Get to know your headset

Below you'll find an overview of your headset and a guide for getting the most out of Varjo Base.

Using the headset

Wearing the headset


Adjusting the headband


The Varjo headset comes with an adjustable headband. There are two ways to adjust the headband’s fit: (1) the adjustment wheel on the back of the headband and (2) the head strap on top.

Before wearing the headset, loosen the headband by rotating the wheel counterclockwise and open the head strap. Do not force the headset on without loosening the headband first.

Put the headset on and rotate the adjustment wheel clockwise until the headset fits, then tighten the head strap. You will find the best fit for yourself by trying different ways to tighten the headband. Be careful not to over-tighten.

You can wear eyeglasses or contact lenses with the Varjo headset.


Fitting the face mask


The headset comes with two face masks. The attached size and face mask material depends on the headset model.

Headset model VR-1 VR-2 VR-2 Pro
Attached face mask type Standard fabric Large fabric Large PU
Separate face mask type (in box) Large fabric Standard fabric Standard fabric


The large face mask is wider and taller. It accommodates different head shapes and provides more space between eyeglasses and the headset lenses. If the standard face mask feels too tight for you, change the face mask.

Instructions for changing the face mask are found here.


Using the light blocker


The Varjo headset has a light blocker that prevents daylight from affecting the virtual reality experience. Position the light blocker flaps on top of the cushion as shown in the picture.

When changing the face mask or cushion, remember to readjust the light blocker.


Exploring the headset


Using the headset buttons


There are two buttons on the headset: (1) the System button and (2) the Application button.

Use the System button to access the System settings when you are wearing the headset.

Use the Application button for interacting with your VR apps. This button can have different functionalities depending on your app.

The System button has an LED light that indicates the system status. The light appears green when the headset is in use, and white when the headset is starting or idle.


Starting a VR application

To use a VR application with your headset, open the application on your Windows computer. The application opens directly in your connected headset.

Make sure that your VR apps are compatible with the Varjo headset. See the details in the Develop for Varjo section for how to integrate your existing apps with the Varjo headset.


Quitting a VR application

When you want to stop using the headset, you can simply take off the headset and close the application from your Windows computer. After a short period of inactivity, the headset will become idle and turn off the displays.


Using the Bionic Display™

The Varjo headset introduces the Bionic Display™ that lets you see the virtual reality as clearly as you see the real world.


The highest and most intense resolution is in the center of the display, also called the “focus area.” This is how your eyes work in the real world, too: you can see what’s happening in the periphery, but your focus is on what’s right in front of your eyes.

Turn your head to see the things around you in the highest resolution.


Adjusting the lenses

When you use the headset, the headset adjusts the lenses automatically based on your interpupillary distance (IPD). In Varjo Base, the setting is found under the Headset tab and is on by default. We recommend that you keep the setting on for optimal comfort while viewing.

Please note: The Varjo headset is recommended to be used by people whose interpupillary distance is between 61 and 73 mm. People with smaller or larger interpupillary distance may not be able to see the content in the highest possible visual quality, or they may feel discomfort when using the headset.

The headset adjusts the lenses briefly every time you put the headset on. You may hear a short buzzing sound during the adjustment.

Tip: Sometimes the automatic adjustment can fail if the headset is not well-positioned and can’t detect your eyes. Also, frequent blinking may cause the adjustment to fail. To get an optimal reading of your eyes, press the System button and select Realign headset. In Varjo Base, navigate to the Headset tab and Show Headset position guidance. The headset will readjust the lenses while the positioning instructions are displayed.

You can switch off the setting in Varjo Base if the automatic adjustment does not work for you. Even though the headset has been designed to work with most eyeglasses and contact lenses, the automatic adjustment may not work due to special eyeglasses or other medical conditions that impair your vision.


Using the system settings

You can access the System settings at any point while wearing the headset.


Press the System button to view the System settings. Turn your head to focus on the items. Use the Application button for selecting items. You can also point and select with a controller.

Press the System button again to exit the settings.


Powering off the headset

The headset gets powered through the Link Box power supply. Please be aware that when plugged into the wall socket, the headset remains powered on even if you turn off your computer.

When the headset is not used for a longer period of time, it is recommended to unplug the Link Box from the wall socket and disconnect the headset’s blue optical cable from the Link Box.


Care and maintenance


General care of the Varjo headset

Please be aware that your Varjo headset is a high-precision optical instrument. Handle your headset with care. Do not drop or throw the headset as it could damage the optical elements.

Lenses and optics play a key part in creating a crystal-clear virtual reality experience. Be careful not to scratch the lenses when you use, store, or transfer the Varjo headset.


When using the headset with eyeglasses, ensure that the eyeglasses do not touch or scratch the headset lenses.

