By | November 26, 2023
TCl RayNeo Air 2 underside

TCL recently launched its Rayneo Air 2 AR glasses, and I’ve spent tens of hours testing them to tell you if this cutting-edge technology is ready for mass market adoption.

AR glasses are a new kid on the block, with cutting-edge displays and small form factors that you can carry with you. However, the “AR” nature of the glasses is something of a misnomer, as the hardware itself essentially lets you beam a several-hundred-inch screen right at your face.

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While we’ve looked at other glasses from TCL and other brands, this was the first I’d personally tested, and it was an eye opener into the future.

Key specifications

  • Screen: MicroOLED
  • Resolution: 1920×1080 per eye
  • Brightness: Up to 600 nits
  • Contrast ratio: 100,000:1
  • Brightness: Up to 600 nits
  • Field of view: 46 degrees
  • Refresh rate: 120Hz
  • Projected image: 201 inches
  • Features: Speaker, USB-C output, 76g weight

Design

Dexerto

On the outside, the TCL RayNeo Air 2 glasses may look like just another pair of anonymous sunglasses, but there’s a lot more going on beneath the surface. The frame is slightly thicker than usual at the top to accommodate a bright, Sony-made MicroOLED 1080p panel that is reflected through a piece of glass. Because of this, the glasses sit slightly lower on the head than you might expect.

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There are also additional controls on each of the stalks, a volume rocker on the left and a brightness button on the right. At the end of the left shaft is a USB-C port, where the device will search for a DisplayPort signal (USB-C alt mode) and power the device itself.

TCL RayNeo Air 2Dexerto

The cable fits neatly behind the ear.

Each stem can be tilted, allowing for a better fit for the visors and your head, with an adjustable nose stem that helps it fit almost any face. You can also fit this with additional prescription lenses, but you’ll need to contact TCL directly to have them all fitted.

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It gives a neat, clean and compact look, and after trying it out, it might take some getting used to. At just 76g, it just feels like a (slightly heavier) pair of glasses. When you put them on and get all the angles of your head just right, it turns into a visual feast for the eyes.

Functions

TCL Rayneo Air 2 screenDexerto

The MicroOLED displays used in the TCL RayNeo Air 2, when positioned perfectly, look great. These screens will likely make their way into the Apple Vision Pro. I quickly connected it to my Android tablet using the included USB-C cable, and it seamlessly streamed the Dune: Part Two trailer right into my eyes, and everything from the black levels to how the content looked was fantastic.

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Immediately I was hooked on how good the content looked. Running the glasses at a steady 120Hz meant navigating Windows and MacOS through my Ayaneo Air 1S and MacBook Air was a cinch, and playing lower-end games like Vampire Survivors made for a buttery experience.

Black levels were fantastic, and you still feel present in any room you use them in, which is a boon to me, as VR so often feels restrictive and anti-social, as I discovered when reviewing PSVR 2 and Meta Quest 3.

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Abberation manifestation

I happened to get quite sick during the trial period, which means I was wrapped up in bed for a while without doing much other than lying down and getting better. Luckily, I had the TCL RayNeo Air 2 glasses, an Ayaneo Air 1S, and a copy of Star Ocean: The Second Story R to dig into. The glasses quickly picked up the PDA and I managed to get right into the game.

Firstly, the screen size is absolutely stunning, you feel so much more connected to games you are playing, but I quickly ran into a big problem. Aberration. The corners of each part of the screen can appear blurred or blurry, detracting from the overall experience. This wasn’t much of a problem when I used it to watch Pluto on Netflix, but became a bigger problem in Star Ocean.

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For a text-heavy game like Star Ocean: The Second Story R, ​​I had to squint a little too often for my liking. Second, this screen gets pretty bright, so I’ve also turned it down several notches. Third, the sound output can be a little weak, especially if you pump up the volume. Grab a pair of earbuds and you’ll have a much better time.

I used these for three hours straight

While tucked up in bed, I eventually got used to the sneezes and managed to use them for about three hours straight. I don’t recommend most people do this, as I got a pretty bad headache after testing. It can also make your eyes feel pretty weird afterwards.

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Not really true AR

The RayNeo XR app is where all the AR features reside, and getting all of this up and running was a job. I had to hook up my (ageing) Pixel 2 XL to a portable MiraScreen adapter that TCL sent to make it work in the first place, and from there I was greeted with a handful of 360 videos, as well as other tech demos that were relatively imperceptible. There’s not a lot of content here, and it just feels a little premature.

Should you buy it?

Someone carrying the TCL RayNeo Air 2Dexerto

The TCL RayNeo Air 2 glasses will get a lot more use from me, especially when my partner is hooked on Final Fantasy 14 on our TV. But when you spend that much on any technology, you have to understand the downsides. For the most part, the screen mirroring is the main feature and the AR character of the glasses is less pronounced and feels slightly underbaked.

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Verdict: 3/5

The lightweight nature of the glasses makes them great for watching TV shows or movies, but the fringes on the edges make them less suitable for gaming, unless you eventually get used to it, which can strain your eyes. If the content displayed was slightly smaller than the lenses themselves, I suspect this problem could have been avoided entirely.

I still want to use these more after the review period, because it’s just so incredibly convenient, especially if you have a capable gaming handheld and still crave a big-screen experience.

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#TCL #RayNeo #Air #review #augmented #reality #future #Dexerto

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