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Eyes-on With the Oculus Rift's Jaw-Dropping Virtual Reality System
The Oculus Rift VR system has been steadily gaining more attention in the past several months, thanks to glowing endorsements from some major figures in the the video game industry and a wildly successful Kickstarter campaign that brought in almost US$2.5 million. We've been following the development of the Oculus Rift for some time now, so finding out the company had its virtual reality goggles available to try on at CES was an especially pleasant surprise. Naturally, we simply couldn't resist giving the Rift a test drive to see if it lived up to all the hype.
It's important to note beforehand that the VR headset I tried on absolutely does not reflect a potential consumer version - rather it's the latest prototype of a forthcoming developer kit. Now, with that out of the way ...
First of all, the goggles are surprisingly comfortable, especially given their bulky appearance. Most of the tech has been built into a regular pair of ski goggles with two viewfinders protruding slightly in front of each eye to completely encompass your field of view. Once fitted over your head, the padding around the goggles and strap ensures the Rift remains snug against your face. Combine that with the lightweight components and wearing the Oculus VR headset is no less cumbersome than any ordinary pair of goggles.
The one negative toward the comfort is that the Rift's lenses put some extra pressure on people wearing glasses, such as myself, making it feel like your face is being squeezed a little too much. It wasn't excruciating, but it diminished the experience a bit. The Oculus reps stated the team is still working on adapting their model to accommodate glasses-wearing users and lessen the weight of the goggles even further.
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