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AMD Cards Not Compatible With DK2 After Oculus Platform Update

Updated11/10/2017, 3:49pm PT: Corrected typo.

Earlier this week, Oculus pushed a new version of the Oculus Home software (Oculus Home 1.20). Although it introduced new features such as login confirmation to safeguard your account and dynamic bundle pricing so you can take advantage of sale bundles when you already own some of the content in the package, reports surfaced on Reddit that suggested the new update renders the Oculus DK2 developer kit unusable.

Several people reported that images weren’t rendering correctly inside the headset. After the new driver is applied, so went the reports, the image on the left screen has a green overlay, and the image on the right screen is green and flipped 90 degrees. Upon reading the reports, we pulled our DK2 out of the closet to see if we could replicate the issue(s).

At first, we could not. Our DK2 ran just fine with the latest Oculus Home software, despite the prominent warning that states that the DK2 headset is not compatible with the Oculus platform. However, as we dug deeper into the online reports, we noticed a pattern: Everyone who complained of a problem appeared to be using a Radeon graphics card of one type or another, including the R9 280, R9 290X, and R9 390 Radeon. Meanwhile, we found no issues reported from people with Nvidia graphics cards.

Our test machine features an Intel Core i7-5930k and a Zotac GTX 980Ti graphics card, so we swapped in a Power Color RX 480 and--bingo. We replicated the issue with the AMD card installed.

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For some reason, AMD’s graphics driver is not compatible with the Oculus DK2 hardware combined with the latest Oculus driver software.

Oculus no longer supports the DK2, so we don’t expect to see a revision of the Oculus Home software that corrects the problem. However, it appears as though AMD could provide the fix here. Oculus didn’t intentionally kill the compatibility of the DK2. If it had, we wouldn’t be able to use the headset with an Nvidia card installed. AMD could potentially address the problem with a driver update if it so desired. For now, DK2 owners with AMD graphics cards can either put their headset away or get an Nvidia graphics card.

  • Mr5oh
    So wait Oculus's update broke it, but "don't expect them to fix it?" Sounds like a real good reason to avoid them. If you aren't going to support it, don't update it either. Especially if you aren't going to be willing to fix it when you break it. As the old saying goes, don't fix what ain't broke.
    Reply
  • NamelessBryan
    I'm not saying Oculus is in the right here - but it's not on them to maintain developer tech forever. When it comes to developer preview hardware, it is buyer beware. It's unreasonable for us to expect prototype and dev hardware to remain supported forever. If I had a consumer model I would be pretty bummed if they held back performance boosting updates so that the older Developer-focused models wouldn't break. And even if Oculus could have prevented the issue on their end, the cost wouldn't be free in terms of development & QA resources.

    Kinda sucks for AMD because it generates some bad publicity for them when the problem is obviously on Oculus' side. Would love to see AMD step up with a driver update and save the day for anybody with a DK2, though.
    Reply
  • steve15180
    I'm really scratching my head on this one. Let me see if I get this. Oculus
    builds a device, Oculus releases drivers, Oculus breaks compatibility with AMD
    graphics cards. Got to be an issue with AMD, they can fix it??? How do you
    get there? Last I checked, AMD and Nvidia use different hardware. Could be
    the way Oculus accesses the hardware. Why would it be incumbent on AMD
    to fix Oculus product if they won't? Why don't you just say "see, Oculus users
    should have bought Nvida cards". Makes as much sense.
    Reply
  • cryoburner
    20364905 said:
    For now, DK2 owners with AMD graphics cards can either put their headset away or get an Nvidia graphics card.

    Or, get a headset from another company that properly tests and supports their hardware. The DK2 might technically be considered a "developer kit", but most of the people buying them undoubtedly weren't developers. And up until last year, it was considered the current version of the Rift . If they truly no longer support their previous generation of headsets, then moving to a different video card might only offer a temporary fix, as another update might break functionality on that hardware as well. It's possible that Oculus may fix the issue though. They may have simply done a shoddy job of beta testing the update, and it's probably in their best interest to not have people reporting about their updates being broken.
    Reply
  • alextheblue
    Consider it a nice thank-you to early adopters.

    "Your cash was appreciated, but it's time to throw away your expensive garbage and give us more cash in exchange for the latest model. Love, Facebook."
    Reply
  • bigpinkdragon286
    There happens to be a complaint from a Vega 56 user also.

    Depending on the issue, AMD may or may not be able to fix it.

    Instead of telling folks to shelve either their DK2 or AMD equipment, why not tell them to turn off automatic updates to their software if they aren't already on version 1.20.
    Reply
  • Martell1977
    I think this is a black eye for Oculus...if they don't fix it or work with AMD to fix it.

    They have a product
    They EOL it, but decide to update it anyways.
    Update breaks functionality.

    How are they not on the hook to fix this? If they aren't going to support the product further, then don't update it further.
    Reply
  • cinergy
    " For now, DK2 owners with AMD graphics cards can either put their headset away or get an Nvidia graphics card."

    This pretty much sums up which side Tom's hardware is in GPUs. If I'd to buy VR headset it wouldn't be Oculus because its inferior to Vive. And when I'm going to upgrade my AMD GPU it will be another AMD GPU.
    Reply
  • warmon6
    20365469 said:
    I'm not saying Oculus is in the right here - but it's not on them to maintain developer tech forever. When it comes to developer preview hardware, it is buyer beware. It's unreasonable for us to expect prototype and dev hardware to remain supported forever.

    What im more surprised about is that DK2 has been "supported" for so long even though it is prototype/developer hardware. I mean, it came out in July 2014... Over 3 Years ago... Then the final retail version been out for a year and a half....

    The fact that nothing really broke DK2 till now so long after the launch of the retail version is quite impressive IMO.

    Granted, Oculus should of had a system in place to prevent updates to EOL products but then again... anyone that did bought DK2 should of known that it was prototype/developer hardware and these prototype stuff always run the risk of problems. Before and after consumer version launches.
    Reply
  • bennie101
    Intel Nvidia can do no wrong but amd or the radeon line up or vega always something negative about it here, I wonder how much is paid for toms to be bias toward other companys. If it wasnt for amd right now Intel would still be sitting on all those wonderfull new chips they suddenly manage to pull out of a rabbits hat!
    Its not amd fault that they updated there code and now it wont work with amd,, maybe they should have informed them beforhand so amd could work on a driver?
    And lets talk about the all mighty Nvidia clan I have never in my life had so many driver errors from any card maker then I have had from them I cant count the times a message pops up your driver has stop working!!!!! I have seen years of this not with one car not 2 cards but a boat load of card from Nvidia... It seems the 2 kings Intel and Nvidia has some issues as well.
    Reply