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The Current Situation with 3D Vision, Something We’ve Already Seen in the Past

August 3rd, 2014 · 12 Comments · Other S3D Tech

It has been a little over 5 years since the start of this blog, even though I has been a stereoscopic 3D enthusiasts for much longer, the reason for the existence of the blog was Nvidia’s 3D Vision. I was really excited when they have announced it and when the first 3D Vision-ready monitors started appearing on the market I was eager to get one as I really did see the potential that the technology had for gaming. And back then since it was something really new and exciting I decided to share my experience, knowledge and other useful information with other users that were just starting and this is how this blog was born.

Now, five years later we are seeing a deja vu as the situation with 3D Vision is pretty much the same as with the Nvidia Stereoscopic 3D Drivers that were available before the birth of 3D Vision. Nvidia did create a market and strong demand for products at first, however they slowly start to neglect things and in a few years they kill the market. This is exactly what is happening with the 3D Vision now as Nvidia hasn’t done almost anything new in many months. The latest bigger things were the announcement of the G-Sync monitors, some with 3D Vision support, that however were greatly delayed to market. The other more recent thing is the addition of “3D Compatibility Mode”, but the more important thing – supporting and pushing game developers to integrate Stereo 3D support in games has been long gone. It is not about fixing games after they have been released, but integrating proper stereo 3D support while they are being developed.

The stereo 3D gaming community can do the fixing with the help of tools like Helixmod wrapper, however even the game modders are giving up on 3D Vision as instead of helping them Nvidia seems to be doing just the opposite. This is really discouraging and if Nvidia does plan to abandon 3D Vision like they did with their old Stereoscopic 3D Drivers, then they should at least open the project and not kill it completely. The people in different stereoscopic 3D gaming communities that are using 3D Vision have asked numerous times that Nvidia works on something or improves another thing in order for 3D Vision to become better and easier to be used, but we have not seen any results. This is really discouraging and many people have just decided that it is enough for them, some of you might of thing this for me as well due to the last few months with no updates here…

I have not given up on stereo 3D and 3D Vision, at least not yet. I was just busy with other things and have decided to get some rest from 3D, not that very much was happening with 3D Vision anyway, and the Facebook and Oculus deal was a bit of surprise and I wanted to see what will come out of it. So far it seems that things are still good and I’m about to get my hands on the pre-order of the DK2 hopefully next week, so all is not lost. However Oculus Rift is not something that can replace 3D Vision, these are two different things, and even though some of their features and functionality do overlap they are still not the same thing. VR with 3D support is an interesting new concept, but for really good results you need content developed especially for the device, meaning that you not only need a good hardware, but good software support as well. At least here Oculus is doing much, much, much better than Nvidia as Oculus Rift is their only product, unlike Nvidia that has many products and technologies and cannot focus solely on 3D Vision. So interesting times could still lay ahead of stereo 3D technology, so we’ll have to wait and see..

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12 responses so far ↓

  • 1 fredrik // Aug 3, 2014 at 14:20

    Helloo! Id have to agree with your post,
    its true that nvidia isnt interested in its 3d technology
    im guessin that until somebody invents a glasses free
    3d system this will be the case.

    i also think that companies of course are interested in making
    profit, and 3d just isnt cutting the mustard.
    Thats a shame because i really like 3d technology!

  • 2 Daniel Stange // Aug 3, 2014 at 15:27

    Dam, so the helix mod ends here… I’ve sunk 150 hours into Skyrim using their mod so far, it’s been the greatest RPG experience for me yet due to the sheer immersion, I couldn’t thank those guys enough for that alone. I knew this would happen once Oculus kicked into high gear but it’s still sad to hear.

    The one thing 3D vision always had going for it over VR was the ease at which games could be converted to it. Aside from a few UI elements being moved into the screen almost any game can be played in 3D vision.

    This will definitely not be the case for the Rift as we all know, so in a way the pool of games we will have available to play will be reduced without significant developer intervention. I had always hopped for the two products to coexist in union. I’d strap on the Rift when I wanted that kind of experience, and i’d still be able to play the more traditional games in 3D on my monitor.

    I think the Rift is definitely the better product, even if it’s apples to oranges, so i’m not entirely crushed. I think the future looks bright, I don’t regret buying the first Samsung Syncmaster nor the sick Asus 27inch that came with 3D vision 2. It’s still a wonderful 120hz monitor after all, and I still have a bunch of games I need to play in 3D as it is before the consumer Rift launches. Not to mention i’m only half way through the full brunt of Skyrim’s content.

    Bloody your monitor reviews and general upkeep were invaluable in deciding which monitor to buy after the Syncmaster, especially your in-depth crosstalk tests. I certainly never saw a single other site bring any of the coverage you did, it was awesome! And I even still use the contrast settings in 3D mode you recommended in your VG278H review. I basically never see crosstalk thanks to it.

    I’ll be keeping you in my RSS feed as always, i’m looking forward to the next step. Hope it’s a good one!

  • 3 Luke S // Aug 3, 2014 at 22:08

    Well said, Daniel. This site has been invaluable to me and I hope it can continue in some form or another as technology changes.

  • 4 Antmeister // Aug 4, 2014 at 10:28

    I would have thought that Rift game development would help 3D Vision. Since the Rift displays left and right eye images, surely that can be ported over to 3D Vision. We just lose the head tracking features.

