5K initial impressions

Finally got my Pimax 5K and spent a couple of hours with it. Here are some quick initial impressions -

Setup - A bit messy. My Vive is in a room on the other side of the house with extension cables. I bought a 10m DP extension but it was no good. I need to re-think my setup. I tried to set it up with just gyros (disable lighthouse in PiTools) but nothing was launching and Steam was throwing 300 errors at me. I brought a single lighthouse into my office and did the setup with that and then it was all finally happy.

Fov - Wow. This is amazing. I agree with what others have said in that the large FOV is mostly pointless. Normal is fantastic and covers most of my FOV anyway. There are certainly distortions around the far edges and every game i’ve tried with it so far (The Lab, Pavlov, Compound and Skyrim) has some slight graphical pop-in at the peripheries as things start to load that you wouldn’t usually see on a typical headset. None of this distracts from the experience once you’re in the game though, at least not for me.

Colours - I didn’t even notice anything different from my Vive and I’ve only just thought about it now. In black loading screens in Skyrim there was a grey glow around the edges which I assume is the LED backlights seeping through. I’m not sure how this would be in a game that’s always dark but it was fine for what I play.

Screen door - It’s still there but I was fine with the Vive screen door and this is considerably less.

Performance - Obviously there’s some messing around and tweaking to do here. I had steam on auto and Pitools on 1.25 for a while. The last thing I tried was Skyrim and the Lab on PiTools 1.5 and they looked fantastic but Skyrim was struggling a bit. I need to sit and have a play with all this stuff though.

Comfort - It’s surprisingly light and I don’t mind the strap. Your eyes are a lot closer to the lenses than I expected and there’s some light that seeps through the nose gap. I might try and stick a nose guard from my Vive there. Overall this will be fine though until the ridgid head strap arrives.

Overall I’m very happy. I just need to work out how I can play with space now as I’ll need a 10m DP extension cable that will work with it.


what are the specs of your rig? has anyone tried the 5k with a gtx 1080 non TI?

I’m on a I7 4770, GTX 1080 (non TI) and 16gb ram. Seems to handle it pretty well!

Can you give some impressions on what the resolution is like?

Resolution looks really nice. Screen door effect is still very much there but much finer than the Vive. The sweet spot is much larger too. On Pitools 1.5 everything looks very crisp and sharp.

It’s annoying as I can’t do much testing at the moment as I can’t get gyro mode to work and my lighthouse doesn’t like my tiny office which is covered in shiny surfaces. I’ve ordered a 2nd 10m DP cable I spotted in another thread though that I’ve been told works. That should be here on Monday so I’ll have my lovely 3x3m room back and can do some proper testing. It’s so frustrating having it here and not being able to use it properly.

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I’m leaning towards the 5K+ myself but I’ve heard from some that it’s “too sharp” an image and needs a “software slider sharpness adjustment” to tone it down a little. Then it would be more appealing to me over the 8K because it requires less GPU.

Thanks for the reply, what types of games do you play? I’m generally going to be playing games like raw data, Pavlov and doom. Do you think it’ll just handle it fine?

I’m not sure about Raw Data, I’ll try and remember to give it a try. But I played some Pavlov and WarDust today and holy crap, they’re like brand new games. It’s like trying VR for the first time again. The immersion gets totally kicked up a level when you can use your whole FOV and I’m sure it gives you quite a significant advantage to Oculus and Vive players.


What pitool version are you using? Pavlov won’t work for me.
Are you in steamvr beta?

Latest Pitools and main Steam branch. I just had to turn on parallel projections and reset steam vr.