3D Vision Blog

A normal user's look into the world of 3D Stereo Technologies

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The Gimpel3D 2D to 3D Stereo Conversion Software is Now Open Source

November 20th, 2013 · No Comments · 2D to 3D Conversion

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I’ve introduced the free Gimpel3D manual 2D to 3D stereo conversion software here on the blog back in 2011, and now the author has made it an open source software by releasing the code of the project on Sourceforge. Gimpel3D is a free application that can help you convert a single 2D image or image sequence into stereoscopic 3D written by René Gimpel. The conversion to 3D is manual and the software only assists you, so do not expect automation like with an 2D to 3D autoconversion solutions that do everything with just a click of a button, with Gimpel3D however you can get much better results.

Since the original freeware release of Gimpel3D, many of the ideas presented in the software have become standard features in commercial software and as a result the author of the program has decided that there is no significant advantage to continue developing it as a stand-alone proprietary solution, although the codebase makes a nice platform for future research and experimentation. René Gimpel has released all source code for G3D under the GPL so that other stereo researchers, hobbyists, and/or professionals can build upon his existing work, and integrate/test new capabilities using the projective modeling environment.

- For more information or to download the source code or the free Gimpel3D software…

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BenQ XL2720Z, a New 3D Vision-ready and 144Hz 2D Gaming Monitor

November 20th, 2013 · 1 Comment · GeForce 3D Vision

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Earlier this month BenQ has announced their new monitor XL2720Z, the first 27-inch gaming monitor that BenQ releases with support for 144Hz refresh rate as their previous model XL2720T was up to 120Hz. BenQ XL2720Z is also 3D Vision ready, though when using it in stereoscopic 3D mode you are being limited to 120Hz (60Hz per eye) like with other 144Hz 3D-capable models. And while the 3D Vision compatibility also comes with 3D LightBoost technology support that can help improving the brightness level in stereo 3D mode and also help reduce motion blur in 2D mode, BenQ has also introduced a new Motion Blur Reduction technology of their own that essentially does what 3D Lightboost does – strobing backlight, but BenQ’s solution does not require “software hacks” to work like you may need to do to enable Nvidia’s 3D Lightboost for motion blur reduction. It will be interesting to see how will BenQ’s blur reduction solution will compare to Nvidia’s 3D Lightboost approach that was originally designed for stereo 3D use. Other interesting things about the BenQ XL2720Z is a new Low Blue Light mode that allows gamers to adjust the blue light levels of the monitor that is considered to be the cause of eyestrain for example when using computers for long periods of time. Another new feature introduced a this monitor is the Gaming-comfort Flicker-free technology that is supposed to eliminate noticeable flickering of the backlight when you lower the brightness level of the monitor (no PWM dimming of the backlight).

If you want to be able to use the BenQ XL2720Z for stereoscopic 3D gaming you would need to get a pair of 3D Vision glasses as apparently this model does only come with built-in IR emitter, but no 3D glasses bundled, and BenQ’s target is probably not stereo 3D gamers, but 2D gamers interested in the higher refresh rate. Unfortunately this monitor does not feature the recently announced G-Sync technology from Nvidia, so if you are looking for a new gaming monitor you might want to wait a bit more for the first G-Sync enabled monitors to come out (probably early next year). BenQ is one of the partners of Nvidia for the G-Sync technology along with Asus, Philips and ViewSonic. By the end of the year Nvidia is supposed to start offering the Nvidia G-SYNC Do-it-yourself upgrade kits for owners of the ASUS VG248QE monitors. So now may not be the best time to go for the BenQ XL2720Z, unless you don’t care about the elimination of screen tearing, input lag, and stutter that Nvidia’s G-Sync technology promises. If your interest is mostly in the new BenQ Motion Blur Reduction technology, then you might also want to check out the EIZO Foris FG2421 gaming monitor that also features similar strobing backlight technology helping eliminate motion blur, but Eizo also has a VA-type LCD and not a TN panel like on this BenQ display.

- For more information about the BenQ XL2720Z 3D Vision and 144Hz 2D gaming monitor…

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Update Version 0.6.4 for the vorpX Beta 3D Driver for Oculus Rift

November 19th, 2013 · 1 Comment · 3D / AR / VR / HMD

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If I did not read that an update for the beta of the VorpX 3D driver for Oculus Rift has been released I probably would not notice (the update is available for people that bought a beta license). According to the developers of the software should update itself automatically when you start it, but in my case it was not updating itself or at least it did not give any indication of downloading and installing an update. Fortunately after running the small executable setup file that I got when I purchased my license it downloaded and installed the update, though the control panel remained absolutely the same and since there is not even an about box or check for update option (there should be) the only way I could see that I have the update version 0.6.4 installed was the files dated 15.11.2013 and the text file containing the changelog mentioning what was changed in version 0.6.4, so below you can find the full changelog of the vorpX beta 0.6.4:

New/Changed:
- Experimental 64bit support
- Added NullTracker to disable tracking completely
- Various Windows Vista related installer changes/additions

Bugfixes:
- Various changes to avoid startup crashes with Steam/Origin/UPlay games on some systems
- VR Keys mapping not working
- Gamepad mapping not working
- Default Eye Separation twice as high as intended in Geometry 3D
- Keyboard focus ‘ding issue’ with various games
- vorpX Control does not start in Windows Vista
- Disabling vorpX freezes screen in Geometry 3D (DX9)
- Disabling vorpX causes black screen in Z-Buffer 3D (DX9)
- Headtracking activates vorpX option freezes rendering under certain circumstances
- DX9 render time handling in Geometry 3D
- Potential crash issues while loading Oculus profiles
- Geometry 3D Draw Exception DeusEx HR and possibly more games (DX9)

Added Profiles:
- ARMA III (Z3D)
- Battlefield 4 (Z3D)
- Bioshock 2 (G3D, Z3D)
- Call of Duty: Ghosts (Z3D)
- Dead Space 2 (G3D, Z3D)
- Dead Space 3 (G3D, Z3D)
- Outlast (G3D, Z3D)
- Q.U.B.E (G3D, Z3D)
- Splinter Cell Blacklist (Z3D)

Profile changes/fixes:
- Battlefield 3: no 3D after ALT-TAB/Resize
- Deus Ex: Human Revolution: Support for the Director’s Cut added
- Elder Scrolls: Oblivion: nightsky/stars look weird with Geometry 3D
- Elder Scrolls: Skyrim: nightsky/stars look weird with Geometry 3D
- Fallout 3: nightsky/stars look weird with Geometry 3D
- Fallout NV: nightsky/stars look weird with Geometry 3D
- X3: Should now support X3: Albion Prelude in 3D (untested)

The most notable changes are the improvements for games that had problems running due to some sort of launcher as well as the official support for Battlefield 4, Call of Duty: Ghosts and Splinter Cell Blacklist. There is also an experimental support for 64-bit game executables, though there are still not many games that come with a 64-bit version along the 32-bit executable. And while we see good improvements in the compatibility of the software and new features, the most basic things that are a must have are still lacking like for example a proper and complete list of games that are officially supported with information what 3D mode they support, more detailed documentation about the various features and options of the software… and even a simple About option giving you the version number would be nice.

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