LG SteamVR Headsets Resurfaces At Korean VR Festival

by Jamie Feltham • September 18th, 2017

We were beginning to wonder if we would see LG’s SteamVR headset again this year, but it’s just been spotted at a VR festival in Korea.

The official Silicon Valley Virtual Reality Twitter account just posted a fresh image of the headset and its controllers as shown at the Korean VR Festival. Take a look below.

That should put any speculation that the device had been quietly cancelled to rest.

Overall it doesn’t seem like the kit has yet undergone any major revisions since it debuted at the 2017 Game Developers Conference in March, at least on a surface level. The black headset still sports the flip-up design that allows you to quickly remove the visor from your eyes, and the controllers still look like a more rigid take on the HTC Vive’s circular wands. The SVVR account described the experience as ‘fantastic’, though, and we were pretty impressed when we tried it on too.

However, it is possible that the internal specs for the kit have been upgraded since we last saw it. When we went hands-on with the headset it boasted the below features.

  • Two panels (one for each eye) with a resolution of 1440 by 1280 each
  • OLED display from LG
  • 3.64 inches diagonal
  • 90 Hz refresh rate
  • 110 degree FOV

Development kits for the device were said to have gone out to ‘select partners’ earlier in the year, though we’re likely looking at a 2018 release at this point. The real question is how the upcoming launch of SteamVR 2.0 will affect this kit. Valve is prepping new, more efficient base stations that can support more elaborate setups as well as a new pair of Knuckles controllers with better ergonomic design. Could LG ditch its current controllers and ship with Knuckles devices?

Look for more information on LG’s SteamVR headset in the coming months.

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  • GreasyMullet

    I am disappointed that this has shown up with almost no stated improvements after all this time. If LG thinks they can come in and release a Gen1 headset at this stage they are very mistaken. Personally I was ready to throw down cash day one for this device if it was a true Gen 2 but that is looking unlikely based on where this appears to be. Perhaps news will come out in the coming weeks/months that prove this is a Gen2 device but right now it does not look like it.

    • Doctor Bambi

      I agree it’s pretty underwhelming based on the specs, seems more like a Gen 1.5, if that. I think it’s great we’re getting another major headset player, but it doesn’t feel like LG is doing much to push the envelope here.

      But things are still pretty malleable for them. I’d say if they could strike a deal with Valve and get those Knuckles controllers bundled in, that would go a long way to making it a worthy upgrade.

      • Mane Vr

        Y would they there is no reason beside the want of a very few amount of people who forget that companies are in busy to make money.

        • Shade Smith

          And the company that releases better hardware will tempt new consumers to expand the market and will make more money. It’s not like there’s some fixed ceiling for VR. VR will grow based on how quickly market demands are served. If VR developers don’t serve the market then the current consumer base WILL remain limited.

          • Mane Vr

            It’s already a better headset for those thinking about getting the vive. But for some reason people act like a company as large as lg should eat the cost to add 4k into a market that they won’t make their investment back in. 4k screens will come out when the market can support it. I need there isn’t even 4k phones which is a far bigger market yet people here keep asking like it a given that a 4k screen it need to increase the vr install base

          • Shade Smith

            You’re right in that there’s no need YET to go above and beyond and jump over everyone to deliver a Gen 3-level headset. Gen 1.5 RIGHT NOW is fine because, frankly, the tech and economies of scale aren’t ready yet to facilitate Gen 3-4 VR.

          • Lukimator

            Ever head of diminishing returns? Of course there aren’t any 4K phones, because it doesn’t make any sense unless you use it for VR, where the difference is still night and day. The two main things holding VR back right now are price and resolution in that order, but unfortunately one depends on the other so that’s why it’s taking time

          • Shade Smith

            >The two main things holding VR back right now are price and resolution

            That and ease of use(including wireless). The normies HAVE to be able to use VR out of the box. If an HMD takes 10 minutes to set up you’re losing a massive contingent of the market. Inside-out tracking is making strides so it looks like standalone headsets not requiring external trackers are on the way.

          • RFC_VR

            Ease of use is super important. I can have my Daydream running in 2 minutes it takes to clean screen, check lenses for cleanliness, put phone in hmd…use VR.

            Getting my Vives running was such chore in comparison?

        • Doctor Bambi

          That’s a valid point they can’t be expected to completely revolutionize the hardware considering all the factors. Coming from the perspective of a gen 1 owner though, it doesn’t seems like the LG headset is offering enough innovation to merit an upgrade, but it certainly will be a better option than Vive for newcomers to the medium.

          • Mane Vr

            The knuckles if what i read is right comes straight from value they might not be licensing them out. They know most vive owners are going to buy it so i am sure they want all the money to themselves

    • RFC_VR

      There is of course the option they are publicly only showing the pre release (development) version 😁

      • GreasyMullet

        If that is true I am on board but you would think now would be the time to show it. Not show old tech. If LG offers wireless, slightly higher resolution display, lighthouse 2.0, and knuckles with the comfort that headset appears to have then I am in!

        • RFC_VR

          Companies don’t show their hand until it’s time?

          Could be wishful thinking…

          • D3stroyah

            not happening. that’s all they got, nothing changed since gen 2017. It will be a vive “kinda better”. GG LG

          • RFC_VR

            What a shame…

    • Shawn Blais Skinner

      I disagree, simply changing the headset from the front-heavy VIVE, and adding a PSVR-like band with proper balancing, and integrated audio, already makes it significantly more attractive than the VIVE. If they come in at a competetive price, with integrated band, and the new lighthouses, I think most people would easily opt for it over the VIVE.

  • martiandynamite

    I’m so excited just to know it’s still in development… it’s a day one purchase for me.

    • Shade Smith

      I’m hyped, too. I’m considering holding off on a Vive purchase in hopes that LG will reduce their headset sooner than later.

  • Meow Smith

    LG ditch theses big fugly wands and copy htcs new controllers or do something like the touch controllers, other than that it’s a good attempt at making a 1.5 gen headset.

    • G-man

      the knuckles controls are valves not htcs

  • care package

    Why would LG bother with making another Vive?

    • G-man

      because steamvr is an open platform and theres this part of capitalism called competition, because not everyone on the planet owns a vive some people might buy an lg headset.

  • REP

    This is a terrible device based on the specs…why are they even releasing it? I mean to me, even the current gen 1 devices are inadequate. THE FOV is small and the sde is terrrible.

    • G-man

      make a better one yourself then, i mean you must be the expert on what is possible to produce right now.

  • People People

    Everyone who is complaining about the controllers don’t seem to realise that you can use the knuckle controllers on the lg headset