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How to convert Enscape to VR using Meta Quest? [2023]



Enscape to VR using Oculus Quest 2
Enscape to VR using Oculus Quest 2

Enscape3D is one of the most widely used tools in the AEC industry for real-time rendering. With a simple and quick rendering engine, Architecture & Design professionals have found an easy way to share photo-realistic renders and videos with clients. As Enscape integrates with 3D modeling software like Revit & SketchUp directly via plugins, adding Virtual Reality to the mix of visualization tools has been a feature available on PC-tethered headsets


With the takeoff of wireless VR headsets like (Oculus) Meta Quest 2 & Pro, a lot of users have been searching and asking for ways to get the Enscape visualization experience on standalone VR. In this article, we will share our learnings from a deep dive into how to view Enscape models in VR using the Oculus Quest 2 headset. So, let's get started with some of the frequently asked questions:


Is there an official Enscape App for (Oculus) Meta Quest 2?


The short answer is No. As of July 2023 - there is no official app that you can download for viewing Enscape designs on the Oculus Quest 2. This does not mean that there is no way to view your design, but officially Enscape supports PC-tethered headsets only. Check their official VR headsets supported by Enscape page for more details.


Courtesy: Enscape
VR headsets supported by Enscape


What are the steps required to view an Enscape design in Oculus Quest 2?


The workaround in order to view Enscape models on Oculus Quest is by using Airlink - a wireless way to play PC VR experiences on the Quest. Since this works primarily for PC VR experiences, you need to make sure that you fulfill the hardware requirements for these experiences. Here's the checklist:

  • CPU: Intel i5-4590 / AMD Ryzen 5 1500X or greater

  • RAM: 8 GB

  • OS: Windows 10

  • VIDEO CARD: NVIDIA RTX 3070 graphics card or an AMD equivalent GPU (eg. Radeon RX 6700 XT)


If your system meets the requirements, you need to install the latest Oculus runtime on your PC.


Next, you need to enable apps from Unknown Sources from Settings --> General --> Unknown Sources


Courtesy: Oculus
Courtesy: Oculus

From the Settings --> Beta tab, enable Air Link option to connect your PC to the Quest wirelessly.


Courtesy: Oculus
Courtesy: Oculus

Once Air Link is ON, open Enscape & click on the VR icon.


Courtesy: Enscape
Courtesy: Enscape

On clicking on the VR icon, you will see the model pop-up inside the VR headset and you can navigate using the Enscape VR menu & settings. Also, you will be able to see the VR view on your PC in this mode.


While this process does help you get an Enscape model in Oculus Quest, you need to be aware of a few limitations to using this in your presentation workflow:


  • A VR-ready PC is required to use this workflow

  • A good WiFi router close to the PC is needed

  • Performance and resolution are not high-quality in most cases

  • Portability is highly limited as the PC needs to be connected to the Quest


Is there a workflow to view Enscape designs on wireless VR?


Yes, there is a cloud-based and wireless VR workflow that allows you to view Enscape designs on the Oculus Quest without the need for a direct connection to a computer. This requires exporting selected renders from your designs as 360 panoramas and then using a cloud-based viewer for sharing on the web and Meta Quest headsets.


With SENTIO VR, you can test this workflow in a matter of minutes enabling clients and other stakeholders to view your Enscape designs without requiring tethered PC-based VR setups.


How to create 360 panoramas from Enscape?


Enscape easily allows you to create 360 panoramas from your designs. They can be an extremely valuable and easy method to enable your VR workflow on the Meta Quest - without losing portability and cloud-based collaboration. To enable this workflow, you need to first learn how to create 360 panoramas from your Enscape design. This knowledge base article from Enscape is a very good resource. In fact, the process is extremely intuitive as you need to follow these steps:


  1. Open your 3D modeling software (e.g., Revit, SketchUp) and launch Enscape. Navigate to the desired view in your Enscape scene.

  2. Locate the Panoramic button and access the panoramic settings. Choose either to create a mono or stereo panorama. We recommend stereo panorama for VR experiences.

