Acer Headset
What is MIXED Reality? - Acer Windows MR Headset Linus Tech Tips
What is MIXED Reality? - Acer Windows MR Headset

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Очки виртуальной реальности Acer Windows Mixed Reality Headset
470 USD Buy
General
UsageFor PCFor SmartphonesFor quadcopter
Operating systemMinimum system requirements
DatesRelease2017/10/17
Design
Body350gram
Display
TypeAvailabilityAR - See-throughLCD
Size2.89inchesSmartphone screenN/AField of view horizontal105°
Resolution1440×1440px.
Features90 Hz.
Camera
Front cameraNumber2
System
SynchronizationAndroidiOSBlackberryWindowsPlayStation
SupportSteamVROculus HomeWindows Mixed RealityViveportPiHome
IntegrationGames600
Interfaces
VideoHDMI 2.0
Wi-Fi
USBUSB 3.0Charger connectorHDMI support
Multimedia
SoundHeadphone input 3.5mm
Power
BatteryN/AReplaceable
Battery lifeN/A
Features
Conrol3DoF Turning head
Tracking3DoF Rotation tracking6DoF Positional trackingTracking area
Contents
ContentsTouch control panelMotion controllerSteamVR Tracking

Acer Headset overview

Acer Headset is a device based on Windows Mixed Reality from the Taiwanese manufacturer, part of the virtual and mixed reality Microsoft development range. The headset is distinguished by a fresh and light design in blue colour, simple installation, tracking of the whole body without installing additional cameras, controllers in the kit. Taken into account the offer from 200 USD on Amazon, Acer Headset looks like the most affordable device on WMR with quite high quality of hardware and software.
Microsoft opened VR/MR for developers and corporate customers after the release of Microsoft HoloLens in October 2016. After that several partners announced their work on gadgets based on the Windows Mixed Reality system. In October 2017, headsets from Dell, HP and Lenovo, as well as development from Acer were demonstrated to the public. All models are classic VR devices. Despite the name of the ecosystem, they do not support mixed reality, like HoloLens, and work exclusively in virtual reality.

Pros of Acer Headset


Lightweight and compact design. It has a bright blue case, 350 grams of weight and the smallest size among the analogues on Windows Mixed Reality. What’s more, you can also raise the front part without taking off the entire headset.
Quick installation and setup. It is enough to connect two wires to the USB and HDMI ports, there are no additional stations. The whole installation takes 5-10 minutes.
It works out of the box. To connect it, you need only a computer / laptop, and for the minimal settings even not the most productive one will be suitable.
There is a headphone jack. Through a mini-jack you can connect your headset, including usual ear buds or large overhead headphones. The main thing is not to become entangled in the wires.
An affordable price. New models cost from 200 USD, second-hand models can be found cheaper. It is the cheapest gadget among the WMR range, also it is more affordable than Oculus RIft and HTC Vive.

Cons of Acer Headset


Not the best assembly quality. Both the headset and the joysticks look fragile, especially in the places of fastenings. The situation is complicated by non-removable elements — if they are broken, you will have to change the entire gadget.
There is no audio system. There are neither headphones nor microphones. At the same time, a voice assistant is built in it — it is a strange situation when Cortana is there, and you will not be able to communicate with it immediately if you do not have your own headphones.
There are few applications. In total, 774 programs are available in the Microsoft and Steam libraries, including 119 free ones. Many of them are poorly optimized or simply do not work with Acer Headset.
Inconvenient controllers. The ergonomics suffers from a poorly designed handle and the location of the buttons. The tracking is also not the best one — the headset loses controllers outside the viewing angle of the cameras.

Competitors of Acer Headset

If you compare the headset from Acer with its analogues from the WMR range, then you will not find any cardinal differences. The resolution of the screen of all models is the same, like the type of matrix is — LCD. The headsets operate at a maximum refresh rate of 90 Hz, track space using built-in sensors, support the movement of the entire body, including controllers. The difference is in the viewing angles: in Acer, Asus and HP they are 95 degrees, Dell and Lenovo have 110. At the same time, the Acer gadget is the lightest and the most compact one, and it is also cheap.
Samsung Odyssey stands out among this row due to a large screen resolution, matrix AMOLED and built-in headphones. In terms of size and price Odyssey is close to the top headsets: Oculus Rift and HTC Vive. But as for the quality of tracking and gaming features, Windows Mixed Reality is still inferior to its competitors with external sensors. So, Acer Headset is suitable for acquaintance with virtual reality on the Windows system, especially if you want a small device. But for better immersion and games, more expensive options are more suitable.
The Windows Mixed Reality range (without Samsung Odyssey)

