This Is The New Oculus Rift Prototype: Crescent Bay

This Is The New Oculus Rift Prototype: Crescent Bay

No, you still can't buy a consumer version of the amazing Oculus Rift virtual reality headset, but it's getting really, really close! Oculus just announced a brand-new prototype at the company's Oculus Connect conference in Los Angeles, and they claim it's a GIANT leap forward.

While we don't have full tech specs yet, it's higher resolution, and has improved optics and 360-degree tracking — meaning unlike the last developer kit, it has tracking LEDs on the rear of the unit so you can spin around in your chair and not get sick while using it.

Update: While Oculus says it's still designed to be a seated experience, the prototypes I tried were way lighter and way more comfortable than even the DK2, and it really feels fantastic to walk around a small area. I barely noticed them on my head unless or until I got tangled in the cable while walking. The resolution is noticibly better than even the Samsung Gear VR, and between that screen and the new lenses the effect is phenomenal. I still saw pixels if I looked hard, but I quickly forgot I had a screen in front of my face. That's something that I've never quite experienced with any previous VR headset. Find more impressions here.

This Is The New Oculus Rift Prototype: Crescent Bay

Also, for the first time, the headset has (optional) built-in headphones, which adjust in all directions for a really comfortable fit. Oculus says positional 3D audio is going to be a huge component of virtual reality from now on. "Starting today, we are working on audio as aggressively as we are on the vision side," says CEO Brendan Iribe. They're also licensing RealSpace3D audio software.

This Is The New Oculus Rift Prototype: Crescent Bay

"[Crescent Bay] is as massive a leap as we made from DK1 to DK2," says Iribe. "This prototype shows the quality, the features, the presence we need to deliver consumer VR."

In addition to the new hardware, Oculus spent a bit of time talking about their overall plan for VR — you know, just in case you were confused by the fact that they're now building a PC headset AND a smartphone-centric one with Samsung.

The answer: pursue both! "We see these two categories continuing to converge, overlap, but not replace one another," says Iribe. "Mobile VR will continue to complement PC VR. We strongly believe it's important to lead in both to do this right."

Mobile is heating up: the company plans to have VR app stores on iPhone, Android, and Windows Phone, and a specific one for Samsung's Gear VR, in addition to a web browser experience of some sort.

This Is The New Oculus Rift Prototype: Crescent Bay

Want to hear about what we actually saw inside the Crescent Bay? Find that right here.


    These guys are going to be the monopoly on VR and Facebook was very smart to buy them early.

    So much envy. I WANNA TRY IT!

      Agreed. They really need to bundle these things with the Virtuix Omni when they go to market though.

      This might be what it takes to get me back into computer games.

    And here I am still waiting for my June 22nd pre-ordered DK2...

    Good to see them pushing the development along with big tech updates and not simply doing incremental changes. Good for us in the long run. CV1 should be awesome!

    “[Crescent Bay] is as massive a leap as we made from DK1 to DK2”
    But is it better than DK Country?

    can't wait till the consumer grade product releases. I'm not quite keen enough to get a development version.

      If you have a decent android phone you can try out Google Cardboard for a few dollars. No where near this but looks fun. Awaiting mine to arrive.

        I use a hand-me-down iphone 4s because it was free.

        I have a smashed nexus 4 I was going to repair and flip, might give cardboard a go before I sell it.

    I dusted off dev kit 1 yesterday, played a bit of hl source and genuinely thought about getting devkit 2 just to see black mesa in 1080p.
    But seeing this i might wait.

    Last edited 22/09/14 11:07 am

      I'm so jealous of you. I've seen videos of people playing HL2 VR with Hydras and it looks phenomeninal.

        You don't need hydras,man. It works with Steam VR (formerly caller OpenVr) and the oculus runtime (never used to need that, but i'l stop talking before some one flames me about that again.)

        But Black mesa is stunning to stand. Everything is so much bigger and the vents are immersive.
        just wait for the consumer version, it will be worth it. :D

        Last edited 22/09/14 2:11 pm

          I played through it on a boring monitor the evening it was released and loved it. Such a careful and respectful upgrade of what was already the best game I've ever played.

    Imagine something like the Phantom Pain demo with one of these.
    I think it could actually psychologically damage a person perhaps?

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