3D Vision Blog

A normal user's look into the world of 3D Stereo Technologies

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PlayStation 3 Now Also Supports Blu-ray 3D Movie Playback

September 21st, 2010 · 7 Comments · Other S3D Tech

Today is an interesting “updates day” for everyone into stereo 3D as Sony has officially released a new version 3.50 firmware for all PlayStation 3 users that brings the much anticipated Blu-ray 3D support to the game console. This is actually the second 3D related firmware update that Sony is releasing after the addition of stereoscopic 3D gaming support in firmware 3.30, so the PS3 is now more functional and can not only be used to play games in stereo 3D mode (still just a few titles), but can also replace the need for a standalone Blu-ray 3D player. So go and update your console to firmware 3.50 if you still haven’t done so, you should however be aware that there are some limitations to what features the PS3 supports in terms of Blu-ray 3D movies…

Limitations on Blu-ray 3D disc playback

– The 3D display of some elements such as menus and subtitles may be different on the PS3 system than on other 3D playback devices (appear in 2D instead of 3D).
– Depending on the content, some BD-J (Blu-ray Disc Java) features such as BONUSVIEW and BD-Live may not play in 3D or may not function properly on the PS3 system.
– When Dolby TrueHD is selected as the audio format, audio will be output in Dolby Digital during playback of Blu-ray 3D content.
– When DTS-HD is selected as the audio format, audio will be output in DTS during playback of Blu-ray 3D content.

On a side note, as I get a lot of questions if any of the 3D DLP projectors can be used together with a PS3 console to output games or movies in stereo 3D, the answer to this question is NO. The reason for that is due to the fact that the PS3’s S3D support relies on the stereoscopic 3D specifications defined in the HDMI 1.4 standard, so the output from the console is based on the frame packing format at 60Hz defined in that standard and on the other hand the format used by 3D DLP projectors is frame sequential at 120Hz. So unless somebody releases an adapter box that converts from one to the other format or builds a 3D DLP projector with such capabilities you will not be able to use your PlayStation 3 for stereoscopic 3D output. This means that you will be either sticking to Sony’s 3D Bravia HDTVs or actually any other brand that has 3D-capable HDTVs using HDMI 1.4(a) as input format for 3D video content input. An alternative would be a 3D DLP HDTV from Mitsubishi and/or maybe Samsung along with a special adapters that are already available that will convert the frame packed content coming from the PS3 to the DLP checkerboard format used by these TVs. So PS3 in stereo 3D and a 3D projectors are still a no go!

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Crytek To Demo CryENGINE 3 in Stereoscopic 3D at GDC 2010

March 1st, 2010 · 2 Comments · General 3D News

Crytek has just announced some very interesting news. It seems that the company is planning to show their CryENGINE 3 in stereoscopic 3D (S-3D) at this year’s GDC expo in San Francisco (11–13 March). It is interesting to note that this actually appears to be the first announcement about something S-3D to be showcased during GDC this year, as I was beginning to wonder if suddenly everyone forgot about Stereoscopic 3D. Lets hope that there will be much more to be seen during GDC in terms of Stereo 3D support, after all the developers need to be aware of the advantages that S-3D can bring into gaming along with how to properly implement game graphics and effects.

But back to the CryENGINE 3, one of the key features of the new engine is the “LiveCreate” feature, which will also be showcased at GDC, and what it does is to allow designers to work with a single editor, but see and play the results in real-time on the PC, PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. With CryENGINE 3, scalability across multiple platforms is a revolutionary development to enable the creation of truly great-looking games – regardless of the target platform. Hopefully this will help a lot to stop seeing some crappy port of a game for one or another platform, especially if other developers adopt similar approach to their game engines.

“After the successful introduction of CryENGINE 3 at last year’s GDC, we are really excited to show the latest version of our all-in-one game development solution this year in stereoscopic 3D. Over the past few years, S-3D technology has emerged as one of the key trends both in movies and games. With CryENGINE 3, developers will have the ability to create their content in 3D on all platforms. There are basically no longer any limits to a designer’s creativity. CryENGINE 3 features many innovations to accelerate development, cut production costs and ensure teams are able to maximize their own creativity without delays,” says Carl Jones, Director of Global Business Development CryENGINE.

It is worth to note that CryENGINE 3 seems to support Stereoscopic 3D natively and does not require additional drivers, or at least that is what Crytek demonstrated during Siggraph 2009 with the engine. And then again even before Siggraph, during GDC 2009, Cytek has also demonstrated working Stereoscopic 3D support with CryENGINE 2 on iZ3D display. Maybe it is about time for Crytek to become a bit more serious and active about S-3D and join an organization like The S3DGA, as there are still not a lot of game engines designed to support stereo 3D gaming. And while the Stereoscopic 3D support in CryENGINE 3 seems to be for PC only at the moment, with PS3 going to be 3D-ready soon and because of the LiveCreate feature of the engine we might see console S3D support too, and not only limited to PS3, but on Xbox 360 too. Still nothing official about stereoscopic 3D support for consoles coming from Crytek…

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PlayStation 3 Firmware 3.20 to Add 3D Video Output Support?

February 13th, 2010 · 10 Comments · General 3D News

It seems that Sony is planing to include the much anticipated 3D support for their PlayStation 3 console in the upcoming firmware update version 3.20. Or at least there are such hints coming from from some leaked pictures of the 3.20 firmware that seems to be already in the hands of some developers. The current firmware version for PlayStation 3 is at 3.15 with still no official release date of the anticipated version 3.20, but it is expected this to happen before the official summer release of the first 3D-ready HDTVs from Sony. Prior to having a compatible 3D-ready high-refresh rate HDTV, along with the required active shutter glasses (the preferred tech for all upcoming 3D TVs) there is no point in having this feature available on the console. Also, it seems that the much anticipated Blu-ray 3D support for the PS3 console will require an additional firmware update that is supposed to be available at a later time, after the summer release of the firmware with 3D gaming capabilities, but most likely before the end of the year.

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