According to a Meta executive, video recording on your Quest 2 VR headset is about to get a massive upgrade.
For the time being, if you want to natively record and share videos of yourself playing the best VR games available, you must settle for a feed at 30fps with a 1:1 aspect ratio. While this is fine for Instagram and Facebook, it is not ideal for those looking to create content for platforms such as YouTube or Twitch.
Thankfully, this may be changing soon, according to comments made on Twitter by Oculur product manager Clorama Dorvilias (via Android Central). Dorvilias stated that Meta was “shooting for a May public launch” for the new tools in response to a question about when Quest 2 content creators could expect improved video recording features.
Dorvilias, on the other hand, followed up by saying that an April release could be in the works.
Meta hasn’t revealed exactly what features fans can expect from the upcoming Quest 2 update, but a wider range of aspect ratios and higher frame rates seem likely.
Analysis: why can’t the Quest 2 record in 16:9?
For a long time, Quest 2 content creators have been able to create 16:9 videos, but the process is time-consuming and complicated. You must use a PC and the link cable, as well as an app like SideQuest to modify the Quest’s settings.
If this upcoming update allows players to create these recordings with the flip of a switch, it will be a game changer for VR content on YouTube and Twitch – But why wasn’t this option available earlier?
The main reason why Quest 2 recordings have been limited to a 1:1 framerate is because that is the aspect ratio used by the headset to immerse you in VR whenever you slip it on.
When you wear a headset, each of your eyes is in front of an 1832 x 1920 pixel display. The image on each screen is nearly identical, albeit slightly shifted to give virtual worlds a sense of depth.
As a result, while the screens don’t have exactly the same number of pixels in each dimension, reducing the video to a 1:1 aspect ratio won’t cost you much.
In contrast, if you want to create a video with a 16:9 aspect ratio, you’d have to crop the image so that it’s either 1832 x 918 or 1080 x 1920 pixels – which means you’d have to cut out a lot of what you can see horizontally or vertically.
To avoid this, the video recording must capture content that the player cannot see – content that is typically completely hidden or less well-rendered in order to save the Quest 2’s processing power.
To make 16:9 recordings on the Quest 2 without causing motion sickness, Meta developers would need to make as many optimizations as possible to ensure the all-in-one device’s parts aren’t overburdened.
Hopefully, the devs have found a way to include 16:9 video recordings in the upcoming update, but don’t be surprised if the feature is still a ways off – we just hope we don’t have to wait for Quest 3 to finally get native 16:9 recordings.