What PC hardware do you need for Windows 10 VR?

The Creators Update is the next major update for Windows 10 that brings a slew of new features and improvements, including virtual reality and mixed reality support.

However, you’ll need newer hardware to take advantage of Windows 10 VR with the Creators Update. The good news here is that virtual reality won’t break your bank, as the new experience doesn’t require very powerful hardware. In fact, any newer Intel Core i5 device, may do just fine.

Windows 10 VR minimum hardware requirements

Below you can see the minimum hardware requirements to use virtual reality on Windows 10.

Virtual vs. mixed reality

The reason why virtual reality only requires modest hardware is because, in this experience, you’re immerse into a pre-defined virtual environment that doesn’t really need much processing power.

On the other hand, in a mixed reality experience, you’re immerse into a mix of real and virtual, and you can move around freely. This means that the experience requires more processing power and special hardware to do real-time scanning of the environment.

HoloLens is the perfect example of a complete mixed reality. Microsoft’s headset features a proprietary HPU (Holographic Processor Unit) that works alongside the CPU and GPU — something you won’t even find on new computers once the Windows 10 Creators Update rolls out.

Device makers like HP, Lenovo, Dell, Acer, and Asus will be some of the companies trying to push virtual reality in 2017 with affordable VR headsets for Windows 10. However, these devices will be cheap for a reason, they will only be good for virtual reality, not for a complete mixed reality like HoloLens.