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Sony's PSVR Official, Undercuts Rift And Vive At $399 (Update: More Like $550)

Update, 3/15/16, 4pm PT: If you thought $399 was too good to be true, it is. During Sony's announcement, they led us to believe that the PSVR would be $399. In fact, we went back and listened to our audio recording, that is what was said from the stage. Not just the headset, but "PSVR." Later we got materials from Sony that paint a different picture, which is to say that price doesn't include the camera or the Move controllers.

Indeed, PlayStation UK eventually tweeted that "the PlayStation VR requires the PlayStation Camera, which is available separately." Further, the PlayStation VR website even states that the "PlayStation VR" will cost $399, but in small print it notes that the PS4 and Camera are sold separately. That, plus all the images Sony provided, would lead one to believe that the Move controllers are included in that price, but if you check the spec sheet, they are not.

Not every game will need the Move controllers, necessarily, but most people will surely want them. They cost $50 each, so you can tack another $100 on top of that $399, plus the cost of the camera, which is around $50.

Therefore, that $399 number is really a boondoggle. The real price, when you take into consideration all the peripherals you still need to buy, the PSVR as a whole will cost closer to $550. 

Original article:

Sony announced today at GDC in San Francisco that the PlayStation VR will be available globally in October for $399 (399 Euro, 349 GBP and 44,980 Yen, $549.99 CAD). The company also announced that the hardware has been finalized.

The specs of PSVR have not changed from what's been previously stated. As a reminder, it uses a 5.7-inch OLED display; with a resolution of 1920x1080, with R, G, and B subpixels; and a 120 Hz refresh rate. The company claimed a latency of less than 18ms. And of course, because it works with PS4, of which there are now 36 million according to Sony, developers have an exact target to hit, hardware-wise, without deviation.

The headset is visor style, and the company said it has been crafted to reduce pressure on a user’s face. It has a single band and a quick release button to make it easy to take on and off. The company also announced that it will include 3D audio that will work within a 360-degree space. That is, it will change in real time based on the orientation of your head.

Playstation VR Specifications
Product namePlayStation®VR
Product codeCUH-ZVR1series
Release monthOctober 2016
Recommended Retail Price44,980 yen, $399 USD, €399 and £349
External dimensionsVR headset: Approx. 187×185×277 mm (width × height × length, excludes
largest projection, headband at the shortest)
Processor unit: Approx. 143×36×143 mm (width × height × length, excludes
largest projection)
MassVR headset: Approx. 610g (excluding cable)
Processor unit: Approx. 365g
Display MethodOLED
Panel Size5.7 inches
Panel Resolution1920×RGB×1080 (960×RGB×1080 per eye)
Refresh rate120Hz,  90Hz
Field of ViewApproximately 100 degrees
SensorsSix-axis motion sensing system (three-axis gyroscope, three-axis accelerometer)
Connection interfaceVR headset: HDMI, AUX, Stereo Headphone Jack
Processor unit: HDMI TV, HDMI PS4, USB, HDMI, AUX
Processor Unit Function3D audio processing, Social Screen (mirroring mode, separate mode), Cinematic
mode
IncludedVR headset × 1
Processor unit × 1
VR headset connection cable × 1
HDMI cable × 1
USB cable × 1
Stereo headphones × 1 (with a complete set of earpiece)
AC power cord × 1
AC adapter × 1

A few other interesting tidbits: The PSVR will allow for cinematic mode, wherein you can project any PS4 game in 16:9 at three different zoom levels. There will be an updated media player that can expose any 360-degree content (photos, videos). And Playroom VR, a toybox of games from Sony Japan, will come as a free download. 

The company said there will be about 60 titles at launch, and today at GDC it is showing off about 20 games.

Our own Kevin Carbotte took the PSVR for a spin back at the Immersed conference, and he was surprised at how well the device performed.

Update, 03/15/16, 3:40pm PT: Included more comprehensive specifications chart

Fritz Nelson is the Editor-In-Chief of Tom's Hardware. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook and Google+. Follow us on Facebook, Google+, RSS, Twitter and YouTube.

  • eklipz330
    i kinda wish i picked up a move controller when they were liquidating them... blah.
    Reply
  • plasmastorm
    How many cables O.O
    Reply
  • Shankovich
    Most people with PS4's don't have the move or camera. It'll basically cost as much as a Rift, which has better specs anyways...
    Reply
  • CaedenV
    how does this thing get such great reviews by people who have used it? 18ms refresh, single 1080p display, powered by a console... on paper this thing looks like trash. I really need to get out more and check these out for myself some time to get a reference idea of what each provides.
    Reply
  • everygamer
    36 Million PS4 does not equal the count for VR developers, if only 100,000 VR headsets are sold by Sony, the developers market is only a max target of 100,000 for VR only games.
    Reply
  • Tykkopoles
    120 Hz display, but games can opt to run at 60 Hz? No thanks. That's guaranteed motion sickness with a VR headset. Sony should mandate that developers optimize it for no lower than 90 Hz.
    Reply
  • PhilipB82
    I don't see this price being a big deal IF they allow AAA developers to use this tech....Could you imagine God of War in VR? Uncharted? 2K18(already announced that 2kGames have something in the works!) GTA VI? There is potential here we as consumers and the industry have to allow this tech to work. And not to go on a rant, this may well bring 3D back into the forefront if done correctly.
    Reply
  • wifiburger
    the price is too high for this accessory, how many % of PS4 owners are going to buy it to justify AAA games to come out ? lots of big ifs

    and where's Microsoft Press on VR ? are they staying silent forever ?
    Reply
  • turkey3_scratch
    My question is how much more powerful this external processing unit really will be. It looks to me like the PSVR (external procesisng unit) connects via USB to the PS4. USB 3.0 transfer speeds are really slow, little bandwidth for a processing unit. How exactly is this going to communicate with the processor and the other GPU in the PS4 quickly enough over the limited bandwidth of USB 3.0? USB 3.0 bandwidth is 640 megabytes per second. Normal DDR memory technology used in GPUs has a bandwidth far exceeding that. Of course, I'm no expert when it comes to this memory and bandwidth, so I may be overlooking something here.

    Also, how will the CPU not bottleneck? Eh, I guess good optimization will do it. The real question now is if Nintendo is getting into the VR game also with the NX console.

    60 games at release seems like a lot more content than we have on PC.
    Reply
  • Knicks2012
    They are making a bundle that includes everything for the US for now, Im sure for other countries as well. $450 and a copy of PSVR Worlds would be a sweet.

    http://www.techinsider.io/there-will-be-a-playstation-vr-bundle-with-a-playstation-camera-2016-3
    Reply