TrackIR and Fresnel Lens Setup

 Since getting my sim up and running I have been having a blast with it. I have been on the search for ways to add to the enjoyment and authenticity of the racing. Currently there are not any new F1 titles for PC and so I am left with EA Sports F1 Challenge as the only Official F1 option. This is not a bad thing mind you as it is a great game with graphics that are still up to the test  5 years later.

Now on to the point of this page. The NaturalPoint TrackIR! This thing takes your head movement and amplifies and translate them to the game. In essence you can move you head slightly to the left or right and your point of view in the game changes with respect to your movements. The beauty of the system is the completeness of the package. The hardware, software, and support are all 4 star first class. There are lots of other options out there, but the TrackIR is by far the way to go.

Right Click here to download the TrackIR Video

Now in my racing I can look into the corner and see the apex as well as being able to check over my shoulder for cars that are or I am overtaking. The added dimension of being in the car is the largest addition to me. It is seamless and is not "gimmicky" as I had thought at first. Once you go to the point to build a cockpit, start adding buttons, bass shakers etc you really owe it to yourself to at least try the TrackIR.

Play the video to the right and you can see the difference, and if you are familiar with EA F1 Challenge you can see how much it will help to be able to look into what was a blind corner. I used SPA as the track for the video, but I should have used Monaco to show off the real ability of the system.

Not to sound like a commercial, but any gaming fan really owes it to their hobby to try this device. For $200 you can't go wrong, and with the great support I received from Vincent while upgrading to the Vector option, NaturalPoint has earned a customer for life.

The Vector option is an add on to the Version 3 hardware, and is standard on the current Version 4 I think. I thought the Vector was only good for Flight Sims or other games that support 6 axis, OH was I WRONG. The accuracy improvement and smoothness seen by going from a single dot tracking to the vector 3 dot mode is amazing!

In summary you have to try this thing, and you have to get the vector option. Any self respecting SIM racer won't be without!

In reading on the old RSC forums I found a couple of new things. One is a Fresnel Lens. You can learn more about them here in their Wiki. In short they are a non distorting magnifying lens.

I built a frame out of foam core and covered it in Avery Carbon Fiber sheet. It makes the LCD take up about the same space as a newer CRT, but the effect is that the screen now has a huge depth of field and has a very real 3D effect to it.