Pimax released a post-CES progress update that confirms our suspicions: The company won’t be able to live up to its delivery window promises. Pimax initially expected to deliver the first round of 8K units this month, but development is going slower than anticipated.
Pimax has an ambitious plan to bring an ultra-wide, high-resolution VR headset to market. The company first announced the Pimax 8K headset at CES 2017. At the time, the Pimax 8K headset was just a concept (V1), but through the course of 2017, the company’s hardware team managed to bring it to life.
Pimax revealed the first working prototype of the 8K headset in August 2017 (V2), which we got to try in October at Immersed 2017. We were impressed by the early device, but it certainly needed work. Since our time with the headset, Pimax has created three additional prototypes. Pimax started showing the V3 prototype in late October. That version featured adjustable IPD, an upgrade from HDMI to DisplayPort 1.4, and improved build quality. Version 4 landed in December, and it included optimized IPD adjustment, improved dust protection, and better heat dissipation.
In late December, Pimax announced that it would demonstrate the fifth revision of the Pimax 8K headset at CES. The new device would feature hidden sensors (early prototypes had exposed sensors) and a better IPD adjustment system. The new headset would also feature a new lens design and a new display with LED backlighting.
In the progress update, Pimax also revealed that it would provide an updated shipping schedule in January. We took the news as an early warning that the earliest backers would not receive their headsets in January as originally believed. Last night, Pimax confirmed out suspicions with an update to its Kickstarter backers.
Pimax announced that it is gearing up to produce what it calls the Pimax 8K M1, which the company describes as its “close-to-mass production” unit. Pimax said that it plans to begin showcasing the M1 headset in mid-March. The company will also ship the M1 headset to a “small, closed group” of active Pimax community members for a final round of feedback before full production ramps up.
Pimax said that it is “now looking at a delivery window of Q2” for the headset. The company didn't have an update about the controllers, base stations, and accessory modules. The headset is the top priority until its ready for prime time.