In 2020 French startup Lynx unveiled a very bold looking headset design, the Lynx R-1, an all-in-one (AIO) mixed reality (MR) headset. At the time it was firmly focused on the enterprise market, planning to retail the device for $1500 USD. Those plans have dramatically changed with the founder Stan Larroque revealing new details about its price, tech and consumer focus.
In a recent 30 -minute live stream – which you can see below – Larroque announced that the Lynx R-1 would no longer be $1500, instead, due to changes made to the hardware the cost will now be sub-$1000. In fact, he goes onto say the price will be “a few hundred dollars”. Which is quite the reduction. Amazingly, Larroque says that most of this reduction is to do with the lenses and the removal of eye tracking from the Lynx R-1.
The headset uses some very funky looking lenses called a 4-fold catadioptric freeform prism, and due to their complexity required eye tracking to be enabled because the eye box – that coveted sweet spot – was so small. So in collaboration with its optics partner Lynx managed to redesign the lenses creating a bigger sweet spot and therefore ditching the eye-tracking cameras. Whilst removing those cameras, Lynx actually went onto add front-facing IR cameras to improve its hand tracking which is powered by Ultraleap software. Previously the Lynx R-1 used the 6DoF tracking cameras which Larroque admits wasn’t great, so now the system is much improved. Important considering hand tracking will be the main input method.
Apart from these changes all the other specifications for the Lynx R-1 remains the same, providing a 90° FOV with 1600 x 1600 per eye resolution at 90Hz. It’ll have colour pass-through for augmented reality (AR) applications, a 3-hour battery life, SteamVR compatibility thanks to OpenXR and it’ll all run on the Qualcomm XR2 platform.
Because of these changes anyone who pre-ordered the Lynx R-1 last year will be reimbursed and given a promo code towards the company’s next initiative, a Kickstarter crowd-funding campaign. Expected to launch in September 2021 for one month, Lynx hopes to attract more consumers to the headset, not just enterprise customers, with the current plan for an official launch in February 2022.
More details are expected to be released in the coming weeks, as they are, VRFocus will keep you updated.