RD Series on Simracing.GP

Daily WTCR races on Simracing.GP Weekly GT3 Endurance races on Simracing.GP Weekly GT3 Sprint Races on Simracing.GP Weekly GT4 Sprint Races on Simracing.GP

Discussion | VR, Triple Monitors or Ultrawides?

What's your preferred setup?

  • VR

    Votes: 621 41.6%
  • Triples

    Votes: 260 17.4%
  • Ultrawide

    Votes: 294 19.7%
  • Single Screen / Other

    Votes: 317 21.2%

  • Total voters
    1,492
This week HTC are launching two brand new Vive products, in a market that continues to grow at rapid pace. Has VR taken the lead in the sim racing world, and if not why?

I have fond memories of my first virtual reality experience in sim racing. I did a couple of practice laps before jumping into a race at the Circuit de Catalunya, being a track I knew well. Any doubts I had about how immersive the experience would be were dispelled almost immediately. A car in front of me was run wide on lap one, hitting a brake marker board which spiralled towards my head. Instinctively I ducked down in my seat, only for a sheepish grin to spread across my face, feeling rather foolish.

The Vive Pro 2 features a 5K resolution display, and an impressive 120Hz refresh rate.
As it reached mainstream market adoption, it became clear that VR was going to lend itself very well to sim racing. The immersive experience that it offers truly is second-to-none, with many converts of the opinion that they could never go back. That being said triple monitor setups are still a very popular option, with many racers enjoying the peripheral vision it offers. Similarly, this is something that can be very enjoyable about using an ultrawide monitor.

Of all the options then, which one is the best? Naturally the topic is incredibly subjective, often due to personal preference, budget or space. However, each also comes with benefits that even make them more suited to different aspects of sim racing.

One of the biggest criticisms of VR since its adoption has been of the low resolutions offered, particularly for the computing power required, compared with monitor alternatives. While virtual reality is still a very young technology and improving all the time, it has to be said that the more crisp image offered by monitors can be a lot easier on the eye, particularly during longer sessions. Furthermore, setting up a VR rig can be a little more time consuming, particularly for those who want to learn the nuances involved with recording virtual reality gameplay.

Ultrawide.jpg

Ultrawides and super ultrawides have fast become a favourite amongst sim racers.

Having tried all three, I've found my preference to be either VR or triple screens, but it depends entirely on the situation. If I am unwinding or practicing alone, I always choose to go with VR simply for the more immersive experience. However, I have found it a lot easier to use triple monitors, or even a single monitor when competing online. It can be trickier to memorise where everything on the steering wheel is, as required when playing in VR. Similarly, in-game menus tend to be easier to navigate on monitors than in virtual reality, which can detract from the experience of using the latter in some situations.

Overall, my go-to is usually VR, and when we consider how far it has come in such a short space of time, and the investment that is going into virtual reality and augmented reality tech, their future does look very exciting indeed.

Finally, we would love to hear your thoughts on this, and find out more about our community's setups!
About author
Charlie Lockwood
23. Motorsport and Sim Racing enthusiast.

Comments

Have owned all three, i returned to just my triples. on 32' triples ATM, but thinking 40' is the go.

VR,
con too much sacrifice in visual fidelity to get smooth framerate
con awkward for button boxes, and makes all the cool gear like tablet displays etc redundant. need to learn muscle memory to find your gears etc.
pro a bit more immersive.

Ultrawide
Con no matter what you try, fov is just never great, and its always stretchy at the edges, can be overcome by running triples mode on it, but then.. uhh..
Pro, no need to screw around with monitors setting up nvidia surround etc.
Pro you get to see your whole rig, all your fancy addons,

Triples
Con, setting up, cost of mounts, finding cards/monitors with all the correct cables.
Pro. you get to see your whole rig, all your fancy addons, and if you go 32+ inch triples as immersive as it gets since the roof of the car is well the roof, and everything under the steering is not relevant either. so visually you are getting what you need to see.
Pro: actual 180' coverage for peripheral vision, your mirrors etc are in the right place, compared to still flat ultrawides (no matter how much curve they have they are still "in front" of you.
 
Last edited:
I voted for "other". Multiple beamers on a large round screen. Advantages: wide viewing angle, no borders between the screens, high resolution, and you can see your steering wheel. Cons: takes up a lot of space and the most expensive solution.

But to be fair, my budget and space are limited, so I still have to do it with one large screen.
 
Nice article. For me it’s VR all the way, immersion etc. The lower graphical fidelity does bother me sometimes & the fact that ACC doesn’t look half as good as AC/AMS2/rFactor2, but it’s a small price to pay.

I was thinking of getting an ultra wide, but I think I’d still be constantly pulled back to VR, so I’ve decided that I’d be better off saving to upgrade that side of things - so I’m very interested in seeing how the new Vive performs.