Design and ergonomics of Acer Headset

The first thing that catches your eye is a bright blue color of the case. In comparison with gray and black analogues, Acer Headset looks fresh. The headset is completely made of plastic, including the blue panels and the black front part between them. The hoop for fixation on the head is fixed on the top of the face block. On the right side the cords are situated: a cable with a 3.5 mm jack for headphones and a main wire with a bifurcation for HDMI and USB. Places of contact with the skin are covered with rubber, but the pads can heat up which gives not a very pleasant feeling.
Let’s look more closely at the main elements:
  • The front block — two cameras on the sides of the black panel for tracking of the surrounding space and an infrared sensor for tracking of controllers. Cameras do not support mixed reality.
  • The lower part of the mask — two ventilation holes for cooling the gadget in working mode. They do not always help, the mask can be heated which is felt by the body.
  • The rear part of the hoop — a ring for adjusting the diameter of the fastening. With its help it is convenient to adjust the size of the hoop depending on the head size for better fitting.
  • The mask from the inside — lenses, a lining and a proximity sensor that turns on the system when it realizes that the gadget is put on the head. If the display is raised, the computer screen turns on automatically and the keyboard and mouse are activated.
Acer Headset camera A big advantage in addition to convenience is a weight of only 350 grams, while there is no strong pressure on the cheeks, so it is possible to wear the headset for more than an hour without any problems. The front block can be lifted on the hinge as a visor. It helps if you have to look at the real world, but you do not want to take off the whole construction. But in the raised state Acer Headset presses down the head much more strongly, and the hinge itself looks fragile.
It is necessary to pay the price for compactness by a problem with calibration — the headset is difficult to fix so that it fits perfectly. In addition, the wire on the right is heavier, so be ready to correct the headset often. Some users complain of a loose fitting of the lining and penetrating light, others complain of a too tight fitting that complicates breathing. It all depends on the type a person’s face.

Acer Headset display and lenses

A LCD display with a resolution of 1440x1440 for each eye produces a better picture than Oculus Rift or HTC Vive with a figure of 1080x1200. The refresh rate reaches 90 Hz when it is connected to a quite powerful computer via HDMI 2.0 and 60 Hz via HDMI 1.4. The viewing angle is 95 degrees which is less than that of its competitors. The picture quality does not suffer because of this, but the immersion effect becomes much worse.
The headset is equipped with two 50-millimeter Fresnel lenses, like in its analogues. A serious drawback — there is no manual adjustment of the interpupillary distance, the lenses are fixed at the level of 63 mm. It is possible to change the parameter by programmas within the limits of 8 mm, but this does not give the full effect. You should always test the gadget before buying — if you have a non-standard distance between the pupils, then VR will make you feel very tired and you will not get any pleasure from it.
In comparison with Oculus and HTC, Acer shows the best quality with a much less noticeable pixel grid. But this is still not ‘a real virtual reality’, i.e. the differences from the real world are obvious. Because of the LCD matrix, rings of light can appear with a rapid shift of view, especially in the contrasting background. In this regard, Samsung Odyssey with AMOLED of high resolution and customizable lenses immerses in VR much better.
Lenses, a patch and a proximity sensor

