AMD Partners With Oculus, GPU’s Make Their Way Into Oculus Ready PC’s from Alienware
Earlier this year Oculus announced the coming availability of what they called the 'Oculus Experience', or a turn-key VR computing solution from venders that have specs that are capable of providing a good VR experience. AMD is now partnering with Dell and collaborating with Oculus to provide Fiji based cards in Alienware's turn-key VR solutions.
AMD's new collaboration might put LiquidVR
This new collaboration will allow those looking for something pre-built to find an option from a well-known and established system-builder that generally has good support. Alienware has been using, or has had, AMD GCN based cards as an option for some time, but this new partnership puts them at the forefront for those specifically looking to dabble in VR.
LiquidVR is AMD's VR middleware API that allows for direct control of both GPU and headset hardware so that some of the more difficult issues with latency and the subsequent motion sickness can be more easily addressed. This can be done in many ways, one of which is by that direct access, letting the GPU speak directly to the headset bypassing the OS at times, reducing the signal time by many milliseconds.
Also, Affinity Multi-GPU allows each screen, or side of the screen depending on the headset, to be powered by one GPU in a multi-GPU setup. This differs completely from the typical CrossFire or SLI setup, that uses Alternate Frame Rendering, in that neither GPU is waiting on the other to complete the previous frame as they are rendering each eye's particular frame in parallel. In this case, a simple GPU mask is all that is needed to enable it at a low-level. Not being AFR means that a dual GPU setup won't incur the same frame-time problems that are inherent in traditional CrossFire and SLI setups.
This also means that Oculus is very serious about pushing VR on a global level, meaning that while the minimum specs list an NVIDIA card, AMD will also provide a fantastic VR experience as well.