Framerate is a hugely important factor for virtual reality (VR) experiences. Videogames need a high, consistent standard for the virtual worlds that users step into to be truly convincing. Oculus VR, for example, has set a minimum of 90fps for titles that run on the Oculus Rift head-mounted display (HMD). Sony Computer Entertainment (SCE), meanwhile, boasts a unique ‘reprojection’ technology for its PlayStation VR HMD and its 120Hz screen that displays titles at 120fps in-HMD when running natively at 60fps on a standard screen. But it appears that 120Hz is far from the limit of what’s possible on the PlayStation 4 with which PlayStation VR runs.
SCE Technical Account Manager Vernon Harmon recently noted that he has seen one PlayStation VR title that was running at 500Hz: “PSVR outputs 1080p at 120Hz,” he explained during his ‘Embrace Virtual Reality with PlayStation VR’ talk at the Montreal International Game Summit 2015. “Now, a lot of mobile titles and smaller experiences are easily capable of this. I’ve even seen some titles – I saw one title – that was running at 500Hz when it didn’t have V-Sync on. [It’s] probably very uncommon but it’s certainly capable of happening.”
Of course, while this title may have been running at 500Hz it would be impossible for PlayStation VR to display this framerate with its 120Hz OLED display. So far a handful of titles are confirmed to be running at 120fps on the HMD, including MixedBag Games’ Futuridium EP Deluxe. While this is higher than the refresh rates on many other VR HMDs, the screen is a 1080p panel that’s lower resolution than what can be found in rivals such as the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive. PlayStation VR doesn’t yet have a solid release date or price but is expected to launch in the first half of 2016.
VRFocus will continue to follow PlayStation VR closely, reporting back with the latest updates on its progress.