The Oculus Rift is poised to forever change videogaming when it is released sometime next year, but unfortunately from the looks of its system requirements, not every PC user will be able to experience virtual reality right away.
In a blog post on the Oculus VR website, technical director Atman Binstock detailed the recommended system requirements for the Oculus Rift, as well as several requirements the headset will need in order to be properly plugged in:
- NVIDIA GTX 970 / AMD 290 equivalent or greater
- Intel i5-4590 equivalent or greater
- 8GB+ RAM
- Windows 7 SP1 or newer
- 2x USB 3.0 ports
- HDMI 1.3 video output supporting a 297MHz clock via a direct output architecture
Aside from the fact that there aren’t exactly too many PC gamers out there with 4GB graphics cards, the GPU requirements for the Oculus Rift make it utterly incompatible with laptops. Binstock explains:
Many discrete GPU laptops have their external video output connected to the integrated GPU and drive the external output via hardware and software mechanisms that can’t support the Rift. Since this isn’t something that can be determined by reading the specs of a laptop, we are working on how to identify the right systems. Note that almost no current laptops have the GPU performance for the recommended spec, though upcoming mobile GPUs may be able to support this level of performance.
Binstock also notes that while a GTX 970 or AMD 290 might be beyond many gamers’ financial reach at the moment, by the time the Rift is released next year, prices for these cards will have dropped fairly significantly.
Additionally, work on support for OS X and Linux machines has been put on hold in order to allow Oculus to better optimize the headset for Windows, “We want to get back to development for OS X and Linux but we don’t have a timeline,” Binstock says.