Synaptics Announce Technology for 2K VR Displays

When it comes to the further development of virtual reality (VR) headsets, one of the major areas to be addressed is image quality. Many VR users have been known to bemoan the ‘screen-door effect’ where individual pixels are visible due to the close proximity of the user’s eyes to the screen. Synaptics Incorporated are aiming to address these issues with its new VR display driver and VR bridge.

The new technology from Synaptics comes in two parts. The first is its ClearView R63455 display driver IC, while the second is the VXR7200 VR Bridge, a connectivity solution which uses USB Type-C cables.

ClearView R63455 is a chip which has been designed to power a VR display of 2,160 by 2,400 at 90fps. This will allow for a display density of up to 1,000 pixel per inch (PPI), with a 2K resolution per eye. This vastly eclipses the VR displays currently on the market, event the HTC Vive Pro can only manage 615 PPI.

Though this is a huge step up in terms of image clarity for VR, most hardware will struggle at consistently outputting such a high quality image. To address this, the ClearView R63455 includes support for a Foveal Transport, which allows for foveated rendering, so images not in the user’s direct line of sight can be downgraded in quality without affecting other overall experience.

The VXR7200 VR Bridge is the other product announced by Synaptics, which is a connectivity solution for tethered VR which uses USB Type-C cables. It supports the DisplayPort 1.4 standard with either AMD or NVIDIA graphics cards.

imge courtesy of Japan Display Inc (JDI)

“While virtual reality devices are becoming more common, issues remain with maintaining high-resolution graphics and avoiding motion sickness and the screen door effect. These display and connectivity issues can hinder even the best user experience, which is why Synaptics is focused on tackling these challenges for new generations of HMDs and a superior HMI experience. Analyst firm IHS Markit is predicting the world-wide VR headset installed base to exceed 90 million units by 2021, and Synaptics is well-poised to lead in these critical human interface advancements,” said Huibert Verhoeven, senior vice president and general manager, IoT Division, Synaptics.

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