Computer hardware brand Zotac has unveiled the VR GO 4.0 at Computex 2022, its 4th generation of portable VR gaming PCs built into a backpack.
To clarify, the entire PC itself is the backpack so you don’t have extra space to pack snacks or stash your wallet, but Zotac does mention that it has some room to expand if you want to make some upgrades, although that seems to be limited to storage and storage.
The wireless gaming backpack is equipped with an Intel Core i7-11800H CPU, 16 GB DDR4 RAM and a 512 GB M.2 NVMe SSD. The back of the backpack opens to reveal that you also get a 2.5″ SATA III drive bay for additional storage options and access for the above upgrades.
You also get an Nvidia RTX A4500, a graphics card that may not sound familiar to many gamers used to Nvidia’s GeForce gaming line, but this is a professional GPU designed for creatives. It rocks 5888 cores and 16GB of GDDR6 memory, bringing it to roughly the same in-game performance as an RTX 3060 graphics card.
The dedicated listing page on the Zotac website (opens in new tab) reads: “Strap on the backpack PC and experience VR and the Metaverse the way it is meant to be experienced. For free. Enjoy unstoppable freedom in games, movies, training, education or even adventures from places unimaginable.”
The full specification details are below:
- Intel Core i7 8-core/16-thread processor
- NVIDIA RTX A4500 16GB GDDR6
- 16GB DDR4 memory, 512GB M.2 SSD, Windows 11 Pro preinstalled
- Expandable storage and memory
- Top and side loaded I/O ports
- Intelligent thermal design
- Padded support and straps, sweatproof, wearable materials
- SPECTRA 2.0 RGB lighting
- Up to 50 minutes playing time
There’s no official price available yet, although given the specs we’d expect it to be around $2,300 (approx. We also don’t have a release date for VR Go 4.0, so if you’re eyeing one you’ll have to wait for either one Announcement is made or it simply appears on the shelves.
Analysis: This… probably isn’t for gamers
Before you roll your eyes at the practicality of having a gaming PC built into a backpack, know that this is probably not intended for the everyday consumer. Sure, there are plenty of VR enthusiasts out there who will find plenty of use for it, but even Zotac seems to be implying that this is geared more towards creatives and developers than your typical gamer.
“The industry-leading VR backpack PC is now equipped with more advanced technologies that enable individual developers and 3D designers to visualize all things creative in virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR) or mixed reality (MR) for VR and implement content development, virtual entertainment and more technical scenarios. For everyone else, the addition of more powerful hardware allows for a more immersive experience in VR gaming.”
The statement above is from the landing page for VR GO 4.0, and amusingly, VR gaming seems to have been stapled to the end like an afterthought. That said, we agree with Zotac – this is an amazing tool for VR game developers who need to test things remotely, or perhaps content creators using platforms like VR Chat.
The RGB lighting seems like an odd style choice in this case, although Zotac may be hoping the flowing rainbow lights will draw gamers in nonetheless. There’s nothing stopping you from buying one for home use, although you might get some weird looks if you try to use it to play in a public space.
Another use for these systems is VR experiences, and I imagine that’s where most of the demand will be. Many VR centers around the world have opened in recent years, offering consumers the opportunity to try out virtual reality games or content in a large open space.
At TechRadar, we actually tried it and played a version of Far Cry that was specifically designed for this type of VR experience (opens in new tab)and the freedom of not being tied to a computer or laptop is really eye-opening if you’ve only been using VR headsets like the Oculus Quest at home.
Would I buy one to keep at home? Probably not, but the VR space is evolving to meet the ever-increasing demands of the metaverse. Who knows – maybe in the coming years my work bag will also become my actual laptop with a virtual office.
- This year Computex is virtual again, but we’ll still be bringing you all the latest computing news and launches, so make sure you check out all the TechRadar offerings Computerex 2022 Cover.