3d Screens


Bob Pank# TV-Bay Magazine
Read ezine online
Often exhibitions such as IBC and NAB can be summed up as progressive – slightly better products but nothing really new. Sometimes there is a breakthrough such as Ampex’s introduction of the VTR in 1956. The early years of digital production and post tools were rich in totally new things. At the time I worked at Quantel and seeing inventions like Paintbox and a DVE video page turn for the first time was truly exciting; I knew these would be game-changers. What they did was instantly understandable and easy to apply. So, you may ask, why should it be that we are many years into the 3D revolution of the modern era and everyone knows what we really need to make 3DTV come alive, but we don’t have. Of course I’m talking about the perfect, or just really good, autostereoscopic TV screen. We can send robots to Mars, find the Higgs Boson, build 830m high, and actually find cures for some cancers and yet the ideal glasses-free 3DTV screen is not here yet. True, some, if not all, of the afore mentioned brilliant achievements are far more important than adding a third dimension to our home TV viewing, but still, you would have thought it would be here by now.
The reason is, it’s not easy – especially as it has to be affordable for the mass consumer market. However it was most encouraging at the last NAB and IBC to see a number of manufacturers, including Sony, Dolby (with Philips) and others showing glasses-free screens that seemed to work OK. It seemed as if the manufacturers had, at last, realised that the glasses-free screen really is the missing link for home viewing to be acceptable. Sony was mainly showing monitors whereas Dolby 3D, as it’s called, is a whole system including signal coding and, no doubt, processing. I look forward to seeing more progress in 2013.
Of course there are glasses-free TV screens already in the market. In the UK you can pop down to Currys and purchase a 55-inch 3840x2160 400Hz resolution Toshiba offering glasses-free viewing. Early reports mentioned it could track up to nine heads for 3D viewing – more on that later. Getting just £1 change from £7,000 for my (virtual) purchase means that this set is not for the mass market. Prices must plummet for appeal to a much wider public – that is already sceptical about 3D. Today we are simply not used to paying so much for a TV but back in the late 1960s when PAL colour TV arrived in the UK, a colour TV set cost around £300 – a price then considered so high as to limit sales. Thanks to the intervening decades of inflation, that price is now equivalent to about £4,200. But TV set prices have been amazingly stable and today you still have a wide choice of excellent sets at £300. So glasses-free TV now costs too much.
Fortunately there is an industry White Knight striving to improve the technology. As a technology junky my most exciting half hour at the IBC exhibition was spent with Fraunhofer – the guys who invented MP3 and runs development projects on behalf on the industry. There, Siegfried Foessel, Head of the Moving Picture Technologies Department, introduced me to one of their projects that was aimed at glasses-free 3DTV viewing. A technology that appears to be common to all such screens is the use of a lenticular filter placed over the front of the screen – a sophisticated version those often-seen 3D or multi-view cards on sale at tourist shops. This TV technology provides 3D viewing only if you are sitting in the right place, so that you can see both left and right images via the filter. Then you are in ‘the zone’.
Such modern 3DTV screens typically offer a number of zones, so that several people can watch at the same time... as long as they sit still! There are two recognised challenges to this. One is that people actually do want to move around. The other is that there needs to be a powerful engine to process the left and right channels of the input S3D video so that each zone shows the correct 3D image. The former problem can be solved by tracking viewers’ faces – I guess lifting established technology from the consumer digital camera market. That tracking data is sent to the ‘engine’ to effectively adjust the angle of the zone, so viewers can move around and the zone moves with them. Fraunhofer was showing its lab version of such a set-up that seemed to work pretty well. Indeed this looked to me very like what is offered in that Toshiba set. However the point of this research is to perfect the 3D processing engine and then reproduce it as a chip – saving size, power consumption and, hopefully reducing cost, while delivering superb 3D viewing. This is definitely one to watch!
The technologies used in the 3D scene-to-screen chain have rapidly evolved in recent years – and it’s still happening. The prospect of good, affordable glasses-free TV screens is only one of many technologies that are aimed at improving the 3D experience which, for too long, has had to ride on the back of established technologies. A root-and-branch overhaul is needed to enable a far better 3D audience experience. For example, TV-Bay editor Simon Tillyer was obviously wowed by the showing of “Hugo” at the IBC auditorium (see pageXX). This used Christie’s laser projection technology to deliver much brighter images of this very well made 3D movie. So watching 3D really can be great experience and it may well be a powerful driver for further technical developments and deployments, such as high frame rate and bigger pictures (4K) to wow more audiences.