Always lift the headset by holding the headset body or the headband. Do not lift the headset by holding the face mask, cables or the head strap.

Be careful not to scratch the lenses or the front plate while changing the face mask, cushion, or headband.

Protect the headset during transportation.



The headset is intended to be used indoors only. Keep the headset in a clean and dust-free place.

When the headset is powered on and not being used, place it on a flat surface with the vents on the top of the headset facing up. Make sure not to cover the vents on the top and bottom of the headset.
Do not leave the headset in direct sunlight or strong ultraviolet light. Exposure to direct sunlight can damage the optics and the displays.

Do not place the headset near heat sources, hot areas, or extreme temperatures. Do not expose the headset to open flames or smoke.

Do not use the headset near water or liquid.

Do not use the headset after a dramatic change in temperature. When you move the headset between environments with very different temperature and/or humidity ranges, condensation may form on or within the headset. Allow enough time for the moisture to evaporate before using the product.


Changing the face mask


The headset comes with two face masks. The standard face mask is attached to the headset, and the large face mask is in the Varjo box.

  1. Place the headset on a flat surface with the front plate facing down. Be careful not to scratch the front plate.
  2. Loosen the adjustment wheel so that there is enough space between the headset and the headband.
  3. Pull out the two holders around the nose pad that attach the face mask to the headset, while firmly holding the headset in place.
  4. To remove the face mask, gently lift either edge of the face mask until it releases.
  5. Place the new face mask on the headset. The magnets snap it into the correct position.
  6. Push the two holders around the nose pad in place.


Changing the cushion


The cushion is attached to the face mask with hook-and-loop strips and can be easily changed.

1. Remove the face mask as described in Changing the face mask.
2. Gently pull the cushion from either of the corners and lift it off.
3. Attach a new cushion by starting from either of the corners and push it firmly into place.
4. Ensure that there are no wrinkles in the cushion and that it covers the whole face mask.
5. Place the face mask on the headset.


Removing the headband


It is possible to remove the headband during transportation or storage of the headset.

1. Place the headset on a flat surface. Be careful not to scratch the front plate.
2. Tighten the headband by turning the adjustment wheel.
3. Open the head strap and pull it free from the front.
4. Remove the cables from the two holders located on the left side of the headset and back of the headband.
5. Using a coin, turn the locking mechanisms on both sides of the headband counter-clockwise to unlock the headband from the headset.
6. Gently pull the headband apart to remove it.


Removing the counterweight


The VR-2 Pro is fitted with a removable counterweight under the rear cushion of the headband. The counterweight balances the heaviness of the display; however, you may wish to remove it in order to lighten the headset.

To remove the counterweight:

  1. Place the headset on a flat, level surface. Please note: the counterweight is not secured in the headband and will dislodge if tilted.
  2. Loosen the head strap to better access the rear cushion of the headband.
  3. Remove the rear cushion by gently pulling it away from the headband.
  4. Carefully remove the counterweight.
  5. Reattach the rear cushion and adjust the head strap.


Cleaning the Varjo headset


Cleaning the headset

Unplug the headset from its power source before cleaning.

Clean the headset body with non-abrasive anti-bacterial wipes.

Do not use soap, harsh chemicals, cleaning solvents, liquid cleansers, or aerosols. Do not use any liquids to clean the headset.

PU face mask: clean with non-abrasive antibacterial wipes.


Cleaning the lenses

Clean the headset lenses gently with a dry optical lens micro-fiber cloth.

Do not clean the lenses with any liquid or chemical cleansers.


Cleaning the face mask cushion

Fabric face mask: Dampen a clean, soft cloth with water (up to +40C / 104F) and gently wipe the area you want to clean. Air dry at room temperature. Don’t tumble dry, iron, or expose the cushion to direct sunlight. Do not scrub, wring, or bleach the cushion.

PU face mask: clean with non-abrasive antibacterial wipes.


Using Varjo Base

Varjo Base is the software that allows you to completely control and customize your headset, deliver the best possible presentation experience for your viewers, and record your observations. From Varjo Base, you can always immediately see what the headset viewer is observing, quickly access important system and presentation tools, and analyze your project with real-time data.

Using positional tracking and understanding device statuses


The Varjo headset uses the SteamVR™ tracking system. With this technology, your VR application always knows the exact position of your headset and the controllers.

The tracking system allows you to move around in your room freely while using the apps, and the headset image updates seamlessly when you move. With the SteamVR™ Tracking technology, you can have up to 5 x 5 meters of (16 x 16 ft) moving space around you.

The status of the devices is displayed in the status area in Varjo Base.

Device is connected and tracking.
Device is connected but tracking is not working. Tracking may be temporarily lost if the device is not in a direct line of sight with the base stations.
Device is not connected. Power on your devices to see their status.
Device’s battery is low. Charge soon.
Device is charging.


