back to article Texas Instruments stands out with 3D TV

Watching your favourite film in high definition and on a monster screen is all well and good, but it still doesn't make the film leap out at you. Texas Instruments claims it's overcome this problem and has teamed up with Samsung to develop a 3D TV. The display, which was last week exhibited at the IFA consumer electronics …

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  1. Simon

    Glasses

    Im sorry but I would never feel right wearing a pair of stupid glasses to watch TV.

    How about I just do alternate blinking instead, right i'm going to start practising now until my boss sends me home on a sicky for "Odd behaviour".

  2. Dan P

    Red and green glasses anyone

    This sounds very similar to the old-fashioned red and green glasses with two images in red and green tint overlayed on top of each other.

    I can't imagine it taking off... I don't wear glasses and can't see that I'd be happy having to wear glasses every time I watch TV. Similarly my fiancée, who does wear glasses, wouldn't be happy having to put another set of glasses over hers to watch TV.

    In addition you'd need at least 4 or 5 pairs of glasses for friends and family - that's going to start costing a rediculous amount of money!

  3. druck Silver badge

    Been there done that

    Exactly the same technique was being used to create pseudo 3D on the BBC Micro back in 1983 or there abouts. The refresh on this system is a bit higher, but people still don't like wearing glasses to watch TV.

  4. Lewis Wernham

    Huh?

    So it's basically an updated version of the old Sega 3D glasses then?

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sega Master System, 1987

    The Sega Master System had LCD shutter glasses in the living room in 1987 and they were crap then. There's still the problem of having to face the TV straight on, of having focal distance and parallax distance not matching, and the main one: a guaranteed headache within 30 minutes due to the flicker.

  6. /\/\j17

    re: Red and green glasses anyone

    I can't see these fitting over your fiancée's existing glasses, Dan P so now we are talking about a set of standard glasses for you and a set of prescription ones for her...and for each of your glass-wearing friends/family...that need replacing every time their prescription changes.

  7. David Greaves

    Mmmm - lcd contact lenses....

    Wake me up when they make lcd contact lenses with the circuitry covering the iris... (silver or glowing, of course).

    Now that would be getting somewhere....

  8. Rosco

    Content?

    Presumably movies need to be filmed in a special way to provide the correct images for each eye - why would you buy one of these now when very few (any?) 3D films are being produced for this format?

  9. Andrew Moore

    Old technology

    Stereographics (now RealD) have been doing these for years- they are called CrystalEyes. The cooler tech is the glasses with polarised lenses- one in the horizontal and one in the vertical which look like an ordinary pair of sunglasses (a lot lighter too than the clunky set show here).

  10. Hector

    I dont understand what is new about this?

    I saw this 3D TV article headline and thought that this was new, but what they have described has been around for years.

    I have a pair of edimensional shutter glasses and a Dell 6 foot DLP display and have been playing games and watching 3D films for about 4 years now.

    The technology for PC gaming in 3D this way has been around for longer (the NVIDIA stereo drivers are up to version 7 or 8 now I think), but I do know for at least 3 years the software has been around to study video and pick out slower scrolling backgrounds and work out the 3D views of it to turn any film and TV program into 3D.

    So am I missing something, or has Texas spent R&D time on re inventing the wheel?

    confused,

    L

  11. bill murray

    Title

    i dont think thats so much the issue. the content available just isnt ample. there is no classic movies i know of in 3d. and i have explored it before. the thing is the movie actually needs shot with a special camera. so no movie ever made will ever be made 3d...... it would be cool if they made cartoons in 3d...

  12. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Sega Master System, anyone?

    Sega had an identical concept for the Master System 20 years ago!

  13. Tom

    Sounds interesting for gamers

    I can't imagine me and the girlfriend always sticking these specs on to watch TV or films, but I tend to play console games alone, so I'd only need one pair for myself. As gamers are already used to extra devices, such as controllers, headset microphones, etc. I think they'd be a more willing audience. I'm also sure that the TV will be able to be used in 2D mode without the glasses, for normal or group viewing.

  14. Joe Blogs

    Not New

    Shuttered 3D glasses have been around for a long time. Last pair I had had an external box that done the timing, all this is is the timing box is built into the TV now (and refresh rate of TV is increased).

    http://www.stereo3d.com/shutter.htm

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Whooo

    Shutterglasses for the win! Let's party like it's 1999! No, seriously, I don't know how they will work at 60Hz, but this way of achieving 3D used to tire your eyes in little time. If you don't get sick first.

  16. Andy S

    what ever happened

    to the 3d trials that the bbc did years ago. It looked perfectly normal on any tv without the glasses, (standard paper jobs, with one slightly darker side) but wearing them you got a snazzy, normally coloured, 3d image. They did a full weekend of 3d programs i think, and it was a good 10-15 years ago.