Unfortunately, I think my upgrade roadmap will be expensive, I currently run an 2070, 3900x & Oculus Rift S, so I imagine the 2070 will need to be beefed up with something much better, so all in all, it’s gonna hit me hard!!
 
Never thought Vr would be winning. I have ultra wide, but not a preference, just couldn’t fit triples. I find VR too confusing to setup the race and with glasses hate having to take the VR on and off to get everything ready.
 
Last edited:
Tried all for hundreds of hours and Triples FTW for me.

I think when it comes to sim' racing in-particular VR is a tad overrated - all you gotta do is look down the road and into the corners and triples do both great. However, VR does offer a better sense of speed but not enough to fool the brain hence some people get nauseous and can't use VR. The next level motion platform helps with sense of speed, but it also helps triples as much - so does good tactile feedback.

Not saying VR isn't good - I get it some peeps may feel more there in VR. When i drive for real do I turn my head 180 degrees in real life? Or do you turn your head 45 degrees the most and use the corner of your eye - triples does all that. If you want to look around the cockpit then I get VR, but also larger triples can help with this a bit with. That huge triple setup he has on 'boosted media' looks absolutely awesome - but expensive and space hungry.

But I get it peeps want to feel like they're in a car in VR - just dont think it helps as much when it comes to the actual sim' racing for me. But if you like to go for leisurely drives around LA Canyons to take in the views I then get why people like VR. Also, when it comes to flight such as MS FS, yep, I fully understand wanting to take the view in using VR.

Yep, triples for me - done with VR and the sweatfest and messing about that comes with it. With my triples its like washing my hair, I got no time to fanny about with stuff - I like to "Wash and Go".
 
Last edited:
Personally I am a widescreen user and I love it. Just got a VR but haven't had chance to use it yet, hopefully it's as good as I hope.

By the way, great article Charlie.
 
Have owned all three, i returned to just my triples. on 32' triples ATM, but thinking 40' is the go.

VR,
con too much sacrifice in visual fidelity to get smooth framerate
con awkward for button boxes, and makes all the cool gear like tablet displays etc redundant. need to learn muscle memory to find your gears etc.
pro a bit more immersive.

Ultrawide
Con no matter what you try, fov is just never great, and its always stretchy at the edges, can be overcome by running triples mode on it, but then.. uhh..
Pro, no need to screw around with monitors setting up nvidia surround etc.
Pro you get to see your whole rig, all your fancy addons,

Triples
Con, setting up, cost of mounts, finding cards/monitors with all the correct cables.
Pro. you get to see your whole rig, all your fancy addons, and if you go 32+ inch triples as immersive as it gets since the roof of the car is well the roof, and everything under the steering is not relevant either. so visually you are getting what you need to see.
Nearly everything is said here :thumbsup:

For me personaly no VR because of hard motion sickness (can´t even stand 1p shooters for long).
If i could VR i don`t know if i could live with lower graphics, lower fps. Additionally i don`t even like drive with headset, it disturbs me...
Tripples is too much screwing around, too expensive and too much space needed.
I am pretty happy with my ultrawide solution.
 
I have both VR and an Ultrawide 21: 9 screen, but usually especially in summer, even for sweat and comfort, I prefer to use the latter over VR, so I put Ultrawide as a vote. But I repeat I use them both more or less. :D
 
Ultrawide 4k 120fps for me!
Although VR is much more immersive I'm not willing to sacrifice beautiful 4k graphics and fluidity, and VR I admit hurts my eyes!
 
I bought HP Reverb G2 a week ago and i'm surprised how much faster i am with VR glasses. I can use/find track limits much better, because i can see example in f1 car where car front tyres are etc.

Also Eau Rouge looks awesome etc, so there is no way that you can achieve same feeling with monitors.

Only downside is that you have to own a really good pc if you want play games in good framerate etc.

In the next 5-7 years few have more powerful hardware and vr glasses with better lcd/led displays, so we wont notice much difference between vr and monitor displays.
 
Last edited:
I think if you have won the lottery, then a triple screen setup with 3 huge screens is the way to go (see Boosted Media's setup), but for me I'm perfectly happy with my Rift CV1, if only the res and frame rate were better, my PC can't really power it
 
I think if you have won the lottery, then a triple screen setup with 3 huge screens is the way to go (see Boosted Media's setup), but for me I'm perfectly happy with my Rift CV1, if only the res and frame rate were better, my PC can't really power it
 
Absolutely VR!

With my Q2 i run both AMS2 and AC at a very clear level of fidelity, AMS2 is completely sharp, with its added filter for sharpening. Both run at good FPS and its exactly like being in a car, with stereoscopic 3D to give depth.

I occasionally have to use panels if playing ACC, but its like playing a computer game then as opposed to actually been in a car with VR.

These new headsets are high resolution, basically zero screen door now too, they are night and day from the gen one headsets, VR is made for sim racing and flight sims.
 

Article information

Author
Charlie Lockwood
Views
20,556
Comments
189
Last update

Share this article

Top