The 3D DLP projectors are one of the most affordable solutions to get a large screen with 3D support, whether it is for watching 3D movies at home or for playing games in stereo 3D with a better sense of immersion. There are a lots of models available on the market using various interfaces and having different resolutions and capabilities and all of these may cause a confusion and as a result you may end up with a 3D-capable projectors that does not work the way you wanted it. There are a few very important things that you should be aware of when considering buying a new 3D DLP projector or already have one, but you still haven’t used its 3D capabilities and you want to try them out. One of the most important advantages, besides the large projected screen of a 3D DLP projector is the fact that the technology does not suffer from issues with crosstalk, unlike 3D-capable monitors or 3D HDTVs. So let us see what is the most important information that you need to know.
When talking about a consumer level affordable 3D DLP projectors there are two main types of modes being used for providing support for stereo 3D, these are frame sequential input (can be over a VGA or HDMI interface) or HDMI 1.4 frame packaging. The interface and mode being used by a 3D DLP projector is very essential on what else will you need and how can you use the projector, so you must carefully choose the right interface based on what toy are going to be using the projector for and even depending on what other hardware you have in your PC. You should be well aware of the fact that there are still no affordable consumer level 3D DLP projectors capable of providing 1080p resolution in 3D mode with high-enough refresh rate for comfortable gaming. So regardless of the interface a 3D DLP projector uses and the native resolution it supports you can forget about being able to play games in stereo 3D mode at 1080p resolution for now, but you can still watch 3D movies at Full HD resolution if the projector is with 1080p native resolution. And this is just one of the examples of the limitations and features you should be well aware of when considering to use a 3D DLP projector, especially if you still haven’t purchased one. But there are a lot more specific things…
3D DLP Projector with frame sequential support:
– You can supply the frame sequential output over VGA or HDMI 1.3 interface.
– The projector is limited to 720p resolution in stereo 3D mode as maximum.
– In order to use the projector in stereo 3D mode it has to be in its native resolution (can be up to 720p).
– Besides being able to use stereo 3D mode at 60Hz per eye, you can also use 120Hz refresh rate in 2D mode.
– You can use any standard pair of DLP Link glasses with it, there is no need for any kind of emitter as the technology uses special kind of white light flashes embedded in the image being displayed.
– With DLP Link glasses you are good to watch 3D videos with the help of any software player capable of outputting 3D in frame sequential mode such as the Stereoscopic Player for example.
– With DLP Link glasses you are not able to directly play games in stereoscopic 3D mode or watch Blu-ray 3D movies without having to meet some additional hardware requirements and use extra software.
– You can use DLP Link glasses to play games in stereo 3D mode only if you have a compatible AMD-based graphics card supporting AMD’s HD3D technology (Radeon HD 5000 series and up) together with the TriDef 3D softare.
– You can use Nvidia’s 3D Vision active shutter glasses together with their specific IR emitter to play games in stereo 3D mode if you have a compatible Nvidia-based graphics card (GeForce 8×00 series and up), you can’t use DLP Link glasses with 3D Vision.
– Have in mind that both AMD and Nvidia have a list of officially supported 3D DLP projectors, so any model out of that list may or may not work, so there is no guarantee that you would be able to use it.
– If you want to be able to play Blu-ray 3D movies then DLP Link glasses are not an option and if you have AMD-based graphics you are out of luck, all of the software players supporting Blu-ray 3D playback on PC such as PowerDVD have support only for 3D DLP projectors using Nvidia’s 3D Vision technology.
3D DLP Projector with HDMI 1.4 frame packaged support:
– You need to use the HDMI 1.4 interface on the projector
– The projector should be either 720p or 1080p native resolution, you will be limited to respectively 720p or be able to use both 720p and 1080p resolutions for stereo 3D, but wit the limitation of using 720p resolution at only 50/60 Hz 3D mode or 1080p at 24Hz 3D mode.
– Even if the projector is with 1080p native resolution, the refresh rate supported at it in 3D mode is limited to 24Hz which is good on for 3D movies, for games you still have to resort back to 720p resolution where you can use either 50Hz or 60Hz in 3D mode.
– With HDMI 1.4 3D DLP projectors you are not able to use 120Hz refresh rate in 2D mode as you can with the frame sequential models.
– These projectors still rely mostly on the standard DLP Link glasses, though there are some models available offering RF glasses as well, but due to the specifics of the HDMI 1.4 3D support the type of glasses used is of not much concern as long as the projector is compatible with them.
– The 3D DLP Projector with HDMI 1.4 frame packaged support do not have support for frame sequential input.
