Craziest Oculus ripoff yet

I’ve written before about a few low-cost Oculus Rift alternatives, which basically put a cellphone inside some kind of frame. They include the Altergaze, which just concluded a successful Kickstarter with headset prices at around $140.

(Image courtesy Altergaze.)

(Image courtesy Altergaze.)

And the vRase, which had its successful Kickstarter last fall with Kickstarter prices for the preorders starting at around $80. Final consumer prices aren’t set yet but they  “will be higher than the Kickstarter pledges price levels,” the company says.

(Image courtesy vRase.)

(Image courtesy vRase.)

And then there’s the Durovis Dive, which is already on the market for around $80.

(Image courtesy Durovis.)

(Image courtesy Durovis.)

But if you want to fund a Kickstarter for a device that is just shamelessly jumping on the Oculus Rift bandwagon — or you want a price point that’s closer to $25 — check out this Poor Man’s Virtual Reality Headset Kickstarter.

(Image courtesy Poor Man's Oculus Rift.)

(Image courtesy Poor Man’s Oculus Rift.)

Yes, you are correct. That is a desk lamp clamp attached to that woman’s baseball cap.

Here is another view of the device.

Poor Mans Oculus 2

The device can be used in other ways, as well, the inventor says.

Poor Mans Oculus 3

Not quite sure why they’re calling a simple clamp a “virtual reality headset,” but I do have to give them props for marketing!

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Maria Korolov

Maria Korolov is editor and publisher of Hypergrid Business. She has been a journalist for more than twenty years and has worked for the Chicago Tribune, Reuters, and Computerworld and has reported from over a dozen countries, including Russia and China.

  • John Norris

    I like the DIY version. $20.00. I’ve been putting one together and it does give the 3d sense, although not total immersion. http://www.roadtovr.com/diy-guide-build-smartphone-vr-headset-hmd-head-mounted-display-oculus-rift-games/

  • Viewer

    Oculus ripoff? They didn’t invent dual screen 3D effect. Remember the View Master, a toy from over 40 years ago.

    • lmpierce

      Yes, I remember well the View-Master; I had one. It was my introduction to 3D images. Later I went on to explore 3D photography – I took a tour of the Kodak lab in Hollywood where they used to process all 3D transparencies back when 3D cameras put two images on the film and then the lab mounted those images in a standard cardboard support (like regular slides) for 3D viewing.

      The difference, of course, with the Oculus Rift and all other variations, is the aspect of realtime interactive immersion. After all, the View-Master and 3D photography is all about a still image; one cannot not change the point of view by moving around in the space. So the new technology really offers something exceptionally enhanced for the sense of true immersion.

      • Except this thing isn’t any of that. It’s just a clamp! They should be selling it in the phone stand category — not as a virtual reality display!

        That’s the crazy part. That they’re trying so desperately to get some of that juicy Oculus hype to rub off on them. 🙂

        • lmpierce

          Ah, yes Maria, that’s clearly the case. And it’s really so lame, it’s a wonder they even bothered!

      • Viewer

        I was referring to the idea of using 2 images, (one for each eye) to get that 3D effect the way Oculus does. That is all Oculus does but it does it with mini computer screens, they do not create the video game running on the screens which gives the real time interactive immersion. So to me it is more the challenge to find a way to enable 3D viewing rather than ripping off Oculus, again since Oculus didn’t invent the 2 images to get a 3D effect.

        My View Master didn’t have photographic images, the slides were all Disney cartoons lol but it was still amazing. I made some 3D images but they are the kind you have to cross your eyes to get the 3D effect, they work well but it does get to your eyes after a while. You can try them if you would like to on TRP360.com bottom of the page look for the “2D to 3D” link.

        That clamp thing is just plain funny, nice touch.

        • lmpierce

          As I understand it, however, the Oculus Rift isn’t just a 3D (split image viewer). But if it was just a split image viewer, it would have the quality of working with a computer, which a View-Master cannot. The Oculus Rift ripoffs also provide a window into 3D viewing on a computer, so I read the ‘ripoff’ part as that (computer 3D viewing), not simply the fact that the images are 3D. Because, yes, 3D image viewing goes back at least to the old-time stereoscopes.

          What I think sounds more revolutionary about the Oculus Rift is that it also tracks head movement, so that it doesn’t simply show a stereo view, but the view pans and tilts with the viewer’s physical orientation. To me, that really is unique and compelling. (If any other viewers outside of labs can do that, I’m just not aware of them at this time.)

          I checked out your stereo images and they are very cool. It took me a few tries to get the effect, but then it worked so well I could simply scroll up and down between pictures without loses the 3D ‘lock’. Really great work. Thanks for sharing!

      • Viewer

        I was referring to the idea of using 2 images, (one for each eye) to get the 3D effect, that is all that Oculus does. It uses mini computer screens instead of images, the content of the videos games the computer is providing gives the realtime interactive immersion which Oculus did not create. So to me it is more the quest to find good affordable 3D imaging not ripping off Oculus’s idea because it is not their idea.

        My View Master did not have photorealistic images, it had Disney cartoons lol but it was still cool just the same. I made some 3D image you have to cross your eyes to see, they work great but it does get to your eyes after a while.You can see them at TRP360.com bottom of the page look for the link “2D to 3D” if you wish, (but they are just static images) Oh my, I think I can put one in this post, I will try.