  17. Gersam

    All about the gaming applications

    It's not just that people would feel a bit stupid wearing glasses to watch 3DTV, or that they would need a set for everybody in the house plus visitors, it simply wouldn't make an episode of Coronation Street any better. I've always found the 3D Imax experience to be a little disappointing.

    If used for playing first person shooters, driving games or any other game genres you care to mention, it might just be brilliant. In fact, if someone could hook up a PS3D (TM) to an imax screen for a game of Half Life 2.....

  18. jonathan keith

    Old tech

    This stuff has been around for about a decade on PCs - I remember having a pair of those glasses with an old Elsa Erazor 3d card in the late 90s, I think. The idea was for FPS games to be "properly" 3d. As I recall, they made a lot of people violently ill. NVidia drivers still come with the software to run the specs, I think.

  19. Neil Croft

    Glasses

    I do wear glasses. No use to me at all.

  20. Mike Green

    Films

    What we need is all films to be shot 3d from now on, and for a format which has both views interleaved. Then whatever 3d tvs come out read this same format and translate them into their particular style of 3d. Is it not possible to do polarised 3d TV as someone mentioned above? Presumably you'd need to build the screens in a particular way... James Cameron's 3d titanic documentary worked quite well, using polarised.

  21. kev conroy

    Pony

    Why do they waste their time with it? No-one, just no-one is going to wear special glasses to watch TV.

    I've seen the Philips screen that does 3D perfectly but without glasses, and the result is really freaky when you see golf balls come out the screen at you and suchlike.

    What soon became very apparent to me was that the demo material was specially created. The tech wasn't going to make Eastenders or The Weather any better. Most use would probably be for adverts where cleverly shot scenes would grab your attention.

    Obviously Philips are way ahead of the competition in making amazing tech that no one needs. Way to go, Dutch nutters.

  22. Francis Boyle Silver badge

    3D is a gimmick

    and always will be. If I wanted to look at something that looks like a model train set I'd get a model train set.

  23. Daniel Ballado-Torres

    3D Imax

    @Gersam: The main thing I find disappointing about IMAX is that it is mostly utter crap that gets to show on IMAX. African documentaries? Mexican documentaries? If I want to watch a documentary, I'll watch the BBC. Only two of these really took advantage on the IMAX: one about the Space Station, and another one about F1 racing. (Watching an F1 car gunning 300+ km/h on first-person view in 3D really, really takes the cake).

    Still, the best examples I've seen on 3D usually involve the red/green glasses, and they do look like true 3D. Though this invention looks like it would do a Pokemon on people (read: seizures from excessive flickering).

    Am I the only one noticing that the proposed 3DTV runs at exactly the double of the normal US frequency? (60Hz*2)

  24. A. Merkin

    Been that, Done there...

    How is this news? The Mayans were using LCD shutter glasses in their crystal pyramids back in 1200 BC, and that was just a rip off of the even earlier Atlantean immersive 3D system. Get with the times TI!!!

  25. Aidan Heather

    3d has it's place.

    Of course not everyone is going to wear stuff like this for everyday TV watching and yes, the tech has been around for a while. But that's hardly the point is it? This technology works fantastically well on Imax (to Daniel B-T: Have you seen the cyberworld tech demo?)

    And at some point soon, in a similar way to the 'Wii', someone is going to introduce a 'killer ap' on this type of hardware and suddenly we will all be eager to look like prats wearing the goggles. But nobody is suggesting a television *replacement* here.

    That Elza stuff was really poorly implemented it's true, but think of the possibilities for gaming with even a subtle 3D engine. Some will vomit, others will become more fully immersed.

  26. Francis Boyle Silver badge

    3D is a gimmick

    and always will be. If I wanted to look at something that looks like a model train set I'd get a model train set.

  27. Paul M

    3D Content

    Of course it would be relatively easy to knock out a 3D version of any CGI film - as long as they kept the backups of course!

    I saw Polar Express in 3D at the IMAX which was reasonably entertaining.

  28. Paul

    elsa & asus lcd shutter glasses

    I still have my Elsa shutter glasses which have an IR led to switch, I also had the Asus wired ones which came with the Gforce2-MX-Deluxe package.

    The clever bit of it was that ANY game which used windows directX would appear in 3D as the directX driver has a 3D model of what you're looking at and can generate two distinct views.

    The most important thing was to have a CRT which could do at least 110 if not 120Hz refresh, and even then the flicker wasn't so nice! It worked pretty well, unrealtournament was pretty damn good especially when also using surround sound.

