Razer’s New Virtual Reality Gaming Headset Encourages Open-Source Hacking

Michael Calore | WIRED | January 6, 2015

Virtual reality gaming is in its super-hype phase. But even with the recent developments and industry buzz, the technology still ranks as nascent. If it’s going to grow in a healthy fashion, it needs standards—assurances to developers and manufacturers that their software and hardware will work with all the VR products and games coming to the market.

That’s the principle behind OSVR, a new group formed by hardware and software heavyweights to promote interoperability around virtual reality gaming.

Razer (one of OSVR’s founders, along with Leapmotion, Ubisoft, Reload, and SMI, among others) is here at CES showing off a new piece of hardware: a VR headset developer’s kit. It’s a fully functioning headset for play-testing games and peripherals, complete with a gyroscope, accelerometer, and compass. There’s a surround-sound codec onboard, so you can add 3D audio to your creations. The internal display runs at 1080×1920 and the optical elements are adjustable. It also has USB ports for connecting any controllers or other devices you want to add to enhance the experience. And since it’s open-source hardware, all of the circuit boards are modular, and Razer says it will make the both the schematics and the 3D files freely available for download, so you can print and build your own goggles or customize the design...