Will the 70PPD FRD/MicroLED projector in the 12K be compatible with SteamVR?

Hey @PimaxUSA and @PimaxQuorra, would you please be able to shed some light as to whether or not the 70PPD MicroLED projector for the middle high pixel density part of the 12Ks displays be compatible with SteamVR, given that SteamVR only supports two viewports? And will the FRD/MicroLED 70PPD projector feature release in the Q4 2022 12K model, or is it for a 12KX model coming after Q4 2022?

Varjo’s higher density focus displays are not compatible with SteamVR for this reason, and it would be nice to get some info on this, as this information would definitely help inform my purchasing decision regarding the 12K and possibly an 8KX or 5KS in the meantime for the trade in benefit.

I’m sure that this information would also be crucial in informing several other people’s purchasing decisions regarding the 12K as well.

Also bonus question – The 42 PPD glass aspheric lenses advertised as an add on for the Crystal – will those 42PPD glass aspheric lenses be compatible with the 12K and will the 12K also have hot swappable lenses like the Crystal? Thanks


Good point! Also, will the 70ppd variant come out in Q4, also? And if yes, for how much?


Well pimax should be focusing on OpenXR vs SteamVR. At this point it would be nice to see real world demos of progress vs info presentations on what there hoping to acheve.

Remember og 8k at 90hz? To compromise on 80hz?

Or BW frame doubling that waa scrapped like the wireless module? Both were heavily hyped and quietly discarded.

Still seems like they have a lot to accomplish as they have said there not ready to demo things suggesting they were not as ready to present at CES as would have been preferred and as result why there has not been a follow up demo aa was said was going to occur after CNY as CES didn’t work out.

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Looks so. On the other hand a working projector could even make some things easier - like lowering the data rate needed and thus getting Wifi to work well enough. If the focus projector is e.g. FullHD and repositioning via eye tracking works reliably and fast, one could probably lower the resolution of the remaining panel considerably, as the detail resolution of the eyes outside of a very small focus area is really low.

If they can use DFR it might even work with two viewports.

Not sure though whether latency is low enough if the eye position is sent to the GPU, the GPU renders the focus area in higher detail and then the result is sent back - while the eyes still have to look at the same spot to make this work…

Edit: On second thought - no, the projector wouldn’t help to reduce bandwidth as they can do DFR now already - with the normal 35 ppd panel as “focus display”. So data rate would increase compared to that scenario as the focus area would have about four times the amount of pixels per eye.

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I’m pretty sure this 70PPD projector is not something coming in the 12K. However, I’ll point out that it would be theoretically possible for a such a thing to be compatible with SteamVR because of the standalone design. The weirdness of the display within a display could be handled onboard and hidden from the PC even being aware of it.

Pimax has already said that lenses are specific to the model. The Crystal’s lenses are not usable with the 12K.


I don’t understand fully why they at one point thought they could demo the thing at CES, with a production date of Q4; Yet somehow they’ve yet to demo and the release date is still Q4? I mean, I still have faith, and will be the first to give them a big bow if the Crystal arrive Q3, but perhaps it’s time to move the release dates into REALITY :sleepy:.

Why are we even talking about this?
I mean to say: how do you get (all/any) games to render at the uber-resolution of the micro-display, whilst not just wasting the renders on the outer display? I think it’s a wonderful idea to have 70PPD, but not if it means my FPS is 25%. If handled “onboard” where’s the input? Effectively the GPU/CPU strength would have to massively beyond our current silicon.

Let’s be real: most AAA games cannot meet the capabilities of the 8KX. If there was a module that made it a 1000PPD - how would you render that (don’t say DLSS…please don’t say DLSS, hahah)?

I would like some VarjoXR3 owners/users to let us know how many games support their existing projector display (is it 70PPD?). If it’s just for commercial use, I’m not sure if it would be useful such that this is about as fluff as the eye tracking for the current series - great idea technically, but must have both software and hardware support.

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DCS works for sure with the focus screens and it apears quite easy to imlement them via OpenXR.

To get the focus screens to turn on brute force you can simply render around a 10K res in any SteamVR title, that’s the threshold for activation.

But you can imagine what the performance is like at that resolution :wink:

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Think of OpenFSR foveate circle. And as @twack3r mentions OpenXR vs limited OpenVR.

only 72 without severe ghosting with the past firmwares, or am I the only one having this issue?

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I did see ghosting when they reintroduced the backlighting setting.

Definitely quite noticable. But compared to the old 4k much better. However does need to be fixed to be on par with todays headsets. They need to revisit this as it was not present before.

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It makes perfect sense to me. At the time Pimax was going to demo at CES, it was believed that Facebook and possibly even Valve and other big players were going to announce their next big VR headsets there. The event was expected to be a big deal for major VR launches. And what did we actually get? Just Facebook announcing their name change and talking about their future plans for world domination. No actual product releases or anything. Just fluff. And nothing from Valve or any other major player either.