Tags: iss071 | 3d | glassless 3d | Siegfried Foessel | Fraunhofer | ampex | quantel | Bob Pank#
Contributing Author Bob Pank#

Read this article in the tv-bay digital magazine
Article Copyright tv-bay limited. All trademarks recognised.
Reproduction of the content strictly prohibited without written consent.

Related Interviews
  • 3D Storm presents LiveXpert and NewTek products at IBC 2018

    3D Storm presents LiveXpert and NewTek products at IBC 2018

  • 3D Storm discuss IP and NDI for Live Media Server and Live CG Broadcast at NAB 2018

    3D Storm discuss IP and NDI for Live Media Server and Live CG Broadcast at NAB 2018

  • LiveCG Broadcast and LiveMedia Server from 3D Storm at BVE 2018

    LiveCG Broadcast and LiveMedia Server from 3D Storm at BVE 2018

  • NDI and Newtek Products from 3D Storm at IBC 2017

    NDI and Newtek Products from 3D Storm at IBC 2017

  • LiveMedia Server and Live Xpert from 3D Storm at NAB 2017

    LiveMedia Server and Live Xpert from 3D Storm at NAB 2017

  • 3D Storm with LiveXpert at BVE 2017

    3D Storm with LiveXpert at BVE 2017

  • 3D Storm at IBC 2016

    3D Storm at IBC 2016

  • 3D Storm at BVE 2016

    3D Storm at BVE 2016

  • 3D Storm at IBC 2015

    3D Storm at IBC 2015

  • Brainstorm Multimedia: Aston3D at NAB 2013

    Brainstorm Multimedia: Aston3D at NAB 2013

  • Brainstorm Multimedia at IBC 2015

    Brainstorm Multimedia at IBC 2015

  • BRAINSTORM VIRTUAL SETS at NAB 2015

    BRAINSTORM VIRTUAL SETS at NAB 2015

  • Brainstorm Multimedia at BVE 2015

    Brainstorm Multimedia at BVE 2015

  • Brainstorm on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

    Brainstorm on BroadcastShow LIVE at IBC 2013

  • Brainstorm with Aston demonstration at IBC 2013

    Brainstorm with Aston demonstration at IBC 2013

  • Brainstorm at IBC 2013

    Brainstorm at IBC 2013

  • Featured Clip: Geoff Boyle comments on NAB 2012

    Featured Clip: Geoff Boyle comments on NAB 2012

  • Brainstorm at NAB 2012

    Brainstorm at NAB 2012

  • VIZRT at BVE 2012

    VIZRT at BVE 2012

  • Newtek at BVE 2012

    Newtek at BVE 2012

  • Sony at ProVideo2011

    Sony at ProVideo2011

  • Sisvel Technology at IBC2011

    Sisvel Technology at IBC2011

  • Sensio at IBC2011

    Sensio at IBC2011

  • Panasonic at IBC2011

    Panasonic at IBC2011

  • Doremi at IBC2011

    Doremi at IBC2011

  • Matrox at IBC2011

    Matrox at IBC2011

  • Blackmagic at IBC2011

    Blackmagic at IBC2011

  • SGO at IBC2011

    SGO at IBC2011

  • Marshall Electronics at IBC2011

    Marshall Electronics at IBC2011

  • QUANTEL CEO at NAB 2015

    QUANTEL CEO at NAB 2015

  • Quantel LiveTouch at IBC 2014

    Quantel LiveTouch at IBC 2014

  • Quantel deal with AFP at IBC 2014

    Quantel deal with AFP at IBC 2014

  • Quantel Pablo Rio at NAB 2014

    Quantel Pablo Rio at NAB 2014

  • Quantel Enterprise sQ at NAB 2014

    Quantel Enterprise sQ at NAB 2014

  • Quantel QTube at NAB 2014

    Quantel QTube at NAB 2014

  • Quantel Pablo Rio at IBC 2013

    Quantel Pablo Rio at IBC 2013

  • Quantels Stream-based Workflows at IBC 2013

    Quantels Stream-based Workflows at IBC 2013

  • Quantel Pablo Rio at NAB 2013

    Quantel Pablo Rio at NAB 2013

  • Quantel Enterprise sQ at NAB 2013

    Quantel Enterprise sQ at NAB 2013

  • Quantel at IBC 2012 Part One

    Quantel at IBC 2012 Part One

