Camera Setup in SteamVR

Camera API in SteamVR is not as stable as other APIs, therefore you may encounter different problems when using Vive Hand Tracking SDK.


Camera does not support hot plug-in. Close SteamVR, plug in your headset, wait for all the drivers are installed, and finally start SteamVR.


For Cosmos users, just update your GPU driver is enough, since Cosmos camera uses different API than SteamVR.

Update SteamVR and GPU Driver

Before your setup or troubleshooting for SteamVR camera, please make sure:

  • You have updated your SteamVR to latest version in Steam or Viveport.
  • You have updated your GPU driver to latest version from NVIDIA/AMD offical website.
    • Some drivers from vendor are too old that does not work with SteamVR camera.


You must close SteamVR before installing GPU drivers.

Enable camera in SteamVR

By default, SteamVR disables camera. To use Vive Hand Tracking SDK, you must enable camera in SteamVR settings. A SteamVR reboot is required after the settings changed.

Test camera in SteamVR

We recommend to test camera before starting use with Vive Hand Tracking SDK or related applications. To test camera, click test camera FPS button in camera tab.

For a working situation, three green ticks are shown:


For a failing situation, three red crosses are shown:


Troubleshooting camera in SteamVR

Whenever camera fails, you need to do extra steps in SteamVR to bring camera back to work. Due to complexe hardware combinations, there is not single step that fixes all the problems. We provide a list of actions, ordered by simplicity, for fixing the camera. We recommend you to try the actions one by one until the problem is fixed.

  1. Reboot Vive headset from SteamVR -> Devices -> Reboot Vive headset menu.

  2. Switch USB port of your headset.

    1. Close SteamVR.
    2. Plug your headset using another USB port. Recommend to use a USB port on different USB bus. A simple way is to change from front USB port to rear USB port (or vive versa).
    3. Wait until all the drivers of your headset are installed. This may take 5-10 minutes.
    4. Start SteamVR and test camera again.
  3. Reboot your computer.

  4. Reinstall USB drivers for your headset.

    1. Remove all USB drivers related with SteamVR using SteamVR Settings -> Developer -> Remove all SteamVR USB Devices button.

    2. Reboot your computer. If you set SteamVR to autorun on computer startup, disable it before reboot.

    3. The new drivers are being installed after the computer is started. Wait until all the drivers are installed. This may take 5-10 minutes.

    4. Start SteamVR and test camera again.