View-Master Virtual Reality viewer

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I just joined the rest of the world and got a smart phone, so I would like to try this out too. I tried a google cardboard and liked it. Something a bit more robust would be fun to try.

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It is really decent and probably one of the best/cheapest cardboard viewers out there.

I agree completely, the included content isn’t great, but it does make a great Google Cardboard experience.

Be sure and initialize the cardboard app with the barcode in the viewer, because that improves the image quality dramatically.

I recently took a trip to Costa Rica and used Cardboard Camera to make a few 360 views of the jungle. It’s a really easy process, and produces excellent results. Cardboard Camera is only Android at the moment.

There’s lots of other interesting content becoming available too, but as a first inexpensive step in to VR this works really well.

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I checked out the VM at an industry preview. Not very different from the Google cardboard in concept. The optics are the same: each eye is viewing half of the phone screen under simple magnification so you see a very “low res” image (you see the individual screen pixels-yuck). The effect is much the same: very nice 360º (plus up and down) surround feel of viewing an environment from a fixed point (you can’t move thru space except to spin around). The NYT videos are NOT 3D–there is no stereo imagery–everything is flat. The VM version has lots of CGI environments with SOME 3D elements sprinkled in but it is not the same beautiful full color, full res, true stereo views as in good old Viewmaster reels. Sorry. Nope. There is some very gratuitous educational “content” (pop up flat text panels that float in space, with lame gradeschool age level “fun facts”-ugh.) Nice industrial design and certainly more rugged than cardboard but not much of an upgraded experience from Google Cardboard.


Our office is heavy into VR for the architectural work we’ve been doing and we have just about all the devices you use to jam up against your head. the Rift 2 is the obvious winner right now and Cardboard is wonderfully portable as we can literally ship one to a client and have them look.

The Viewmaster is janky crap with a very forced UI that feels flat, exactly as Bob mentions above. The space shuttle is laughably terrible as an educational demo and none of us are very impressed with the device at all. I’d say that at $18 it’s still overpriced. We prefer the old fashioned Viewmaster we keep next to it in every aspect.


Agreed. It’s fine as a Cardboard viewer. The software is not great. There are physical reels that are essentially a dongle since the app is free to download. You need to point the viewer at the reel to start the experience.

Also, for reference:


It seems about as good as any bare-bones VR viewer can be. I wrote up my thoughts on it in a review here.

The biggest problem the thing has is that it’s a hand-held VR viewer, not one you can actually strap to your head. And that big hunk of plastic might be every bit as sturdy as the old-fashioned Viewmaster stereoscope viewers it’s modeled after, but it’s also heavy. Sooner or later, your hands are going to get tired of holding that big hunk of plastic up to your face.

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I have tried many but for just a simple “google cardboard” viewer I prefer or They are both good quality lenses and have the advantage of fitting into your pocket. You can even change the interocular position with the goggletech. Only issue is they put the google cardboard QR code in the manual rather than printing on the side of the device, this means if you switch viewers you either have to carry the stupid paper manual with you or you can’t switch viewers.

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I got one for free (promo for that Star Wars movie that came out recently) and I think it’s great! Only bad thing is the screen on my smartphone isn’t that big so things seem to be squished together. I can upgrade this year so I’m thinking a bigger screen is in order (along with more storage space).

Could you cut the code out and glue it to the gadget, e.g. with a doubleside tape? Then it could be laminated with a regular transparent tape to protect against wear.

I love mine. I got the space and destinations packs (they were out of the animal pack that day) and they were fun. It could have used some UI improvements, but I did write up some criticisms and sent that back to Mattel and NatGeo. Mainly, the nfc card for the expansion packs are a pain to work with. But then that’s what I do. At the very least, it’s a google cardboard device that’s fairly rugged. I let some of the Think Progress people try it out and there were a lot of wows and oohs and ahs.

My wife got me one, and I like it a lot as a Google Cardboard viewer. Is it perfect? No. But it’s very nice, works well, and the space shuttle demo isn’t that bad.

As long as you realize that it is, in the end, google cardboard in terms of functionality - it’s actually kinda nice. At $18, it is about the same as the actual cardboard viewers, except it is fairly sturdy plastic; I had no problem putting my iphone 6s into it and handing it to the kids, who were very impressed by the novelty of the 3D and VR on the demo reel. Having said that - yeah, the viewmaster software is kinda meh, but at $18, versus what $600 plus a pimped PC for Oculus, it was a cheap way to get into VR and some stereo viewing.

Got one for my girlfriend’s son at Chrimbo, I find it pretty entertaining for brief intervals. That being said, the key word is brief. The ‘wow’ factor runs out quickly.

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