Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Dev Update #43 - VRidge 2.2 is now LIVE!

We’ve been waiting for this moment for a long time. Finally we have released version 2.2 of VRidge to everyone. Your RiftCat desktop client and VRidge mobile app should automatically update.

We couldn’t have made it without your intensive Beta tests! Thank you for helping us bringing this update to everyone.

Deployment status:
Platform Version Status Link
PC 2.2 Deployed Link
Viveport 2.2 Deployed Link
Oculus Home (Go and Gear VR) 2.2 Deployed Link
Google Play 2.2 Deployed Link
Daydream Store 2.2 Deployed Link

HTC Vive Focus, Oculus Go, Gear VR, Daydream View official support

With this update we were able to utilize all major SDKs to bring you the support of these extraordinary all-in-one headsets. If you own any of these, your experience with VRidge will now go to the next level.

We also want VRidge to be distributed via their official stores for easier installation. HTC Vive Focus version is already available on the Viveport mobile store. Oculus Home and Daydream version is in the approval process.

3-DOF controllers support

You can now use HTC Vive Focus, Gear VR, Oculus Go or Daydream controller in SteamVR! We have came up with an idea how to map the missing HTC Vive buttons to the controllers by using a little bit of space from the touchpad.

To read how to operate these controllers, simply take a look at our Help Center article to learn how to use them.

Reprojection for VR ready devices

If your phone or AIO headset is HTC Vive Focus, Daydream, Gear VR or Oculus Go compatible it will now use reprojection. Thanks to it, the experience is much better, basically getting rid of the jitter. If you have an optimal setup - your experience should be flawless now.

We will investigate if we could deliver different custom reprojection method for phones that are not VR ready. This might happen with the next update.

You might want to select Prevent frame loss as "Connection mode" if you're using stable connection (5 GHz / tethering) to prevent artifacting. This usually could introduce some extra latency, but it should be smoothed out by reprojection.

Reworked connection screen to include various devices

With multiple supported devices we had to upgrade our user experience to make it easier to pick the appropriate version.

We hope that with this change it’s going to be easier to install the appropriate VRidge version for your device.

CPU performance boost

We have made several iterations of optimizations for VRidge which allowed us to significantly reduce CPU usage:

Reduced CPU usage when using NVENC
Reduced VRidge's CPU load by 30-40% when using NVENC.

Many Android optimizations - CPU usage should be lower across all Android devices.
On average, you should see 15-20% system CPU load instead of 50-60%. This also means that heat generation should be significantly lower resulting in less "device too hot to run VR" errors.

The image shows the CPU usage when optimizations are turned OFF and ON.

In extremely rare cases this may lower VRidge performance. See this explanation to disable those optimizations.

We have also disabled MSAA on Daydream to save some GPU cycles and we have updated Google VR SDK to 1.80.

Automatic FPS selection

VRidge will now automatically select FPS based on the device refresh rate. For example, if you’ll connect to VRidge with 75Hz HTC Vive Focus headset - 75 FPS will be selected.

You may override device provided values by modifying vridge.cfg. Simply change the variables to:

"Video.FPS.Mode": "Custom",
"Video.FPS.Value": <your value>,

New languages supported

We were able to deploy six new languages: Bulgarian, Lithuanian, Indonesian, Korean, Italian and Hungarian. Old languages got updated as well.

Thank you for everyone’s contribution at our CrowdIn campaign. You did a tremendous job! All active translators will be rewarded with free VRidge key!

Unfortunately we weren’t able to include some translations in this patch as they missed the submission deadline. They will be deployed with patch 2.3 so they will have to wait for the next release.

Improved picture clarity on some Daydream devices

This should be quite noticeable at 1440p resolution as unintentional downscaling and filtering was in effect until now.

Automatic Field of View adjustment

FoV will now be selected automatically to improve the image quality. It will be especially effective on headsets with asymmetric FoV.

Other changes

  • Changed the way "End of Trial session" message is being displayed to user. Instead of displaying message (in one eye only due to very old bug) it will go back to lobby with localized notification message.
  • Added Project Cars tutorial to Discover view.
  • You will no longer be able to switch encoder when HEVC is enabled. This doesn't hot-switch on mobile side and it was freezing VRidge.
  • Lobby text ("Connected, waiting for SteamVR" should no longer become stuck and displayed on top of streaming window.
  • Fixed a crash on startup that could happen when FreeTrack was enabled.
  • Mobile app should no longer crash on reconnect sometimes.
  • VRidge settings should no longer incorrectly stay on top of all windows in certain cases.
  • Tethering tooltip no longer clips in certain localizations.
  • Removed artificial +170cm HMD height that could sometimes cause incorrect API controller calculation when paired with headset that didn't send positional data.
  • steamvr.vrsettings read-only flag will now be automatically switched off. If the file still remains locked, error message will be displayed instead of crashing. Generally other software should never lock this file but certain drivers aren't always interop-friendly.
  • VRidge and SteamVR should now automatically start on dedicated GPU, if available. This should fix a crash on Nvidia Optimus laptops.
  • VRidge.log will now contain information which GPU drives VRidge.
  • Fixed driver crash on Windows 7

Final notes

We hope that the new update will bring your VRidge experience to the next level. We will now decide on our next development cycle so expect more news coming soon!

If there is any feedback you would like to give us, send it to support@riftcat.com - the team will see it :)

Thanks to all Beta testers and translators who helped us bring this version to everyone. We have the best community in the world.