msi gt72s tobii

MSI’s presence at CES 2016 this year was pretty impressive, and the company announced a slew of new products that will take over the gaming world eventually. Today, MSI let the press know that two of their notebooks on display at CES are now certified to be VR-Ready through NVIDIA’s VR-Ready certification program. The certification only applies to notebooks running the Geforce GTX 980 or GTX 980M GPU, so anything lower, like the GTX 970M or GTX 965M, just doesn’t cut the mustard according to NVIDIA’s standards.

This does mean that some of you will have another label on the notebook that you’ll want to take off, but it’s certainly peace of mind knowing that you’ll be ready to rock either an Oculus Rift or a HTC Vive with these notebooks. MSI is working in conjunction with NVIDIA and various VR companies to identify any compatibility issues and hopefully work out the kinks.

The requirement for VR support on a laptop is fairly straightforward – anything that supports NVIDIA Optimus is not going to work. There needs to be a direct video connection to the GPU to allow it to talk directly to the headset, which helps to reduce latency in the display chain from the GPU sending out the completed frames to the headset displaying them. This is also why G-Sync notebooks can’t include Optimus, because the discrete cards are not directly hooked up to the display.

The following MSI notebooks currently support VR headsets and have been tested to be VR-Ready according to NVIDIA’s certification program:

  • MSI GT72S 6QF Dominator Pro
  • MSI GT72S 6QF 29th Anniversary Dragon Edition
  • MSI GT80S 6QF 29th Anniversary Titan SLI
  • MSI GT80S 6QF Titan SLI Heroes Special Edition

Now we just need to see who will step up next to announce support, and which vendor will be the first to bundle a VR headset with their notebook. Will it be MSI? Will it be Gigabyte, or ASUS? Maybe EVGA? I’ll take bets in the comments below on who’ll be first.

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