Do You Need Base Station to Use Valve Index?

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By Eric Wilson

If you’re looking to purchase the Valve Index, you might be wondering whether or not you need a base station to use it. The answer is yes, you do need a base station in order to use the Valve Index properly.

What is a Base Station?

A base station is a device that emits infrared signals that are picked up by sensors on the Valve Index headset and controllers. These signals allow the system to track your movements in 3D space, which is essential for immersive virtual reality experiences.

How Many Base Stations Do You Need?

You will need at least one base station to use the Valve Index, but it’s recommended that you use two for optimal tracking. With two base stations, you can achieve full 360-degree tracking and reduce occlusion (when your body or other objects block the sensors).

  • For seated experiences or standing experiences where you only face forward: 1 Base Station
  • For standing experiences where you might turn around: 2 Base Stations
  • For room-scale experiences where you move around in an area: 2 Base Stations

Do You Need to Mount Base Stations?

Mounting your base stations on tripods or wall mounts can help optimize their performance by ensuring they’re at the correct height and angle. However, it’s not strictly necessary – if you have a level surface that’s high enough (such as a bookshelf), you can place them there instead.


In summary, if you want to enjoy the full VR experience that the Valve Index has to offer, then yes – you will need at least one base station. For best results, it’s recommended that you use two and mount them at an appropriate height and angle. Happy gaming!