– You cannot use the Nvidia 3D Vision active shutter glasses with these projectors, you either need a generic DLP Link glasses or any other specific model designed for the particular projector (RF glasses for example).
– You can play any kind of 3D videos and movies, including Blu-ray 3D movies as long as you have a software 3D video player and a video card capable of supporting HDMI 1.4 frame packaged output.
– All software players with support for Blu-ray 3D movie playback such as PowerDVD will be able to play 3D movies if you have at least an a second generation Intel Core processor (Sandy Bridge) in order to have support for Intel’s InTRU 3D technology, and this means Intel Core i3, Core i5 or Core i7 CPU, Pentium processors won’t do as they don’t feature InTRU 3D support. For owners of AMD-based video cards the minimum is Radeon HD 5000 series (all AMD HD3D capable video cards should work, though some may not support GPU acceleration for Blu-ray 3D) and for owners of Nvidia-based GPUs the minimum is GeForce GTX 260 or GeForce GT 320 according to Nvidia (some of supported GPUs might not have GPU acceleration).
– When talking about gaming in stereo 3D mode, using Intel’s integrated GPUs is out of the question as they are simply not powerful enough and regarding the AMD and Nvidia-based GPUs the limitation is the same as with Blu-ray 3D movie playback above – you need ca graphics card supporting either Nvidia’s 3DTV Play or AMD’s HD3D technology that can supply HDMI 1.4 frame packaged output.
– Owners of compatible AMD-based hardware with AMD HD3D technology supported need to use the TriDef 3D software (the same as frame sequential users would), owners of Nvidia-based graphics cards need to use Nvidia’s 3DTV Play software (instead of the 3D Vision for owners of frame sequential capable projectors).
– Have in mind that both AMD and Nvidia have a list of officially supported 3D DLP projectors, so any model out of that list may or may not work, so there is no guarantee that you would be able to use it.
– Projectors relying on HDMI 1.4 frame packaged input do tech do have more input lag than models using frame sequential input for stereo 3D and while this isn’t an issue for watching 3D video on them it can be a bit of a problem for some (not all) gamers playing in stereo 3D mode.
You should note that the newer 3D DLP projectors using HDMI 1.4 for 3D support are not suitable for some owners of older Nvidia-based hardware that would work with frame sequential models for example such as the GeForce 8800 which although old is still quite popular and widely used product and quite capable for gaming in the not so demanding 720p resolution even in stereo 3D mode. And with regards to the increased input lag required for the processing of the frame packaged 3D input and the lack of support for 120Hz 2D mode the frame sequential models might still be more attractive for people that are going to be using them mostly for gaming. On the other hand 3D DLP projectors using frame sequential mode are more restrictive and hard to setup for users that are going to be using them mostly for watching movies in 3D whereas the HDMI 1.4 interface makes it much easier. For gaming in stereo 3D mode on a 3D DLP projector there is still not way to get 1080p resolution, so the far that some 3D DLP projectors with HDMI 1.4 interface are with native resolution of 1080p does not help at all as you’d still have to resort to 720p resolution when playing games in stereo 3D mode anyway due to the limited refresh rate at the higher resolution.
DDD is offering a trial version of their TriDef 3D software and Nvidia also does offer you to download a 14-day trial version of the 3DTV Play software from their website, so you can get these to try things out and if everything works then you can buy a license for the software. There is no trial version of the 3D Vision software as it is a part of the Nvidia graphics driver now and it includes only free anaglyph 3D mode, the 3D Vision functionality is tied to hardware requirements as well anyway. If you already have the IR emitter of a 3D Vision kit connected to a PC you get free 3DTV Play functionality, so there is no need to buy a separate license for that.
