of space available in a building.
In short, a VR PC will provide all those important and relevant data that will help the designers to validate and develop useful architectural features.
- Community outreach and project pursuit:
VR, as such, can create a lot of excitement among the end-users and public when a particular project is showcased. This will ensure a higher and better community outreach.
When it comes to project pursuit, a VR PC will help the designers to know the different DDR approaches as well as the challenges that may come up in due course.
This will help the stakeholders to visualize things in a much better way and understand the logic and logistics behind it much clearly.
This will facilitate better and faster communication between the team members of the project.
While planning the logistics for a site, using VR by the field operators will help in understanding and communicating the impact, challenges and disruption in the activities while the actual construction starts.
This will enable them to convey the same to the people living nearby and even in the same building.
- Operation and facilities management:
A VR model will help the engineers, facility managers as well as the building owners to know how every system in it works.
This helps in providing adequate training to the staff involved in the project. This will ensure a better and faster operation and proper maintenance.
It will also help them to create a better and more effective safety plan considering the equipment and tools to be used, the accessibility and other requirements.
Any construction process will involve a lot of communication between the team members for its successful completion. VR models will facilitate that with the help of virtual mockups which is much better than physical ones.
These mockups will enable the team members to visualize, understand and distinguish the complex installations and finish features in a much better way.
It will also help them align the expectations of the designers, building owners and contractors, that may be varied.
How Does It Work?
A VR PC will have several components such as a headset, a fast graphics card, a powerful processor, HDMI port, and even a device for motion-tracking, in some cases, to build a virtual environment. All these are done digitally.
- The headset will display the content to the users and
- The HDMI cable will transfer compressed and uncompressed data to the display or computer monitor.
Sometimes, lenses may be used to give a 3D effect to a flat image.
It is the minimum frame rate per second or 60 fps that will render perfect virtual simulations to the eyes of the users to make it look realistic within the specific 100/110-degree field of sight.
There are three specific systems that make the VR PC work perfectly. These are:
Head tracking system – This tracks the head movements of the users including the angles and sides. It considers the X, Y, Z axis to determine the exact movement and directions. For this, this system uses specific tools such as:
- LED circle and
- A gyroscope.
These head tracking systems come with low latency of 50 milliseconds or even less. This eliminates the lag between the VR simulation and head movements,
Eye tracking system: This is an infrared controller that a few headsets may come with. This system trails the direction of the eyes and keeps it inside the VR environment.
The most significant reason to use this eye tracking technology is to ensure a deeper and more realistic field of view.
Motion tracking system: This is the third system that is engineered and designed to take the VR experience to an entirely new level.
Without this system, the VR ability of the computer will be limited. This means that the users will not be able to move their head to look around the VR setting.
In a nutshell, a VR ready PC uses different concepts such as:
- 6DoF or Six Degrees of Freedom
- 3D space and
- Optical and non-optical tracking.
Most of the modern computers, especially those designed for gaming, come with all these systems to ensure a higher VR experience.
What does it mean when a computer is VR Ready?
VR ready computer means a device that has the ability to produce a better user experience and a more immersive gaming through powerful processors and graphics cards.
These computers usually have 3D graphics that are intricate and highly detailed. It also comes with easy to use gears that ensure a more comfortable and natural movement.
How do you know if your PC is VR Ready?
You can use one of the several tools like HTC Vive check, SteamVR performance test, and Oculus Rift compatibility check tool to quickly check whether your PC is VR ready.
What do you need for a VR Ready PC?
Your PC will need specific hardware to make it VR ready.
This includes specs such as an Intel Core i3-8100 CPU, GTX 1060 3GB or RX 570 GPU, ASRock Z370 Pro4 motherboard, Seagate Barracuda 1TB HDD as primary storage, 8GB DDR4 RAM, Seasonic S12II 620 power supply, CPU cooler, Corsair 200R case and Windows 10 Operating System.
The make and model may differ but the specifications should be as mentioned.
VR has evolved over time and has now become an integral part and a powerful tool in design development, site logistics, safety planning, maintenance, MEP coordination and any type of project.
Using VR ready PCs can leverage stakeholder engagement, add value, eliminate challenges in a project and enhance communication to ensure a better outcome and project predictability.