philip lelyveld The world of entertainment technology


Kopin’s Prototype VR Headset is Incredibly Thin & Light, More Than 3x the Pixels of Rift and Vive

kopin-lightning-vr-microdisplay-768x432Kopin is touting a new prototype VR headset featuring their 4K OLED ‘Lightning’ microdisplay that they say is made specifically for VR. At nearly half the size of other headsets, and made from lightweight materials, the device feels featherlight compared to VR products on the market today.

Kopin is a publicly traded display manufacturer that was founded in 1984. With the massive buzz generated by VR, the firm has turned developed a roadmap for manufacturing displays specifically for VR headsets.

kopin-lightning-vr-microdisplay-6-768x432The first microdisplay that Kopin is positioning for VR is what they’re calling ‘Lightning’, a 1-inch display with 2,048 x 2,048 per-eye resolution and running at a whopping 120Hz.

The tiny size of the microdisplay also brings another advantage: the potential for a much shorter focal length.

Kopin has worked with Chinese ODM Goertek to develop a prototype VR headset that employs their Lightning microdisplay.

Meanwhile, microdisplays benefit from having incredibly tiny and dense pixels, but when it comes to VR, the challenge is—counterintuitively—actually making them larger. ...  the image needs heavy magnification in order to achieve a wide field of view. They claim their current Lightning display is capable of delivering up to a 110 degree diagonal field of view using a dual-element Fresnel lens. They are also working in conjunction with 3M to develop an even smaller ‘pancake’ optic which they say can achieve a 100 degree field of view.

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