back to article 3D TV by Christmas, hints Sky

Sky subscribers could be treated to 3D TV this coming Christmas, the broadcaster has said. The firm’s Chief Engineer, Chris Johns, said that there’s the possibility that homes could “see 3D” by the end of the year and it’s aiming to “build a content library over the coming year”. Sky’s already claimed to have successfully …

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One more way that TV won't stop being crap

Colour, High Definition, widescreen and now 3D. All lipstick on the proverbial pig.

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No!

3D TV that requires glasses to view = FAIL. I won't be shelling out for a new telly, although I am interested in Sky HD+.

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Stop

more useless crud

even more useless crud that they are telling you that you need when standard deff tv is good enough. this is gonna be the next chav must have (they already have the sky hd and a 52" hd tv while their kids have to make do with 8p beans on toast for the 37th day in a row)

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Paris Hilton

Crap in 3D!

Great, so now we get offered the same programs (repeat after repeat after repeat ad infitum) in glorious 3D?

Paris, cos she has enough trouble with 2D.

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Coat

New STB too

The current Sky HD stb won't be able to display 3D as they are limited by their use of early version of HDMI -- so you'll need a new stb too.

Although the entire HDMI spec needs an update to properly handle 3D-HD, HDMI 1.3 could be heath-robinsoned into first-generation stereoscopic material ... maybe ... but the HDMI format really needs to support 120Hz rates for 3D-HD and that is a long way off.

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Paris Hilton

It'll never take off...

Who's going to want to sit down in front of the telly and have to don a pair of sexy specs just to watch Eastenders 3D?

Its OK for the occasional movie or sports, but how quickly with those specs break, are they going to provided enough of them for 7 or 8 people to all sit down and watch together, and will they be available free?

Paris, because I'd like to see her star in a remake of Twin Peaks in 3d.

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Coat

Hmm

Candy Mountains, anyone?

Mine's the shabby duffel coat .....

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Coat

Likely not a big hit

"Early adopters will have to fork out extra for a new telly capable of displaying the stereoscopic images and special specs to separate out the left- and right-eye views."

So, I need a special TV *and* shuttered glasses for each viewer. Something tells me that this, along with a lack of content (two cameras for each shot?) makes this plan a non-starter.

What are those folks at Sky smoking, and where can I get some?

//mine's the one with the red/blue cardboard glasses in the pocket

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New TV? Yeah right.

So having forked out for an HD TV and the premium Sky HD Service, they expect us to fork out for another TV - one which you need those silly cardboard glasses to watch? Not on your life.

They've had these 3D experiments before on analogue TV. They do not look particularly 3D and make doing other things at the same time quite difficult (contrary to what Sky seem to believe I'm not about to devote large chunks of my life to staring exclusively at the TV.. I have other things to do).

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Lovely...

Just a shame the current HD service is utterly pants. 1080i? come on Sky, wheres the 1080p. And where's all the content? finding a show in HD is like finding an Apple product playing WMA's :P

No one in there right mind would want 3D, short of a few moments of craziness no one should bother with Sky's HD service with it lacking so badly in actual content. Forget the fluff Sky, get the content on HD, and get FullHD available!

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PJ
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No pic no proof

Oh, hang on...

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Shooting yourself in the foot?

If I'm going to have buy a new TV to watch 3D in 2 years time then there is no point in me going out and buying a new HD TV, and the services from Sky, now is there?

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All I need now,

is Morpheus and the Red Pill.

Does Sky3D come with an attachment to intravenously feed the dead and empty telly watching carcasses back into themselves? Ah yes, it's called debt.

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specs - why?

Why the specs? If you're gonna do it, do it right. I've seen a rather nice example of it sans specs at London City Airport. We're not going to sit around wearing stoopid polarizing specs are we?/

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Porn

Just like VHS, unless the porn industry adopt 3D it'll never take off. Forget broadcast, are there any 3D Blu Ray movies out there ? If there was public demand, there would have been more 3D DVDs produced.

Sky are SCARED of FreeSat. Yes, those interested in sport will still stump up lots of cash for Sky and even more for their HD from Sky. Those who want HD for BBC news and documentaries will get FreeSat. This marketing stunt isn't going to help Sky's cause much.