AMD HD3D supported 3D DLP projectors (frame sequential):
– BenQ MP777, MP776, MP626, MP782 ST, MP772 ST
– Dell S300, M410HD, M210X
– Infocus IN3116, IN2116, DepthQ-WXGA-HD, IN104, IN102
– Mitsubishi EW270U, XD600U, XD280U, EX240U, XD221U
– Optoma GT720, PRO350W, HD67, HD66
– Sharp PG-D45X3D, PG-D3010X, PG-D2500X
– Viewsonic PJD6531W, PDJ6251, PDJ6241, PDJ6221, PDJ6381, PDJ6211, PDJ6220-3D, PDJ6210-3D, PDJ5111-3D
Nvidia 3D Vision supported 3D DLP projectors (frame sequential):
– Acer X1261P, X1261-3D, X1130P, X1111, H5360, X1110
– BenQ W700, W710ST, MS612ST
– Canon LV-8235UST
– LightSpeed Design DepthQ HD 3D Projector, DepthQ HDs3D-1, DQ-3120
– NEC V300X, V300W, NP216
– Optoma GT360, GT720, HD67, HD66, HW536, IS500, XE149
– Sanyo PDG-DXL2000, PDG-DWL2500
– ViewSonic PJD6531w, PJD6220-3D, PJD6210-3D, PJD5351, PJD5111, PJD6381, PJD6211, PJD6241, PJD6251, PJD5112
– Panasonic PT-CW230, PT-CX200
Nvidia 3DTV Play supported 3D DLP projectors (HDMI 1.4):
– Acer H5360BD, H6510BD and H9500BD
– BenQ W1070, W1080ST, W7000
– Epson EH-TW6000, Home Cinema 3010, Home Cinema 5010
– JVC DLA-X3, DLA-X7, DLA-X9, DLA-RS40, DLA-RS45, DLA-RS50, DLA-RS55, DLA-RS60, DLA-RS65, X30, X70, X90
– Mitsubshi HC7800D
– Optoma GT750, HD33, HD83
– Panasonic PT-AE7000U
– Sharp XV-Z17000
– Sony VPL-HW30ES, VPL-VW90ES, VPL-VW95ES, VPL-VW1000ES
As you can see 3D DLP projector support overlaps quite a bit in the frame sequential models, though there are some models and brands covered by official support only by either AMD or Nvidia. Unlike Nvidia however AMD is much more open to support for projectors supporting HDMI 1.4 frame packaging as there is no official list of devices on their website. Now, if you already own a 3D-capable DLP projector that is not on the list don’t worry, there is still some chance that you might be able to make it work via a workaround solution, however you should be warned that things like IR emitter emulators, or EDID override drivers may or may not work in your case and even if they tend to work you might face different issues or problems and you never know if they won’t stop working soon. So resort to trying the different workarounds (some of which are also being discussed on this website) as a last resort if you already own a device that is not on the officially compatible list, if you are making the decision on what to buy now, better choose a compatible model fitting your needs and requirements, as this can save you a lot of trouble later on.
Tags:3d dlp·3d dlp projector·3d vision·3dtv play·amd·AMD HD3D·blu-ray 3d·frame packaged·frame sequential·hdmi 1.4·intru 3d·nvidia·powerdvd·stereo 3d·tridef 3d
Cyberlink has recently announced full compatibility with the new Windows 8 OS in the latest update for their PowerDVD 12 software allowing you to playback Blu-ray 3D movies and stereoscopic 3D videos on systems using the new operating system. Cyberlink has also released PowerDVD Mobile for Windows 8, a software that is specially optimized for multimedia playback on tablets with Windows 8 (note it is Windows 8, not ARM-based tablets with Windows RT), offering similar tile-based interface like the one of the Windows 8 Start menu. I was however more interested in trying PowerDVD 12 on a Windows 8-based tablet and luckily I’ve had an Acer Iconia Tab W700 handy to test with. The Acer W700 tablet uses Mobile Intel HM77 Express chipset and comes with a 3rd Generation Intel Core i5-3317U Processor and an integrated Intel HD Graphics 4000 along with a micro HDMI connector for use with external displays, making it a perfect combination for playing back 3D movies and videos. The hardware does offer support for Intel’s InTru 3D technology that is required in order to be able to output 3D content using HDMI 1.4 frame packaging for example to Blu-ray 3D movies on compatible 3D HDTVs or other 3D-capable displays.
Unlike on a computer used for work, desktop or laptop, where I really don’t like much the new Tile-based Start menu, a real productivity killer for me, on a tablet it is really handy. The Acer W700 tablet comes with a 1920×1080 resolution IPS LCD panel in an 11.6-inch display which is not a problem for the Start menu, but makes the standard Desktop and everything running there quite small and hard to use just with the touch panel (adding a wireless Bluetooth mouse is a kind of a solution). So the new PowerDVD Mobile for Windows 8 could actually be quite handy when you don’t need 3D support as it plays back not only video, but also music and photos. Using the standard PowerDVD menu is not a problem with the touchscreen display of the W700, however when playing back 3D videos you’d probably want to have a mouse handy due to the specific requirements in order to be able to make things work. You’ll have to select the external 3D HDTV in my case a Panasonic 3D Plasma to be the only monitor in order for PowerDVD to detect and activate properly the 3D support of the Intel GPU (not Clone or Extend Displays). So you end up with a working touchscreen on the tablet, but no image on the tablet and the image displayed on the bigger 3D HDTV, believe me it is not very easy to navigate this way, so a mouse is a must have. Other than that everything is working just fine, 3D videos play just fine and the 3D mode is automatically activated on the display. If you want to be able to play Blu-ray 3D movies you’ll need to either get an external Blu-ray device that uses USB interface (the tablet comes with USB 3.0 support) or to backup the Blu-ray 3D movie into an image file that you can transfer to the tablet.
