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It is a world shown to you that is so enveloping, you believe, even temporarily, that it’s your own world.

Reserve time in the VR Lab

Texas Architecture VR Reservation


What does the VR Lab have to offer

  • 3 Calibrated Zones for unrestricted VR Play.
  • Augmented chaperone around the perimeter of each zone and room for your safety
  • Each zone is equipped with:
    • Dell Precision 7920 (Xeon CPU, 128GB RAM, Dual Nvidia Quadro P5000 GPU, M.2 SSD)
    • 1 Vive Pro open source headset w/wifi, Dual Vive Controllers
    • 1 large wall mounted screen to allow everyone to see what the person in the headset sees
    • 1 small screen/kb/ms for control
  • Available Software in the VR Lab

Apps used with HTC Vive Pro devices

  1. Enscape: Revit, Rhino, Sketchup
  2. MindeskVR: Immersive Modeling
  3. Steam VR
  4. Viveport
  5. Unity3D Engine
  6. Unreal Engine
  7. Vive Pro SDK: Augmented Reality Support
  8. Google Earth Pro: VR Support

How it works

Utilizing movement sensors like a compass and accelerometer to change your position in the virtual world.When you turn in the VR world, the device picks up on that position and moves you in the 3D world, shifting your direction so that the world rotates around you. When the phone is loaded into the holder and the special software it needs loads in place, the phone splits the image in two, revealing two frames of 1280×1440 for your eyes to view.  With two lenses inside the Gear VR you can change the focus depth depending upon the ability of your eyesight.  When everything is setup right, you'll be able to look at a three dimensional image on screen courtesy of your brain doing the math for what your eyes are seeing, and it’s not just a static 3D image either.

The phone itself is the computer and can load the 360 images, apps, and 3d models, so, you can see something other than what's right in front of you.  You'll be able to see all around, and experience a different reality.  Call it, Virtual Reality. 

A touchpad is on the side of the headset with four directions molded into it, providing you with control over the apps in the direction other that what you can provide with your head movement.  A few additional buttons control sound, focus, and a back button for exiting apps. 

What gear we use

(3) HTC Vive Pro Open Source Kits, Wifi(10) Gear VR Oculus(10) Samsung Galaxy S6 (2560×1440 panel Quad HD)

Apps used with Gear VR & Galaxy devices

  1. Oculus
  2. VIMaec Viewer

Gear VR Quick Start

  1. Unlock or swipe the home screen the phone to access the home.
  2. Load the phone into the slot and put it into the Gear VR microUSB plug.
  3. Samsung’s Oculus software will load up providing you a grid-like interface for you to browse apps from.
  4. 360 degree videos and photos are accessible through the Oculus Dashboard.

Viewing VIM (Virtual Information Modeling) in Gear VR

Virtual Information Modeling is the immersive experience of Building Information Models (in our case Revit models) within the Gear VR headset.  The VIM can also be viewed using a desktop viewer or touchscreen. VIM technology takes full advantage of the "meta data" you enter into your Revit model.  This enables you to explore BIMdata in a 3D interactive environment.  (ex: select a material, object, wall, window, door, etc, to view the full description). 

Translating Building Information Models into the VIM environment via VIM AEC

  1. Each Revit model need to be optimized before being translated. 
    1. Insure all materials, texture and reference files are included in the same directory of the Revit model. 
    2. Any desired lighting should be verified to work and render correctly in the Revit file locally. 
  2. Submit your file to the SOA Technology Resource & Innovation Group.
    1. Note:  we currently use a single administrative login to manage all of our projects. 
  3. All files associated with the model will be uploaded to the "VIMtrek Building Visualization Cloud" for translation.
  4. Model translations can take minutes to hours depending upon the size and complexity of the model. 
  5. Each model is accessible through the "Building Portal Workbench".
  6. Once translated, the Revit model will become available in the VIM environment of the VIM Viewer and Gear VR. 

SOA project examples using VIM

House Design

Lasalle Detention Center Exhibit

Glass Interior Design StudioBieg Design Studio

Viewing "your own" 360 images

  • Rename any panoramic or 360 images you may have with 360 at the end of the file name.
  • Copy those files to the Gear 360 folder under DCIM on the mobile device. (360.jpg, 360.mp4, etc) A "Gear 360" folder may already be there ready to go. 
  • Once loaded, view the Galaxy Library to view your 360 in the Gear VR headset.

  • Using an Oculus Library account:

Viewing 360 images

Viewing the existing environment through the pass-through camera