Valve Index

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Valve Index
VI logo.svg
TypeVirtual reality headset
GenerationSecond generation
Release dateJune 28, 2019
Retail availability2019
Introductory priceUS$999[1][2]
Operating systemWindows, Linux
DisplayTwo 1440×1600 LCD IPS Fast Switching Type Displays @ 80 Hz, 90 Hz, 120 Hz, or 144 Hz[3]
SoundIntegrated headphones, 3.5mm audio jack, built-in dual microphone array[3]
Controller inputValve Index Controllers
CameraFront-facing 960×960 stereo cameras[3]
ConnectivityDisplayPort 1.2, USB 3.0 expansion port[3]
Supports HTC Vive and Vive Pro Controllers and HTC Vive and Vive Pro Base Stations[4]
Related articlesHTC Vive
WebsiteOfficial website

Valve Index is a virtual reality headset created and manufactured by Valve. Announced on April 30, 2019, the headset released on June 28, 2019.[5][6] The Index is a second generation headset and the first to be manufactured by Valve.

Technical specifications[edit]


The headset uses an IPS fast switching[7] 1440×1600 LCD panel for each eye for a combined resolution of 2880×1600. The panels are full RGB and can operate at refresh rates of 80 Hz, 90 Hz, 120 Hz, or a currently experimental 144 Hz mode.[3] The specified field of view is 130° but users report a practical field of view of 120°.[8]


The headset and controllers both support Valve's Lighthouse 2.0 tracking system,[5] while retaining full compatibility with all previous HTC Vive base stations.[9]


The headset is intended to be used with the Valve Index Controllers, known during development as the Knuckles Controllers,[10] but is also backwards compatible with the HTC Vive and HTC Vive Pro controllers.[4] The Valve Index Controllers have a joystick, touchpad, two face buttons, a menu button, a trigger, and an array of 87 sensors that allow the controllers to track hand position, finger position, motion, and pressure to create an accurate representation of the user's hand in virtual reality.[11] Valve Index supports both the Windows and Linux operating systems.[4][12]


The Index features "a pair of ultra near-field, full range, off-ear (extra-aural) headphones",[13] which use BMR drivers to create accurate and immersive low frequency sounds.


The Index uses a single connection which splits off into video/audio, USB and power.



The Valve Index is Valve's first virtual reality headset developed and manufactured in house, and is planned to be the launch console for Valve's upcoming virtual reality games. Development on a completely first party headset started some time around 2015 according to interviews with staff, before the release of their Vive headset with HTC.


It sold an estimated 149,000 sets in 2019, 103,000 of which were in the 4th quarter due to the announcement of Half-Life: Alyx, which buyers received for free.[14] The sudden demand caused the unit to be sold out in all 31 countries except Japan in January 2020.[15] As of December 2019, 6.67% of the VR units connected to Steam are Valve Index sets.[16] While Valve had anticipated supply for many of those that had ordered the Index in time for the March 2020 release of Half-Life: Alyx, the COVID-19 pandemic impacted production of the Index which left Valve with a reduced number of units available on the release date.[17]


  1. ^ Tucker, Jake (April 30, 2019). "Valve Index Headset: Price, release date, specs for Valve's new VR headset". Trusted Reviews. Retrieved June 5, 2019.
  2. ^ Hollister, Sean (April 30, 2019). "Valve's Index VR headset will officially cost $999, and here's what it's all about". The Verge. Retrieved June 5, 2019.
  3. ^ a b c d e "Headset – Valve Index – Upgrade your experience". Valve. Retrieved May 9, 2019.
  4. ^ a b c "Valve Index Headset on Steam". Steam Store. Valve. Retrieved May 9, 2019.
  5. ^ a b Machkovech, Sam (April 30, 2019). "Valve Index reveal: The best of VR's first generation—but is it worth $999?". ArsTechnica. Conde Nast. Retrieved May 9, 2019.
  6. ^ Higham, Michael. "Valve Index Impressions – A Necessary But Incremental Step For PC VR". GameSpot. Retrieved June 9, 2019.
  7. ^ Tiger, Leon. "Fun fact, the index's display panels are IPS". Reddit. tigerleon10. Retrieved June 20, 2021.
  8. ^ "Valve Index vs Vive Pro vs Reverb G2: Do We Have a VR King?". Circuit Stream. Circuit Stream. October 22, 2020. Retrieved November 22, 2020. Compared to other headsets on the market, Valve Index currently has the highest field of view (FOV) of 130 degrees (perceived as 120)[unreliable source?]
  9. ^ "Do HTC Vive lighthouse base stations work with the Valve Index headset?". Windows Central. September 4, 2019. Retrieved July 16, 2020.
  10. ^ Lang, Ben (April 1, 2019). "Valve Index and Knuckles Pre-orders Confirmed for May 1st, Shipping in June". Road to VR. Retrieved April 19, 2019.
  11. ^ "Controllers – Valve Index – Upgrade your experience". Valve. Retrieved May 20, 2020.
  12. ^ "Valve's Index VR Headset Will Support Linux". Tom's Hardware. April 7, 2019. Retrieved April 19, 2019.
  13. ^ Ridgway, Emily. "Ear Speakers - Research, Design, and Evolution". Valve Corporation. Valve Software. Retrieved April 19, 2021. a pair of ultra near-field, full range, off-ear (extra-aural) headphones
  14. ^ "SuperData XR Quarterly Update". SuperData, a Nielsen Company.
  15. ^ "Valve Index out of stock around the globe ahead of Half-Life: Alyx launch".
  16. ^ Lang, Ben (January 29, 2020). "Analysis: Monthly-connected VR Headsets on Steam Reach Record High of 1.3 Million".
  17. ^ Nunneley, Stephany (February 21, 2020). "Coronavirus has affected the production schedule for Valve Index, fewer units to be made available". VG247. Retrieved February 21, 2020.

External links[edit]