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TOOB, an Immersive Dome Type Display With Stereo 3D Support

July 12th, 2011 · 13 Comments · Other S3D Tech

Going for a multi-monitor setup for more immersive gaming environment can be an expensive and hard to realize task, especially if you want that setup to also support stereoscopic 3D. Building an Nvidia’s 3D Vision Surround setup with 120Hz 3D LCD monitors or an AMD Eyefinity 3D setup with passive 3D displays are some of the options, but that would require more powerful video cards and to have three 3D-capable monitors of the same model etc. And even when you are there you get some possible issues still facing you like no way of completely getting rid of the bezels of the displays, or a specific game not working in multi-monitor mode at all or at least having some issues. And although the end result would still be quite good and the extra immersion added by the wider field of view it may still not be what you would want to achieve if you are making some kind of a setup for a simulation game for example.

But there is an interesting alternative that hopefully will be available on the market later this year it is called TOOB being made by a company called Think Out Of Box. Essentially this is a special immersive dome type display that uses a single projector to offer the user a much more immersive curved display that covers better the whole peripheral vision. The display relies on a projector that is projecting the image on a curved mirror that reflects it on a curved screen creating the illusion of 3D-ness even when you are using a normal 2D projector and you can of course use a 3D-capable projector to add stereoscopic 3D support.

The clear advantage of this TOOB solution is that it does not have any specific requirements for the image source – it can be a PC, DVD or Blu-ray player, game console even TV channel and it can work with a 2D or 3D source, you just need to get a 3D-capable projector to use it with stereo 3D content. There is no special software required in order to get the whole extra immersive effect, so no compatibility issues or games not willing to work correctly, although especially for games there are some that might benefit more from this type of display than others, like all types of simulators for example. The whole curved dome type display without a projector should cost about 1500 USD and bundled with an Optoma projector (official partners of Think Out Of Box for TOOB and projector bundles) the price should be about 2000 USD. The good thing is that it is fully compatible with Nvidia’s 3D Vision if your projector is a 3D Vision-ready one, or with AMD HD3D technology and PS3 consoles in 3D if you happen to get a projector with HDMI 1.4 support (or an extra adapter that adds it). I’m eager to see one of these TOOB domes in action and try to play some games on it when it comes out on the market as it appears to be a really good and affordable solution for a more immersive curved display for home use, and apparently not only for gaming, but for movie watching as well… like your own private small scale IMAX dome theater at home.

More information about the TOOB dome type curved displays is available here…

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13 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Jacob // Jul 13, 2011 at 00:19

    Even in their promo video there seems to be significant image skew happening, very similar to the kind you get at on a curved IMAX display. Isn’t this skew something that could be corrected in a driver?

  • 2 Jacob // Jul 13, 2011 at 00:23

    Nevermind, should have read the faq

    Q: Does the image warp? If so how can this be corrected?
    A: The TOOB Reflector (or mirror) does warp the projected image to fit inside the domes surface, however it may not be a perfect fit depending on the position of the projector. TOOB Dome desktop software is designed to be installed on a compatible PC which will correct your image real time at desktop level, is application independant and supports both 2D and 3D stereoscopic content. A single user license is bundled with your TOOB for non-commercial consumer purchases. Corporate licencing carriers a different price point.

    Suddenly I’m more interested :)

  • 3 eqzitara // Jul 13, 2011 at 02:33

    I think this is outside consumer price range tbh. Like a few thousand.

  • 4 eqzitara // Jul 13, 2011 at 02:35

    NM read full post.1500 is a bit crazy for it but we shall see.

  • 5 aCRTfan // Jul 13, 2011 at 10:24

    I think that degree of warp is way too radical both for DLP and for your average game. DLP is not focus-free.

  • 6 Johan // Jul 13, 2011 at 11:57

    An alternative foldable Immersive product is available here: http://jdome.com/the_jdome.asp. This solution is NOT using reflector and/or image correcting drivers so there will be some faulties in the appearance of the image.

    Anyhow if you’re not using 3D the “feeling” is great beeing surounded by your image.

  • 7 Bloody // Jul 13, 2011 at 13:07

    The Jdome also seems interesting, but is more expensive and the project does not seem to have a lot of activity lately or at least it seems so after checking their website. Johan, have you tried it personally?

  • 8 Johan // Jul 14, 2011 at 10:49

    Hi Bloody,

    I have tried it and it for sure has some pos and negs… ;-)
    Pos being transportable and easily foldable if you’re on the go or want to get rid of the stuff in your gaming room.

    The solution usually gets loads of attention on market events but I guess still “long” way to go… targeting research/academic use at a first.

  • 9 budda // Jul 14, 2011 at 21:21

    considering the price of 3d surround this sounds like a perfect alternative – and much more immersive

    waiting anxiously

  • 10 eqzitara // Jul 15, 2011 at 19:27

    on site it says four different sizes. I am curious about actual sizes.

  • 11 eqzitara // Jul 15, 2011 at 19:29

    Also where the heck does your projector go? in the bottom?

  • 12 aCRTfan // Jul 16, 2011 at 12:37

    “considering the price of 3d surround this sounds like a perfect alternative – and much more immersive”

    3x CRT in surround with fresnel lens is better and cheaper

  • 13 Matt Turley // Mar 13, 2013 at 23:17

    If anybody stumbles across this post, Kickstarter funding failed and the “company” has fallen off the face of the earth.

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