Valve has officially announced the Valve Index.
Valve Index Is Here
The Valve Index has two 1,440 x 1,600 RGB LCDs with a refresh rate of 120 Hz. There's even an "experimental" 144 Hz mode too. As Valve puts it, the LCD displays "provide 50 percent more subpixels than OLED." Couple that with the high frame rates it can deliver, then users will get a sharper and more comfortable experience overall.
The company also says the Valve Index's field of view is also wider by 20 degrees compared to VR headsets in the market. It's also equipped with off-ear speakers for more natural-sounding audio.
Meanwhile, each one of the Index controllers has 87 sensors that track hand and finger positions, pressure, and motion, allowing it to know exactly what the user is doing.
The complete kit of the Valve Index has everything the user needs to get started: the headset itself, a pair of Index controllers, and a pair of base stations. However, it's not exactly affordable with its $999 price tag.
The VR headset can be purchased separately for $499, though, and it's compatible with HTC Vive controllers and base stations. The Index controllers, which are available for $279 a pair, also work with Vive equipment, including the games and apps designed for Vive. The same goes for the $149 base stations.
Here's a breakdown of the prices:
• Complete Valve Index kit: $999
• Valve Index headset and a pair of Index controllers: $749
• Stand-alone Valve Index headset: $499
• Two Index controllers: $279
• Base Station 2.0: $149
Regarding availability, the Valve Index is going up for preorder on May 1, and it's expected to start shipping out and landing on storefronts on June 28.
Valve Index vs. Vive Pro
Needless to say, what Valve is offering is impressive, so its high cost doesn't really come as much of a surprise.
Another VR headset in the market that's comparable to the Valve Index in terms of price is the Vive Pro, which costs $1,399 for the full kit.
For a quick comparison, the Vive Pro features a 90 Hz refresh rate and a 110-degree FOV, while the Valve Index has a 120 Hz refresh rate that goes up to 144 Hz and a 130-degree FOV. In short, the latter has the upper hand here.