Last edit: 08.Jul.2018, 14:14h

Mixed Reality - Controller (Part 3)

Interacting with the virtual environment in MXR/VR systems requires some form of input device. Classical controllers like the XBox controller or other gamepads could also be used, but tracking controllers are much better suited to make full use of VR’s capabilities. These controllers can be recorded in space using various tracking methods (optical, infrared, gyroscopic, etc.) and thus also displayed in virtual reality. So you can e.g. display hands in the VR room, hold and operate tools or weapons and do similar things. Only these controllers make the VR experience very special and interesting.

In Windows Mixed Reality systems, the controllers are tracked both optically (via an illuminated LED ring) and gyroscopically. This in combination with InsideOut tracking and a Bluetooth connection enables interaction with the VR environment.


The MXR controllers (all devices have the same controllers with the exception of the Samsung Odyssey controller, which is only slightly modified in form but also uses the same technology) are characterized by different input options. Since Oculus and HTC had devices on the market before the new MXR systems came out, there were already many games that worked with them. The Oculus Rift controllers use control sticks, while the HTC Vive uses a touchpad system. To be able to play as many games as possible, the MXR controllers offer both possibilities. There is both a touchpad and a control stick.

This allows the MXR controllers to use a wide range of games and programs that are not specifically designed for them. Both methods have their advantages and disadvantages in certain situations and application scenarios, but the MXR controllers offer advantages here.

Ergonomically, the MXR controllers are also located in the middle. Especially the current HTC Vive controllers are very bulky and heavy, while the Oculus Rift controllers are considered particularly ergonomic.
The MXR controllers offer an excellent compromise between features and weight and represent the optimum for me.

Unfortunately, only InsideOut tracking is inferior to external tracking in some situations. If you want to know more about this, take a closer look at part 2 of this series and if you want to know a little more about what mixed reality is, you can have a closer look at part 1:
Here we go to part 1...
Go to part 2