I should warn you that not every tablet out there with Windows 8 will be able to play stereoscopic 3D video on an external 3D-capable display like the Acer Iconia Tab W700 is capable of. The reason for that is the fact that the more affordable tablets with Windows 8 do not come with Core i-series of processors, but instead use the relatively new Intel Atom Dual-Core Processor Z2760 that according to Intel has been designed especially for Windows 8 tablets. This Intel Atom processor doe not come with graphics supporting HDMI 1.4 or the InTru 3D technology, two things that are required for playing back 3D video on active 3D-capable displays – 3D HDTVs, 3D Projectors or 3D monitors. You could still be able to make this work with passive 3D HDTV though by using direct Row Interleaved output to the TV set instead of relying on HDMI 1.4’s frame packaging method. This however will still probably be a no-go option for Blu-ray 3D movies as the Atom processor will probably not be powerful enough to decode the 3D MVC streams in real time, though I still haven’t personally tried that, but it should work Ok with most 3D videos.
I’m also interested to see some ARM-based tablets running Windows RT, wondering how these will handle stereoscopic 3D content if they can. Actually I’m not sure if the RT version will have native stereoscopic 3D support like the Windows 8 does and Microsoft isn’t helping much in telling us clearly if it does or not. Not to mention the fact that Windows RT will have much less software available for it initially, but still it is interesting to see what Microsoft has come up with on that front as well.
Tags:Acer Iconia Tab W700·Acer W700·Acer W700 3D·hdmi 1.4·intru 3d·PowerDVD 12·stereo 3d·Windows 8·Windows 8 3D
The laptops with built-in 3D-capable displays on the market are still not that many, and most of the systems that do have 3D displays are high-end and targeted at gamers and that actually makes sense considering the extra price you have to pay for the 3D display. Active 3D technology seems to be the most popular among these solutions, though there are a few solutions offering autostereoscopic 3D displays and in the lower end price segment there are multiple options with passive 3D displays. And while it definitely sounds nice to have a laptop with a 3D-capable display, most people actually get a normal laptop with a 2D screen and at some point of time decide that they want to connect it to a 3D monitor, 3D projector or a 3D HDTV that they already own. And usually this is where the problems start along with the questions why it does not work. That is why I’ll give you some useful advice on what to look for in a laptop if you plan to using it in stereoscopic 3D mode with an external 3D display of some kind at some point in time and you want to make sure that you are going to be able to.
I’ll be starting with active 3D displays that are capable of supporting 1080p resolution at 120Hz or 60Hz 3D mode at Full HD resolution as these are the most demanding ones. Usually for such a monitor you will need a Dual-Link DVI port and these are rarely seen available on laptops nowadays, you may be lucky to find such on a bigger and more powerful multimedia or gaming laptops only or on an external docking station for mobile workstations or business class laptops. Alternative solution would be to look for a DisplayPort connector that also has enough bandwidth to output 3D at high resolution and refresh rate (if you have a 3D-capable monitor with DP support) or if you add in an active DP to Dual-Link DVI adapter.
If you are going to be connecting a passive 3D monitor or 3D HDTV to your laptop things are much easier as these solutions can accept the stereo 3D image in a single 1080p frame at 60Hz, so the bandwidth requirements are no different than a standard 2D image. The drawback of using this technology and the Row Interleaved method is that you essentially loose half of the vertical resolution of the image when in 3D mode. But the good thing is that you can at least use pretty much any interface that can output 1080p 60Hz for sending the 3D image to the 3D display and since HDMI is nowadays so common that pretty much any laptop has it you’ll be covered for that.
