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When to Expect a Solution Based on ATI’s Open Stereo 3D Initiative

July 26th, 2010 · 9 Comments · Other S3D Tech

ATI has been talking about their upcoming stereoscopic 3D support utilizing 120Hz LCD monitors and active shutter glasses for quite some time already, and although we expected a complete working solution as early as this summer, things did not work out so well. So now, according to an interview with ATI made by Digital Versus we are going to wait a few more months (second half of the year), but we should see the complete working solution before the end of the year, maybe just in time for Christmas.

Now when talking about openness, ATI is open to supporting different standards and hardware, along with middleware software, but in the end you will most likely be required to have an AMD/ATI-based video card in order to use one such solution. This is of course normal, as ATI will want to sell you their hardware as well as Nvidia does, to use when watching any kind of stereo 3D content. So although ATI in general seems to be more open, the end results seems to be not that different than what Nvidia is doing with their 3D Vision product. You can say that a really open approach is what companies like iZ3D and DDD are doing with their drivers/software that do support multiple stereoscopic 3D solutions and work on all video cards, no matter if they are based on ATI or Nvidia GPUs. What we actually need are standards that will allow interoperability and the users will not have to think now do I have a compatible video card for that solution, or will this 3D monitor work for me or not, or what shutter glasses should I get.

And example that I’ve been seeing a lot lately of not having good interoperability that is confusing the users and making them wonder why is the fact that they cannot use their 3D-capable monitors and 3D DLP projectors to display 3D content from their PlayStation 3 console. The reason for that being that the PS3 sends the stereo 3D signal to a 3D capable display according to the HDMI 1.4(a) stereo 3D specifications and not a single one of the 120Hz 3D LCD monitors is capable of understanding and displaying 3D content sent this way. Of course you need to buy a 3D HDTV to play stereo 3D games from your PS3 console, but then again you’ll also have to buy a 120Hz 3D LCD monitor for your PC, as you will currently also have trouble connecting and using your new 3D HDTV to your PC. So being an early adopter has its advantages, but also comes with a lot of disadvantages and trying to cover more things and work with more partners like ATI does not only means bigger delays, but might as well mean more problems.

If you take a look at how much time the 3D Vision has been available on the market already and how Nvidia is having trouble to convince the hardware and software manufacturers to work on products that support it, not to mention that for more than a year and a half the software and hardware support is still far from being perfect. Now imagine what will be the situation when ATI’s complete stereoscopic 3D solution finally becomes available… I expect a lot of issues to be present at first and it will take some time for all of these to be fixed, and that is something that everyone of the early adopters of 3D Vision is well aware of. Now the 3D Vision already has a lot of users, has a larger community and this also helps a lot in reporting problem and improving the S3D support of the product. But ATI will need some time before reaching the critical mass of users that will have all the needed hardware and software and users that are willing to experiment, test and report issues, even make optimizations and workarounds for better experience etc.

So although I’m eagerly expecting to see what will ATI offer at the end as their complete stereo 3D ecosystem using shutter glasses (I’m a 3D enthusiast after all), I’m not trying to lie myself that it will be a problem free solution, perfect from the start and much better than what 3D Vision currently offers. Yes, it might be better in some aspects, but I don’t think that it will be that different in terms of overall experience for the users. And finally getting some competition between ATI and Nvidia in the stereo 3D area too may help in faster and better development of the software and hardware needed for that, and let us just hope that ATI will be as active as Nvidia in pushing both software and hardware companies into adding stereo 3D support in their products or releasing new stereo 3D-capable products. After all this can only benefit us, the end users that just want better and more affordable solutions for enjoying stereoscopic 3D content of all kinds, isn’t that right? Not to mention that we do need more stereoscopic 3D content available and in that area things are still moving a bit slowly, especially regarding 3D photo and 3D video, as the situation with games is better. However we also need both ATI and Nvidia to work more closely with the game developers in order for the upcoming games to have better stereoscopic 3D support and thus less or no issues in S3D mode at all, so that playing these will be much more fun… ;)

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9 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Thomasjn // Jul 26, 2010 at 17:14

    I agree, ATI’s solution will need some time before it will be as good as Nvidia’s. Hopefully it will also give some competition between Nvidia and ATI.

