Index 2 in 2023 - Evidence mounting?

It’s been 4 years since Valve announced Index back on April 30th 2019. Since then Index has been regarded as the best all round headset on the market.

In 2023 RoadtoVR has labeled Index as the best overall PCVR headset up to $1000, which is quite something considering it’s age.

But mounting evidence suggests Valve are moving onwards and upwards. Patents have been reported on for the past few years. Companies are said to be working on new 4k OLED panels and credible alternatives are coming to market.

It’s been reported Base station 2.0 is now being handed off to HTC so they can replace their 1.0 units.

Apple is said use the same 4k panels as Valve and are highly rumoured to be launching their first HMD this year. So when Apple jumps Valve jumps.

Hardware on the Valve store is slowly drying up. An indication of an impending release?

HP pulls out of VR. Could this be because they knew what was coming and they knew they couldn’t compete.

Meta announces the Quest 3 will be released in 2023.

Now all these things could be just coincidence or wishful thinking on my part but I for one are a firm believer this is going to be big.

Is 2023 going to be the biggest year for VR since 2016?


Haha yeah I do think this is a lot of wishful thinking. And man, I do wish it too, really loved the Index back then but it so badly needs an update now.

Fact of the matter is that nobody knows what Valve is doing. Personally I think they’ll release it next year instead but pick a coin and toss it, who knows …


I’m 90% certain its this year. Haha.


To BS3.0 or not to BS3.0? That is the question.

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Well, if Valve actually can muster something conclusive regarding its ‘Deckard’…
PLUS, if it is anything close to or better than things like the Varjo/PIMAX, then THAT will be interesting.

But the bomb hasn’t been dropped yet by Valve. I suspect it’s the 2nd or 3rd quarter of the year at earliest. If not, then sometime by 2024 CES or not in our lifetimes.


Well back then when they released the Index, the resolution already felt conservative. They’d been experimenting with 2k2k too, but chose to go with a way lower resolution. If they’d choose 2k2k now then that would be disappointing, especially if we’d need to bridge another 4 years with it. So hopefully they’ll use indeed a resolution close to the Crystal/Aero because that’s the point where SDE really starts to disappear.


I’m expecting 4k per eye.

Haha pretty sure they won’t release a 4k4k headset this year. Last time they were really conservative with their resolution and 4k4k is quite the opposite of conservative :slight_smile: But who knows …

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I don’t think Index 2 will release this year, but if and when it does I bet it’ll be a fantastic vr headset. i would’ve bought the Index but like Djonko says the res is too low.


Yeah it was but when you add the average cost of the GPU and HMD v FPS Valve played it safe. In todays market eye tracking will become the norm so resolution can go wild without the penalty of FPS.

For a headset to last another 4 years I think 4k per eye with 150-160FoV is more than reasonable.


Valve played it smart as they wanted more mass market target vs niche target market. Of the Index had been $1500+ for a complete package 4 years ago it wouldn’t have enjoyed the success it has. As the market Target would have been much smaller. Due to not only the base cost of a full VR package but also the pc to run it. This gave them a nice mid to high end product with great sound and refresh options up to 144hz.

Where as Meta even went after a much bigger market share by offering something truly for more mass adoption with the Quest series and ensured it’s success with a very attractive buy in price that just about anyone can afford.


Agreed that’s why I strongly believe they won’t be releasing a 4k4k headset this year, it’s just going to be too expensive to reach the market share that they seek.

And sure, eye tracking will make some difference but honestly I don’t expect too much there. So you’d still need a 4080 or 4090 to even run such headset and that’s going to be really niche for a while to come.

If Valve would release a headset right now I expect its resolution to be pretty close (slightly higher maybe) than the PSVR2


I suspect Valve will hybrid the steamdeck concept with a vr hmd. A full pcvr portable that can also leverage a desktop tether. Kind of similar in some respects like Sulon Q from long ago

Though I suspect it will come in the form of maybe Steamdeck 2 with a VR hmd addon that has the extra hardware ie sensors & Displays and other things that need to be in the hmd itself while using the Steamdeck 2 as an external brainbox for a more powerful standalone and even stronger hybrid when combined with a desktop wired or wireless.

Only time will tell. But I do see Valve also strongly considering other more portable & affordable tracking systems.


@Atmos I want to thank you for creating this topic. As it brings us back to the early days/roots of the original Pimax forum discussing all things vr instead of pining for and over pimax updates.

We need more of these types of positive vr discussions to get back on track.



No problem.

