Love VR? You need to try HP’s amazing Mixed Reality Headset

As Microsoft starts to invest in virtual entertainment, headset makers are beginning to come on board. HP’s new offering is one of the best yet.

  • What is Microsoft Mixed Reality? Created from the ashes of Hololens, this platform offers a range of VR content.
  • What PC specs do I need for running VR content? Something with an Intel i5 processor, at least 8GB of RAM and Intel HD Graphics 6206.
  • What is the best Microsoft Mixed Reality Headset? There are several options available, but HP’s Mixed Reality Headset is one of the best.

Virtual reality is often touted as the future of entertainment, and for good reason. The technology allows you to step inside games and movies, offering a truly immersive experience.

Unsurprisingly, there are several big players in this fledgling market. The latest is Microsoft, which hopes to cultivate a library of virtual content in the Windows Store. The new HP Mixed Reality Headset offers gamers and early adopters the chance to try Microsoft’s new platform, without the need for a powerful PC.

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Mixed reality

What is mixed reality?

In the generic sense, mixed reality is somewhere between virtual reality and augmented reality. When you play a mixed reality game, the characters should blend in with your real-world environment rather than floating above it.

However, Microsoft uses a very different definition. The software giant’s Mixed Reality platform has focused on pure VR content in recent times, on the back of the Windows 10 Fall Creators Update.

The HP Mixed Reality Headset is designed specifically for Windows Store content, although it also supports SteamVR.

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Total immersion

What mixed reality content is available?

Between the Windows Store and SteamVR platforms, you have about 2,500 titles to choose from. The library includes games, 360-degree movies, and immersive apps.

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Zombie outbreak, anyone?

It must be said, the Windows Store only makes a very small contribution to this total. You can download Minecraft, Skype and Netflix — but not a whole lot else.

That said, the Windows Store is slowly gaining more content. We also expect to see more rapid progress over the next couple of years.

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Robocop vibes

How good is the HP Mixed Reality Headset?

The device itself is very well designed and easy to set up. With the Creator’s Update installed on your PC, you just need to plug in the device via USB and HDMI.

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Responsive controllers

Each eye has its own 2.89-inch LCD display, with a resolution of 1440 x 1440 pixels. The refresh rate varies between 60Hz and 90Hz depending on your hardware, and the supplied controllers are very responsive.

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Movement tracking

The soft headband provides good comfort throughout your session, and we kinda like the Robocop look. In addition, you can plug in your favorite headphones via the 3.5mm jack.

Priced at just $300, HP’s headset is great value for VR newbies.

“Designed to deliver cutting-edge visual quality and superb comfort, the HP Mixed Reality Headset with Controllers puts the magic of immersive computing within reach…An easy setup and straightforward adjustments make it simple to jump right into the action without missing a beat.” — HP.com

What we ❤

This headset offers a nice balance between price and features. Furthermore, you don’t need to break the bank buying a top-end PC just to enjoy an immersive movie.

Future upgrades

This headset deserves better software. We hope Microsoft works hard over the coming months to increase the choice of virtual and augmented reality content.

Availability

– Order now: via HP.com

– Price: $299.99 USD

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Meet Mark Myerson

Mark is best known for writing about apps, but he also loves the tactile, hardware side of technology. Being a professional photographer, he's pretty handy with a camera, and he's a self-confessed tweetaholic.

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