    Btw, as you have talked about before. There will properly be a Version 2. of Nvidia’s glass’s, with improved 3D quality.
    Theise glass’s might be realesed sooner, if ATI start to work with 3D also.

    The things the glass’s could improve is stuff like;
    – Ghosting(speciall the ghosting seen at top of the screen). Resident evil 5 has really much ghosting, and so do other games.
    – The darkness. There should be a way to make the picture less dark, deffently something that can be improved also.
    – Overall look. Maybe more then one model, and if they made them look abit like Sunglass’s.
    – Light reflection. The light is easily reflected into the glass, because of the surface of the glass’s.

    If Nvidia realease a Version 2. of the glass’s, with some of the things above, improved, it could be some sort of a “counterattack” to show that Nvidia is leading the market. :)

  • 2 mickey mouse 3d 2010 // Jul 26, 2010 at 17:52

    ‘The things the glass’s could improve is stuff like;’
    “Ghosting(speciall the ghosting seen at top of the screen). ”

    – TN LCD (display hardware ) issue pal
    “Resident evil 5 has really much ghosting, and so do other games.”
    – TN LCD (display hardware ) issue pal

    “The darkness. There should be a way to make the picture less dark, deffently something that can be improved also.”
    – TN LCD (display hardware ) issue pal , light is not blocked for
    50% of the time, but 75 % , so your LCD monitors are 240hz by sony/samsung terms ;) (bs.)

    “Overall look. Maybe more then one model, and if they made them look abit like Sunglass’s.”
    – thats called passive glasses

    “Light reflection. The light is easily reflected into the glass, because of the surface of the glass’s.”
    – you shouldn’t play in much ambient lightning anyway

  • 3 arnoldschwartz // Jul 26, 2010 at 19:41

    actually, dont blame all the ghosting on the TN LCDs
    light/dark ghosting is caused by the glasses, as nvidia’s current glasses are opaque only in the most center area, the opaqueness fades to transparency as you get to the edges, so you have to look at the screen at a very specific way toget 100% opaqueness, and thus, no ghosting but the ghosting introduced by the LCD screen (which is ghosting on top, overdrive arrtefacts on bttom)

  • 4 Thomasjn // Jul 26, 2010 at 22:34

    mickey mouse 3d 2010, TN Panels seems to be quite bad then.. but never the less, the glass’s still have ways they can be improved.

    And as far as i know, ghosting is caused when the glass’s isnt sync’ing the images to the right eyes correctly, and they overlap abit.

  • 5 Thomasjn // Jul 26, 2010 at 23:02

    “- you shouldn’t play in much ambient lightning anyway”
    im just playing at daytime light, it should be possible..

  • 6 mickey mouse 3d 2010 // Jul 27, 2010 at 03:06

    100:1 contrast is not exactly my “dream setup” .

  • 7 mickey mouse 3d 2010 // Jul 27, 2010 at 03:10

    theres zero noticable ghosting with DLP and 3d vision glasses.
    I can’t even make it ghost in the dark tunnels of metro2033…………

  • 8 Zloth // Jul 27, 2010 at 05:39

    I don’t know if competition is always that good of a thing. Remember HD and BluRay? Those two techs got locked in a battle that was close enough that nobody was willing to buy either one, for fear of buying a ‘betamax’. If ATI comes out with a strong but completely incompatible solution, we could get a similar situation.

    I’m hoping that won’t be the case here. As long as both just tap into DirectX and OpenGL (please NVIDIA!) then a gaming company optimizing for one will pretty much be optimizing for the other, too, with perhaps just a few tweaks needed. But if they somehow manage to make it so developers need to do completely different optimizations for each company’s 3D, we’re in deeeep trouble.

  • 9 Fritz // Jul 27, 2010 at 08:13

    I have the 3d DLP ready Projector Acer 5360 and I have absolut
    no Ghosting!So I think the problem with Ghosting is not the Glasses!The Problem are the LCD Panels!

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