Virtual reality headsets nowadays provide more realistic and immersive experiences than ever before. However, if the lenses on your VR headset start fogging up, the opportunity to enjoy high-quality virtual reality goes down the drain. And this isn’t an issue you can simply ignore. It forces you to take the VR headset off, clean it, sit down and cool off so it doesn’t start fogging up again, all that really annoying/immersion breaking stuff.
Why is this happening? Is there anything you can do to prevent your VR headset from fogging up?
Let’s break it down!
Why is my VR headset fogging up?
Just as your VR headset lenses are fogging up, any glass surface fogs up as a result of moisture in the air condensing on it. This effect mostly takes place in situations when the warm, moist air comes in contact with the cooler air – it condenses. You’ve probably noticed this very effect, albeit on a bigger scale, when first starting a car on a cold winter morning.
In your very case, the high body temperature rapidly warms the air engulfed between your face and the VR headset, which causes the fogging up, as the moisture is condensed on the significantly colder lenses.
The very design of many VR headsets provides the perfect conditions for fogging up to occur, considering that the air mostly remains enclosed. This is especially annoying if you’ve stored away your VR headset for some time, as it may take a while for the headset lenses to warm up, and catch up to the temperature of your body.
What should I do to prevent my VR headset from fogging up?
Acting beforehand is probably the best way to prevent the VR lenses from fogging up. As you can probably already conclude, the idea is to keep the temperature of your VR headset closer to that of your body. Clearly, there are other solutions too, which don’t involve taking precautions, but can eliminate lens fog as effectively.
Warm your VR headset up before using it
For the most headsets, just turning them on before use will do the trick. It may take a while, so maybe go and grab a drink and wait for 10-15 minutes. If you want to get into the action more quickly, put the headset over your head for a couple of minutes. This will help it the cold lenses acclimate faster and reach the temperature closer to that of your body.
Some users report that turning on a hair dryer and blowing hot air onto the headset did the trick as well. Creativity goes a long way, you may even come up with some DIY quick fixes. Just make sure to let us know!
Store the VR headset in a warm place
Now, this can be problematic, especially if you own a PC, tethered headset. This depends entirely on how your living space is organized.
Obviously, you want to avoid extreme temperatures.
It comes down to how you store the VR headset, so while keeping it in a nice cozy place may not completely prevent a VR headset from fogging up, it will significantly decrease the temperature difference, enabling your headset to pick up heat more quickly.
Anti-fog sprays and wipes
These are the solutions which skiers may be familiar with. Now, the effectiveness of sprays and wipes often vary depending on the brands and situations. I myself prefer being patient rather than frustrated, so before immersing into VR sessions I warm the headset up and have the wipes just in case.
It is a fact that the HTC Vive has only grown in popularity since it first came out in 2016. This has lead to the creation of a huge amount of side accessories and covers that let you customize your virtual reality headset as you most like.
As for the covers, you can find sticker-like packages that decorate controllers, the headset, and even the base-stations; however, these don’t have any functionality other than to make your gadgets more visually appealing.
Similarly, silicon skins can also be found. Among these, the HyperkinGelShell skins are the most commonly bought as they come in different colors and are quite affordable. Here are some of the best and worst aspects of these HTC Vive Skins, as well as other tips you should keep in mind before buying them.
The HyperkinGelShell skins for the Vive can be bought to either cover and protect your controllers or the main VR headset. The controller package comes with 2 separate skins in the color you chose, which can be white, gray, red, green, or bright blue.
These HTC Vive controller skins will easily add durability to your gadgets while also making sure that the sensor is clear enough to connect and not interfere with the games. The skins are made of a thing yet high-quality silicon and they are specifically designed to keep your wands from breaking apart when they fall down.
Likewise, the material used for the construction of these skins offers a nice, secure grip, letting the user feel safe even when their hands are sweating from the excitement of playing. After all, Virtual Reality games are normally very active and will frequently end up in sweat.
These HTC Vive Skins are super affordable and cost a little over $20. The box brings 2 skins and they will not only make sure that your wands are not scratched but they also prevent dust from getting into the small, open places in the controllers.
They fit the Vive controllers perfectly. They are harder than you might expect and will definitely add a sleek and sci-fi vibe to your wands. Depending on the color you choose from, you can also buy the skin for the headset and make them match or mismatch on purpose.
Covering your wands with these HTC Vive Controller skins couldn’t be easier. There isn’t anything that you should know before simply doing it. They just need to be pushed over the controllers and the will immediately fit around it. Everything goes right in place and it feels like a secure skin that won’t fall off anytime soon.
Comfort and Grip
The skins are not thick enough to cause any discomfort. In fact, they are quite soft to the touch and will prevent sweat from making the controller slide down to the floor. These HTC Vive skins also cover the buttons on the wand safely while still letting you press them freely.
