01-11-2019 01:37 PM
I want to get some wipeable face covers for the Vive. I have previously bought covers for a Rift from VRCovers and I was thinking of getting some from them; however I have read a lot of posts and watched videos of people having issues with their sweat seeping into the Vive and destroying it (and this is no longer covered by warranty).
I am curious if the less absorbent VRCovers are exacerbating this issue. Does anyone have experience with this? Can anyone recommend a good cover from another place that may be more absorbent (and washable)?
01-11-2019 02:02 PM
Sweat damage tends to be a lot less common in our repair numbers than one would expect given the large amount of noise about this on Reddit. In many cases, there are other factors leading to the damaged HMD other than sweat. Keeping your VR playspace a reasonable ambient temperature and taking breaks when playing intensive games is the best way to prevent any sort of damage and ideally you'd be doing this anyways from a comfort and health prospective.
If you're having an okay time with your PLU cover for Oculus, you're probably fine for Vive. The amount you sweat will really depend on personal factors so if you tend to be a heavy sweater a PLU cover may not be for you.
We use VR covers in all of our internal shared use headsets. That said, the Vive does ship with absorbent foam facial covers specifically to manage fluids.
Technical Specialist - San Francisco, CA; Monday-Friday
01-11-2019 02:09 PM - edited 01-11-2019 02:10 PM
Adding on to what @VibrantNebula said,
If sweat is your main issue, you can get a second set from the www.vive.com store and switch them out. Since it's so easy, I tend to switch them out every 30 minutes or so during an intense Beat Saber session. This way, I'm keeping the fit that I like and making it so they have time to dry out. It works out since you should be taking a break from VR every so often as it is. STAY HYDRATED!
If you decide to go the VR Cover route, that's fine too. I personally use the ones that come with the Vive, but a friend of mine prefers the feel of the VR Cover one. You'll still want to stop every bit and wipe it off just in case as well.
01-11-2019 06:41 PM
@VibrantNebula I do tend to sweat a lot. I have not had VR Covers for my Rift long enough to get a good feel for if they could potentially cause damage. I do know that in every video and article I have seen about sweat damage on a Vive, they are all using after market VR Covers. Correlation is not causation, so it may just be that a large number of users have VR Covers and it just so happens that some of these users are having issues.
I know it may not be a big problem, but I returned multiple Rifts, and eventually switched to the Vive because of hardware failures on the Rift (not sweat related) so I want to be careful with this.
@SuperNikoPower I do like the included Vive cover (and the fact that it came with an extra is a huge bonus in my book) however they are not easy to clean (they are not washable) and even just dabbing them with a cloth causes black stains to transfer to the cloth. Ideally I could have hand washable versions of the ones included with the Vive and I would just get a bundle of them.
I generally have three people using the Vive on a regular basis, but will often invite family and friends over and have seven or more people sharing it. I don't like the disposable ones, and I am not really much of a fan of the "covers" style (that VR Covers sells), but I want an enjoyable experience for everyone that plays. The last thing I want is them to leave with the impression that its not enjoyable because they have to soak in someone elses sweat!
01-14-2019 10:23 AM
@thedevilsjester, if you are having more of a group session with your Vive, maybe VR Covers are good for you to have handy so you can avoid the concern you mentioned. I know disposable ones aren't ideal, but for this situation, it might be a good idea. This way you can discard them afterwards and not have to worry about the experience being hampered by the old sweat share.
01-14-2019 02:56 PM - edited 01-14-2019 03:16 PM
@SuperNikoPower I do not like the feel of the disposable covers, the white will absolutely make light bleed more noticable, and with over half a dozen people, swapping the headset back and forth (not just a one and done) for a few hours those 100 are going to go very fast. I don't feel like burning through $50 a month on disposables.
It doesn't seem like there is a good solution for the Vive. For certain experiences I can just switch back to my PSVR, but there are many games that are fun to play in a group that are not available on that platform. Is HTC considering any offical product to make it a more pleasant experience with groups of people?
01-14-2019 03:58 PM - edited 01-14-2019 04:08 PM
We definitely are improving on things like material design and overall HMD design. For instance, the Vive Focus is specifically designed to be as easy as possible to wipe/sanitize the lenses and facial interface as possible.
That said, humans are pretty gross and past a certain point barriers are the only way to reduce risk and increase sanitation levels. It's analogous to how prophylactics are still the most effective control method against some diseases despite modern ones being over 100 years old. We're definitely developing solutions but they'll likely see action first in the enterprise and LBE space first as they won't scale well to in-home use. For in-home use the best thing is to use a PLU cover and wipe down every surface except the lens with 91% isopropanol. Avoid using Chlorox wipes (lkyl dimethyl benzyl ammonium chloride) as you can cause serious irritation/damage to your corneas - it takes alot longer to evaporate than isopropanol. Same with beach based disinfectants. Using lens wipes are the best way to prevent damage to the lenses.
The common disposable VR hygine masks kind of exist as a placebo for westerners. They succeed in reducing the amount of human gunk you have to remove from the HMD but they're often permiable - bacteria are able to pass through these types of barriers with eaze and they're not a substitution for a sanitizing pass. Much in the same way the Vive ships with an absorbent interface, these are also absorbent under the guise of being able to throw away whatever gets absorbed. (In a previous life I was a Microbiologist).
In any case, design will only solve so many problems with it comes to HMDs. It is something you're attaching to your face and faces are gross. It's simply a limiting factor of HMD based AR/VR.
Technical Specialist - San Francisco, CA; Monday-Friday