The HTC Vive XR Elite has been unveiled and is now available for preorder. However, what’s inside and will it be worth it?
Once the virtual reality space king, HTC now sits comfortably amongst the many headsets on sale. The last major headset, Cosmos, didn’t do too much to shake the boat and was ultimately upstaged by longtime partner, Valve, and Meta’s Quest 2.
Though, with a new race to release a ‘pro’ headset, HTC seems to be coming for Meta and the Quest Pro with a vengeance.
What is the Vive XR Elite?
The Vive XR Elite is a new all-in-one headset, sporting a design for maximum flexibility. Even the hot-swappable battery, which can be detached to create a lighter headset, seems to be aiding that goal.
There’s a little confusion about the Elite’s battery life, as the specs say it can last “up to 15 hours”, while others are claiming two hours. We’ll have to wait until it’s in the general public’s hands before we can confirm this.
This battery pack also appears to be housing the USB-C hub needed to connect the Vive XR Elite to the PC, allowing you to game or use VR applications from your more powerful PC. Wi-Fi streaming is also included, using Wi-Fi 6E to apparently allow for seamless streaming.
Inside, the pancake lenses allow those needing glasses to manually adjust the lenses up to six times. This is HTC’s attempt to remove the uncomfortable feeling of a headset over your specs.
It also appears that HTC has bested the competition in terms of passthrough video. This feature allows users to use a built-in camera to see their surroundings. For the Meta Quest Pro, this means enabling augmented reality for applications, but it has been met with some issues.
From CES, audience members have reported that the passthrough video is genuinely really good. It’s backed by a 16MP color camera, and footage coming out of the tradeshow is impressive.
HTC Vive XR Elite release date
The HTC Vive XR Elite will be launched in March 2023, with Amazon providing a provisional release date of March 31. However, this could be subject to change, so we’ll be sure to keep you updated when we hear a solid confirmation from HTC themselves.
HTC Vive XR Elite price
The HTC Vive XR Elite will be available for an MSRP of $1,099. This is significantly more expensive than something like a Meta Quest Pro, but the Vive XR Elite is much higher-end by comparison. What you’ll be paying for here is the horsepower under the hood. Though, you will lose out on Meta’s now mature store platform.
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Where to buy the HTC Vive XR Elite
The Vive XR Elite is currently up for sale on Amazon and through HTC. It’ll launch in March, with Amazon giving a tentative date of March 31.
You can pre-order the Vive XR Elite for $1,099 below:
Pre-ordering before February 15, 2023 will score you five free games.
HTC will be giving away the following games:
- Green Hell VR
- Les Mills Bodycombat
- Unplugged: Air Guitar
- Figmin XR
Included in the box is the detachable battery, as well as:
- Battery cradle
- Controller (L)
- Controller (R)
- Lanyards x 2
- Microfiber Pouch
- Top Strap
- Type-C to Type-C Cable
- Type-A to Type-C Cable x 2
- Lens Protection Card
HTC Vive XR Elite specifications
HTC has outfitted the Elite with similar specs to the Meta Quest Pro. However, where it seems to be coming up short is with the gritty aspects. There’s no eye tracking, and full-body tracking doesn’t seem to be included either.
Those that intended to use this as a partial upgrade to their old base station-equipped headset, will be disappointed to hear that it’s not supporting them either.
It is, however, offering a decent amount of competition with the Meta Quest Pro, which you can see in the comparison below. Unfortunately, until the device actually launches in March, we’re missing a few key elements in terms of performance against Meta’s headset.
|Spec||Meta Quest Pro||HTC Vive XR Elite|
|Optics||Pancake lenses||Pancake lenses|
|IPD Range||55-75 mm hardware adjustable (manual)||54 to 73mm|
|Display Type||2 x LCD binocular||2 x LCD binocular|
|Resolution||1800×1920 per-eye||1920*1920 pixels per eye (3840*1920 pixels combined)|
|Refresh Rate||90 Hz (72 Hz mode available)||90 Hz|
|Visible FoV||106° horizontal96° diagonal||Up to 110 degrees|
|Weight||722 g with headstrap||625 g|
|Tracking Type||6 DoF Inside-out via 5 integrated cameras||6 DoF Inside-out Tracking via 4 cameras|
|Ports||USB Type-C, charging contacts||USB-C|
|Wired Video||USB Type-C/Oculus Link||USB 3.2 Gen-1 Type-C peripheral port|
|Wireless Video||WiFi streamingVirtual Desktop, AirLink||Streaming over Wi-Fi|
|WiFi||WiFi 6E||Wi-Fi 6 + 6E|
|Bluetooth||Bluetooth||Bluetooth 5.2 + BLE|
|CPU||Qualcomm Snapdragon XR2+||Qualcomm Snapdragon XR2|
|GPU||Adreno 650||Adreno 650*|
|Memory||12 GB LPDDR5||12GB|
|Battery Life||2 hours||2 or 15 hours, depending on the battery pack*|
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