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Slip on this hat for a full virtual-reality experience

Crescent's Immersive Digital Entertainment helmet is a retooled industrial virtual-reality display. Looks neat, but expect the price to be astronomical if it ever hits the market.

A gun-toting Japanese reporter tries Crescent's VR system at the 3D & Virtual Reality Expo in Tokyo. Video screenshot by Tim Hornyak/CNET

Would you wear this digital sombrero for a better gaming experience?

Japanese imaging equipment dealer Crescent recently showed off its head-mounted display at the 3D & Virtual Reality Expo (IVR) in Tokyo.

As seen in the vid below, the Immersive Digital Entertainment VR system provides a high-def, 360-degree display showing virtual objects that users can manipulate with their hands. User motions are tracked with high-def motion-capture cameras from Vicon.

The VR experience seems very realistic and smooth. Takahiro Akiyama of collaborator 4D Brain suggests the helmet could also serve as a brain-machine interface and react to what the user is thinking. If BMI technology were incorporated in the device, it might be able to display scenes matching certain brain wave patterns. For instance, a beach when the user is trying to relax.

That would be cool, but the entire concept is dubious.

The display is actually Crescent's HEWDD-768, seen before but repurposed for gaming and entertainment instead of industrial applications.

The HEWDD-768 system has previously been reported to cost $80,000, which is comparable to Crescent's HEWDD-1080 head-mounted display; it carries a price tag of 8,400,000 yen ($103,660).

If that doesn't give you enough of a headache, the helmet also weighs around 4 pounds. Ouch.

(Via Akihabara News)