3D TV: Cool Demo, Then Back To Regular 2D Viewing

by Randy Murray on July 15, 2013

I recently bought a new TV for our newly remodeled bedroom, a Sony 55-Inch TV. It’s very nice, with a beautiful picture and very thin design. And it came with 3D capabilities. I didn’t want the 3D stuff, but it came with every TV of that class that I looked at.

We also received a new Blu-ray player with the TV as a part of the package, a Sony 3D Blu-ray Disc Player with Wi-Fi. Once again, didn’t want or need the 3D functionality, but it came with it. I’d investigated 3D out of interest, even written about it for clients (telecom/Cable TV) and I wasn’t impressed. Actually, I found the experience in the showroom very poor. And I’ve had very few good 3D experiences in movie theaters. Avatar in Imax 3D is the only movie I can name that I thought really benefited from the technology.

We mounted the TV on the wall (OK, I hired someone who knows what they’re doing to hang it), and plugged in the new Blu-ray player. I looked through our movie library and discovered that I had exactly one 3D movie: The Avengers (Four-Disc Combo: Blu-ray 3D/Blu-ray/DVD + Digital Copy + Digital Music Download). I fired up the equipment, put on the glasses, dimmed the lights, and pressed play.


The picture was bright, clear of distortion, and the depth of field was astonishing. The movie looked great. Even Diane, my wife and someone generally uninterested in cutting-edge tech, was impressed.

We watched for a few minutes, then we turned off the movie, put the glasses in the drawer, and went back to watching regular 2D HDTV. We probably won’t purchase any more 3D movies. If we get one in a combo pack, that’s fine, be we won’t go out of our way to buy them, even when they do look great.

Why? Because it’s the wrong technology, the wrong solution. I don’t want to wear the glasses. And for the most part, movies don’t really benefit that much from 3D. I believe at some point we’ll have really good 3d entertainment, but the current approach isn’t interesting or workable. Given a choice between watching a movie in high definition or having to put on dark glasses OVER your existing glasses I’ll pick the one without the extra headgear.

3D makes a great demo, but it’s really not interesting enough for most movies and it’s pretty unworkable for watching sports (while watching sports you typically don’t give the screen 100% of your visual attention. Looking around the room and at other people with those damn glasses on is weird and annoying).

I wouldn’t recommend going out of your way to get 3D, but if you do end up with it, as I did, it’s fun to play with for a little while. But then you’ll probably forget about it and go back to watching good old easy to watch 2D HD TV.

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