Rift Roomscale: Oculus Details The Equipment to Use

Over the past week Oculus has been releasing lots of tech tips to get the best use out of its headset, sensors and Touch controllers. Today sees the final installment and its all to do with the extra equipment needed to make owners lives that little easier.

Firstly the blog looks at wall mounting and the cabling users might need for the optimal set-up. When purchasing the Touch controllers they come supplied with an additional sensor and extension cable. Should you need further cabling or for set-ups involving more sensors (roomscale), Oculus has listed several other cable brands its tried that might be worth a look. The company does note:

  1. Active extension cables tend to maintain their signal better than passive extensions, so we recommend you use them if possible.
  2. Since USB 2.0 uses less data bandwidth than USB 3.0, they often work more reliably with extension lengths 15 feet or greater. We don’t recommend any USB 3.0 extensions longer than around 15 feet.
  3. We’ve seen some instability when trying to connect four sensors on USB 3.0 on a single controller, as mentioned in our previous post, so we don’t recommend trying this configuration.

Oculus Rift - Touch

The sensors maybe one thing but what about extending the Rift’s cabling? Depending on where your PC is, the shape of your room and other factors, the 12 feet of cable may not quite be enough, so Oculus does have suggestions:  “you can try using USB 3.0 and HDMI extension cables to get a longer Rift cable. That said, we didn’t specifically design the Rift cable to work well beyond the default 12-foot length, so your mileage may vary if you decide to extend it. We’ve done limited testing with extensions up to 6 feet and have noticed it generally works well for the machines and hardware we tested.”

Going back to the sensors, optimal placement is key to getting the best roomscale, and that might just mean putting them on a wall in the corner of a room. The sensor can actually be unscrewed from the base plate to connect to a standard tripod mount. Or if you’ve got the skills, know how, and a 3D printer, print your own mounts (Oculus doesn’t make these).

For any of the extension options Oculus does state: “Non-Oculus equipment/service references are not recommendations, guarantees, or endorsements of products or performance.” So it might well be worth shopping around, especially if you’re outside of the US.

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