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1080i is 1080p

"1080i? come on Sky, wheres the 1080p"

Err - any content that started as 1080p ie movies @1080p24 can be easily reconstructed from the 1080i signal. Do a little research before spouting off.

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Paris Hilton

Allan Rutland talks bollocks

Firstly, 1080i vs 1080p is simply a difference in transport mechanism for 25 frames per second content -- which includes movies, drama, and pretty much everything HD except sport. 1080p/25 takes exactly the same bandwidth as 1080i/50 which the odd and even lines of the 25p picture are split into two fields. Any half decent deinterlacer in any tele bought in the last couple of years can pull the two fields together to recreate the 25p frames.

Don't drink the "Full HD" marketing kool-aid, and then try and sound like you know what you're talking about.

Secondly, not being a BSkyB apologist but there is tonnes of stuff in HD: loads of great BBC programmes; as well as likes of Channel 4's flagship US shows like Desperate Housewives; BBC's US shows like Heroes and Damages; Sky 1's US shows like Lost, 24, Battlestar Galactica, Bones, Simpsons, and many more as well as Sky's own tat like Gladiators; there are 16 dedicated entertainment HD channels. There are also 10 HD movie channels including Disney as well as 2 ppv HD movie channels, and 4 HD sports channels.

"Badly lacking in content" doesn't really seem a realistic comment considering all that.

Paris, coz she knows a good thing when she sees it.

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Geek alert....

Sounds fine in theory, but the technicalities have way, way to go in getting an image that works well.

For instance, in a 2D image the focus is on the main protagonist on a standard TV. If our eyes roam the screen then its not too distracting or visually disturbing. But when you go to 3D we naturally move our concentration elsewhere and expect the focus to adjust accordingly...... The result so far? - A blurred area ( bad depth of field) and not a re-adjusted focus as we would see in the real world ...... Vomit comet or what!

Still, I look forward to Paris Hilton in 3D - actually, come to think of it, no thanks ;-)

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W

"fork out extra for a new telly"?

...not on your nelly.

We're still watching a 10 year old 14" CRT Bush TV with the audio running through a modest but decent enough Cambridge amp to a pair of modest but decent enough JVC speakers.

Admittedly 14" is on the small side and I've not got the /greatest/ audio setup, but the overall viewing experience is infinitely more enjoyable than watching an oversized supermarket special "HD" TV pixellating the picture as soon as anything moves on-screen, whilst the brag-tastic and shiny piece of chav-tech squeezes out a tinny approximation of the intended sound through the built in speakers.

Outside, on the footpath in front of the house containing the proud owners of said new telly, next to the bins, is a Toshiba/Philips/Hitachi CRT TV that was perfectly functional piece of kit until it became rain-damaged and had it's screen kicked in.

Actually, scratch my first line. It'll no doubt sell like hotcakes once Tesco and Asda have the no-name brand versions in stock.

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I'm not a trekkie - but...

...if it's not like the mofo holodeck, I couldn't give a fuck.

Come back when you have something worth getting excited about, TV-tech people...

Steven R

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All crud!

Am I the only one on the planet who cannot see what's so great about HD? I have seen Sky's HD offerungs played out on a relative's 50" monstrosity and quite frankly for the amount it cost set up, I was severely disappointed!

So onto the next gimmick to try to keep the masses paying out for their Sky subs. Much like computers, Average Joe will only buy one large device every couple of years, so unless Sky are going to offer cut-price sponsership deals so you only pay 20% list for one of these 3D-HD TV's can't see this being anything more than a gimmick to appease Sky's shareholders.

All hype to get separate fools and their money, just like HD TV broadcasts!

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3D won't catch on 'cos of the glasses

Having to wear stupid looking 3D glasses is a no-no for regular watching. It's OK occasionally when you go out to an IMAX or something.

Also, you have to bear in mind that a large proportion of the population that wear glasses. Wearing 3D specs over your glasses is a PITA. Not all of us glasses wearers can wear or want to wear contacts and people such as my wife who only need glasses for watching telly will not want to put contacts in just to watch 3D TV.

They ought to give up on the idea of 3D until they can get rid of the silly specs requirement.

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Anonymous Coward

@"fork out extra for a new telly"?

