The HTC Vive XR Elite Is A Big Step For XR Hardware

Even weight distribution, magnetic gaskets, a swappable battery pack, and built-in adjustable diopters show that HTC is really focused on hardware.

After weeks of teasing, HTC officially unveiled the HTC Vive Elite XR at CES 2023.

The new HTC Vive XR Elite is a compact standalone device. The front panel barely extends past the front of your face and the battery is placed within the back portion of the headset for more even weight distribution.

The headset itself weighs 625g—slightly heavier than the Meta Quest 2, which weighs 503g—and has a look that is very similar to the HTC VIVE Flow, which also got some big news at CES when holoride announced Retrofit, a new device that brings the company’s lineup of motion-synced in-car VR experiences to any vehicle via the HTC VIVE Flow.

Tech-wise the XR Elite packs a lot of power and is capable of rendering 4K content at a refresh rate of 90 Hz thanks to a Snapdragon XR 2 chipset with 12GB RAM and 120GB ROM. You can store content locally on the device as well as connect it to a PC using a USB-C cable.

The device’s battery can last up to two hours and features fast charging tech that should give you a half-charge in just 30 minutes.

In an interview with VRScout, Fraser Bowie, Chief Product Officer at NuEyes, said, “HTC’s Vive XR Elite shows that HTC is better focused when it comes to hardware than other companies.”

According to the overall feedback we are seeing, XR Elite seems to be very comfortable to wear. The flexible fabric gasket can be easily removed and cleaned thanks to magnetic connectors. The headset also features one of the biggest advancements in XR headsets in my opinion: built-in adjustable diopters so users can remove their glasses while using the headset.

The arms of the HTC Vive XR Elite are made to be relatively compact and sit on the sides of your head, similar to a pair of glasses. However, it does have a couple of speakers built into the stems which are designed to deliver better bass and clarity.

The HTC VR headset can also be stored inside a compact cylinder case, which is ideal for traveling.

The HTC VR headset comes with 6Dof controllers and also features support for finger and hand tracking through its built-in laser depth-sensing camera. This feature, which is not required for IR lighthouses, is also useful for mixed reality experiences.

There is also an RGB camera built into the front of the headset and as Bowie tells us, “The camera is interesting, much better than the Quest Pro and Lenovo, however not as good as the Pico 4. There is this odd wave that happens when your hand or object passes in front of the camera.” Bowie also said that when he was talking with people at HTC they did say they are “working on the wave-like issue.”

According to HTC, there will be over a hundred games available for the HTC VR headset at launch, including Demeo, Hubris, Yuki, Maestro, Les Mills Body Combat, FigminXR, Unplugged, and Finger Gun. HTC reps said that Everslaught: Invasion and the mixed reality game Eggscape will arrive later in the year.

Users can also stream content from their Android devices to a private 100-inch display and connect a controller via Bluetooth to play gamepad-friendly smartphone games. The complete list of compatible Android devices can be found here

Along with gaming, HTC looks to leverage its Viveverse platform to bring gaming, entertainment, and enterprise tools to the Vive XR Elite. The idea is that the device can be used all day for a variety of use cases, from work and general productivity to gaming and entertainment.

Keep in mind that this is all information that we’ve managed to collect through CES 2023 social media posts, colleagues at CES, and official HTC information. We hope to have a real hands-on review for you in the near future.

You can pre-order the HTC Vive XR Elite headset now on the HTC website for $1,099. This will include the headset, your controllers, and a slick cylinder carrying case.

For more information visit here.

Image Credit: HTC

About the Scout

Bobby Carlton

Hello, my name is Bobby Carlton. When I'm not exploring the world of immersive technology, I'm writing rock songs about lost love. I'd also like to mention that I can do 25 push-ups in a row.

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