Overview of the NVR virtual reality helmet

Devices that allow people to immerse themselves in virtual reality have become one of the main technological trends over the past few years.

Both small start-ups, such as Oculus in 2012, and IT giants like Samsung, Google, HTC, Sony and others feel comfortable in this niche. Not surprisingly, in our country there are a number of small companies engaged in VR-devices, and this review is dedicated to the product of one of these teams.

At the end of October 2015, a team of enthusiasts from the Moscow Technological Institute presented a virtual reality helmet called NVR.

The emphasis in the application of the device is not only on the entertainment segment, but also on such serious areas as education and training in medicine, construction and architecture.

We were lucky to be one of the first who tried the final version of the device and write a review on it. What can a domestic VR-device offer us?

First of all it is necessary to note that NVR are a full-fledged VR-helmet with own “iron” inside, instead of simply the case in which it is necessary to insert the smart phone.

The device has a 6-inch matrix with a resolution of 2560×1440, manufactured by TFT IPS technology, which is an advantage over many other devices of this class that have 1080p displays.

Built-in accelerometer, magnetometer, and gyroscope are responsible for tracking head movements. The device communicates with the computer by simultaneously connecting via USB and HDMI. The equipment is minimalist – only the helmet itself and a set of wires.

The device was tested on a computer with rather modest characteristics by the current standards – Intel Core i7 processor 930, 6GB of RAM, Nvidia GeForce GTX 650 graphics card, Windows 10 Pro operating system.

Full device connection is carried out by assigning a helmet in the system as the main monitor, respectively, the sound is also switched to the helmet, it is possible to connect their headphones in the built-in 3.5 mm Jack.

I had to deal a little with image positioning, rotate the center-to-centre distance of lenses and belt tension for a comfortable fit on the head. The glasses weigh 450 grams, but this is not particularly noticeable.

Let’s move on to the most pressing issue – the game. NVR supports several development environments: OSVR (a standard of the Razer company with the help of which it is proposed to unify the development of VR-programs), the well-known game engine Unity 3D, as well as Oculus SDK, if more specifically, all games from Oculus DK1 are supported.

Optimized launch of games is carried out through a special program that comes with the set – NVR-tray, it allows you to add and run games through your own interface. If you run some game bypassing this environment, the image will simply not be optimized for points.

We tested the helmet on standard VR-attractions from Oculus – Great Power, in which the player is invited to fly between the skyscrapers of a small metropolis, and Cyber Space, a completely insane simulator attraction with swings that are carried to the sky, and then at an incredible rate fall down.

If you are strongly afraid of heights – we do not recommend, feeling of immersion full, up to nausea :) The response time of the display is 5 milliseconds, the refresh rate is 60 Hz, and the overall angle of view in games is 100 degrees.

An important feature of VR helmets in general is the ability to run any other games through special applications-emulators, one of the most famous is the program TriDef 3D, the production of which in some way involved AMD.

To be more specific, it is first of all a driver that is able to prepare any content for 3D, even if it wasn’t originally adapted for this purpose. It works very simply – it breaks down all the visual information into 2 separate parts, and allows you to optimize them for VR-devices by working with distortions. The program supports a fairly large list of games, which can be found on the official website.

Well, it will not be superfluous to note that the owner of NVR will always be able to easily open the front cover of the case, pull out of the special clamp built-in unit with a display and iron, and put your smartphone there, with a screen diagonal preferably from 5 to 6 inches and display resolution of 1080r, and enjoy the VR-applications on iOS or Android.

Thus, the device turned out to be extremely versatile.
We were satisfied with the helmet and thank the NVR team for the opportunity to be the first to try the Russian VR-product. We hope that MIT will please us and other high-quality devices of virtual reality.