The tell-all of backer 31, 101 things you didn't know you needed to know


So, I just got my pimax and did an unboxing and demo session for the members of the pimax (unofficial) discord. I have some things that no one has said, and I thought might be nice to tell people, this will basically be a big list of things and tips that I came across that weren’t said before, and I’ve been pretty thorough on following all the news and exposure.

I backed the 8K, but switched to the 5K+, and I am backer number 31, with a 1070 graphics card (for now).

  1. The blue strip on the front is actually blue plastic, and is lit up from behind, there is no sign of different colored LEDs for “patterns” like it originally had.
  2. When putting in the head strap on the top, make sure to use a butterknife or something to get the cloth strap to thread the awkward angle by riding up the knife.
  3. The nose gap has visible light coming in, but not as bad as the oculus, and somewhat forgetable if you don’t look down too much.
  4. There is still distortion, but it comes in the form of the image being compressed horizontally, the closer it gets to the edge of your vision, which you don’t notice when you use your head to look (like people normally do in VR). So we’re still not quite at the software stage where we can use our eyes to look around.
  5. “PiHome” is just a planet scene with a dark grey unity-made bumpy terrain, with a sun and some planets around you. This will be active when steamVR is not started yet.
  6. If you ever get “usb device not recognized”, try unplugging the power, display port, and the usb plug, then plugging them in reverse order to the way I listed them, especially power last.
  7. If that doesn’t work, you may need to restart you computer.
  8. Pitool will re-do your bounds (for the first time only) to a complete circle about 2 feet in diameter, and remove any bounds that was set up in steamVR.
  9. The plastic on the pimax is sharper/smoother feeling that you might imagine.
  10. Yes, the SDE is still visible, but you quickly forget about it, and enjoy how CRISP text looks.
  11. Make sure you set your steam vr supersampling BEFORE starting a game for the first time, as you might just lag it out if you have it on 130% like I did. I know this sounds obvious, but I totally forgot in the excitement.
  12. There was a fogging problem at first (like the oculus), but after three or so times of wiping the lense off, I think the air warmed up enough that it stopped fogging.
  13. The IPD adjustment knob, at the more extreme ends of ranges, begins to not turn as well, like it has some kind of spring attached to it, pulling it back half a turn, but it can adjust just a bit higher even still, if you really need it to.

Please ask me any questions, and I will try my best to be around to answer as many questions as I can, from the perspective of a vive user just getting the pimax.


@PM_Sean @Pimax-Support please add @BarShiftGames to Early Adopter group.


Pimax VR Home just eats system resources, best to turn it off.


In my opinion, it just seems to be a really simple scene, I could see how maybe turning it off would get a couple more frames or reduce any cpu lag, but otherwise it doesn’t seem to be a big threat, unlike steamVR home which is a complex scene with high-res images and models and scripts. Pihome is just a static scene.


@SweViver says it chews some resources. Easy enough to test summon resource monitor & test with & without.


Yes it eats lots of resources, nearly 30% CPU on mylaptop and 20-25% on my 8700K at 5Ghz, but Pimax Home only runs when SteamVR is not running. Luckily, if u start SteamVR, the PVRHome closes automatically…


Adding some additional infos that I did not read until now:
14) My 5K+ unit does not have a proximity sensor in the upper middle part of the HMD like the unit that was shown in SweVivers video review. In that video the proximity sensor was actually covered by the face padding, so I guess it was not actually working on this unit. Maybe @SweViver can confirm this.
15) When the unit is turned on the panels are always active. This could be related to the missing proximity sensor (see 14). However after six minutes they start to show a uniform middle gray which could be seen as a burn-in protection for the panels.
16) If you are not using PiHome you will just see a static screen with the Pimax logo that is not following tracking which could affect people sensitive to motion sickness.
17) The cloth strap features three small velcro strap for cable management. One on the left side where the cable goes into the HMD and two on the back. This was shown briefly in SweVivers video review but I did not see this being mentioned in written reviews.
18) Sometimes the panels are not initialized correctly and show a broken image inside. In this case you need to reboot the HMD and everything is fixed.

19) The box includes a light grey lens cleaning cloth with an embossed Pimax logo.
20) PiTool has a context menü in the task bar and will show if the device is connected or not while hovering over the task bar icon.

21) PiTool is hindering a PC reboot as it requests a user confirmation before shutting down.
22) PiTool has no settings for mirror window size.
23) PiTool runs Oculus Unity games with very small mirror window which is good for performance (Luckys Tale)
24) PiTool runs Oculus Unreal Engine games with full desktop (in my case 3840x2160, 60Hz) resultion mirror window which is bad for performance (Aircar).
25) PiTool runs some Oculus Unreal Engine games with broken mirror window (Witchblood).

26) Changing the FOV option at runtime (small, normal, large) does only change black borders in the peripheral view but not the distortion profile. To test this yourself start application with small FOV then switch to normal FOV in PiTool without restarting the application. You will see more edge distortion compared with the same application started with normal FOV from the beginning.

@PM_Sean @Pimax-Support


On the 8K the proximity sensor is covered up or non existent but the device does fall into standby mode after some time.

My screens are dark grey when idle, don’t know the timing but it’s been noticed more than a few times now.

Just like the Pimax 4K, the default static Pimax image can be changed if desired, C:\Program Files\Pimax\Runtime\resource

Replace pimax_default.jpg with another 2560x1440.jpg (Preferably solid black).


Thanks for pointing out how to change the default image. With this method users could show an IPD adjustment image. I need to test if my 5K+ unit goes into standby mode after some time or not. Will report back.


Did the test. After six minutes of inactivity the panels show a uniform middle gray. It uses the image ‘bg.png’ from the runtime resource folder.

Edit: Ok, did the test again with .90 Pitool Version. The panels show black after less then a minute with a moving little color changing square. A tiny vibration is enough to show the actual content again.


anyone here can run Skyrim , look at tree or high building geometry and do through the lenses photos on small , normal an large FOV ? I would like to see how distortion differ with different FOV options.


Hello, unfortunately I do not possess a good enough camera for that job. However, I can escribe that the distortion on the normal field of view is on the outer around… 5-7% of your screen, and on the top and bottom it’s probably around like 4%, and the distortion comes in the form of compression as it gets closer to the edge. I have not tried different FOVs, and I will attempt to get back to you on that. One thing I didn’t see mentioned by sweviver is that, personally, with the “compatible with parallel projections” settings off, skyrim runs fine but the loading screens are really bad, as they encompass your whole screen and are wrongly projected to each eye.


Thanks for answer. I’m curious how other people perceive distortions now. During my Berlin 5K+ demo I’ve seen something like this at Skyrim:
Did Pimax devs managed to move the distortions more to the outside FOV?
Some users seems to claim that there is less distortion with the normal fov and almost 0 with small. It is interesting becouse they have never been quite around the edges IMHO.
Distortion wasn’t noticable or bother me in sim games.