Oculus Quest 2 and Sketchup

  • I thought I might chip in here as I've been using a Quest 2 with Enscape 3 for a few weeks now. Most of my projects are concept/spatial design for houses and commercial buildings/spaces. I've not tried the AirLink feature as yet. FYI I'm using a RTX 2080ti GPU.


    Quick overall judgement: If you've never experienced VR then the experience is generally positive and reasonably impressive, unless you suffer badly from motion sickness.


    In more detail: (concise points outlined in bold font)


    The interface is a little clunky, and will definitely require setting up well before meeting with a client. You have to have the Oculus app and Virtual Desktop installed on your computer to make it function at all, and use a compatible USB 3.0 cable (and port on your computer). Even when using a compatible cable (the occulus app has a cable test feature btw) it is not foolproof: sometimes the connection won't register, and hot-plugging is definitely not recommended. I seem to be getting waaay more WHEA errors since I started using the link cable.


    The process to get it running is outlined by LEGOsketcher above (thanks) but I'll go over it again here so anyone reading this can see how the process can differ.

    1) Open your sketchup model

    2) Open the Occulus app on the computer

    3) make sure Virtual Desktop is running on the computer, and that 'Allow remote connections' is ticked

    4) Connect the Quest 2 to the computer using a compatible cable

    5) Put the headset on, and if a message pops up to allow access to data, click deny using the controller

    6) Still wearing the headset, if a request to enable link mode doesn't pop up, click on settings and then click on 'enable link mode'

    7) A new VR space and menu will appear. Click on the Virtual Desktop icon (right hand side) and select the monitor which is showing sketchup

    8 )Start Enscape

    9) Click on the VR headset icon in Enscape


    Resolution and clarity:

    For me, the resolution isn't great. I think that is generally the case for the Quest 2. It might be 'good for VR', but it doesn't come close to a good 4k rendered still image- I can see the individual pixels and the field of vision isn't nearly wide enough for me to call it completely immersive. The lighting is OK - don't expect ray-traced smooth shadows and do expect some granularity. Also, some light-coloured but non-emissive materials have a sort of digital glow when up really close.That said, the VR experience even at that resolution is still impressive and I for one am adopting it into my presentation workflow.


    Modelling:

    As with the progression from sketchup-Enscape etc. viewing the model in VR will highlight any bad modelling/textures etc., and it really is important to use high-quality, low-poly assets (furniture, light fittings etc.) as well as making your model as detailed as possible to get the best experience. Think about how textures are represented on a victorian four-paneled door for instance: if the whole door uses the same texture, you will need to clearly define the edges of the panels using geometry and a contrasting texture to make these features visible and realistic.


    Client usability:

    As above, for a positive experience this will need to be all set up pre-meeting otherwise it could look pretty unprofessional. If the client/user has never experienced VR before (or perhaps even if they have) they may find navigating the space using the thumbsticks/joysticks disconcerting/nauseating so beware - I recommend having them seated to begin with. It helps MASSIVELY to have a large space and guardian (google if you're unfamiliar with this) set up, along with a much longer cable than you think is needed to accommodate the user turning around several times.


    Performance:

    My PC specs are below. I have had the GPU temp. up to around 80 degrees C on the highest resolution possible, which is OK. I don't have any stuttering, flickering, clipping etc. It's all good.


    Specs:

    SketchUp 2021

    Enscape 3.022 (as of this week)

    i9-9900X

    64GB DDR4

    RTX 2080ti

  • Some of your criticisms are why we switched to a VR-specific Revit/Sketchup model viewer that would live on the Quest-2 headset. It doesn't look as nice, obviously but is much more user friendly. Enscape is still a critical part of our workflow, but not for VR. There are better options out there in my opinion.

  • We use Prospect, but have tried 'The Wild' (who purchased prospect recently) and have also toyed around in 'Arkio'. I don't really feel like they are competitors to Enscape, but are helpful to use alongside. Both these packages and Enscape do different things well. Perhaps in a few years they may start competing more, but at this point it's not like you are going to stop using Enscape for one of those packages. The poor quality of the other packages goes largely unnoticed by clients and architects alike.

  • The pricing for The Wild is the wildest thing about it. I could never get our partners to agree to that cost... yikes. Hopefully, Enscape integrates some kind of VR collaboration tools in the future.

  • The pricing for The Wild is the wildest thing about it. I could never get our partners to agree to that cost... yikes. Hopefully, Enscape integrates some kind of VR collaboration tools in the future.


    Agreed. The Wild was expensive. I don't know how these quest-only VR suites are created, but they all seem like (somewhat) repackaged versions of the same thing. Outside of cost and a few small tweaks which weren't really selling points, there really isn't any difference between some of these. We chose prospect because it was cheapest w/ unlimited uploaded to their cloud.


    I do hope that Enscape takes on this market. I really think they can make a significant impact. The VR abilities of Enscape are good, but they aren't robust. I still hold to the fact that---with all the imperfections---these Quest-only suites are better suited for our industry. Collaborating and marking up in VR is a game changer for us. It's only a matter of years until the quality is on-par with Enscape.