  29. fluffy

    @ Andy S

    That gimmicky method of doing 3D isn't really true 3D, and only works if you have everything in carefully-controlled motion. It's called the Pulfrich effect; basically it works by inducing lag into one eye. It was a pretty common gimmick in the 90s, but really what you can do with it is pretty limited. It'd work really good for side-scrolling rails shooter games, for example (and actually it should work on most of those games without any modifications at all!), but not for FPSes or anything else which isn't in constant horizontal motion with parallax effects.

  30. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Pony

    I'm sure Philips could find an application for the 3D display tech in their medical division. Imagine being able to view MRI and CT data in real 3D!

  31. Herbert Meyer

    there is no classic movies i know of in 3d

    Ah, you young people. The master, Hitchcock, made one, "Dial M for Murder". I have actually seen it in 3D. There is a spectacular shot looking up Grace Kelly's robe from the floor across the room. Nice Legs ! Of course, he also put in a shot of a bobby standing in front of a rear projection screen, the bobby is in 3D, the background scenery is in 2D. Very jarring.

    Also "House of Wax", a different kind of classic, with Vinnie Price and Charles Bronson. Maybe not so classic.

    Also Warhol's "Frankenstein" was in 3D. "F*** life in the gall bladder", in 3D. Definitely classic something.

  32. The Mighty Spang

    warning to content providers

    for those of us with a low inter-ocular distance (eyes too close together) you may make content that we can't really use.

    with a low IOD, very close objects that seem fine to everybody else break into 2, killing the 3d effect and causing you to squint to try and get it back into 3d.

    i found out about the low IOD whilst having a demonstration by a VR company back in the early 90s. anything close just exploded into two.

    I was experimenting with my own solid shaded mode-x red-blue glasses 3d engine back in about 93. very early on I realised it needed a control to vary the "eye distance" when projecting, not just because I needed it quite low, but moving from a 14" monitor to the boardroom projector needed different settings.

    there are other problems though, that the 3d images are all in focus, which isn't how we tend to see things normally.

  33. Vic Sub

    LCD 3D display sans glasses

    In my days at the PC Magazine Labs, I saw a demonstration of an LCD display that achieved a really nice 3D effect by putting two LCDs layered one on top of the other. The foremost layer was transparent and showed the foreground of the 3D image while the hindmost showed the background. I don't know if the product ever got off the ground but I thought it was noteworthy.

    As for the "blinder" glasses, they were a novelty at best. The effects were really trippy and you'd go looking for all the nicest 3D renderings to see how much cooler they'd look but using the goggles in an actual game was too distracting, tiring and downright confusing.

    While an RPG was whizzing towards you, instead of dodging it, you'd be mesmorized by how trippy it looked as it careened for your face.

    Not an advantage at all

  34. Andy Dent

    Content, adjustable 3D etc

    With regards to content, check out the conversion stuff at

    http://www.ddd.com/technology/technology.html

    These guys have 3D conversion down to something of similar effort to colourising old black and white movies.

    As far as the low inter-ocular distance goes, the kind of 3D that DDD used to produce allowed for real-time adjustment - I wrote their OpticBoom QuickTime plugin which allowed you to switch the 3D on and off and adjust the "3D Depth". I assume similar stuff will be made available for viewing movies on this TV.

    Howeer, if you thought the war over the remote control was bad, imagine the war over the 3D adjustment! Hopefully the condition is genetic and the whole family suffers (umm, hopefullly?).

    Anyway, for me the single biggest limitation of most 3D viewing technology, especially the glasses-free displays, is that you can't watch them lying on your side on the couch! I think time-based differential stuff like this will still work but of course if the separation is horizontal, you lose the 3D effect depending on your head angle.

  35. AM

    3D Glasses

    Does anyone remember the other method they used to achieve 3D, where the glasses contained one lens which was slightly tinted? If I remember, the glasses were included in one of the TV mags prior to Children in Need or something, where they planned to show some specially shot scenes.

    The idea being that the brain takes that little bit longer to process a dark image than a bright one. So whilst the same image is displayed to both eyes (from any standard TV), the right eye was taking longer to process and so was effectively seeing an 'old' image, or rather an image from a slightly different position in space from the left eye.

    Granted the effect only worked if the camera was moving, and moving right to left across the scene but the specially shot sequences worked well, as did a lot of other standard programmes like the footy.

    Surprised this hasn't been dug up for use more often.

  36. Daniel Winstone

    Last invention of the Human Race

    Will of course be something very like a Holodeck.

    Programable and voice controlled. Interactive hologrames. Weapons and or sex toys.

    I give the human race about a 30 day life expectancy after the technology has been sorted out and everyone gets one in their spare room.

    Or main room of course.

    On the upside - interior designers will be the first to go.

  37. Ben W

    yeah......

    Cos this is going to take off like a brick!!!!

    I wish I could get paid their salery for being a moron too!!!

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