Valve's Index VR Headset Ships In June, Full Set Costs Over $1400

Following last month’s tease, today Valve officially announced the Valve Index, a “high-fidelity” virtual reality headset with impressive specs, cool new controllers and a $US1,000 ($1,421) price tag.

The Valve Index headset features a pair of 1440x1600 RGB LCD displays running at 120Hz (with an experimental 144Hz mode.) It also has built-in stereo headphones that are off-the-ear, to provide a more natural soundstage for VR applications. None of the new hardware will be available in Australia as of yet.

The Index headset is controlled by the new Index controllers. Each controller features 87 different sensors for detecting finger and hand position, movement speed, and other measurements necessary to translate real-world hand motions into virtual space. The Index controllers are compatible with all existing HTC Vive games and apps.

The controllers and the new Index base stations are also compatible with existing HTC Vive hardware. The controllers, which sell for $US279 ($396) a pair, can be purchased separately, as can the $US149 ($212) base stations. Vive owners with Vive controllers and the original base stations can opt to upgrade to the Index headset by itself for $US499 ($709).

The full Valve Index kit comes with the headset, two controllers, and a pair of base stations for $US999 ($1,419). That price tag makes the package seem like it’s not an entry-level VR setup, but more for people who’ve tasted what virtual reality has to offer at lower levels and want to take the next step.

Hit up the official website for more information on the Valve Index.


Comments

    I was all ready to jump into VR, bought a Vive and set it up in a large room. For the first month it was great. Now it sits in a box. There's just not enough compelling content, the devices are too bulky, and way too expensive for a decent experience. It's still a long way from mainstream and there's no compelling reason to own one of these just yet, and so far it isn't getting any better.

      I've been wanting to jump into VR, but for the same reasons you listed, I've avoided doing so until a headset is both wireless (preferably with virtual link for backup) and inside out tracking is a thing.

      Until then, I know I can't keep a space large enough clear to use easily and without issue, and know I wouldn't pull it out because its a PITA.

        Inside out tracking is a thing, its just it will for a very long time be worse than outside tracking just because of how each work. plus inside out can basically never be as good for hand/controller tracking.
        I definitely get the bonus of ease of use, but the downsides for now and likely the next while are too big if you want a great experience.

          Oh of course, but the magic double is it also needs to be wireless :P.

          And I'd be happy if you could pair inside out with light towers for enhanced tracking, just that I don't necessarily need to is my kicker.

          More than likely, I have another generation to go \ Microsoft enters the VR market with Xbox before I can get what I want, but until then, here we are.

      There are some genuinely great games like blade and sorcery, robo recall, lone echo (and its pultiplayer counterpart), superhot, pavlov vr and many more, as well as dozens to 100s of 'good' ones. Not to mention the adult games of which there are some very good ones

      Then theres other things that aren't games. VRchat is interesting, bigscreen desktop is great for watching movies (on the newer headsets with better screens like this valve one and pimax headsets), VR porn, 360/180 degree videos on youtube and other places. All the 'experiences that aren't quite games but like tech demos and such.

      Its definitely a compelling amount to own it in the sense there is definitely enough awesome stuff to pass a lot of time. But yes perhaps not as compelling when you consider its price, probably $2500 grand for full headset and PC setup if you want a very good setup. though of course if you have a PC already thats halved, if you go for a cheaper headset thats even less (though not as good).
      If you want to go cheap but still have a pretty good PC experience and VR experience I've seen the windows MR headsets for sub $200 on gumtree sometimes even new in box and you can run those well off like a $700-800 PC

        I have a few of those - they're fun but they feel more like a collection of tech demos, like a proof of concept - nothing I actually want to play for prolonged periods. I have no interest in things like VRchat, and I don't want to wear a heavy headset to watch a movie or use my desktop. And the 'aren't quite games' aspects can be filled by cheaper headset phone mounts that rely on mobile phones to power the experience instead of beefy PCs plus the headset unit itself.

        Remember those Windows MR headsets are being sold second hand for a reason - and probably the same reason I'll eventually sell my Vive. As much as I like the technology, as impressive as it can be, it's just not something most people are going to play like they would regular video games, or consume content. It's something you use for a bit, and then just kinda... don't. The tiny adoption rates per Steam hardware stats seem to suggest it isn't making major progress too.

          I get what you mean with even those games feeling kinda tech demo-y. I need something like a first person mass effect where im in a story for 30 hours. That'd be great for VR, because yeah the single player sort of story games there are, are still pretty short on the whole.

          I guess if you aren't interested in anything but games it does make it overall a harder sell and honestly if thats the case i cant imagine VR is going to be for you for quite some time.

          >Remember those Windows MR headsets are being sold second hand for a reaso
          Yeah but $200 is $200, why they are selling it doesn't really matter if you are interested and the price you have to make the 'worth it' decision on is that low.
          >The tiny adoption rates per Steam hardware stats seem to suggest it isn't making major progress too
          It isn't that tiny, its over 4 million headsets all up, plus PSVR has over 4million sold by itself as well (i know its seperate but it helps VR grow as a whole). Its not exactly super speedy, but the adoption rate isn't that bad. For the additional cost on top of what you already need the adoption rate is pretty good i reckon.

