What is Oculus Rift resolution

What is Oculus Rift real resolution?

To answer this question you have to understand Oculus Rift design. Most 3d helmets feature two separate identical screens – one for each eye. The images are combined by our brain to get an illusion of image depth. So essentially, each eye gets the resolution of the screen, or per-eye resolution equals the resolution of the screen used. Oculus Rift, however, is a different story. It uses only one screen for both eyes – you can clearly see single screen in between the lenses in Oculus Rift insides. Each eye sees only half of the screen. That means, that each eye gets only full vertical resolution, while the horizontal resolution is split in two, and each eye gets only half of the screen horizontal resolution. So if a FullHD screen is used in Oculus Rift of total 1920×1080 resolution, per-eye resolution will only be 960×1080 pixels. So in Oculus Rift, per-eye resolution does not equal screen resolution, it is twice less. In practice, it is even smaller, as Oculus Rift does not use the screen resolution effectively. In fact, only 73% of the screen resolution is actually used. To get a 4k resolution in Oculus Rift, you would either have to install two 4k screens inside it, or a single 8k pixels long, custom aspect ratio screen. Either of this will be very expensive at the moment, and as Oculus Rift needs to keep the price of the CV1 as low as possible not to scare off the potential first adopters, they probably stick with the FullHD screen, which will only give 960×1080 resolution. That is not a big deal currently, as 3D applications require the source to render two different images simultaneously. You need a very powerful and expensive PC to render even two FullHD images with decent fps, and rendering two 4k images in real-time can be beyond capabilities of most end-users wallets. Rendering two 4k images is beyond NASA budget! There is a working make of true 4k 3D goggles, which use two 4k screens – one per each eye. The cost of the helmet alone is more than $100k, and you also need really expensive hardware to render 4k stereo image. So only US Military can afford those helmets. Do not expect 4k 3D in Oculus Rift anytime soon.

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