My thoughts on developing with Magic Leap One for a week

As many of you asked, my Magic Leap review after spending a week with it:

I genuinely love it actually.
Compared to ‘that other AR headset’ I find it more refined in most areas:

Wearing it is very comfortable as it’s so light and well balanced.

Fitting was not as delicate as I expected, you can go through a proper fitting/calibration routine but I generally don’t do this for demos.

It comes with 2 forehead pieces, 5 nose pieces, can do eye calibration and adjust the waveguide planes during calibration.
Maybe you can fit (small) glasses underneath but that’s probably not a good idea (running the risk to scratch the optics).

The increased FoV is welcome and noticeable (especially in the height) and the slightly blocked of sides actually help.

Visual quality is much increased, no more RGB separation (due to the more modern, much flatter waveguides).

Build/deploy cycles are very fast (there is no UWP overhead for example).

“Zero Iteration Mode” allows you to have a complete live Unity scene and access to the profiler in realtime. Haven’t checked if this is available for UE4 yet.

The controller is very nice, navigating the menus works much better than using hand gestures, you always feel like you’re in control.

On a tech level there are lots of welcome features:

More hand gestures and true hand/finger points.
World meshing is better and faster.
Plane detection/extraction (from the world mesh) is very fast and easy.
Raycasting using controller, head direction and eye direction is great. Using the controller feels very intuitive and more precise than just the head direction.
Eye tracking works well (even though I wear contact lenses) and opens up new doors for interaction/storytelling.
Integrated image recognition/tracking means no need for (slow) Vuforia anymore.
The increased compute and GPU power is very very welcome, feels we can actually do things now and not constantly be restricted.
Using UE4 is supported (although the samples aren’t as comprehensive as Unity).

Tracking is good but not perfect.

In comparison HoloLens has slightly better tracking but on that platform if the app falls below 60 fps (and many do due to the lack of CPU/GPU power) tracking quickly gets wobbly.

Magic Leap (the company) seems very responsive and helpful on social media and on their forums.

There are many small OS/driver updates instead of a few large ones per year (at least so far in the pre 1.0 stage).

There is actually warranty in case there is a hardware problem (should be a no-brained but some other companies refuse warranty on developer kits).

The SDK/examples are clean and good (documentation is excellent) it’s not as comprehensive as the massive MRTK community effort though.

At the moment live-streaming is still missing which is a bit tricky when doing demos (should be coming soon though).

At the moment there is no built in multi-device sharing (I hear that is coming as well and of course you can roll your own).

No carrying case, the box comes with handle, I’m using a pelican-case (well different brand, same idea).

I can litterally develop all day, with the powered USB hub it keeps it charge while connected and being used.

It’s also comfortable enough to wear for hours on end and wear it while using Unity / Visual Studio.


At the bottom of the line the Magic Leap One is cheaper and offers more features and mostly of higher quality for that price.



And before you ask, don’t get me wrong I still love my HoloLens 1 and hope Microsoft will soon let us know more about v2, the AR headset wars have finally begun! 🙂

Saturday, September 29th, 2018 Magic Leap, Ranting, XR No Comments

Collaborative VR experiment with multiple Valve/HTC Vive headsets

Recently we had the opportunity to play with two Valve/HTC Vive headsets and controllers so we opted to experiment a bit for a few days.

Since I strongly believe the Virtual Reality revolution needs a social element in order to become more than just a hype of we implemented the following things to play with:
– multi user collaborative experience
– interaction with virtual objects using Vive’s hand controllers
– implemented using two (networked) machines running Unity
– build it so it works when users share the same physical space (like in this example)
– but also works when users are in different places with access to a (5 Mbps) internet connection

R&D project by:
Jasper Brekelmans……..brekel.com………(pointcloud streaming & Unity integration)
Jeroen de Mooij………….thefirstfloor.nl….(Unity networking & scene design)

Thanks to:
Adriaan Rijkens…….VRheroes.nl
Marald Bes…………AnyMotion.nl
Erwin Kho…………..Zerbamine.nl


Tuesday, January 12th, 2016 Ranting, XR 2 Comments

“He-Man vs Skeletor”

A short animation film by Hethfilms and Heiko Thies, captured with Brekel Pro Body v2.
These guys were clearly having fun!

Wednesday, September 16th, 2015 Kinect, Ranting No Comments

Microsoft MVP (Most Valuable Professional)

Microsoft has awarded me with the MVP (Most Valuable Professional) title as an appreciation for my work with the Kinect v1.x and v2.x SDKs.
In practice this means I’ll be active in forums/social media/email and will answer your questions like I’ve always done 🙂

But it’s very nice to feel the appreciation from the cool folks at MS that gave the world these innovative tools in the first place!





Saturday, April 4th, 2015 Kinect, Ranting No Comments

Had a great chat about Motion Capture, Kinect, depth sensors and the Sweetie project with the guys from “All Things 3D”

Check out their many other great podcasts here:

Thursday, February 5th, 2015 Ranting No Comments

Forums moved

Over the last few months it proved very difficult to fight spam and maintain the forum, which is why they’ve now moved to Google Groups here:
Thursday, January 2nd, 2014 Kinect, Ranting No Comments


Huh, Brekel’s mug on Faceshift’s tutorials?






Well that’s correct, I’ve written the MotionBuilder plugins for them 🙂


Tuesday, December 10th, 2013 Kinect, Ranting No Comments

IBC fxphd meetup

In case anyone wants to meet up at IBC next week, as usual I’ll attend this:

IBC fxphd meetup Friday (yes the 13th!) starting 18.30 at De Koningshut.

(pub also accessible for non-fxphd members btw)

Thursday, September 5th, 2013 Ranting No Comments

Some new next gen Kinect footage

And how Rare is using it in their upcoming “Kinect Sports Rivals” game:

Tuesday, August 20th, 2013 Kinect, Ranting No Comments

Kinect 2 details / specifications / observations

Just created a page collecting all the Kinect 2 details, specifications and observations coming from the latest announcements of the Xbox One console.



Wednesday, May 22nd, 2013 Kinect, Ranting 5 Comments