iWear VR920

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 27 April, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 27 April, 2008, 12:00am

As 3D games and virtual reality environments like Second Life gain in graphics detail and realism, one thing still separates us from those worlds - the space between our eyes and the computer screen.

Unless of course, you happen to have a pair of these neat glasses, which position two 640x480mm screens mere centimetres from your eyes. The experience, according to Vuzix, makers of the iWear VR920, is like looking at a 62-inch display at a distance of three metres.

While glasses with built-in displays for media players have been around for a while, the VR920 takes the experience a step further by supporting connectivity to PCs as well as integrated support for PC applications - namely games and 3D worlds.

The coolest thing about the VR920 is something called 3 DOF, or 3 Degree-of-Freedom, head tracker technology. This lets you control the view inside an application simply by moving your head, as if you were really in the virtual world and looking around. At this point, only 40 games - including World of Warcraft, Second Life, Counter Strike, MS Flight Sim X, and Unreal Tournament 2004 - support this feature, but the company promises future driver support for more titles.

The VR920 also comes with integrated earphones and a microphone for in-game communication or VoIP calls and connects to PCs or laptops via USB or VGA connection.

The iWear VR920 is currently only available online for around HK$3,200 (excluding shipping). See store.vuzix.co.uk for details.

Pros: truly immersive experience, head-tracking technology, big-screen experience, integrated earphones and microphone

Cons: no study as to the long-term effects on your eyes from having so much detail so close to your retina for an extended period of time