Next up are 3D HDTVs and some Full HD 3D projectors using HDMI 1.4 interface for stereoscopic 3D support. This is a standard interface and you may be able to use a lot of laptops that have HDMI output to connect to such 3D HDTVs and feed them with 3D content, you just need to make sure that the laptop has a GPU capable of supporting HDMI 1.4 frame packaging 3D output as not all do. Due to the currently more limited bandwidth capabilities of the HDMI chips used in 3D HDTVs you are essentially limited to using 1080p 24Hz 3D mode for movies and 720p 50/60Hz 3D mode for gaming, and there is no support for 120Hz in 2D mode. The good news is that people with passive 3D HDTVs can skip the HDMI 1.4 frame packaging 3D support and the limitation for the lower refresh rate at 1080p and instead go for Row Interleaved output for 1080p 60Hz 3D mode, but with half vertical resolution, so there is still some trade off, but this is an extra option that owners of active 3D HDTVs to not have.
Moving on to 3D DLP projectors, most of these use frame sequential input, so they still need high refresh rates, however due to the fact that there aren’t that many Full HD models (these tend to use HDMI 1.4) and most consumer models are up to 720p resolution, so you should be fine connecting these to a laptop. The 3D DLP projectors either have a VGA or an HDMI connector, the two most commonly available interfaces on laptops at the moment, and for both the 120Hz refresh rate is not a problem at the lower resolution that the devices use.
Ok, so far I’ve talked about the interfaces and the requirements and limitations about connecting different 3D-capable displays to a laptop, but this is just the start of things as the next step is much more important in order to be able to actually output stereo 3D content to the display and not just be able to connect it. It is not only important what video outputs you have available on your laptop, but also what graphics processor they are connected to, because you’ll have to find a software that needs to be able to work with them properly for the stereoscopic 3D output. And since we have three major makers of GPUs (AMD, Intel and Nvidia) things can get a bit complicated here, especially depending on what kind of stereoscopic 3D use you need with your laptop.
Switching graphics is your enemy number one for stereo 3D use on a laptop, no matter what kind of manual or automatic switching between an integrated Intel and discrete AMD or Nvidia graphics you have this thing may prevent you from properly using the right software for outputting stereoscopic 3D content from your laptop. For example the Nvidia Optimus technology is a nice and useful feature that can extend your battery life when you don’t need to use the more powerful discrete graphics chip, but it also prevents you from using 3D vision, “Optimized for GeForce” or the 3DTV Play software solutions for outputting 3D content to a compatible 3D display. So try to stay away from such technologies if stereoscopic 3D support from your laptop is important for you, though if it is only for playing 3D movies on your 3D HDTV for example you may still have an option available.
Even if you have a laptop with integrated Intel GPU and a discrete graphics chip that uses some sort of switching between the two graphics processors, and thus you are unable to use the discrete chip for stereo 3D, you might still be able to get the integrated one to work. And while Intel’s GPUs integrated in their processors are not powerful enough for stereoscopic 3D gaming, they do support HDMI 1.4 and have enough performance for stereoscopic 3D photos and 3D movie playback, including Blu-ray 3D. That is if you happen to have a compatible chipset and processor that can support HDMI 1.4 and stereoscopic 3D output. What you’d need to have is at least a second generation Intel Core processor (Sandy Bridge or the newer Ivy Bridge platform) in order to have support for Intel’s InTRU 3D technology, and this means Intel Core i3, Core i5 or Core i7 CPU, Pentium processors won’t do as they don’t feature InTRU 3D support. All of the major software Blu-ray 3D players do have support for Intel’s stereo 3D implementation, so the software side is well covered.
Ok, so we now know which Intel integrated GPUs do support stereo 3D, but what about the supported AMD and Nvidia graphics processors used in mobile computers. Both companies have stereo 3D support for a wide range of their more recent graphics processors, though Nvidia’s support covers way more older generations than AMD’s. Looking at the official list of compatible mobile Nvidia GPUs you can see that everything from the GeForce 200M series up until now with the 600M series is compatible with the company’s stereo 3D technologies, however even the older GeForce 8000M and 9000M mobile series should also work. But you should be careful with for the presence of a GPU switching technology as even though a GPU might be compatible with stereo 3D, that technology may be preventing it from properly providing 3D support. Currently AMD only lists their latest Radeon 6000M series of GPUs as compatible, but their previous 5000M series also supports AMD’s HD3D technology and you might be able to even get some stereo 3D support on older GPU generations even though they do not provide support the AMD HD3D technology.
I hope that this short guide can help you when choosing a new laptop for stereo 3D use or you want to see if your old one might be able to work in stereo 3D mode together with an external stereoscopic 3D-capable display. Feel fee to ask any other questions that you may have in the comments below…
Tags:3d laptop·3D Notebook·3d vision·3dtv play·AMD 3D·AMD HD3D·intel 3d·intru 3d·Nvidia 3D·Optimized for Geforce·stereo 3d·stereo 3d laptop