Acer Headset controllers

Power source2 AA batteries for each controller
The time of stand-alone work3-10 hours depending on the batteries’ manufacturer
Connection and updatingBluetooth 4.0
Elements of control6(touchpad, joystick, trigger, 3 buttons)
Weight with batteries171 g
Sensors
  • Gyroscope
  • Compass
  • Magnetometer
  • Accelerometer
  • LED
The price of two controllers100 USD (an analogue from Dell)
Two plastic controllers are included in the kit, they fully correspond to the recommended Windows Mixed Reality design. All buttons are on the handle, in the lower part of which a compartment for two AA batteries is located. Above, a plastic rim with 18 LED bulbs is attached to the handle — they are monitored by cameras on the headset. The controllers are equipped with a gyrostabilizer and a magnetometer for better tracking.
Tracking is still not perfect, with sudden movements and behind user’s back the system may lose the connection. Strong light bulbs, for example, like ones on garlands, can also interfere. Behind the cameras’ field of view, controllers work autonomously for a couple of seconds and then freeze and do not react until they restore the connection. On the border of the viewing, bugs may also occur: sharp jerks, breaks in connection.
The control elements are as follows:
  • The touchpad — a front panel, the outer edge.
  • The joystick — a front panel, the inner edge.
  • The menu button — between the touchpad and the joystick.
  • The Windows button — under the menu button.
  • The grip button — on the side, under the middle finger.
  • The trigger — a back part, under the forefinger.
Controllers look like and are felt to be quite cheap. Ergonomics is not the best one because of the rough edges and rims from above, which you will have to get used to so as not to beat them against each other. The fastening of the rims to the handles also does not look very reliable. The combination of buttons is unsuccessful — it is not easy to put your fingers simultaneously on the touchpad and the trigger or the joystick and the trigger. In the most comfortable position, the thumb lies exactly on the Windows button which is only needed to access the home screen.
Because of the location of the Bluetooth button, it's not convenient to connect the joysticks — you have to hold the batteries with your hand so that they do not fall out. Both HTC and Oculus offer more ergonomic controllers. Samsung Odyssey also has better ones because the manufacturer changed the native design. With Acer Headset, you can use controllers from other Windows Mixed Reality systems, Xbox joysticks and even a keyboard with a mouse.
The front part
The back part

Acer Headset gaming space

The headset works on the basis of WMR, and this system supports two modes: fixed (sitting, lying, standing) and active (within the gaming space) ones. As for the former, everything is clear here, it does not involve movements and tracks only the head and hands with controllers. As for the latter, the headset also tracks the body, so you can move around in games. The gaming space is limited by the wires’ length — 4 meters and they must be permanently connected to the computer. During the setup, the system advises you to choose a zone of 1.5x2 meters that is free from any objects.
If there is a laptop with quite a large battery and suitable hardware, the WMR headsets, including Acer Headset as well, can be used outdoors. It is an interesting experience, although you will need much more time to get used to it than to playing in the room.
The assistant explains how to outline the gaming area

Software and games for Acer Headset

Windows Mixed Reality after its launching sends a user to the virtual space, ‘Home’. It includes a few minimalist-furnished rooms, a view of Mount Rainier, but the most important thing — a number of standard applications. Through the home space you can open the Edge browse, go to YouTube, chat with friends on Skype. Here you can call a virtual keyboard up or go to Cortana for voice control. In the April update, Windows developers added a second home zone.
Acer Headset, like the rest of the WMR devices, works with Microsoft Store and Steam VR, but it is much inferior to Rift and Vive in terms of the amount and quality of the content. Many projects are still not optimized. What’s more, there is no full support for mixed reality, holograms can only be used in virtual spaces. The list of games and applications is available on the official websites:
ServiceThe number of games and applicationsIncluding free ones
Microsoft Store18272
Steam VR59247

Acer Headset packaging and arrangement

Amazon, Microsoft and Acer offer two set options: with controllers and without them. In any case, the box is simple enough, but of high quality, from untreated cardboard and with a pile of foam rubber inside. The headset and joysticks are additionally packed in plastic bags, the paper lies just useless. The complete equipment is as follows:
  • Acer Headset.
  • Two WMR controllers.
  • Four AA batteries.
  • A user guide.
Cables are immediately built into the headset, they only need to be connected. Nothing else, except a computer / laptop, is required for operation. The package looks poor, but the main thing is that the set of functions does not suffer. By the way, if you buy it on the official websites, then there will be another voucher for a free copy of GhostBusters VR in the box.

Hidden costs of Acer Headset purchasing

Like other gadgets running on Windows Mixed Reality, Acer Headset needs to be connected to a computer or laptop. Microsoft provides minimum and recommended system requirements. The first column — Windows Mixed Reality PC — allows you to run games and videos with a refresh rate of 60 fps, the second one — Windows Mixed Reality Ultra PC — up to 90 fps. The hidden costs of buying a fully working system are on average from 500 USD to 1,500 USD.
Detailed requirements:
.Windows Mixed Reality PCWindows Mixed Reality Ultra PC
CPUIntel Core i5-7200UIntel Core i5-4590 or AMD Ryzen 5 1400 3.4GHz
GPUIntel HD Graphics 620Nvidia GTX 960/965M/1050 or AMD RX 460/560
CablesHDMI 1.4HDMI 2.0
RAM8 GB8 GB
Embedded memory10 GB10 GB
MonitorVGA (800x600) and betterVGA (800x600) and better
ConnectionBluetooth 4.0, USB 3.0 Type-A or Type-CBluetooth 4.0, USB 3.0 Type-A or Type-C
OSWindows 10 Fall Creators UpdateWindows 10 Fall Creators Update

