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The New Pimax Crystal VR Headset: Competition for the Varjo Aero?

Pimax announced the Pimax Crystal, a new Headset which is broadly similar with to the company's upcoming Pimax 12K QLED Headset, but with cut back a few features and a lower price. Although the price is about €1,900.00 lower, the Headset still falls into the 'ultra-enthusiastic' category, making it a direct competitor to Varjo's Aero Headset.

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Just half a year before Pimax will launch its flagship (Pimax 12K QLED) Headset, Pimax introduced another, similar Headset, which it says will launch in the third quarter, just a few months before the 12K QLED.

Pimax Crystal has many of the same ambitious features: Standalone processing with PC compatibility, eye tracking, ultra-high resolution, support for a WiGig wireless module, high refresh rate, inside-out tracking, and much more. What sets it apart from its more expensive brother is a slightly lower resolution and a smaller field of view.

Pimax Crystal

While the €2,400.00 Pimax 12K QLED aims for an ultra-high resolution and an ultra-wide 240-degree diagonal field of view, decreases the Pimax Crystal both, but claims to maintain a very high 42PPD with a 120 degree diagonal field of view, or 35PPD with a 140 degree field of view - the choice is up to the user, thanks to interchangeable lenses, one of the unique features of the Headset.

with a price of €1,900.00 seems to want to directly compete with the Pimax Crystal with Varjo's ultra-enthusiastic Aero Headset, which is priced at €2,000.00 (but does not include Controllers or required tracking base stations). On the other hand, Pimax says that the Crystal will be supplied with Controllers following the Headset and inside-out tracking out of the box for a price from €1,900.00.

An optional €200 SteamVR tracking faceplate will be offered at launch, and the company says it is working on a stereo camera faceplate for color Passthrough, although price and availability have not been officially announced.

Pimax Crystal

Here is an overview of with the specifications of the Pimax Crystal:

  • Resolution: 2880 x 2880 pixels per eye
  • Screen type: QLED + mini LED (aspherical lenses)
  • Refresh rate: 160 Hz
  • Field of View (FOV): 120 or 140 degrees (depending on lens configuration)
  • Processor: Snapdragon XR2
  • Internet connection: WiFi 6E, 60 GHz add-on
  • Battery: 6000mAh
  • IPD Adjustments: Automatic, 58 - 72 mm
  • Connection: 1 x DisplayPort
  • tracking method: inside-out tracking (optional SteamVR tracking)
  • Eye tracking: Yes
  • Audio: Built-in headphones, optional off-ear speakers

Although Pimax says it wants to provide a 'no compromise' experience for its customers, the Crystal Headset reaffirms the company's affinity for introducing multiple, modular Headset models that force customers to choose between a range of overlapping features and capabilities; it is unclear why the company plans to launch the Crystal in Q3 2022, just a few months before the 12K QLED in Q4.

Either way, we'll definitely be impressed if Pimax manages to deliver on everything it promises with with these ambitious headsets!

Diederik Hermsen- XR Product Specialist

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