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Nintendo Switch and head mounted display : VR speculation time

Buggy Loop

Member
So with the patent dump from Nintendo, we have a lot more info. Now we know that they have been looking at turning switch into an HMD



Now, from what we know, in portable mode it'll most likely render at 720p. With a 6.2" display, putting it at 240ppi, it's really good for a handheld, but not really right next to your eyes when it is strapped on your face.

So how is it even considered? Who would release one of the worst PPI VR HMD on the planet?

Is the screen RGB ala sony VR ? Is it actually a 1080p display, but simply rendering @ 720p for power ressources? Even RGB @ 1080p would still put it a bit worse than PSVR in ppi, but would probably be sufficient as PSVR actually has the least screen door effect.

Or...

Nvidia, i believe, is behind all this tech mainly. I want to point out to a research Nvidia did 2 years ago on VR display tech, called cascaded displays.

https://youtu.be/0XwaARRMbSA









Or it's just a dead patent that will never come to fruition, but i just want to point out a possible scenario.
 
I actually bet this will be used in some way as a very low-end introductory VR solution. The fact that all of this comes in a package costing $250 (plus whatever extra for the HMD, which should be cheap) is kind of mind blowing.

Aren't we missing an SCD to do VR on Switch right? (Supplemental Computing Device).

If the screen is 720p an SCD will not do anything to help resolution or PPI.
 
I think VR on the switch is dead-in-the-water in the first place.

Googles DayDream (and other competing solutions) will have much more power than the switch with (probably) a lighter device in ~2 years time, around the time Nintendo would be able to launch this anyway. It just seems like it would be late, and under powered compared to even the cheap (eg daydream) solutions of the future.
 

C.Mongler

Member
My bet is on them just covering bases. There might be a novelty Google Cardboard-like experience that technically works but is super low-fidelity and more or less for shits and giggles; I don't expect VR is a huge focus for Nintendo with the Switch.
 

marc^o^

Nintendo's Pro Bono PR Firm
I think VR on the switch is dead-in-the-water in the first place.

Googles DayDream (and other competing solutions) will have much more power than the switch with (probably) a lighter device in ~2 years time, around the time Nintendo would be able to launch this anyway. It just seems like it would be late, and under powered compared to even the cheap (eg daydream) solutions of the future.
As a Vive owner I need to be convinced. One thing is sure Nintendo would know how to make very good content for it. If anything, it's a way for them to prepare for our VR future
 

Cartman86

Banned
Well I guess it will take Nintendo to pull a Wii for everyone to realize how shitty mobile VR is. How long before external sensors for VR Motion+ to get it right?
 

Semajer

Member
I'm not particularly well versed in VR, but would it be possible to put something between the eyes and the screen to blur the image so that you don't see the individual pixels? Would that even make any positive difference?
 

Vic

Please help me with my bad english
My bet is on them just covering bases. There might be a novelty Google Cardboard-like experience that technically works but is super low-fidelity and more or less for shits and giggles; I don't expect VR is a huge focus for Nintendo with the Switch.
The new R.O.B., 3DS AR card game side gimmick.

 
It could maybe do the most entry-level Google Cardboard experience, but the Switch hardware will be under powered, the screen will be really low resolution for VR. And who knows if it will have accelerators sensitive enough to provide non-sickness-inducing head tracking.
 
D

Deleted member 465307

Unconfirmed Member
Since 720p seems too low, my guess is that an eventual 1080p version of Switch will happen a few years from now and this patent was filed with that in mind. That model could also include custom hardware to optimize for VR.

Patents don't have to be used; I believe they're more about just claiming the rights to an idea.
 

Somnid

Member
The PPI would be like the OG Oculus dev kit. It's enough for impact, I think VR enthusiasts tend toward audiophile-like techno-fetishism but you can get certain experience with this for little cost. One of the things that really points to them looking at this is the fact that both the joycon and core unit have accelerometers and gyros. If they weren't to be used independently they they would be contained in just the joycon for cost savings, so presumably the core unit has motion tracking when not used with the joycon or in addition to them which is interesting.

What I would expect is small demos with the option to improve the core unit if it becomes a more viable space to move into.
 

Vic

Please help me with my bad english
Since 720p seems too low, my guess is that an eventual 1080p version of Switch will happen a few years from now and this patent was filed with that in mind. That model could also include custom hardware to optimize for VR.