Accessories for Acer Headset

A working computer or laptop is enough to launch virtual reality from Acer. But for better immersion, you can buy some accessories:
  • Headphones, from 15 USD. It is the most necessary gadget for Acer Headset because the headset does not have a built-in audio system. It is better to buy vacuum ones and with a microphone to communicate with Cortana.
  • The Xbox controller, from 15 USD. Both wireless and wired joysticks are suitable for Acer Headset. You can buy or use one from the kit if you have Xbox.
  • A face lining, 20 USD. It is useful if the native one has already become unusable. It is made of artificial leather, can be removed and cleaned. It is a useful accessory.
  • Ceiling mount for a wire, 23 USD. It is a good alternative to wireless gaming. Thanks to the simple construction, the wire does not hang loosely under your feet.
  • A backpack / bag / suitcase, from 30 USD. Any capacious option will be suitable, but some companies, for example, Navitech and Govark, offer proprietary products.
  • A rack for controllers, 32 USD. It is not the most practical accessory because joysticks can be put anywhere at all. It is a plastic rack with steel bolts.
  • A mesh backpack for the laptop, 40 USD. It will be useful if you want to play with the laptop behind your back outdoors. The backpack should be well ventilated and have sections for additional batteries.
  • An external battery for laptop, 70 USD. The headset quickly discharges the battery, so it's better to take extra power source for playing outdoors.
There are difficulties with replacing native controllers. Only Dell on the official site sells them separately from the headset, the price is 100 USD. Since the WMR controllers are universal and multifunctional, they can also be used with Acer as well. Among the whole range, only the Samsung Odyssey joysticks differ slightly, so there is no guarantee that they will work.

Installation and configuration of Acer Headset

For the proper operation of Acer Headset, you need to install Windows 10 Fall Creators Update or a newer version of the system. After connecting USB and HDMI cables, the computer must open the configuration website by itself, offer to download the basic application and drivers. In addition to two wires you do not need to connect anything else. The installation takes about 5-10 minutes, unlike the Oculus and HTC time of settings with base stations.
The system constantly gives clues and guides the configuration, so there should not be any problems. You will have to deal only with the virtual reality by yourself, exploring the ‘Home’ and application stores. It takes from 30 minutes to several hours to get used to VR. But even in this case you can ask Cortana for help. The main thing is not to forget the headphones.
As a result, the installation process looks like this:
  1. To start Windows and upgrade to the latest version.
  2. To connect Acer Headset for launching the WMR website.
  3. To connect the controllers using pairing buttons.
  4. To choose a place for the gaming zone and go around the perimeter with the headset.
  5. To get familiar with virtual reality.

Problems with the device and tips for owners of Acer Headset

The main issues and concerns are about the hardware and construction. Because of the weight, dimensions and cheapness some components of the headset and controllers can fail. The most vulnerable points of Acer Headset are the following:
  • The visor hinge. It is used to lift the front panel and fix it, but it looks unreliable and after a lot of sudden movements it can break.
  • Cables. Wires are immovable and only 4 meters long, so it is easy to trip over them and pull them out of the socket, especially during active games.
  • Fasteners of controllers. The places where the rims are attached to the handles are also plastic and fragile. If you beat them strongly against each other or accidentally get into the wall, they will break.
At the same time, in the headset you can replace only a face lining from artificial leather which can also become worn-out quickly. The remaining components, even the back plate, are immovable. To prolong the device life Acer advises to wipe the lining of sweat, clean the headset case and do not overheat it.
Among the software bugs, there are often bugs of optimization. In games from the Steam library, controllers often make mistakes, do not respond to movements, just do not connect. Some applications are not launched.
Acer describes recommendations and cautions in detail in the user's manuals. If the information is insufficient or there are some problems, then contact the support websites of Acer Headset and .