If you buy cheap supermarket rubbish lcd's then of course you'll get a rubbish pixelated picture and tinny sound. same as anything, buy a cheap £4.5K new car and you'll get a plastic dashboard that falls off and a car that sounds like a set of roadworks above 40mph.

Stick to a decent brand of LCD TV , and avoid stupid sizes like 50" and you will get something that gives a noticible and enjoyable improvement in picture quality. I found the difference between my old 26" crt and my new 32" 1080p the same as the improvement between watching SD and Extra Long Play recorded VHS. (and before anyone mouths off on whats the point in 32" 1080p , I have a small room and am close to the tv so yes it make difference over 720p)

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New telly? Not on your nelly!

When I was a lad (1980's) they showed a few films on the box that had been created for 3d & TVTimes/Radio Times (the only TV guide magazines back then) for that week included cardboard specs for viewing the 3d effect.

There was no need to change from your 24" colour CRT fat telly fed purely through analogue aerial signal with a super lo-def signal. So why the need for new telly & HD set-top box AND cardboard glasses?

Has 3d technology really "developed" over nearly 30 years if the stupidly uncomfortable shades are still required?

Sounds like the telly salesman's wet dream... another format to sell. I'll be keeping my money to spend in the real world where real world experiences are in 3d for free.

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Stereo TVs

You won't need to fork out for a new TV. The people stuck with older CRTs can use shutterglasses, and you can guarantee that once it gets mainstream there'll be a low-flicker version to be used with plasmas and LCDs.

Plus if they go frame-sequential it'll work with the head-mounted displays some people have (for iPods, for gaming, etc).

And if you're a bit cheap there'll be a box for converting the frame-sequential into red/blue anaglyph.

And for the ultra-cutting-edge types the glassesless auto-stereoscopic displays would be able to interpret the frame sequential images.

Looking at the longer term view, this could be a good driver for tech- okay, you might not want it now but what if your next TV in, say, 5 or 10 years came with it built in- essentially for free? Would you mind that? Plus it'll improve the refresh rate of LCDs and Plasmas (and whatever comes next), meaning that people like me won't get headaches from poor update rates).

Saying that, it's Sky so it'll be anaglyph Disney movies twice a day and a claim that they're world-leading...

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Unhappy

wtf???? luddites!

@"The current Sky HD stb won't be able to display 3D as they are limited by their use of early version of HDMI -- so you'll need a new stb too.

Although the entire HDMI spec needs an update to properly handle 3D-HD, HDMI 1.3 could be heath-robinsoned into first-generation stereoscopic material ... maybe ... but the HDMI format really needs to support 120Hz rates for 3D-HD and that is a long way off.

" ----- ?? you seem to have not understood. all they do is show stereoscopic images. also, on the gadget show they demoed sky HD 3d on a normal sky box (allegidly) so why do you think this is needed?

and to the rest of you? wtf??!?!?! 3d tv is great (i remember being blown away years ago at universal studios... and that was with the silly green/red glasses) - the new glasses look like see through fake glasses.

i think films and sports will be amazing in 3d. but then again this website is full of people who cream over the new linux distro but cant see the difference between SD and HD tv so i guess linux wrecks your eyes??? :)

@"Who's going to want to sit down in front of the telly and have to don a pair of sexy specs just to watch Eastenders 3D?" ----- erm, many people DO wear glasses already. i guess i would just need to put some film over my TV glasses? or maybe an overlay of some kind... like the asians seem to do on glasses to make them sunglasses.

also, the gadget show said sky have no plans to broadcast commercially. so i wonder who is talking rubbish here? sky already do broadcast in 3d but privately, they showed some working in the studio.

they also showed an interesting nvidia usb device that tweaks your pc monitor to show 3d! all you need is the clear glasses. and they said it looked pretty good too. and was only £140, but did rely on cpecific games apparently... but there was over 140 to choose from they said.

i must admit though, after buying a massive good quality TV last xmas im not considering shelling out for a new tv for quite some time, but i do find the prospect of 3d movies and footy an interesting new direction.

@"We're still watching a 10 year old 14" CRT Bush TV with the audio running through a modest but decent enough Cambridge amp to a pair of modest but decent enough JVC speakers.