Patents don't have to be used; I believe they're more about just claiming the rights to an idea.
Most people who aren't into VR and don't spend their time comparing specs (in other words, pretty much everyone) could get into this if the content is there, visually quality be damned. But again, I don't think Nintendo is seriously trying to get into the VR space.
 

ArtHands

Thinks buying more servers can fix a bad patch
Nah man the hmd double as a portable dock and will have a 4k screens in it which will be placed in front of the 720p display on the switch when the switch is docked in the hmd, so you will be seeing 4k resolution in the hmd as the 4k screens will convert and increase the 720p resolution to 4k
 

foltzie1

Member
So with the patent dump from Nintendo, we have a lot more info. Now we know that they have been looking at turning switch into an HMD

Now, from what we know, in portable mode it'll most likely render at 720p. With a 6.2" display, putting it at 240ppi, it's really good for a handheld, but not really right next to your eyes when it is strapped on your face.

So how is it even considered? Who would release one of the worst PPI VR HMD on the planet?

Or it's just a dead patent that will never come to fruition, but i just want to point out a possible scenario.

Ignore the speculation and speaking to just the thought about using a 720p screen as a VR screen.

It wouldn't be a great experience, but it would be cheap and it might be good enough for some functions as others have pointed out ala Google Cardboard.

But this seems more like the old Luigis Mansion 3D features for the Gamecube, an idea that is being explored, but not taken to market.

Would be hilarious to see them push this as a concept during the January Direct.
 

wtd2009

Member
pretty low resolution for VR, i suppose like everything nintendo we just need to wait and see how this is going to play out.
 

Speely

Banned
I fully believe that this is a patent securing future uses of iterative Switch hardware, and perhaps SCDs, not anything we will see for the upcoming device.
 
YES. I myself wondered about the potential of a cheap VR solution for the Switch's screen. I think that's what the Google Daydream set is, where you use a leather headset and use your mobile phone as a screen.

I don't see why a 720p screen is unfeasible, at least with this "extra" feature of a handheld gaming console.

I've come up with a cool idea where GameStop and Nintendo could sort of work together and have MadCatz make a Switch-specific headset for the screen, and have the GameTrust label put out a cheap "tech demo" VR game alongside.

And they revive the GameShark brand (since they own it) and call it a GameShark Switch VR Headset (The GameShark Pro Jaws VR Headset? You know, the teeth can surround the screen part? Maybe? :p), because that would be so fucking cool.
 

Polygonal_Sprite

Gold Member
I believe there will be Nintendo VR games for Switch. They won't compare visually to PS VR games obviously but it will be some nice experiences for the more casual users.

I've played a couple of fairly impressive VR games on my iphone 5c, how does the rumoured Switch specs compare to that particular iphone ?
 
D

Deleted member 465307

Unconfirmed Member
Most people who aren't into VR and don't spend their time comparing specs (in other words, pretty much everyone) could get into this if the content is there, visually quality be damned. But again, I don't think Nintendo is seriously trying to get into the VR space.

Are you sure? I haven't used VR, but if it results in a blurry image, that seems like something the average customer would care about. While they might not care about specs, I imagine they probably would care if using the device made them feel like they needed glasses. I think this is different from TVs because VR is attempting to be a visual simulation.
 
That would be neat. More application. That is actually smart if they can get the experience down.

I imagine more accessories.
 

KAL2006

Banned
Switch Pro
NVidia Volta Architecture
1080p Portable Mode
Up to 4k Docked Mode
Comes with headcount for VR
1080p Screen
Exclusive VR Games
Exclusive Pro Enhanced Games
 
I believe there will be Nintendo VR games for Switch. They won't compare visually to PS VR games obviously but it will be some nice experiences for the more casual users.

I've played a couple of fairly impressive VR games on my iphone 5c, how does the rumoured Switch specs compare to that particular iphone ?

It's not just the power it's the screen resolution. If the image quality is poor that will make for a poor VR experience and is something even casuals will notice.
 

TedHub

Banned
I think that if Nintendo was planning on having a Switch based VR experience, they would have included a camera on the back, as their main concern in the past regarding the medium was the factor of "disconnectedness" it can bring
 

orioto

Good Art™
Most people who aren't into VR and don't spend their time comparing specs (in other words, pretty much everyone) could get into this if the content is there, visually quality be damned. But again, I don't think Nintendo is seriously trying to get into the VR space.