I hope Index 2 is a PCVR only HMD and a second stand-alone HMD comes in 2 years with the Steamdeck 2.

A stand-alone has too many cost and spec limitations to make a high end PCVR device reach it’s true potential.


This is largely due to the hardware being used. Arm while decent enough is still very limited and requires separate platform content.

Turbografx 16 while didn’t do great was a very nice console as the portable gaming used the same memory card like cartidges as the main system.

Now granted not all pcvr titles will be playable in a standalone mode which is understandable. Risc-5 is also shaping up nicely. Though atm Arm is giving Qualcomm trouble as they have some Risc-5 chiplets in the XR2. So Arm is also in part locked down vs Risc-5.


Interesting discussion and I admit, I haven’t yet read all the posts within.

Nonetheless I’d like to asko the following question:

Why should Valve want to release a successor to the Index? That’s it. What are the arguments for it that would make it a worthwhile endeavour.

Follow up would be: If there are compelling reasons why they would want to, why do it in 2023? This year will most likely see the highest number of HMD models released, ever. Plus expected showings by the one behemoth within the industry no other competitor should ever dream of getting anywhere close to.

I’m asking this genuinely because I feel most disucssions about an Index successor revolve around why Valve can and indications that they might but no real insight as to why they should.

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Very valid points. As @Atmos posted earlier RoadToVR has praised the Index in a recent 2023 article. So imagine until Index Sales drops low enough they will continue to sit while patenting/locking ideas away until they feel a real need to release something new. In the meantime they will continue to put focus on Steamdeck advances like more games added to the official compatibility list.

Valve gets profits pretty much no matter whom releases a headset. And with the Index may attract a company or 2 to build a sponsored SteamVR hmd. LG bailed on them and there DeV kits flopped; so they needed to build there own as a proof of concept that sings.

If Valve releases their HMD this year is it going to be a VERY different beast than has been built up in everyone’s head by somebody doing patent diving. Or it’s going to be absurdly expensive and well over what people hope/expect. Or both.

Valve is somebody who works on their own time, they are a private company who is beholden to nobody but their own whims and wants. They have zero need to release something unless they want too, compared to public companies that have to keep in mind “We need to make X or else our shareholders will kill us”. They could work on something and have it mostly done, but if it doesn’t end up meeting their standards, they’ll scrap it too. Anyone who’s followed, well, any products should know that patents=/=the actual product. The actual product often differs quite a bit from what’re in the patents.

Frankly, at this point I do find beating the drum of “DECKARD IS COMING SOON!” to be similar to how people say “Apple is going to reveal their headset at X!” and have been for what, almost 2 years? Maybe a bit less? Despite nothing to show for it. It doesn’t mean they’re not working on it, but stuff takes time.

Things like MicroOLED and pancake lenses are still in their infancy and we got some growing pains with them, from either limitations we’re still working on, potentially quite low yields or the simple extreme cost. And Valve does not strike me as the company who’s going to jump onto something new just because it’s there, they seem more like the kind who wanna release something that’s actually quite a jump and not just “Index but higher res screens lol”.

Look at what happened when companies like Arpara tried to jump at being the first to market with MicroOLED, there were some real problems, particularly with brightness. And the MeganeX seems like it has had opinions turn against it, especially since it’s got such a massive price increase now. And then Pimax themselves even mentioned how using OLED(Sounded like normal, not even microOLED) would’ve added a decent chunk to the Crystal’s pricetag, which seems entirely credible to me given how few HMDs are using it and the crazy cost of the MeganeX, alongside OLED costing more in general on monitors.

Valve is obviously working on something and will most certainly come out with something someday, but I think people who expect it this year(Or it to at least live up to the hype expectations built up. Absolutely 0 chance of Varifocals this year, for example) are gonna be a bit disappointed.


Which evidence?

Valve is probably leaving HW market. SteamVR is now in full maintenance mode (no changes, even bugfixes made), while Valve moved to OpenXR.

Unfortunately it seems that Khronos did not release OpenXR Device Plugin interface spec (which if implemented by Valve could be a major help for all headset manufacturers), so it looks like OpenXR is going to be stuck half-way through.

If it is supposed to mean Lighthouse v3 than I would say no. LHv2 is pretty much maxed out on all fronts and pretty much almost perfect because of this. It is an example of a (very) clever idea turned into a great application at a great price.

I do not think there are any. There are already quite a few hardware manufacturers, no need to boost that part of the industry. What the industry still suffers from are the runtime wars (and the other half of the OpenXR spec. missing)