Best Answer: Yes, you can use the Index controllers with any headset that uses the Valve tracking technology (1.0 or 2.0).
- First-gen VR: Vive ($499 at Amazon)
- Cutting-edge VR: Valve Index ($1000 at Steam)
- Crisp and high-definition VR: Pimax ($309 at Amazon)
Flexible tracking technology
When HTC developed the Vive, they enlisted Valve to design their hardware. The result was the Vive tracking system, later updated to 2.0. Since this system is also being used for the upcoming Valve Index, the hardware is compatible. Other headsets can also utilize the Valve tracking system. Due to this compatibility, the new Index controllers (previously called the Knuckles) can be used with other systems.
What systems are compatible?
The first headset to utilize the Valve tracking system was the HTC Vive. Since Valve developed the Vive hardware for HTC, everything Vive related is compatible with Valve tracking. With the release of the Pro, they introduced the 2.0 tracking system. Some hardware is not compatible with 2.0, but in the case of the Index controllers, either will work. In addition, the Pimax headset also utilizes the Valve tracking system, so the controllers will work for this headset as well. The general rule of thumb is, if it works with the Valve tracking system, it will work with the Index controllers.
What system is for you?
If you choose to use the Index controllers with a different system, there are clearly many options. There are pros and cons for each. For the most balanced at an affordable price, we recommend the HTC Vive. Since you get the entire VR kit, you will also get the Vive wands, which may be more suitable for some games compared to the Index controllers. Most importantly, Valve had a direct hand in designing the Vive hardware, so the Index controllers will work right out of the box. Check out more information about the HTC Vive.