Here's another interesting snippet of news from Nvidia's GPU Technology Conference (GTC) 2016, held this week. Nvidia Vice President of Research David Luebke took to the stage to reveal and demonstrate a prototype 'Zero Latency Display' in a special 'Sneak Peek' presentation. Aimed at VR environments, where latency of any kind can spoil the experience, this display refreshes at a superlative 1,700Hz.
To demonstrate the Zero Latency Display at the GTC event Luebke 'vigorously shook' the display, mounted on a rail system, to simulate a wearer quickly scanning around their environment. Nvidia superimposed a logo on the display that while all around it moved quickly and smoothly, it was hardly affected by the movements, remaining "locked" in one position. The extremely rapid refresh rate helps the Nvidia logo appear completely motionless however fast you can physically move the display (thinking of this display as one inside a wearable VR HMD). Luebke explained that, if you were to fit this 1,700Hz display in a HMD, effectively "the display would no longer be a source of latency".
To put into perspective what Nvidia was demonstrating here, a current state of the art VR headset display will typically run at 90Hz, says Road to VR. A 90Hz display refreshes the screen every 11 milliseconds but a 1,700Hz display updates the image every 0.59 milliseconds.
Of course there are several other components in a VR setup that contribute to unwanted latency; movement sensors feedback time, GPU and computer performance, software and others. Nevertheless it's good to see one part of the equation effectively reduced to 'Zero'.
You can see, in the Nvidia sourced chart above, that display remains a major contributor to latency.