Admittedly 14" is on the small side and I've not got the /greatest/ audio setup, but the overall viewing experience is infinitely more enjoyable than watching an oversized supermarket special "HD" TV pixellating the picture as soon as anything moves on-screen, whilst the brag-tastic and shiny piece of chav-tech squeezes out a tinny approximation of the intended sound through the built in speakers." ----- oh come on.... you are just jelous and bitter... 14" wtf??? i couldnt even cope with a monitor that small.... and not all of us watch on cheap big TVs... you get what you pay for i think sums it up well! my tv only pixelates REALLY poor broadcasts (like some european football from the arse-end of nowhere), which you can easily see on a small tv too.

@"Am I the only one on the planet who cannot see what's so great about HD? I have seen Sky's HD offerungs played out on a relative's 50" monstrosity and quite frankly for the amount it cost set up, I was severely disappointed!" ----- probably another one of those 'HD ready' 720i shitty tvs... on a decent TV programs like blue planet and BR disks are amazing (dont watch casino royale BR its terrible! check out iron-man or the new batman films for some seriously good HD action)! seriously, go and find someone who has it all setup right with a nice AV amp and you can see/hear the difference! nature programs look amazing!

and btw "All hype to get separate fools and their money, just like HD TV broadcasts!" if you are going to insult the people who are pushing technology please do it in a manner than makes sense. if it was all down to people like you we would all still be watching a 10" tv in mono... but i guess stereo doesnt make any difference to you either does it?

im shocked by some of the luddites on a tech website to be honest.

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re: All crud

fuzzy,

sounds like your relatives fell for the "biggest is best" school of thought. For these flat panel tellies you have an optimum viewing distance, roughlly 4:1, so for every diagnal inch on screen, you need to be sat 4 inches away from the screen. That means that that huge 50" monster would need a viewing position around 17ft away to get the best picture, and sitting any close things will be heavily pixilated and very gash.

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Free HD?

I'm all for it - soon after HD was out, Sky made the SKY+ functionality free rather than £10 per month. If having this new funky 3D system means making the HD sub free, then I'll happily lag a bit behind the bleeding edge and just have HD!

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HD Simpsons?

I guess I'm missing something here. What is the point of HD Simpsons? Or does it allow you to see even more of the low quality animation?

I did see the IMAX 3D with the 30 foot high 3D Homer and that was pretty impressive, but that was computer generated.

As Sky don't seem to have the current bandwidth to actually deliver really good images in standard def what the hell is this mad rush to HD and now 3DHD all about. Apart from Sky getting worried about not having any new "product" to sell?

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Jay
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New TV?

I don't think so somehow! At least other (non-Murdoch) channels are in HD, I can't see anyone else hurrying to make 3D progs.

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gadget show last night?

anyone? it showed some decent 3d stuff. well, the guy with the x-ray specs said it looked decent to him.... not sure if you needed a new tv? anyone?

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stu
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Happy

@Fuzzy & @W

Hmm.. all I can say is.. are you blind ??

Don't base your judegements on what you see in comet FFS.. I mean you wouldn't go there to hear how good your cambridge amp sounded would you ?

Decent blueray + decent (even 720p) large modern plasma or LCD and it looks MASSIVELY better than DVD.

Now, fair enough some HD content is going to be bandwidth squished, and to be honest some stuff doesn't really benefit from HD anyhoo (QI in HD.. so what?)

But your basic argument is akin to 'why does anyone need more that 640x480 resolution on their PC' from 15 years ago..... personally I'll stick with my 50" HD plasma, HD projector in the bedroom, and 42" HD plasma in the conservatory.... :-)

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Anonymous Coward

Sound?

I still use an old telly, but plugged into a Windows Media Center (which may well soon become a Mtyh box...) and the 7.1 surround sound system it drives. OK, 7.1 is over-kill and it's just a crappy CreativeLabs system...but wow. What a difference.

I would go far as to say that the sound is more important than the picture. So when will I get 5.1 surround broadcast over the air, huh? That's what I want, not more lines on the screen.

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Joke

@All crud!

'Am I the only one on the planet who cannot see what's so great about HD?' Yes. Yes you are.

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3D Pron?