Reviews about Acer Headset

Acer Headset is the easiest and cheapest option for getting acquainted with the virtual reality from Windows. The screen quality is even better than in the top-ranked models: Oculus Rift and HTC Vive, but it is worse than in the flagship WMR — Samsung Odyssey. Despite its compactness and availability, Acer does not have built-in headphones, but it has unregulated lenses, tracking errors and not the best quality of the case and assembly. If you are interested in more durable and stylish headsets at an average price, then you can pay attention to the models from Lenovo and Asus.
If you are looking for an inexpensive VR headset for connecting to the computer without unnecessary trouble, then Acer Headset is a good choice. Especially if for it, as well as for all WMR gadgets, Amazon and, less often, Microsoft Store offers discounts of up to 50%. If you need a top-end gamer set with full immersion, then there is nothing better than time-tested Rift and Vive. If you do not want to spend money at all, then pay attention to mobile VR like Google Cardboard.

Analogs Acer Headset

Showing 1-10 of 10 items.
PriceProduct
PhotoUSDTitle px.AngleHz.MPGr.
USDTitle
HTC Vive499HTC Vive    1200×1080110°901 pc.470
HTC Vive Pro799HTC Vive Pro    1440×1600110°90 2 pc.555
Pimax 8K~ 800Pimax 8K    3840×2160200°90~450
Lenovo Explorer487Lenovo Explorer    1440×1440110°90 2 pc.380
Samsung Odyssey399Samsung Odyssey    1440×1600110°90 2 pc.644
ASUS Headset583ASUS Headset    1440×144095°90 2 pc.400
Microsoft HoloLens4,412Microsoft HoloLens    1268×72030°602 pc.579
Oculus Rift DK2534Oculus Rift DK2    960×1080100°75 440
DELL Visor 449DELL Visor     1440×1440110°90 2 pc.590
Pimax 4K454Pimax 4K    3840×2160110°60 620

Full specification and comparison

Brand Acer HTC HTC Pimax
ModelHeadset Vive Vive Pro 8K
Min. price USD
199
USD
499
USD
799
USD
800
Estimated price
Release 2017/10/17 2016/04/05 2018/04/05 2018
Usage
For PC
Design
Body
Total weight 350 gram 470 gram 555 gram ~450 gram
Body weight 512 gram
Display
Type
Availability
Type LCD PenTile OLED AMOLED LCD CLPL
Size
Size 2.89 inches 3.6 inches 3.5 inches
Aspect ratio 16:9
Field of view horizontal 105 ° 110 ° 110 ° 200 °
Field of view vertical 120 °
Resolution
Resolution 1440×1440 px. 1200×1080 px. 1440×1600 px. 3840×2160 px.
Features
Latency 22 ms.
Refresh rate 90 Hz. 90 Hz. 90 Hz. 90 Hz.
Adjusting
IPD
Focal length
System
Operating system
Minimum system requirements Windows 10 – Creators Update, Intel Desktop i7 или AMD Ryzen 7 1700, NVIDIA GTX 980/1060 - AMD Radeon RX 480 (8GB), RAM - 16 Гб GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 970 или AMD Radeon R9 290; CPU: Intel Core i5-4590 или AMD FX 8350; Оперативная память: 4 ГБ или больше; Видеовыход: HDMI 1.4 или DisplayPort 1.2 GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 или AMD Radeon RX 480; CPU: Intel Core i5-4590 или AMD FX 8350; Оперативная память: 4 ГБ или больше; Видеовыход: DisplayPort 1.2, USB 3.0 порт или более скоростной, Windows 8.1 или выше
Synchronization
Windows
Support
SteamVR
Oculus Home
Windows Mixed Reality
Viveport
PiHome
Camera
Front camera
Number 2 pc. 1 pc. 2 pc.
Multimedia
Sound
Headphone input 3.5mm
Microphone
Features
Conrol
3DoF Turning head
Tracking
3DoF Rotation tracking
6DoF Positional tracking
Tracking area 5x5 meters 10x10 meters
Applications
Integration
Games 600 3500 3500 3500
Interfaces
Wi-Fi
Wi-Fi
Video
HDMI 1.4
HDMI 2.0
DisplayPort 1.4
USB
USB
USB 3.0
USB 2.0
USB type-c
Charger connector
Display port support
HDMI support
Contents
Contents
Manuals
USB cable 2
HDMI cable 2
HDMI repeater 1
Headphones 1
Motion controller
SteamVR Tracking
Lighthouse 2
Sensors
Accelerometer
Gyrosсope
External position sensor in space
Proximity sensor
Indicator
Immersion 9
Interaction 9
Comfort 6
Ecosystem 7
Setup 6