Oculus details inside-out tracking of Santa Cruz prototype headset

Oculus took a minute to show off the latest version of its Santa Cruz prototype standalone VR headset. Santa Cruz looks to be a higher-end follow-up to the entry-level Oculus Go standalone device scheduled for release early next year. The prototype headset's headlining feature is the inclusion of six degrees-of-freedom motion control using inside-out tracking. The company says Santa Cruz is the first standalone headset with full inside-out tracking, which we suppose is true given that Windows mixed reality headsets all attach to a host PC.

Santa Cruz doesn't require any wires or external sensors, a convenience that could go a long way towards boosting immersion and easing setup for potential users. The new headset was shown off with updated controllers, fittingly dubbed the Santa Cruz controllers. The new handheld devices work a lot like the existing Oculus motion controllers, except they're more compact. The controllers work with the same array of four sensors that the headset uses for motion and positional tracking.

Oculus says Santa Cruz is on target for release to developers sometime next year. Widespread release will likely lag behind by a year or more, judging from the gaps between the release of the Oculus Rift DK1 in March 2013, the DK2 in July 2014, and the retail Rift headset in May 2015. The company didn't talk potential prices, but we suspect Santa Cruz will be more expensive than the $199 standalone Oculus Go, especially if it comes packaged with a pair of motion controllers.

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    • Chrispy_
    • 2 years ago

    I know it’s still a prototype but the side-by side video just shows so much lag. Looks to be over 100ms.

    Lag ruins VR, and ‘ruins’ was the kindest adjective I could have picked.

      • Laykun
      • 2 years ago

      Not sure if this is a joke …

    • Zizy
    • 2 years ago

    Nice, but what kind of computer is running the experience here? Or should I say ruining, if we consider OR Go?

    • GrimDanfango
    • 2 years ago

    Hmm, without the power of a full gaming PC behind it, I can see how this or the Go are going to do much besides drop the quality of the VR experience, and thereby convince a lot of 1st-time users that it’s not really worth bothering with.

    There’s already enough of an uphill struggle… most people who haven’t tried VR at least slightly suspect it’s probably just another pointless gimmick like 3DTV. Show them a half-baked experience running on a smartphone or tiny portable computer, and you’ll just confirm their suspicions and maybe even turn them off for life.

    • albundy
    • 2 years ago

    do you need head hair to play it?

    • JosiahBradley
    • 2 years ago

    Just to be clear standalone VR will always be inferior quality wise while giving you much better freedom motion wise. There is just no way to strap a 1080 ti to your face. That said, you totally /can/ strap one to your back in the form of backpack VR which I see as the real winner in portability/performance/no need for wi-gi etc.

    Now that I’ve actually played games on the Vive I’m glad I have all this high end hardware and the cable isn’t bothering me. I welcome these standalone HMDs for infotainment devices and hope people don’t try to game on them, less we be thrown into wii quality console ports to real VR headsets.

    Still happy for any VR improvements as it is the most revolutionary piece of hardware I have bought since the ATi Radeon 9700 Pro.

    • Captain Ned
    • 2 years ago

    Santa Cruz??

    I’m sure Legal cleared it, but there is only one true Santa Cruz:

    [url<]https://techreport.com/review/3719/sound-alternatives-sound-card-round-up/4[/url<]

      • CScottG
      • 2 years ago

      ahem:

      [url<]https://www.google.com/maps/place/Santa+Cruz,+CA/@36.9759548,-122.0824996,13z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m5!3m4!1s0x808e441b7c36d549:0x52ca104b2ad7f985!8m2!3d36.9741171!4d-122.0307963[/url<]

        • Ikepuska
        • 2 years ago

        I mean if we are going to talk about having the real Santa Cruz please stand up, then really it needs to be the one at Golgotha, about two millennia ago. Just sayin’

          • Captain Ned
          • 2 years ago

          That would be the Vera Cruz.

      • Generic
      • 2 years ago

      /nostalgia button thoroughly pressed

      • Chrispy_
      • 2 years ago

      [url<]https://www.santacruzbicycles.com/en-US[/url<] since 1993.

      • Mr Bill
      • 2 years ago

      The best SMP sound card (for dual CPU motherboards) in its day. I wondered if the name was deliberate because of the need to coordinate dual screens in VR.

    • CScottG
    • 2 years ago

    It’s no coincidence that this is exactly THE substantive limitation that upcoming Windows “Mixed Reality” headsets have, using “inside-out” tracking – but loosing it once the controllers are beyond the two cameras on the front of the head mounted display.

    Inside-out:

    [url<]https://youtu.be/7JjiReFuQhs?t=341[/url<] The problem: [url<]https://youtu.be/7JjiReFuQhs?t=434[/url<]

    • meerkt
    • 2 years ago

    [quote<]and the retail Rift headset in May 2015.[/quote<] Wasn't the Rift released in 2016?

    • Voldenuit
    • 2 years ago

    I like this much more than what HTC is doing with adding more base stations.

    Give me fewer cables everywhere, not more.

    And now I feel dirty for praising Oculus.

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