PSVR 2 ‘see-through’ view, broadcast mode & cinema mode detailed

PSVR 2 design Header

Sony has revealed more details about the capabilities of the upcoming PlayStation VR2 headset. This includes a ‘see-through’ view, special broadcast mode using the PS5’s HD Camera, ability to designate play areas and special cinema mode for viewing non-VR content within PSVR 2.

Some of these features are enabled by the PSVR 2’s new inside-out tracking system, which uses outward-facing cameras built into the headset to track and position you in relation to your environment. The see-through view will let you switch to viewing the world through these cameras by pressing the Function button, meaning you can glimpse your environment without removing your headset. Handy if you want to pick up your PSVR2 Sense controllers, or make sure you’re not going to step on your cat.

You can also get the same feature from the Card within the PS5’s system software, which also gives quick access to other settings, like the play area.

Our first look at how the PS5 UI will appear in PSVR 2.

The play area on PSVR 2 can be much more dynamic than with the original PSVR, which was fixed by the position of your single PS4 camera position. With PSVR 2, the cameras will scan the room in 3D and let you draw a space within it to act as your play area. If you come close to the edge, a virtual boundary will appear to let you know you’re about to get to the edge and (potentially) punch a wall or TV.

PSVR 2 See-through play area

PSVR 2 will make sure you don’t punch a wall.

While there’s no requirement for an external camera to use PSVR 2, if you do have the PS5 HD Camera, then you can use this to broadcast yourself overlaid on the game to game streaming platforms. With the camera having multiple lenses, it will be able to pick you out and remove the background, meaning that you only cover up as much of the game view as is necessary.

And finally, the ability to sit down and view non-interactive VR content and non-VR content will return. In VR mode, the headset can display 360º environments for you with the system’s full resolution (2000×2040 per eye) and with 90Hz or 120Hz. Cinematic Mode is what will be used for the PS5 system menu and UI and non-VR game and media content, displayed on a virtual cinema screen. This will only render it in a virtual 1080p, but will support 24Hz for films and both 60Hz and 120Hz, which is better suited for games. Heck, you might want to play in cinema mode if you don’t have a TV that does 120Hz!

All of these features are great to have for PSVR 2, and are a sign of how big a jump over the original PSVR this new headset will be. Inside-out tracking has quickly become the standard for mainstream VR headsets, and this has made being able to view the outside world through the headset’s cameras, designated play spaces, and other features pretty much industry standard features.

While Sony are drip-feeding news and details about PSVR 2 – such as that there will be over 20 launch titles for the system which could include No Man’s Sky, Ghostbusters VR, and the tech specs – we still don’t have a release window for the new headset. It’s largely expected for early 2023, but Sony has been tight-lipped on that one key fact.

Source: PS Blog

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  1. The “where did I put the controllers” mode sounds slightly useful. Not really a huge issue they needed to solve though.

    And now we’ve got a good look at the controllers in someone’s hands, they look massive. Can’t Sony design sensible sized controllers these days? Is there too much going on to make them smaller, the same way the DualSense is just too big?

    Cinema mode could well be very nice. Games at 1080 and 120Hz while blocking out the world? I’d give that a go. And 24Hz for watching films? No mention of 3d there though, so that tiny collection of 3d Blu-Rays you might have may not be getting any love. And “non-VR … media content” suggests we won’t be allowed to watch anything rude.

    Hopefully the price and date are the next announcement. They say they’ll share more information “soon”, including launch date. But not price? It’s looking like it’s going to be more expensive than expected, and they’ll not manage to launch it until next year. Which could be a big mistake.

    • It all sounds great, apart from the cinema mode being only 1080p. As all the PS5’s games are 4k I was expecting cinema mode to be the same.

      • There’s maybe not enough headroom in the system allocation to do the added rendering, and diminishing returns when the screen in the PSVR2 isn’t 4K per eye. If PS5 had a 1440p mode in the system, they could’ve shoed that in there, but hey ho.

      • It’s only 2000×2040 per eye. In total, that’s more pixels than 4k, but it’s a wider aspect ratio (1.96 instead of 1.78 – closer to IMAX apparently)

        So you can’t squeeze 4k into each eye. The best you can manage is 1080. But at 120Hz. Which most PS5 games will struggle to do at 4K.

        And plus you’re going to need space around the big floating screen. So to do 4K, you’d need more than a full 4k in each eye. Where they’d get the parts for that from, I’ve no idea.

      • 1440p is incoming, I’ve just received an invite for a PS5 system software beta test which includes support for 1440p HDMI video output.

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