Does the Valve Index Need a Base Station?

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By Valerie Becker

If you’re thinking of getting a Valve Index, you may be wondering whether or not you need to purchase a base station. The answer is yes, you do need a base station in order to use the Valve Index.

What is a Base Station?

A base station is a device that emits laser beams to track the movement of the Valve Index’s controllers and headset. It’s an essential part of the Valve Index’s tracking system, which allows for accurate and responsive motion tracking in virtual reality (VR) experiences. Without a base station, the Valve Index wouldn’t be able to track your movements properly.

How many Base Stations do I need?

The Valve Index requires two base stations in order to provide full 360-degree tracking. These base stations should be placed diagonally across from each other and mounted on walls or tripods for optimal performance. The base stations should be positioned at least six feet off the ground, and they should be angled downward toward the center of your play area.

Do I have to buy Base Stations Separately?

Unfortunately, yes. The Valve Index doesn’t come with base stations included in its package. You’ll need to purchase them separately if you don’t already own them from a previous VR headset like the HTC Vive or Oculus Rift.

Are there any alternatives?

If you’re looking for an alternative to the Valve Index’s standard base stations, there is one option available: the Vive Base Station 1.0. These are compatible with the Valve Index and offer similar tracking capabilities as the standard Valve Index base stations.


In summary, if you want to use the Valve Index for VR experiences, you’ll need to purchase two base stations separately from the headset itself. These are essential components that allow for accurate and responsive motion tracking within your play area. There is an alternative option available if you already own Vive Base Station 1.0 but keep in mind that this may not provide the same level of accuracy as the Valve Index’s standard base stations.