Pimax Announces Handheld Console That Supports Virtual Reality – Virtual Reality Times

Pimax has announced a new handheld console, Pimax Portal, designed with an accessory that turns the accessory into a virtual reality headset. The accessory was designed to combine VR and mobile gaming and could see a re-emergence of smartphone-based VR that was popular in VR’s early days.

Yesterday, Pimax showed off the device at the Pimax Frontier 2022 launch event and describes it as a “Metaverse Entertainment System”, abbreviated as MES.

Pimax handheld console
Pimax handheld console

With Pimax Portal, the Chinese VR hardware maker wants to integrate mobile games, PC games, virtual reality and augmented reality.

The new Pimax console is designed with WLAN streaming capabilities. It can also be connected to the TV via a docking station. You can connect it to a computer via an HDMI cable. The console screen can be inserted into the housing of a virtual reality headset and used as a VR headset.

The pre-sale of Pimax Portal, which is funded by Kickstarter, is set to begin on November 15. The cheapest version of Pimax Portal costs $299 while the most expensive version sells for $599. The device is powered by an unspecified ARM-based chip as well as a Snapdragon XR2. The Snapdragon XR2 chip is widely used in some of the standalone virtual reality headsets such as the Meta Quest Pro. The device also has 8 GB of RAM. Its storage space varies between 128 GB and 256 GB. This storage space is expandable up to 1 TB via a microSD card.

Pimax controllers can be split and shared in multiplayer gaming apps
Pimax controllers can be split and shared in multiplayer gaming apps

Pimax Portal has an Android-based operating system that will open it up to a wide selection of mobile games. All Portal consoles have Wi-Fi 6E which likely has an optional 5G mobile module. It is also compatible with the Pimax WiGig module which provides more stable WLAN streaming.

The design and layout of Pimax Portal closely resembles that of Nintendo Switch. Both have an almost similar joystick and button layout. However, Pimax’s Metaverse Entertainment System (MES) has more option buttons on its top and bottom edges. The MES also features analog shoulder buttons with resistance designed to be continuously adjustable.

As in the Nintendo Switch, the controllers of the MES are also detachable, but via a magnetic holder. Pimax controllers, similar to JoyCons, can be split between multiple players for multiplayer games or deployed in motion control. The console can support up to six controllers.

Like the Nintendo Switch, the MES also has an optional docking station. Thanks to this, the Pimax Portal can be directly connected to a TV for large screen use.



The Pimax Portal has a better display than the Nintendo Switch. The Portal has a QLED display with 4K resolution, HDR and mini-LED along with a 144Hz refresh rate. The OLED Switch, on the other hand, has a 1,280 x 720 pixel resolution with a 60Hz maximum refresh. So the Nintendo Switch screen is bigger at 7 inches. By comparison, the standard Portal has a screen size of 5.5 inches.

Pimax XL Portal

There’s also the Pimax Portal XL which provides a case expansion and targets PC gamers. It has an 8.8-inch screen and a resolution of 2560 x 1600 pixels with a refresh rate of 120Hz. The Pimax Portal, along with the controllers, are plugged into the Portal XL box. The WuGig module can also be used to stream PC games to the handheld.

Pimax Portal also supports Xbox Game Pass and Nvidia’s GeForce Now cloud gaming services. Pimax also provides a Mini Station that allows playing PC games on the go. It is a form of mobile mini-PC powered by an AMD 6800U processor and comes with 32GB of RAM. You can install games on its 1TB SSD and stream them to the handheld.

The Pimax Portal screen can be inserted into a virtual reality headset housing
The Pimax Portal screen can be inserted into a virtual reality headset housing

The Pimax Portal Display can also be inserted into a virtual reality headset housing to create the “portal view” reminiscent of the early days of smartphone virtual reality. Pimax also provides a case that allows you to use detachable controllers as virtual reality controllers. Five cameras are positioned on the rear of the console housing allowing the setup to be put into mixed reality applications as well as for upside-down tracking in virtual reality mode.

As in the Pimax Crystal, the Virtual Reality Headset Housing for Pimax Portal also contains two different types of interchangeable aspherical lenses. There is a standard pair which has 27 PPDs as well as a 100 degree field of view which primarily targets VR applications.

Additionally, there is also a pair of 40 PPD lenses which have a 60 degree field of view and target movie viewing applications. Pimax says there’s also a “social portal edition” that will have eye tracking and face tracking. The portal view can also be integrated into PC VR game applications. The headset can be interfaced directly with a computer via a mini-HDMI port.

Pimax started with a 2017 Kickstarter for its ultra-wide field of view PC VR headset. This turned into a wide range of VR hardware, but the company struggled with a host of issues, including inconsistent quality, long shipping delays, software glitches, and issues with its customer service. Although its hardware has an attractive field of view, it still has very low market penetration.

Pimax’s Metaverse entertainment system is the company’s third product in its new “VR3.0” line of standalone hardware. All standalone headsets in this range are dual mode and can operate standalone or via PC.

The company announced its Reality Check 12K headset last year which offers a 200 degree field of view. Pre-orders for the headset were due to begin this summer with a late 2022 launch. However, Pimax announced the Crystal headset this summer, which it touts as offering the highest angular resolution for a consumer headset. The Crystal helmet was supposed to ship before October of this year. The Crystal and Reality 12JK headsets have yet to ship, but the company has gone ahead and announced their new project.

Pimax launched new products before previously announced products were delivered.

https://virtualrealitytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/11/Pimax-Handheld-Console-600×337.pnghttps://virtualrealitytimes.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/11/Pimax-Handheld-Console-150×90.pngRob GrantCompanyPimax has announced a new handheld console, Pimax Portal, designed with an accessory that turns the accessory into a virtual reality headset. The accessory was designed to combine virtual reality and mobile gaming and could see a re-emergence of the smartphone virtual reality that was popular in its early days…

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