PlayStation VR 2: Everything we know so far about the PS5’s biggest accessory


The next big VR gaming headset may not be the Pro Questor Apple expected device. Consider instead the PlayStation VR 2. Sony’s long-awaited sequel to its 2016 headset for the PlayStation 4 isn’t coming until early 2023but we had the chance to try the material recently, and came away impressed. For gamers who don’t mind being tethered to a game console, this could become the most important VR hardware release in a long time.

The PSVR 2 isn’t a standalone, standalone headset like Meta’s Quest 2 (aka Oculus Quest 2). This means that you will need to attach it to a PlayStation 5 (and of course, own a PS5) to use it. We still don’t know a specific release date or price either. But we know a lot of other key details: specifications, designhow some of its software features will work and even some confirmed games.

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The PlayStation VR 2 looks, in many ways, like the headset we wanted for the PS5 all along. A new design has a color scheme that matches the PS5 and a similar but smaller headband-style visor to Sony’s first PSVR. The high-resolution, vibrant, camera-equipped eye-tracking capabilities of Sony’s second-generation PlayStation headset seem to match the high-end specs everyone dreams of.

Earlier this year, Sony revealed a ton of details about its expected next-gen VR headsetwhich is a long-awaited PlayStation VR update that Sony released for the PlayStation 4 in 2016. Sony revealed more details about the headset in small drops: specifications were revealed in January in a detailed blog post, funky dedicated VR controllersreminiscent of those of the PS5 DualSense controllerswere revealed last year.

More recently, Sony revealed new details about how VR game streaming and room detection work with its passthrough cameras.

We also know of an exclusive game: Horizon Call of the Mountain, which takes place in the same universe as Horizon Zero Dawn and Horizon Forbidden West.

We were able to try out this game and the hardware for hours on a September day. It works much like other VR headsets, but with greatly improved display technology, advanced eye-tracking and vibrating haptics, and triggers in the controllers and headset that make virtual objects that much more compelling.

The VR headset eye tracking also allows rendered foveala technology that focuses only on where the fovea of ​​the eye seeks to maximize resolution, getting more graphic punch with fewer pixels.

Sony’s head of PlayStation R&D Dominic Mallinson has suggested that eye tracking could likely be back in a 2019 conversation with CNET.

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PSVR 2 can scan your room and live stream your VR games

The passthrough cameras on the headset work like the cameras on the Quest 2 and other VR headsets, showing the real world in your headset. The headset will also “mesh” your physical space, scanning walls, floors, and obstacles like chairs and desks to get a clear sense of the playing space. This can create a boundary in which you can play.

The mesh part is particularly interesting, because it’s something AR headsets and mixed reality headsets do. This means the PSVR 2 could, theoretically, also have mixed reality experiences like the Quest 2 already plays with it, although Sony hasn’t announced anything about that yet.

A unique feature is a live streaming mode, which will use the PS5’s TV-mounted camera to record you overlaid with footage of your live gameplay in a single stream. Mixed reality live-streaming tools have appeared for Quest 2, but no game console has ever had this feature before.

There is a cinematic mode plus a VR mode

Sony also details two display modes for the headset: one, for VR, will display at 2,000 x 2,040 pixels per eye in HDR, at 90Hz or 120Hz. A 2D “cinema mode”, a much like what the original PSVR can do, plays 2D movies and games at 1920 x 1080 resolution in HDR at 24Hz, 60Hz, or 120Hz.

Specs we know so far:

  • OLED displays, with a resolution of 2000 x 2040 pixels per eye, frame rates of 90Hz and 120Hz
  • 110 degree field of view
  • Eye tracking and foveal rendering
  • Adjustable lens separation
  • Vibration in the helmet
  • 3D audio
  • Built-in microphone and audio output headphone jack
  • Four external cameras for tracking
  • Single USB-C connection
  • Sense controllers with USB-C ports, Bluetooth 5.1, rechargeable batteries, 6DoF tracking, finger tracking using capacitive and infrared touch buttons, haptics and specialized haptic triggers like the DualSense controller
Rear view of the PlayStation VR2 headset

There is an adjustment knob on the back to tighten the fit of the helmet.


Headset Design: Vibration, Eye Tracking, Moving Lenses

Even though Sony’s PSVR 2 headset looks bulky in photos, it’s actually much more comfortable than the Quest 2. An adjustable headband, similar to the original PSVR design, means it will tighten around the head like a visor instead of using an elastic strap to tighten your face. Sony also promises adjustable lens distance for different eyes and faces, like the original PSVR. This type of fit worked very well for my goggles, and the material was surprisingly light in my first demos.

The headset supports headphones with a standard headphone jack and has a cable that connects to the PS5 via USB-C, through a jack that appears to come out of one side of the headband. That’s far fewer wires than the breakout box needed for the original PSVR.

Integrated eye tracking promises to deliver better graphics and possibly enable eye control and eye contact in VR games. Eye tracking is not yet common in consumer VR headsets, but the technology is expected to come to other consumer headsets, including Meta’s next VR device and maybe Apple as well.

The headset’s four tracking cameras will allow movement tracking in VR without using a camera bar connected to the TV. Tracking should work the same as other VR headsets. It’s possible the cameras also allow for some mixed reality, mixing virtual reality with what the cameras see on the headset screen.

PlayStation VR2 headset side view

A side view of the headset and another angle on the Sense controllers.


Games revealed so far

Sony’s exclusive Horizon Call of the Mountain remains PSVR 2’s splashiest game, but other games have also been announced. No Man’s Sky, which can be played on PSVR, is a confirmed PSVR 2 port. Also announced: The Walking Dead: Saints & Sinners – Chapter 2: Retribution (yes, it’s just a game); Resident Evil Village; Star Wars: Tales from the Edge of the Galaxy; and Demoo.

However, some bad news for original PSVR owners: Sony has confirmed that the original PSVR games are not compatible with PSVR 2unless the games are specifically updated.

What we still don’t know: Many

Even though Sony seems to have spilled a ton of information, there are still a lot of unknowns about the PSVR 2 that we hope to discover as soon as possible:

Sony still hasn’t put a price on the PSVR 2, which suggests it won’t come cheap. The original PlayStation VR cost $400 for the headset in 2016. With the PSVR 2’s eye-tracking, high-end display, and fancy controllers, it could cost at least as much as the PlayStation 5. But those are just assumptions. speculations.

Sony has said PSVR 2 will now arrive in early 2023, but does that mean spring, or sooner, or later? One thing we know now is that it won’t be a 2022 holiday giveaway.

Sony has unveiled a PSVR 2 game, but how good will the rest of the lineup be? Sony could tap into its exclusive game library or get timed exclusives from indie developers. The first PSVR launched with a number of notable games, and PSVR 2 will need some interesting games to sell the hardware.

Will it be backwards compatible with all older PSVR games?

It seems the answer is no. Sony recently confirmed that older games will not automatically be compatible. Hopefully Sony finds a way to make it easy for developers to adapt their existing games to PSVR 2, as there are hundreds of still good games that even work on the PS5 with older PSVR hardware that would otherwise be stuck.

Is there any chance it’s wireless?

Sony has confirmed that the headset is connected to a USB-C cable, and you can see the connected cable in the PSVR 2 photo above. Right now the answer is no. It’s hard to imagine 360-degree Beat Saber with that USB-C cable connected, but PC VR headsets are also connected by cable.


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