Pimax is a little fish swimming in a pond where all of the other fish are huge. The people on these forums are intensely interested in every little thing Pimax does. But the rest of the world hardly knows or cares that Pimax even exists. I think that perspective is often lost when we’re talking about this kind of topic.

Pimax is not able to produce buzz in the media on its own. It has to piggy back off of buzz created by larger fish. And realize here that I don’t mean getting coverage from RoadToVR, Thrillseeker, Mateo311, etc. These are VR centric news media which are themselves small fish in the news media pond. The various bigger fish in news media hardly know or care that the VR industry as a whole even exists, much less tiny little Pimax. It’s a momentous occasion for references to VR to appear in a Superbowl ad. How many times has VR ever been mentioned on CNN or FOX?

If you look at the timing of Pimax’s various presentations with this in mind, it makes a lot more sense. They are consistently timed for when other bigger fish in the VR industry are creating buzz which draws (or at least potentially draws) interest from bigger players in news media. They try to get their presentation out just ahead of whatever the big fish announces. Essentially putting themselves in the role of an opening band at a concert. That huge crowd didn’t come just to see them.

For example, the Crystal presentation appears to have been riding off of the expectation of Apple’s imminent announcement of their rumored AR headset at their big event the following week.

Returning to Pimax demoing at CES, I was surprised at the time that Pimax would say that they intended to still demo the 12K shortly after CES. That would have been a mistake. That would be like the opening band missing playing the opening, but then deciding to play on stage to an empty theater after the crowd has already gone home. I suspect this was a kneejerk reaction at the time amidst covid concerns, and they thought better of actually doing it later.

So my belief is that Pimax has been technically able to demo the 12K since at least CES just like they said. They’re just waiting for the appropriate moment from a marketing perspective to do it. And also, the longer they wait, the better that demo gets as they get more stuff sorted out closer to release.

But why has that been so long? Well, because we’re in a lull in the VR industry for any big product announcements. I mean there wasn’t any big stuff at CES or since CES. The 12K and Crystal are actually the only substantial VR headsets on the horizon right now. Everything else out there is just rumors and/or future plans with no dates. Deckard, Cambria, Apple’s AR headset, etc… they’re all ghosts.

The announcement of the Crystal for Q3 is strong evidence that the 12K and the Crystal are both on track for their release dates. What motivation could Pimax possibly have to make this announcement if they weren’t? It would be nonsensical.

There’s a big difference here in that these are not Kickstarter projects. Pimax, for the first time in its history, isn’t being forced into making release date promises it isn’t ready to make. These release dates are being offered voluntarily.


Not true at all. Pimax has created buzz since the 8k v1 prototype. The KS also had lots of self generated buzz during it’s run.

The 8kX even got a best VR award at CES.

Pimax shot themselves in the foot by continuing to hype a demo that now has been confirmed by there own words was just fluff.

They had a key opportunity to back out early with the resurgence of Covid with so many cancelling attending ces. But no they kept hyping that they were going forward with no backup plans. Well 1 the after CES private showing that was such a bust they requested an NDA with commiting to a reschedule after or before cny. And well still nothing but presentations of what may come.

Yep there CES commitment was a missed opportunity for a now not so small fish. They may not be a whale, but haven’t been a small fish in a long time.

Instead the media just gets to showcase pimax’s misses on there own words.


I think your definition of creating buzz and my definition of creating buzz must be pretty different. Because most people I talk to have never even heard of Pimax much less have any idea what Pimax is up to. And I’m pretty sure that’s not just anecdotal. The company has very little sway outside of a small niche of the already converted.

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That all makes sense I agree.

Agreed, just look on reddit. The12k got very little actual discussion anywhere outside of the Pimax subreddit and the Crystal got literally zero. No one is talking about Pimax outside of this message board and when it does occasionally get brought up you got more people calling them a scam then actually discussing the product.

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Then that simply demonstrates then that even CES is not that big either.


No real discussion as nothing has been publicly demoed only information presentations. Until there are public demonstrations; no real hype.

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You asked exactly what I wanted to ask, I didn’t know the 70ppd retina was even a part of the 12k, but yes I def want to know if the 12k will have swappable lenses to trade some fov for ppd

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Varjo was not able to get Steam VR support for its VR-3 retina micro-OLED. Since Pimax works with both Steam VR and Oculus software, this might make it harder to integrate a highly compatible projector setup for foveated rendering.

If Pixel density is your jam, I think the Pimax Crystal will make more sense for overall compatibility. I cant imagine that the foveated projector will be integrated, it will probably cost more.

Pimax crystal will be great for anyone already running the 8K-x who wants higher resolution without breaking the bank.

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