Operating/hosting a session

The headset viewer’s experience is in a central role. Above the headset view, Varjo Base will show you an overview of your system status with notifications and other status messages also appearing here.

Below Headset view, there are several tools for taking notes and making observations:

Screenshot Captures still images of the headset view.
Record Records video of the headset view.
Gaze dot Enables you to visualize the eye tracking feature to understand where the viewer is looking.
Tip: this feature is only accessible if eye tracking calibration has ben performed.
Pointer Toggles your mouse into a VR pointer.


Using presentation options

The Presentation tab in Varjo Base contains features to ensure that no headset actions are triggered accidentally by the viewer.


Headset buttons When disabled, the viewer can focus on the immersive experience while the presenter is able to control headset features from Varjo Base.
Mouse in the headset When enabled, System settings in the headset can be operated with a mouse.

When disabled, the mouse works with your PC only. System settings in the headset cannot be operated with the mouse.

Notifications in the headset When disabled, this option creates a less distracting experience in the headset.

However, please note that in the event of an error, such notifications will appear.

Optimize performance When enabled, Varjo Base will shut down Varjo System processes not required by the main VR application.


Positioning the headset for optimal viewing

The Bionic Display™ is a precision tool; seeing contents in the highest possible visual quality requires that the headset is precisely positioned over your eyes. Optimal positioning may be different for every individual as it depends on the shape of the face and eyes of the user. Also, eyeglasses may affect optimal positioning.

Whenever you plan on working in a virtual environment with rich visual details, it is recommended to check that the headset is optimally positioned, using the instructions screen for the headset positioning.

Tip: If the headset is not optimally positioned, you may see straight lines appearing discontinuous or curved as they travel from the display edges towards the center of the display. You may also notice blue or red halo colors on the edges of light-colored objects.

To quickly launch the headset position guidance in Varjo Base, navigate to the Tools menu and open Headset position. Alternatively, this can be managed via the Headset tab and Show Headset position guidance.

The graphics show four lines extending from the center of the display towards the edges. If you observe them closely, you will notice that each line consists of three thinner lines.

Carefully observe the thin lines in the four areas highlighted with blue circles. These are the intersections where the high-resolution focus area meets the lower-resolution peripheral area. When the headset is well-aligned, the lines will appear continuous in all these four areas. If you observe the lines broken, blurred, or bent, try moving the headset on your face to fix the alignment. The picture below illustrates an example of bad and good positioning.

While the headset positioning guidance is displayed, the device will also adjust the lenses to match your interpupillary distance.

After you have found the optimal position for the headset, make sure to adjust the headband so that the headset feels stable and stays in its place.

You can set the headset positioning guidance to appear automatically every time when you put the headset on. This will help to check the positioning easily when you start using the headset. Go to the Headset tab in Varjo Base and enable Automatic headset positioning.


Using the eye tracking

The Varjo headset can track your eye movements. This feature can be used by VR apps for interacting with the contents and the virtual environment.

If your VR application uses eye tracking, you will see the calibration screen. Follow the guidance on the screen to calibrate the device to recognize your eye movements. The calibration is done by following a moving dot with your eyes. This sequence typically takes less than a minute.

For the eye tracking to work accurately, the headset needs to be placed firmly and aligned straight so that the cameras can see your eye movements. Always use the headband with eye tracking apps to make sure the headset stays stable during use. The headset may show you additional instructions on how to position the headset optimally before the calibration.

Note that if you remove the headset, you will need to calibrate the eye tracking again for the next session. To launch the calibration again at any time, press the System button and select Calibrate eye tracking.

If you are hosting a session and wish to quickly calibrate eye tracking from Varjo Base, navigate to the Tools menu and select Eye tracking calibration. You can also begin Eye tracking calibration from the Headset tab.

Eye tracking has been designed to work with most eyeglasses and contact lenses. However, the technology cannot be guaranteed to work with all special glasses or medical eye conditions.


Updating the Varjo software and headset firmware

You can update the Varjo software and the headset’s firmware in Varjo Base. It is recommended to always use the latest software and device firmware for the best performance.

Go to the Support tab in Varjo Base to check for available updates. You can set Varjo Base to automatically check for available updates and show a notification about them. All updates will ask for your confirmation before they are installed. Varjo Base never automatically updates itself without your consent.

If your computer doesn’t have direct access to the internet, you can download the updates on another computer and copy the installation files locally to your computer.

Important: Firmware updates to the Varjo headset can only be installed using Varjo Base. Never attempt to update the firmware using the SteamVR application. SteamVR may suggest updating the firmware for your headset. If this happens, ignore the notification.