          Its hardly the "super game changing, you'll never go back to flat screens" tech (and overall ecosystem) that everyone wants (yet), but I feel its better than most people make it out to be

            It isn't that tiny, its over 4 million headsets all up, plus PSVR has over 4million sold by itself as wellPer the Steam Hardware Survey, the top 3 systems are the Rift (0.46%), the Vive (0.38%) and WMR (0.10%). So less than one percent of all systems that participated in the survey have a VR headset. Granted we don't know the sample size, but given the massive expense of these devices it's unlikely to be higher. It is tiny compared to the PC gaming market as a whole. A VR focused game might be reaching 1% of the Steam user base.

            but I feel its better than most people make it out to beOh it's good, it's fun, I like the tech and I love what people can accomplish with it. But right now, I'd be more inclined to sit in my chair and play a regular game than break out the VR headset, connect it all up, and play a VR game for about 30 minutes before I finish it and pack it all away again.

      Also for content/games i forgot to say about some great regular 'flat' games getting VR mods, like alien isolation, doom etc, as well as VorpX which can make 100s of games semi VR so its 3D and with head tracking

      I think I would feel the same way as you if I wasn't so into racing games, Between Assetto corsa, Raceroom and Iracing I probably have around 500 hours in my vive over the last 12 months.
      Haven't used roomscale since the first month or two, but my headset still gets used a few times a week. Beatsaber would probably get more time from me too if I wasn't so unfit.

    Looks to be a solid upgrade to the original Vive. Never bought the Vive Pro due to how ridiculously it was priced. Index will be about the price I paid for the Vive at its launch. And about $700 cheaper than the Vive Pro...

    Their new controllers are great too. Been using developer versions for a few months with my Vive, they've been a massive improvement for all the games I regularly play. Being able to physically grab and let go of the controller to grab in VR, and having a proper thumbstick for movement, also way more ergonomic than the Vive controllers. Controller bundle on their own looks like they'll be about $400-450 aud, worth it if you've already got a Vive and can't justify a full headset upgrade.

      Pardon my ignorance, but do the controllers need the light stations to function?

    I haven't tried any headsets yet, but there is more appeal than just VR games for me.

    I don't have a gaming monitor, and I'm really keen for one. But I feel blur reduction would benefit me more than just a higher frame rate. Which makes HMDs more appealing, as it's an important factor here.

    Also interested for 'big screen' (standard) gaming, and movie watching.

    My biggest concern is clarity and comfort; we'll see how the reviews!

    Also, I have little interest in Room-Scale VR. I mean sure it's a cool feature, but one I'd rarely used; as personally I've never thought I'd like to spend much of my game time standing up - I thought this before the Kinnect was launched, and that thought was confirmed after it released.

      Have you considered finding a monitor with ULMB support? Be careful as some implementations are subpar, but my Z35 felt like I was playing on a CRT all over again.

        @camm
        Yeah I've been looking at the various options for monitors. I think if I go a monitor, I'll be getting Gigabyte's Aorus AD27QD. Blur reduction on it may not be the best (I know it's not bad, just can't remember how it compares to others), but after weighing all the other options, it's the one I like the most.

        I really need to try a gaming monitor or two out, so I can try VFR and Blur Reduction to see what I'd prefer.

    Australia boned again by Steam! Steam is not shipping to Australia so the only way to get one is second hand through places like Ebay

    Thanks Steam Fork you very much!!!

    Good to see Valve continue their Fuck Australia policy. I hope our government fines them again.

    Tested.com (Adam Savages blog) got their hands on it and posted sonething on youtube. Havent watched ot yet.

    looks great but the problem is theres not enough games with substance.

    Standouts like Robo recall and Lone echo are too few and far between.

    Beat saber and gallery shooters dont cut it for me when the potential of immersive VR is so promising.

    How about a Triple A Blade runner

    Robo recall as a 50hr+ story driven game would be

    If you want to try VR but don't want to spend a billionty bucks. Check out the Windows Mixed Reality gear. Full setup is around $400 and you don't need base stations or a big room to play in.

    So $1400 in straight currency conversion, plus 10% tax, so $1540 there, plus on 99% of PC related tech items the 'australia tax' is around 10%, so this thing could easily be up to $1700, or if they feel like not doing too much aussie tax i'd say it will still be $1600.

    Hmmm, sure its an upgrade to the vive but its 50% more expensive than when that released (at what people already thought was insanely expensive). Plus they had previously said the main reason for LH 2.0 and 2.0 tracking in general was it wouyd be cheaper and that valve by themselves would charge less for hardware because they make it up in software. apparently all of that was incorrect/lies, sadly.

    Price tag makes it very unappealing, I'd rather (and probably will) get the Rift S for half the price, with more than enough content to justify the money. In the same way as consoles which are only worth buying for exclusives, of which there are also a limited number.

    I think I'll wait to see what the PS5 has in store for VR.

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