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 Post subject: VR headset?
PostPosted: Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:15 pm 
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Senior Airman

Joined: Tue Jul 04, 2006 11:37 am
Posts: 144
Location: Oxford, England
I wonder if the Forum can say if there is any chance BoBWoV in its present form could be made to work with a VR headset? Or does the age of the coding simply make this impossible? Thanks.

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 Post subject: Re: VR headset?
PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 5:51 am 
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BDG
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Joined: Sat Nov 13, 2004 8:21 am
Posts: 5086
Location: wet coast, Canada
I haven't used a VR headset now in almost a decade - I have a couple sitting
around, but haven't had the urge to use them, too busy with other stuff. But
generally, they came out of the box with the ability to work with any display
that is rendered in 3D, so all flightsims worked. The first unit I had worked with
the nVidia stereo video drivers, the second used the iZ3D. These drivers basically
took the 3D directX signal and generated output for two viewpoints an eyewidth
apart, and sent them alternating in consecutive frames. The headset then sorted
them appropriately to the dual displays. I don't know how it is with the current
generation of headsets, but it would seem odd to me if they had regressed from
the previous situation. I would expect they would also work with any 3D display,
as that provides all the data required, but it is entirely a matter of how their drivers
are written.


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 Post subject: Re: VR headset?
PostPosted: Thu Nov 09, 2017 12:19 pm 
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Senior Airman

Joined: Tue Jul 04, 2006 11:37 am
Posts: 144
Location: Oxford, England
Thanks for this comment, PV. So if I understand you using BoBWoV with a headset would give an immersive wrap-around sky and being able to turn and look behind rather than toggle a backward view on a 2-D monitor. This would be quite transformative. I stopped messing about with the sim because I got tired of looking at the action through the confines of a single monitor (I know people have used more than one). I had my first experience with VR a few weeks ago - not a flight sim but more like a documentary. That's what prompted my question.

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 Post subject: Re: VR headset?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 11, 2017 1:49 am 
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BDG
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Joined: Sat Nov 13, 2004 8:21 am
Posts: 5086
Location: wet coast, Canada
Yeah, it's at least somewhat immersive, although those older headsets
lack the big wraparound FOV that makes the current generation
really crackle. For those, it was more like you had a view window
not much bigger than your monitor, but it would track your head
position. So, an improvement over trackIR, but not psychedelically
fooling your basebrain into vertigo or anything. The first one was
if anything a little claustrophobic, but the second had a few degrees
better window, which helped. The stereo effect made the cockpit
real, which is cool, but generally the terrain was too far away for
any 3D effect (unless you buzzed the cliffs). Of course, as soon as
you get that level of realism, you start to really notice the limitations
of the D3D world rendering as a whole, the resolution and detail of
the textures and mappings. Being humans, our expectations seem to
be inherently prone to exponential growth.

There are now some 3D stereo videos to be had online, filmed from
the real world, so without the rendering limitations, and some of those
are great to watch, but i haven't looked for them in quite a while. Sort
of travelogue things were what I found mostly, but I expect there's
just about anything now that the new generation headsets have been
out a few years. But the ones I saw were also "canned", that is, you
didn't get both stereo 3D and the control of your POV, it was more like
watching a 3D movie, or else you were in one spot and could turn around
and see in stereo, but not move (and time wasn't passing). Or, there was
one website showing a system from Russia, featuring a helicopter flying
over volcanoes in Kamchatka, where you could look in all directions as the
copter travelled along, but you didn't get stereo 3D.

...The nice thing was the drivers. nVidia released stereo drivers for several
years to encourage devs to construct hardware for them, but gave up
for a while in the late 00s, I think they subsequently resumed, but I
shifted to an ATI card around '10, and then I got the iZ3D driver which
ran on either vendor's cards. It also fielded the D3D without any effort.

Thus I would think (though I don't know) that the new machines ought
to do the same. There were several headsets available back in the late
00s that relied on these drivers, like the Z800. Most were too expensive for
the FOV for most people to buy into them, though. I figured, I had a bit of
money, if I buy, it will encourage the market (probably unreasonable, but
what the hell). I got quite excited about the prospect of cheap VR when
it looked like it was becoming a thing back in '13, but the rollout has turned
out to be much slower and more painful than i expected. I was expecting
the user base would be far larger now, and that superwhizzbang lightweight
wireless glasses for like $250 bucks would be everywhere by now. Oh, well,
I expect it will happen eventually.


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