Jump to content

Valve Index

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Valve Index
TypeVirtual reality headset
Release dateJune 28, 2019
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]
RelatedHTC Vive, HP Reverb G2[5]

The Valve Index is a consumer virtual reality headset created and manufactured by Valve. Announced on April 30, 2019, the headset was released on June 28 of the same year.[6][7] The Index is a second-generation headset and the first to be manufactured completely by Valve. Half-Life: Alyx is bundled in with the headset.

Technical specifications[edit]


The headset uses an IPS fast switching[8] 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, 90, 120, or 144 Hz.[3] The specified field of view is 130°, but users report a practical field of view of 120°.[9] The panels and lenses can be moved horizontally to adjust the user's inter-pupillary distance (IPD) using a physical slider underneath the displays. The allowable IPD adjustment ranges between 58 and 70mm.


The headset and controllers both support Valve's Lighthouse 2.0 tracking system,[6] while retaining full compatibility with all previous HTC Vive base stations,[10] using SteamVR.


The headset is intended to be used with the Valve Index Controllers—known during development as the Knuckles Controllers[11]—but is also backward compatible with the HTC Vive and HTC Vive Pro controllers.[4] The Valve Index Controllers have a thumbstick, 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.[12] In addition, the controllers include an accelerometer for additional measurements. In 2018, a tech demo called Moondust was made to showcase the capabilities of an early version of the Knuckles.[13]


The Index includes "a pair of ultra near-field, full range, off-ear (extra-aural) headphones",[14] which use BMR drivers to create accurate and immersive low frequency sounds, as well as a microphone.



A senior U.S. Air Force member using Valve Index headset

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. In February 2021, Valve registered patents for a new VR headset, describing the improvements over the previous model.[15]


It sold an estimated 149,000 sets in 2019, 103,000 of which were in the fourth quarter due to the announcement of Half-Life: Alyx, which buyers received for free.[16] The sudden demand caused the unit to be sold out in all 31 countries except Japan in January 2020.[17] As of December 2019, 6.67% of the VR units connected to Steam are Valve Index sets.[18] 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.[19]

See also[edit]


  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". Valvesoftware.com. Valve. Retrieved May 9, 2019.
  4. ^ a b "Valve Index Headset on Steam". Steam Store. Valve. Retrieved May 9, 2019.
  5. ^ Robertson, Adi (March 23, 2020). "HP is teasing a new VR headset in partnership with Valve and Microsoft". The Verge. Retrieved November 27, 2021.
  6. ^ 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.
  7. ^ Higham, Michael. "Valve Index Impressions – A Necessary But Incremental Step For PC VR". GameSpot. Retrieved June 9, 2019.
  8. ^ Tiger, Leon (May 20, 2021). "Fun fact, the index's display panels are IPS". Reddit. tigerleon10. Retrieved June 20, 2021.
  9. ^ "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?]
  10. ^ "Do HTC Vive lighthouse base stations work with the Valve Index headset?". Windows Central. September 4, 2019. Retrieved July 16, 2020.
  11. ^ 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.
  12. ^ "Controllers – Valve Index – Upgrade your experience". Valvesoftware.com. Valve. Retrieved May 20, 2020.
  13. ^ Dayus, Oscar (June 22, 2018). "Valve Releases New Portal VR Demo, Moondust". Gamespot. Oscar Dayus. Retrieved April 23, 2023.
  14. ^ 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
  15. ^ "A Successor To Valve Index VR Headset Could Be In The Works". eXputer.com. August 13, 2021. Retrieved August 14, 2021.
  16. ^ "SuperData XR Quarterly Update". SuperData, a Nielsen Company. Archived from the original on March 8, 2020. Retrieved February 2, 2020.
  17. ^ "Valve Index out of stock around the globe ahead of Half-Life: Alyx launch". GamesIndustry.biz. January 15, 2020.
  18. ^ Lang, Ben (January 29, 2020). "Analysis: Monthly-connected VR Headsets on Steam Reach Record High of 1.3 Million".
  19. ^ 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]