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Trying Anaglyph Stereoscopic 3D Gaming on your Laptop

February 3rd, 2010 · 5 Comments · Anaglyph Glasses


The usage of Anaglyph method for viewing stereoscopic 3D is still by far the easiest way to get a glimpse of what is possible in the world of S3D and what you can expect from a better solution. Of course there are some issues associated with the anaglyph method like problems with color reproduction or you getting tired even after a little use of the red-cyan or other color filters. But still having in mind that you can try it without the need for special display, glasses or even software that you have to pay is just enough for a lot of people to want to try that first and then go with solutions like 3D Vision, iZ3D Monitors, Zalman Trimon and others that require a serious investment in hardware and not only for the 3D setup itself, but also for the PC that will be able to handle the 3D content good enough. So lets get to the point how you can test anaglyph stereo 3D gaming on your mobile computer in particular, but the same solutions will also work on a desktop PC…


If your laptop has an Nvidia-based GPU inside (GeForce 8xxx or later mobile graphics) you can go for the 3D Vision drivers and use their free anaglyph mode called 3D Vision Discover with any pair of plain red-cyan anaglyph glasses paper or plastic. Or it was working without problems for the 3D Vision Drivers up to version 190.38, as with the later 191.xx (if I remember correctly) up to the latest ones you will get the error above when trying to enable the Stereoscopic 3D mode from the control panel. It seems that when you run any newer 3D Vision drivers they try to find a compatible 120Hz LCD panel in your laptop and if they don’t you are out of luck and cannot even enable the 3D Vision Discover mode to try out the anaglyph mode. It is still weird why Nvidia did not do anything about his issue since it has been around for some time already, or maybe they are simply ignoring all the owners of gaming laptops since there is still no official 3D Vision support for mobile systems with external monitor (with shutter glasses and 120Hz LCD). If you are a lucky owner of Asus G51J 3D laptop – the only one so far with a 120Hz panel you are Ok and you probably should not have any problems running the 3D Vision Discover anaglyph mode too, but why would you do it on this laptop anyway? Still with a modified drivers and and external 120Hz LCD monitor you can run both anaglyph and shutter glasses mode with the 3D vision driver. At least running the anaglyph mode on your desktop PC does not bring any issues, but still if you don’t yet have the shutter glasses you cannot even try the anaglyph mode on your laptop, why?


Anyway, the good news is that there are alternatives for laptop owners that still want to try the free anaglyph mode and that is to use the iZ3D Driver that does support Anaglyph and a few other stereo 3d viewing methods apart for the specific mode used for their own stereoscopic 3D displays. Another good thing about the use of this driver is that it will work not only on Nvidia-based hardware (including pre-stream processors architecture GPUs), but also on ATI-based video cards. The only drawback here is that the iZ3D Driver still does not support DirectX 10 games, unlike the Nvidia solution, although the company seems to be working on adding it for some time now. So if you have a laptop and you want to try out stereoscopic 3D gaming on it with anaglyph mode you should definitely download and try the iZ3D Driver.

To download the iZ3D Driver with free Stereoscopic 3D anaglyph mode…

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5 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Kevin Newman // Feb 3, 2010 at 19:33

    I recently wrote some initial impressions from using anaglyph S3D for gaming. In that post there is some information on how to change the iZ3D anaglyph color settings for custom color separation (I needed magenta/green to use with my kids’ Monsters Vs. Aliens glasses).


  • 2 Chris K. // Feb 3, 2010 at 20:06

    Know any drivers/tricks to get cross-eye or parallel out of the same pipeline? Would take less processing (1/2 the number of pixels per eye, no color post-processing needed.)

    I’ve played with the anaglyph rendering in Track Mania and Pirates of the Caribbean and it renders reasonably fast on my MacBook (2GHz Core 2 Duo running XP in Boot Camp, 4GB RAM, NVidia 9400M) even on an external (1900×1200) display. But getting color correction for anaglyph glasses to work well is a nightmare.

    While I would love to pick up some shutter glasses and a 120Hz LCD, I’m not interested in spending $2k for a decent gaming desktop to go with it. :^o I can play many of the modern games at full screen and with high quality rendering with no problems on my MacBook…

    (And looking forward to picking up one of those keen 11″ Alienware laptops when they come out…)

  • 3 Bloody // Feb 3, 2010 at 21:03

    Cross-eye or parallel for anything other than still 3D pictures, why would you need that…? I mean it is not very convenient to try playing a game in cross-eye stereo mode… ;)

  • 4 laptop asus // May 31, 2010 at 11:13

    While I would love to pick up some shutter glasses and a 120Hz LCD, I’m not interested in spending $2k for a decent gaming desktop to go with it. :^o I can play many of the modern games at full screen and with high quality rendering with no problems on my MacBook…

  • 5 Flint Eastwood // Jul 8, 2010 at 01:57

    [b]I found a cheap Hardware-solution to get past this stupid message:[/b] [color=”#FF0000″]”This laptop’s panel is not qualified for 3D Vision”[/color]
    You will need a 24+5pin DVI-plug and 3 75Ohm resistors. The 3 resistors must be connected to the analog-color-signals against Ground.
    This works with an old VGA-connector too if your laptop only has VGA-output.

    When connected to the laptop it will find an Analog-Display-Device. You will need to set the Displays to Clone-Mode and set the Analog-Display-Device as Primary.
    Now you will be able to pass the 3D-Vision-Discover-Wizzard.
    [img]http://img682.imageshack.us/img682/6465/analogdisplaydummy.jpg[/img] [img]http://img693.imageshack.us/img693/6277/analogdisplaydummyvga.jpg[/img]

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