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Wearable 'Backpack PCs' Let You Experience High-End VR On The Go ( 47

An anonymous reader writes: Powerful virtual reality headsets like the Oculus Rift and HTC Vive require powerful PCs with beefy graphics cards to operate. That means you'll usually be tethered to a PC tower in your home. Well, HP and MSI have announced portable 'backpack PCs' designed to be used with high-end virtual reality headsets. These PC internals are built in a backpack enclosure powered by a large battery pack. The HP Omen X weighs less than 10 pounds and has a battery that's big enough to last for up to one hour of gameplay, but you do have the option of swapping out the batteries for uninterrupted VR. Specs include either an Intel Core i5 or i7 processor, up to 32GB of RAM, and at least an Nvidia GTX 970 or AMD R9 290 or higher. The MSI Backpack PC features an Intel Core i7 processor and Nvidia GTX 980 graphics, according to the company. The last of the backpack PC trio is the Zotac Mobile VR. The company hasn't released any specs of the product but the company did state in a blog post, "This mobile solution not only removes the bulk of connecting to the large traditional computer towers of old, but also allows the user to roam freely in VR with their undivided attention. This innovative solution includes a system powerful enough to drive VR, and a portable battery pack to keep you going." There is no pricing or availability information as of yet.
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Wearable 'Backpack PCs' Let You Experience High-End VR On The Go

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  • Reminds me of lan parties back in the day. Almost brought tears of joy to my eyes!
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Every does know that the Hololens does its own rendering and is a complete system in the head gear right? AR is a better idea, their system fixes all head tracking and is fast enough to fix motion sickness.... Why is this this kludge news?

    • by janoc ( 699997 )


      a) AR is not the same thing as VR or a replacement for it. Those two technologies are pretty much orthogonal to each other, with different use cases. Saying "AR is better/will replace VR" is like saying an airplane will replace car. Both are means of transportation but serving different purposes and used at different times.

      b) Hololens is unable to generate a fully immersive scene - has narrow field of view and a lot of problems with achievable contrast (as any see-through display) in brightly lit sp

      • Nobody believes me when I tell them my VFX1 is no more pukey then my Rift. Like you say, it's all about content. Descent 2 was the worst, but they are working on a new Descent...

  • Am I understanding that this is a dual battery system so a battery hotswap would be possible?

  • by lkcl ( 517947 ) <> on Friday May 27, 2016 @05:40PM (#52198517) Homepage

    welcome to snowcrash by neal stephenson!

    • by Lumpy ( 12016 )

      Snowcrash 0.01 Pre alpha... we dont even have 1/500th the processing power nor even 1/50,000th the internet capacity needed to do even early snowcrash.

  • Is any of those backpacks compatible with the new nVidia GTX 1080 that came out today? And wouldn't using a GTX 1080 give you more hours/minutes with the same batteries?

  • I use google streetview a lot, basically as a virtual tourist. I even put together my own little library - museum of my favorite places:
    http://xweb123-001-site1.myasp... []
    but I talk to people and I'm shocked at how few(actually none) people are into using google streetview to explore. Although, there are whole web sites devoted to streetview pics of hookers and people urinating in the streets. Quite a few people say its somehow wrong to see the world through streetview and you should go there in perso
  • Sweet (Score:4, Funny)

    by bistromath007 ( 1253428 ) on Friday May 27, 2016 @06:01PM (#52198613)
    Can't wait to try "Get Hit by a Bus Simulator."
  • "On the go"? You mean, like... when you're pooping?

    • First you have to swallow a 360 degree camera pill though. Pooping yourself out is a unique experience.

  • You can experience the virtual world... while walking around in the real world...

    Try not to get hit by a bus... Or ... whatever, go ahead..

  • Cant wait to look back on this moment in 10 years and LMAO. Oh, virtual boy.
  • These were actually announced a while ago. You can make one yourself by putting a gaming laptop inside a backpack (and figuring out how to ventilate it). The upcoming ones are more like NUCs with decent GPUs and big batteries. As GPUs improve, the size/weight/battery draw will shrink, until it can clip onto your belt. Hopefully the HMD will be down to a single thin cable by this point. In the near term, external graphics card docks will be used, as HMD advances will track closely with GPU advances for the n

"It takes all sorts of in & out-door schooling to get adapted to my kind of fooling" - R. Frost