As for the grip, these might not be the perfect skins and they could still slip around the controller but it will never slide off the controller.
Affordable price to protect your wands from dust, scratches, and bumps
Several colors to choose from let you customize your HTV Vive controllers and headset however you want
The HTC GelShell skins fit nicely and prevent the controllers from falling down. Particularly good for those who play active games where sweating could happen
They have been designed to allow the sensor to read your controllers as they don’t interfere with the signal
The skins cover the buttons on the controller so if you are a beginner in the HTC Vive world, you will lose some time before remembering which button does what
Some might consider that the color range is too small yet
They won’t protect your controllers from the worst accidents, only from daily wear and tear
The HyperkinGelShell HTC Vive skins are a great addition to your Vive accessory collection. They are super soft, lightweight, and affordable enough to convince you to try them out, and with them, you can rest assured that you won’t see as many scratches on your controllers as you would if they weren’t covering them.
Sure, there might not be too many colors to choose from and not everyone will like the bright blue, but the white and gray will undoubtedly make your wands look better and feel better when playing, as the grip improves once they are on.
In conclusion, these are a great pair of Vive controller skins that you can buy if you are on a budget: they will do the work effortlessly and take care of your wands, too.
As we have covered in the previous article, PSVR with its 4.50 update has brought the possibility of enjoying a full-blown 3D experience from the comfort of your own home, without the need of buying a 3D TV.
The experience of watching 3D movies on PSVR is comparable to one where you possess a large 3D projector with you being the sole viewer in front of the screen in a cinema designed just for you.
As we have mentioned in our article, TV manufacturers have shifted their focus from 3D TVs to 4K and 8K resolution monitors. However, as every 3D enthusiast might know, there is no shortage of 3D movies, and the number of available movies is increasing each year.
Before we get onto our list of 9 titles which, in our humble opinion, might be the best choices for PSVR watching, we will use this opportunity to refresh our memory a bit regarding the necessary settings needed for maximum viewing pleasure.
How to watch 3D movies on PSVR using LittlStar App
As we have covered in depth in the article linked above, to use the PSVR 3D capabilities, first you need to ensure that the system is up to date. To be more precise, you need to have your system upgraded to version 4.50, but since the process is automatic that shouldn’t be an issue.
Next, you will need a USB device and a Littlstar application installed. You will need to transfer your video files on to a USB stick. You will then plug the stick into your PS4, but there are some extra steps that need to be taken as well. Here are some tips on how to achieve just that. A quick tip to being with – be mindful of the file names.
First, make sure that you format your stick as either FAT32 or ExFAT. FAT32 has a max file size of 2GB so ExFAT is better. But it is possible you may need to try both. Be mindful that not all USB sticks are PS4 compatible, so don’t despair if your USB isn’t working, try another one.
The process of formatting a USB stick for Windows is pretty straightforward, but it’s somewhat complicated on a Mac. You need to explicitly choose the “Master Boot Record” scheme when formatting. In order for this option to show up, you need to have clicked on the top-level USB device on the lefthand device list and NOT on the volume name indented/nested underneath the device name. Otherwise, the Erase option will be greyed out and unselectable.
Once you have the USB formatted correctly, make a folder on it called “littlstar” (note there is no E in littlstar). Put all of your video files in this folder. For video files to be supported by Littlstar app, they need to be properly named, since the PS4 uses side-by-side 3D, your file name should be „*movie_name*_3dff_sbs“. For any additional issues be sure to check the official Littlestar documentation as well as our article.
Next thing to do is Adjust the cinematic viewing settings on PSVR to your preference. We recommend going with the Medium setting.
After you have done all the necessary steps, just open the Littlstar app and go to the Library option where all of your files shall be visible. Then make sure you are seated comfortably, lay back and enjoy any (or all) of these 9 gems, chosen for your viewing pleasure.
1. Pacific Rim – 3D
For those wanting to witness the mayhem and destruction of epic proportions, there is no better viewing experience than Pacific Rim. This giant robot vs giant monsters blockbuster has everything you could hope for. Although not originally filmed in 3D, the director Guillermo Del Toro spent almost twice the time than the norm on the conversion, and the result is the best possible 3D experience.
The extra layer of depth given by 3D boosts the movie performance in numerous ways. The war-torn, ravaged cityscapes are brought to life in front of your eyes. Towering mechas are given presence, while the thundering monsters are given a deadly punch. The remarkably natural-looking 3D brings waves crashing down in front of you, as well as skyscrapers, bridges and almost anything else you can think off. Definitely one of the best 3D movies made, on par with the rest of the 3D titans.
How could we not include Avatar on our list? Revolutionary director James Cameron brought the 3D trend upon us with his tale of planet Pandora and its tree-hugging inhabitants, brought in conflict with Earth’s attempts to bleed the planet dry. The Cameron’s world is truly a breathtaking triumph of technology.