  • 5 MikeS // Aug 5, 2014 at 21:12

    Glad to see you are still around as I have missed you informative posts. Yes 3D is in a sad state due to manufacturer and retailer lack of interest/promotion of 3D in any form. Your site has been invaluable to those of us who love the 3D format. It’s to bad companies don’t keep up a level of promotion for a product one they find it won’t be an easy money gold mine and will require ongoing promotion.

    Will look forward to your future posts. The Rift looks promising and fun but hopefully will have legs and not do the 3D video/TV/computer hype then nosedive once it doesn’t make that cool instant $100 million and the backers want back their billion dollar investment.

  • 6 Schmeltzer // Aug 6, 2014 at 23:57

    I don’t agree Nvidia killed 3d. The real reason is: people just don’t want it. I’ve spent many hour discussing with people who told me 3D Vision sucked, although they had never tried it. There is very vocal minority who get sick from S3D and they have succesfully convinced everybody else they should hate it too.

  • 7 Daniel Stange // Aug 7, 2014 at 06:01

    It’s harder for me to imagine the Rift not holding some stake in the long run compared to 3D vision. I have a lot of trust in John Carmack’s decision-making. Carmack always knew the advantage to building a community, he first realized the importance of it when the first modding community sprung up around Doom, and championed for proper modding tools to be included with Quake. After Quake 3 he wanted to continue to build community driven games, but was vetoed into doing the single player Doom 3 (he speaks of this in his most recent talk: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EaN4wUii0T0).

    Community is what gives these things life, it creates content and it keeps it in the news, no one can argue against Carmack’s good intentions, in my opinion.

  • 8 eqzitara // Aug 16, 2014 at 04:04

    I am also not giving up on 3D but I will be shifting away from 3D vision as I see lack of change which is very likely to continue.

    The main problem I have with my supporting 3D vision in any form is its kind of dishonest. I see it coming to an end and I don’t want people to be surprised when that time comes. I am hoping that people communicate there displeasure with Nvidia. Maybe its possible things will change on there end.

    If not… well then its better off that it dies. I dont want people picking up $800 displays. $150 3d vision kits and then realizing that 3D vision isnt what its made out to be.

    To people saying its not Nvidias fault that 3D vision is dieing. Maybe. Maybe not. Thats open to interpretation.
    I HIGHLY disagree with them still advertising the product with no support on there end. That is something I morally can not stand by.

    That would be true if Nvidia was contacting developers. Frankly any engine that supports Rift should support 3D vision. It requires very little time/effort. But it does require some.
    Game developer releases game. Its too late now to them pretty much.

  • 9 eqzitara // Aug 16, 2014 at 04:09

    Also I have contacted both people in charge of 3D vision twice over the years and asked that they contact tridef about assisting them in supporting 3D vision hardware. These requests went ignored.

  • 10 Dan // Aug 20, 2014 at 22:38

    I got my 3D Vision monitor for 120Hz (supports 144Hz but I like 120 better) and for 3D movies. Never really liked to use 3D Vision in games as most of them have poor support. DX11 games are extremely limited and OpenGL doesn’t work at all.

    I’m now waiting for my DK2 to arrive, which I think will be awesome. Never got to try the DK1, so it’s extra exiting for me since VR is something I’ve dreamt of since I was a kid :)

  • 11 claydough // Aug 24, 2014 at 18:39

    Last movie I saw at the theatre was Gaurdians of the Galaxy.

    4pm est and I still could not get matinee pricing on a weekday! so I sucked it up and bought two full priced tickets fer $17.50? a pop only to realize after leaving the theatre that another 1.50? was also added to each ticket as tax ( butt hurt ).

    As an afterthought I also remember a huge line waiting for those Imax 3d seats when our show was finished and it occurs to me ” 3D is not going anywhere!”

    And considering that Imax 3d theatre experience does not come close ( aside from the glorious large screen ) to the superior experience/combination of active shutter/interactive immersion/ and tweakable depth/convergence.
    There needs to be that “differentiation” in 3dVisions promotion:

    That difference being that the passive and interactive experience are hardly the same thing as different as any video game and a weak film adaptation of that game that fails to translate the experience of interactive immersion. ( wherein the first instance my childhood gets a turbo charge as if all my toys have come alive and the tableau passes past the imaginary plane into reality as it converges past 2d! ) The latter requires popcorn and a pause button fer potty breaks.

    Another mistake Nvidia has made in it’s greed is in not supporting open gl except in Quadro products!
    If all games should have the realtime stereoscopic experience in mind during initial stages of development and not as an afterthought. Then Nvidia should have supported the DCC tools that polycounters use to build these games. Until the last versions that meant openGL support! Considering they are not engineers are filmmakers, that means stereo support on the same hardware they use. In which case supporting the cards of their end user as well: Nvidia gForce not quadro. Every brilliant creator of interactive environments I know uses gForce on their machines, most with bad amd/ati driver experiences that keep most in the NVidia camp. Yet I know of none who considers stereo as anything but an afterthought.

    And why should they? It’s not as if the solution was catered to them?

    Now that Maya’s viewport renderer supports directX11 I came here to find if there could be a Helixmod solution that could change all that only to find out it’s to late.

    Just Bloody depressing! ( please forgive the Bloody pun but DAM! )

    screw u world! U mock me once to much!

  • 12 Sun_Wukong // Jan 17, 2015 at 09:37

    I think 3D is neither going to be mainstream , noR its going to completely go away. For TVs and PCs, it will always be present in the mid / higher end markets. However, with the greater viewing angles provided by head tracking technology for 3D screens (think the New Nintendo 3DS), viewing 3d images should be a much more pleasant experience, and I think mobile phone makers should consider putting 3D back.

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