Ray, I think they have all been of the same version of headset. It’s just that many were hoping for eye tracking, foveated 4K rendering, and field of view approaching Pimax, but the technology just isn’t ready yet. So an almost doubling of the pixel counts and other features disappointed some reviewers. The Pro is really just what could be done now without a complete overhaul though it does have the new tracking sensors that can use either 1.x or 2.x version Lighthouse base stations.
The true gen 2 headsets are going to need a lot to come together and work properly to pull off. First is just bandwidth. Those pixels at 90 fps at too much higher resolution have to be calculated and shipped to the headset which is already difficult on long, thin, flexible cables that can withstand being stepped on or sent wirelessly. There’s going to have to be on the fly compression and expansion of some sort. Eye tracking and foveated rendering will need to be there to reduce GPU and CPU loads, and it will probably be needing GPU driver support to work most efficiently so coordination with GPU manufacturers is probably in there too. Maybe even optimized silicon to do it right.
What we are getting is a resolution increase that is enough to really address the thing flight simulators have the most difficulty with - text and gauges. The big increase in text readability is something everyone mentions in Pro reviews and where GPS and comm radio displays are tough to read now, it should make a big difference. I’ve not seen anyone specifically say that yet, but it stands to reason from the way reviewers have described it. And the differences where the Pro has had through the lens video are to me stunning. There’s one video where a dev got their Pro, put it on, and just started saying "oh wow, oh wow" and commenting on how much more detail he could see. It won’t be perfect and it isn’t gen 2, but some reviewers were expecting way too much I think. Sure, Pimax is trying to run at "8k" but it’s LCD, they are having trouble hitting 90 Hz, they are upscaling lower resolution images, their lensing has issues, and they are behind schedule with no announced ship date. I don’t mean to bash Pimax by any means. I’m just saying with the choices being a much needed bump in resolution that has significant benefits now, vs. true gen 2 that nobody has even announced and isn’t expected by many for at least another year, I’ll go for the headset I’ll be able to get in the next month or two.
Yes, there are lots of new ground to break for significant increases but the two big things I would like to see for our flight sim use is the wider FOV and the increased resolution so as you stated - we can read the gauges.
I find myself using the non-VR version quite often just so I can zoom in on the panel gauges and switches but, once I am back in VR I am back wishing for those two improvements.
I can get tangled in a single cable so I am really hoping for wireless in the future headsets.