  3. Choose panorama settings such as image resolution, file format, or other settings such as image effect or time of the day.

  4. Once you have customized the settings, click on Create Panorama button to initiate the rendering process.

  5. Wait for the rendering to be completed.

  6. Locate your rendered panorama in the upload management button under Enscape.

  7. Download the panorama image to your local folder


Create a Mono or Stereo panorama

Click on the 360 Icon and choose Mono or Stereo panorama options. For VR presentations, we recommend the Stereo option as they provide a sense of depth when viewed immersively. For sharing on PC/mobile devices, the mono format will work just fine.




Courtesy: Enscape
Courtesy: Enscape

Source: Enscape 3D



Download panoramas to your PC


You have the option to upload the panorama to your Enscape account or download it to your PC. Click the "Upload Management" section in the Enscape Toolbar to view your panoramas. In the same window, you will find an option to download a 360 panorama to your PC. For Oculus Quest presentations, we recommend downloading the file.



Courtesy: Enscape
Courtesy: Enscape

Courtesy: Enscape
Courtesy: Enscape











How to view Enscape 360 panoramas using SENTIO VR?


1. Export panoramas to your desktop


Panorama created in Enscape can be exported locally to your PC either one or several at a time with adjusted settings such as max lighting, refinement, motion blur, and frame rate. Here is a guide for available file formats, resolutions, and modes for exporting panoramas locally:

  • File format: PNG, JPG

  • Mode: Mono, Stereo

  • Resolution: 2K (2048 x 1024) to 16K (16384 x 8192)

2. Drag and drop to your SENTIO VR account


Click on "Create Tour", add your panorama images in the right order to create a 360 virtual tour


Drag and drop 360 panoramas
Drag and drop 360 panoramas

Drag and drop 360 panoramas


3. Add hotspots, floor plans, notes, audio, and video


Customize your virtual tour by adding floor plans, hotspots, notes, audio and video to make an interactive experience.


Add hotspots, floorplans, notes, audio and video
Add hotspots, floorplans, notes, audio and video

4. View 360 tours in the SENTIOVR app for Meta Quest


Download the SENTIO VR App for Quest and enter your unique 6-digit access code to view your panoramas in VR. Once the virtual tour is created, there is no need to connect the PC to the headset and the experience can be shared via cloud to any client or stakeholder.

Sentio VR on Meta Quest App


5. Join remote collaboration meetings in VR with clients and stakeholders


The VR tours are available not just for individual presentations but also for collaborative meetings where multiple people can remotely join and review the designs together.

Remote collaboration with clients and external stakeholders


Comparison of Enscape and SENTIO VR


SENTIO VR and Enscape are both powerful tools used in architectural visualization that can be used in a complementary fashion to enable powerful real-time visualization as well as cloud-based immersive collaboration. With 360 panoramas-based workflows from Enscape to Sentio, users can create powerful virtual tours that can be shared on any device including wireless VR headsets without requiring high-end PCs and enabling a swift design review process.

Features

Enscape

SENTIO VR

SketchUp & Revit Integration

Upload panoramas to cloud

Share links with clients

Customize tours

(hotspots, floor plan, video, audio, 2D pop-ups)


VR App on Meta Quest

( Quest 2 and Pro app for presentations)


Download 360 panoramas offline

( Save images locally for offline presentations )


Multi-user VR meetings

( Meetings in VR for remote collaboration)


Design Review collaboration tools

( Annotations, Notes, Screenshots & Reports )




Conclusion


At SENTIO VR, we believe that the future of VR presentations in the Architecture & Design industry is going to be dominated by cloud-based experiences on standalone VR headsets like Meta Quest 3. With a few workarounds, you can view your Enscape 3D designs on the Meta Quest 3. In addition, with an easy workflow to create and edit 360 panoramas exported from Enscape, you can prepare client presentations that are immersive, cloud-based & do not require high-end PCs connected to the headset as an option for enriching your VR workflows.


If you’re interested in trying out Sentio for cloud-based visualization & collaboration of 3D designs in VR, you can get started here or you can get in touch with us directly Talk to sales.



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