  • Quantel at IBC 2012 Part Two

    Quantel at IBC 2012 Part Two

  • Quantel at IBC2011

    Quantel at IBC2011

  • Snell Advanced Media (SAM) 4k workflow at IBC 2015

    Snell Advanced Media (SAM) 4k workflow at IBC 2015

  • Snell Advanced Media (SAM) at IBC 2015

    Snell Advanced Media (SAM) at IBC 2015

  • Snell Kahuna Production Switcher at IBC 2014

    Snell Kahuna Production Switcher at IBC 2014


Related Shows
  • Show 20 - July 17th 2013

    Show 20 - July 17th 2013


Articles
GoPro HERO 7 Review
Tim Bearder When I heard I was filming a nature restoration project in the pouring rain this week I was excited. WHY? No Cameraman enjoys the rain, surely but this time I was enthusiastic because I knew this would be the perfect opportunity to try out the brand new GoPro Hero 7 Black Edition.
Tags: iss134 | gopro | hero 7 | review | liberal media | Tim Bearder
Contributing Author Tim Bearder Click to read or download PDF
Sony HDC-4800 Review
Andy McKenzie First announced at NAB 2016, the Sony HDC-4800 is a studio camera system capable of shooting 4K/UHD at up to 8x or full HD at up to 16x. With a price point upwards of £250,000 it is a very high-end product with a wide feature set. In Sony's own words, "This is the future of live production, designed to satisfy the storytelling aspect of modern sports production.” Deliveries began in mid 2017 and, after careful preliminary evaluation, we invested in several systems for our hire fleet ahead of the FIFA World Cup in Russia.
Tags: iss134 | review | hdc-4800 | sony | finepoint | Andy McKenzie
Contributing Author Andy McKenzie Click to read or download PDF
University and Mental Health
Rhiannon Jenkins University study and mental health has been in the media quite a bit over the last year, and I’m sure there are many people wondering what is going on? The issues are complex, and I suppose the focus of employability off the back of a degree course has raised the stress stakes for a lot of young people. I’m only qualified to talk about this from my perspective, and my story began when I joined a course not knowing I had a mental health condition.
Tags: iss134 | portsmouth uni | mental health | student | tvfutures | Rhiannon Jenkins
Contributing Author Rhiannon Jenkins Click to read or download PDF
Protecting the continuity of transmission
Lorna Garrett Your viewers love you. You consistently bring them their preferred channels 24/7. They’ve come to rely on you for their viewing pleasure. They never miss cheering on their beloved sports teams. They’re the envy of their friends as they watch live concerts of their favourite bands. They gather the family around and catch up on their must-see shows. They don’t have a bad word to say about you.
Tags: iss134 | garland | gpl | streaming | artel | disaster recovery | Lorna Garrett
Contributing Author Lorna Garrett Click to read or download PDF
NEP Student Day
KitPlus The world of broadcasting is in constant flux, with undefined boundaries between broadcast, TV, film and interactive media. With a changing consumer demographic now a key influence on the industry, many companies no longer specialise in a single medium, but have had to become adaptable to deliver multiple services through a combination of media.
Tags: iss134 | students | tvfutures | NEP | KitPlus
Contributing Author KitPlus Click to read or download PDF