Most people trying VR for the first time are shocked how blurry it is actually, and that's with 1080p screens, not 720p
 

Cartman86

Banned
Resolution, PPI, frame rate, fov, method of tracking, and input all matter for VR. There is a minimum standard and the chances of this meeting that are very low if the leaked info is to be trusted.
 

Vic

Please help me with my bad english
Most people trying VR for the first time are shocked how blurry it is actually, and that's with 1080p screens, not 720p
Yeah, if there's actually VR software for the Switch, it'll never be more than proof-of-concept tech demos. Unless the content is something that people really want to experience.
 

Polygonal_Sprite

Gold Member
It's not just the power it's the screen resolution. If the image quality is poor that will make for a poor VR experience and is something even casuals will notice.

I didn't have an issue with screen resolution and my old iphone's screen resolution was 1136 x 640. The average person really won't care about image quality as long as it doesn't give them a headache.
 

KoopaTheCasual

Junior Member
Most people who aren't into VR and don't spend their time comparing specs (in other words, pretty much everyone) could get into this if the content is there, visually quality be damned. But again, I don't think Nintendo is seriously trying to get into the VR space.

You seem like you definitely haven't tried VR. I tried all the headsets multiple times and the screen of at least the PSVR bothered me a lot. It always felt like my eyes were unfocused on the image. And this is coming from a guy who is more than happy playing 720p games on a large screen, as long as the game is fun.

1080p seems like the barest minimum, when it comes to VR resolution, unless you want people walking away with massive headaches after an hour long play-session.
 
I didn't have an issue with screen resolution and my old iphone's screen resolution was 1136 x 640. The average person really won't care about image quality as long as it doesn't give them a headache.

"Average people" probably won't be trying VR on the Switch, for one, it's going to have to be targeted at gamers. And two, I think you are underestimating how much image quality matters to even casual users when it comes to VR. It doesn't make it unplayable, but it's definitely noticeable and something I've had some of my more casual friends mention when they've used PSVR, and that's with 1080p. Could they just throw it in there and give people some quick, throwaway crap experience with a few tech demos like you'd probably get from some generic Brookstone headset? Sure. But when have you ever known Nintendo to do that? It would be worthless. Nintendo isn't just going to cram low quality, bottom of the barrel VR (that might end up souring people on the technology) just to check off a bullet point.
 

Buggy Loop

Member
1080p seems like the barest minimum, when it comes to VR resolution, unless you want people walking away with massive headaches after an hour long play-session.

Check Nvidia's light field stereoscopy. 1080p is bare minimum because the lenses make the screen look bigger. What if there's no lenses (or much thinner) to create the stereoscopy? I would be curious what the PPI observed through lenses vs PPI of screen without stereoscopy lenses.

This conference from Stanford university (partner with nvidia) goes through many present issues with VR displays.

https://youtu.be/c8Ge08MwSLQ
 

Vic

Please help me with my bad english
You seem like you definitely haven't tried VR. I tried all the headsets multiple times and the screen of at least the PSVR bothered me a lot. It always felt like my eyes were unfocused on the image. And this is coming from a guy who is more than happy playing 720p games on a large screen, as long as the game is fun.

1080p seems like the barest minimum, when it comes to VR resolution, unless you want people walking away with massive headaches after an hour long play-session.
You're right, I haven't tried VR. But I never said that the Switch was going to be a viable option in that space. I did said that, if it does comes out, that the Switch solution won't be anything more than a proof-of-concept, a very cheap entry into a VR experience.
 

Bsigg12

Member
I didn't have an issue with screen resolution and my old iphone's screen resolution was 1136 x 640. The average person really won't care about image quality as long as it doesn't give them a headache.

Screen door effect from a low resolution screen in VR really takes away from the experience.

I doubt this is anything more than a patent for the sake of having the patent. I don't expect to see anything come of it based on the rumors of screen resolution we have.
 
Does the weird screen reflection on the Fallon debut have something to do with this? Or maybe the Switch will just use a matte finished display?
 
Based on the patent we are looking at something similar to Gear VR where you slot the Switch tablet into the headset.

Unless they have some magic voodoo this will only offer 360 degree experiences and won't allow for 3D spatial movement, head tracking and more. Along with the fact that the tablet screen is going to be incredibly low pixels per inch, so the quality will take a massive dive.

I am glad they are doing something, but this is already in the "poor wo/man's" VR space.
 
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