With his painstaking perfectionism, the landscape of Pandora is brought alive in front of your eyes, given depth and life and its pacifist inhabitants have to strike a chord with anyone who has watched the movie. How could anyone forget Jake’s flight scene at the back of a mountain Banshee, huh? His fulfilment of a lifelong dream of flying translated into one of the most thrilling 3D sequences in existence.
Alfonso Cuaron’s blockbuster with Sandra Bullock as an astronaut desperately floating in the vacuum of space required almost all of the combined rendering power of UK’s CGI industry to make, but the result is a pure 3D masterpiece rewarded with seven Oscars.
The movie absolutely must be viewed in 3D, you will feel the panic and misery of Sandra Bullock as she tries to survive the harsh and unforgivable conditions of space. One of the most memorable scenes in the movie, where the debris is hurled towards the heroes, will leave you gasping for air.
4. The Walk 3D
Director Robert Zemeckis has turned out to be the best choice for translation of one of the most amazing human achievements into a 3D experience. The Walk is a story of Philippe Petit’s stroll and a tightrope between the Twin Towers in 1973.
As our hero steps on the wire, determined to make the walk, the camera sends our eyes on the plunging 1300 feet abyss of fatality, making us feel a vertigo-like moment of shock and awe for the achievement pulled by Philippe.
The story of pure determination, conviction, and willpower, the Walk 3D will leave you with a feeling of amazement at the power of a human spirit.
5. Dredd 3D
In the aftermath of a civilization collapse, humanity is concentrated into few mega cities where the resemblance of order is achieved by Judges, serving as judge, jury, and executioners. Marvellously crafted 3D gem of a movie, it puts its 1995 Sylvester Stallone adaptation to shame in all aspects.
Bloody, violent and claustrophobic, the 3D effects intensify and illustrate the psychotropic effects of the Slo-Mo drug used by future criminals. The movie is sprinkled by beautiful moments of carnage that will make you try to dodge the blood splashing out of the screen.
6. Hugo (2011)
Hugo is Martin Scorsese’s playful mixture of stories and ideas. It is a story of a young boy trying to make his mark in the world without the help of his departed parents. The movie is director’s ode to the magic of the cinema and sense of wonder and awe that the medium inspires. The movie is easily one of Scorsese’s greatest achievements.
Emotionally charged, set in Paris train station in the 1930s, the 3D brings life to the crowds and trains rushing into the station. Everything in Hugo is delicately crafted, from the costumes to the emotional finale, and 3D is no exception.
7. Star Wars: The Force Awakens
The continuation of a saga that has captured the imaginations of past, present and quite probably future generations, Star Wars: The Force Awakens is a love letter to fans, invitation to newbies as well as a visual marvel in its own right.
Its 3D effects only boost its spectacular and thrilling visual narrative that has given fresh life to the space epic. The 3D effects have struck a good balance and give a lot of dimensionality to a lot of scenes, be it deserts of Jakku or the cockpit of iconic Millennium Falcon. The movie is a visual treat and a must-view experience for anyone.
8. Ghostbusters 3D
Fans of the original movies might have a thing or two to say about its new reboot. However, no one can deny the masterful 3D effects that make the movie a fun and immersive experience.
The movie seems like a journey through a haunted house, where ghosts can pop up at any moment. The 3D technology gives these moments an even bigger punch. Director Paul Feig smartly made sure not to overdo it, using these tricks only for specific scenes while making sure that the pesky ghouls never get in the way of comedic exchanges.
The director really went the extra mile. At certain moments in the movie, objects even break the frame and go into the black area and letterboxing, thus extending the 3D view of the spectator giving it that „Coming at you!“ moment. Simple, but works like magic and is quite possible done uniquely in this manner. Truly a guilty pleasure.
9. Ghost in the Shell 3D
There is a distinct possibility that you have already heard of the name Ghost in the Shell. It stands as one of the best „man and machine“ stories ever told, the original anime has served as an inspiration to innumerable modern day films, not to mention Wachowski brother’s 2000 hit The Matrix. Its 2017 adaptation is even more relevant in today’s hyper-tech world and serves as a warning how our love of technology can go wrong.
The movie does the story justice, since the pressure in face of the original material was quite high, and unfolds the futuristic Tokyo in front of our eyes. In the world where the line between a man and a machine is quite blurry, you will definitely struggle to find it. The 3D effects are amazing, giant holograms hovering over the city are given life and you may feel their influence over you, especially with the violent, intimidating robots and their menacing appendages. Director Rupert Sanders had plenty of material to work with and he has done quite a good job.
Given the plethora of cinematic treats, we hope that we have planted an itch in the back of your head which can only be cured by experiencing these movie gems by yourself. Don’t take our word for it, strap on your PSVR headset and plunge into the marvellous world of 3D cinema!
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