Memories of the scene from Jonathan Creek springs to mind.

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Boffin

I'm surprised.

All the negative comments on here seem to have missed something crucial here. Yes, no-one's going to buy it and no-one's going to wear the specs and no-one's going to fork out for another telly and no-one's going to watch the invariably crap programs that are produced (i'm excluding the real hardcore gadget freaks here).

The crucial bit you've all missed is - yet.

So it looks stupid now but call me a 'my-glass-is-empty-but-I-know-it'll-get-filled-soon-optimist' if you will but given that the world around is 3D why shouldn't our entertainment be 3D too?

The technological aspects will be solved. The initially microscopic market will expand. And 10 or 15 years from now the next generation that may come across these comments will wonder what the fuck all the fuss was about and just how or why we put up with 2D for so long.

Yes it's shit at the moment but you could say that about any emergent tech. Give it a chance peeps and you never know, mofo holodecks may not be too far away.

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Don't see the point

Why are Sky wasting money on this? 3D was a fad in the 60s and is still a fad today. Just who do they think is going to be interested in this? The market will be limited to handful surely!

Nuts. Why not concentrate that money on making the Sky+ and Sky+ HD EPG actually decent, i.e. with proper series links that actually link *all* series and across channels, ability to have wish list / keyword / metatag recording, and something infinitely better than Anytime (e.g. like Suggestions on TiVo which is based on your viewing likes and dislikes, not what Sky want to force on you and then find you can't watch because you don't subscribe to the relevant channel, but it'll eat disc space for it anyway) ?

Better still, add support for online content, iPlayer etc.

And why not also concentrate on making Sky+ HD boxes reliable. Stop putting dodgy components in the boxes to save money for a start!

3D! Pah. They're as nuts as Lucas.

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hmmmmm luddites Part II

@"I still use an old telly, but plugged into a Windows Media Center (which may well soon become a Mtyh box...) and the 7.1 surround sound system it drives. OK, 7.1 is over-kill and it's just a crappy CreativeLabs system...but wow. What a difference.

I would go far as to say that the sound is more important than the picture. So when will I get 5.1 surround broadcast over the air, huh? That's what I want, not more lines on the screen."

nah - 7.1 is good if the room can handle it. i have a long narrow lounge so my surrounds are behind me and to the side and my 2 surround rears (the 6.1 and 7.1 elements) are at the back of the room. they add a nice depth. not to mention if you have a good amp it will do 7.1 stereo for music... which sounds amazing! (2 walls of stereo, with the center speaker taking the majority of the vocals etc). and as you say, 'wow, what a difference' that is because you are listening to 3d sound.... not just sound coming from 'over there'. the sound is around you. and no, those TVs that claim to give surround sound from a set of stereo speakers dont sound anywhere near as good as the proper thing.... trust me (ok, i havent tried the bose £3,000 ones but my TV has top end speakers built in and sounds nowhere near as good as the separates and speakers)

i would say if you can afford it get rid of that creative laps kit and get some proper speakers and a decent amp. i went with a 5.1 (little sony AV system) first but slowly upgraded to 7.1 yamaha amp and mordaunt short speakers... the difference is as good again from stereo to the sony 5.1 setup. also you find that amps and separates dont make the bloody hum of a PC! and btw - BBC HD channel does 5.1 when it can - so things like blue planet etc are (i think) in 5.1. some stuff definately is (heroes for example) and there was even cat stevens live on at xmas - in 5.1 - it sounded awesome! i just wish i'd waited another year to get the dolbyTRUEHD amps... uncompressed sound... lovely. although im more than happy with my current setup.

remember that 7.1 isnt really used on many films - there are some 6.1 (blade 2 for example) but not many that i have found. i would rather go for a decent amp as mine does lots of config with a mic and it adjusts the reverb etc for your particular room... very impessive!

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Anonymous Coward

@AC

"buy a cheap £4.5K new car and you'll get a plastic dashboard that falls off and a car that sounds like a set of roadworks above 40mph."

I know this is kinda off topic, but if you shop around you can get a new Citroen C1 for little more than that, and that is a well built little motor, and I've never had any problems with it above 40 thats for sure. I have nothing against rants, but rants need to be factually correct :)

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