Acer Windows Mixed Reality Developer’s Edition HMD

PRICE $399.99
VRS RATING
CUSTOMER RATING
PROS
  • Inside Out Tracking
  • Easy to Set Up
  • High Quality Hardware and Software
CONS
  • Intended for Developers
  • Low Specification Mode Limited to 60Hz

VRS Review

VRS OVERALL RATING
Recomended Not Recomended

This HMD from Acer is one of the first Windows Mixed Reality hardware units that’s up for sale. It is not meant for consumer use and comes with warnings to that effect. This is an early production unit that’s meant to give developers a head start in making software for Microsoft’s attempt at a new industry standard for AR, VR and MR.

As part of the Windows Mixed Reality platform, the Acer HMD shares most of the same software as the Microsoft Hololens. Unlike the Hololens this HMD uses a traditional design with an immersive face mask, two high-resolution LCDs and two pass-through cameras that allow AR and MR applications. The cameras are also the basis of the revolutionary inside-out room-scale tracking system. Which means you don’t need external motion cameras!

As a first-generation device the Acer HMD follows the Microsoft reference design quite closely. While it’s not an ugly device by any stretch of the imagination, the Acer design definitely looks cheaper than it’s brother the HP Windows Mixed Reality Headset Developer’s Edition. It also doesn’t come off well in the looks department compared to the Lenovo Explorer, which IS a consumer product in the Windows Mixed Reality family.

Since this is not a consumer product, it should come as no surprise that there are some minor complaints about built quality from those who have bought one. Dead pixels in the LCD is one occasional issue, which is probably just an effect of a different quality control standard.

To their credit, this device is being sold for $50 less than consumer versions and you must be a developer to buy one. It’s purpose is to provide developers with a way to, well, develop apps for the platform and then test them. If you somehow get one without being a developer you can hardly complain about it not living up to your expectations.

Physically the device is quite similar to the PSVR, with a flip up hinge that allows you to exit VR without removing the whole HMD. This is in line with the platform’s goal of being a practical productivity tool.It also uses a similar single head strap design, which is much less complicated than first-gen consumer VR products such as the Oculus or Vive.

The Windows Mixed Reality platform is notable for having two tiers of system requirements for consumers, with a lower integrated GPU tier (the Intel HD 620) that clocks the refresh rate down to 60Hz and let’s you use low-end VR apps such as virtual desktop interfaces.

The developer editions have a third tier for development, which is significantly higher. So if you are a developer, be sure to check the uprated specifications.

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SPECIFICATIONS

Display LCD
Panel size 2.89” X2
Resolution 1440x1440x2
Refresh rate 90Hz
Field of view 105°
Sensors 6 Degrees of Freedom Motion Tracking, Inside Out Tracking
Connections HDMI, USB 3.0, Audio Out
Audio Built in Audio-Out

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