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3D TV: Not So Fast

Posted by: Stephen Wildstrom on August 29, 2008

LG Electronics has become the latest consumer electronics firm to show off a 3D display, only to show off again that the technology is nowhere close to ready for for consumer use.

Unlike a display that Sharp actually put into some laptops a couple of years ago, the 42-inch 3D Monitor that LG showed at the IFA trade show in Berlin is viewable from a considerable range of distances and angles. While it gives an effective illusion of a 3D image, it appears to be extremely difficult to get the foreground and background of an image in focus at the same time. An LG spokesman explained that while this limitation can be improved by careful encoding of the video—and some of the test videos did come close—the focus problem is an inherent limitation of the technology as it exists today.

Right now, the display is intended primarily for lab use. It’s priced at about $7,500 (4999 euro) including an embedded PC.

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Reader Comments

Rolf Bork

August 29, 2008 03:05 AM

3D TV "limitation of the technology as it exists today"...from a distance it appears rather straight forward to create powerful 3D TV images with the combination of 2 projection displays. Fraunhofer HHI Berlin has shown how it works some years ago.

Microvision and 3M have commercial high volume/low cost solutions that would make perfect 3D display engines.

The challenge to synchronize the total (so that the human brains get a perfect 3D image) can be easily solved with a simple system-on-chip module. Watch video clip on

As the realization of real-time 3D vision is even much simpler one might expect real-time 3D video conferencing to be the killer app for 3D (TV) display as the lack of 3D TV content is no hurdle.

Rolf Bork, BOD &

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BusinessWeek writers Peter Burrows, Cliff Edwards, Olga Kharif, Aaron Ricadela, Douglas MacMillan, and Spencer Ante dig behind the headlines to analyze what’s really happening throughout the world of technology. One of the first mainstream media tech blogs, Tech Beat covers everything from tech bellwethers like Apple, Google, and Intel and emerging new leaders such as Facebook to new technologies, trends, and controversies.



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