Acer just announced a new 23.6″ 3D monitor, namely the Acer HS244HQ which is also the first on the market to deliver Full HD 3D support via the new HDMI 1.4a standard, meaning that you can use this monitor with just about any 3D-capable device that outputs stereoscopic 3D content in frame packaged format according to the HDMI 1.4(a) specs. This means that you will be able to use this monitor for example together with your PlayStation 3 console to play games in stereo 3D, instead of having to buy a more expensive 3D HDTV, but that pretty much goes for any other device that uses the same standard for outputting S3D video in some form.
According to Acer, with currently available 3D shutter technology (probably meaning 3D Vision), the monitor brightness dramatically drops to 16% of normal when in 3D mode, however the new active shutter glasses that Acer is bundling with the HS244HQ 3D monitor you should be able to get tree times that brightness level or around 50% of the light displayed by the monitor. Of course the monitor comes with a built-in IR transmitter to synchronize the glasses with the stereo 3D image being shown on it. From what I’m seeing on the currently available photos, the glasses seems much like those bundled with the HP Envy 17 3D laptops and much like the ones made by Xpand, so it is quite possible the glasses are the same. So indeed they are more brighter than the 3D Vision from what I’ve personally seen, although there might be some differences with the glasses coming with the Acer monitor.
According to Acer this new monitor should be capable of achieving 12,000,000:1 contrast ratio (dynamic of course) thanks to its LED backlight, something that is quite impressive as a number at least, but in real world use it might not be comparable to the level of contrast and black/white levels you get with a plasma TV for example. And of course you are getting Full HD native resolution with support for 3D, however what is important to note here is the fact that this monitor will feature only two HDMI 1.4a connectors that support stereo 3D, so there is no Dual-Link DVI anymore available. This also means that you will also be constrained to the limits introduced by the HDMI 1.4a specifications regarding stereo 3D support – 720p 50/60Hz 3D mode and 1080p 24Hz 3D mode, and no 2D mode with full 120Hz refresh rate, although the LCD panel should be perfectly capable of that. These limits are implied by the HDMI 1.4(a) standard and the specifications defined in it, so there is not much you can do, however Acer has more interesting new 3D-capable models that will be announced in the next few months that will offer an alternative to that.
Acer already has available for quite a while 23.6-inch Acer GD245HQ/GD235HZ 3D Capable LCD monitor, that only supports frame sequential Dual-Link DVI input for stereo 3D content, and the company just announced 23.6-inch Acer HS244HQ, that will only work with frame packaged stereo 3D content as defined in the HDMI 1.4a standard. But in the beginning of 2011 the company will gradually introduce additional 3D-capable LCD monitors with different sizes, capabilities and for different segments, thus becoming the brand with the widest gamma of 3D-capable LCD monitors on the market.
In the value segment there will be the new 23-inch Acer that will be using passive polarization and will also support only HDMI 1.4a input for stereo 3D content. In the more mainstream multimedia segment, there will be the new 27-inch Acer with LED backlight that will again feature only HDMI 1.4a support for stereo 3D content (will have 4x HDMI 1.4a ports) and will also come with Acer’s active shutter glasses bundled and an IR emitter built in the display. And for the 3D gamers there are also some good news, apart from the fact that the Acer GD245HQ/GD235Hz models will still remain available on the market, there will be also two new models that will be designed to be used together with Nvidia’s 3D Vision glasses, both of which will be bundled with the glasses. The new 23.6-inch model Acer GN245HQ will be available with LED backlight, integrated IR emitter and will support both Dual-Link DVI and HDMI 1.4a for stereo 3D input to offer the best flexibility for the user. The new 27-inch Acer HN274H 3D LCD Monitor will probably be the most interesting of the upcoming products, as it will be with LED backlight, integrated IR emitter and bundled with 3D Vision glasses, as well as offering Dual-Link DVI and HDMI 1.4a support for stereo 3D content…