A Hands-On of LG's Cinema FPR 3D TV
| by Rossi Fernandes
3D is back and it’s bigger than ever before. This is not the first time the world has witnessed the wonders of 3D. In the earlier half of this decade, graphics card manufacturers started bundling 3d glasses to be used with their graphics cards and monitors. Things weren’t impressive and the hype quickly died out.
3D Cinema Zone at the LG Headquarters
Now, close to a decade later, things have been heating up again. Watching movies in 3D at cinemas is a common thing. At home however, things are somewhat different. TVs are still pretty expensive and the technology hasn’t matured as yet. LG invited us to their headquarters in the heart of Seoul, South Korea to get our hands on the technology itself. The demonstration at their Cinema 3D Experience Zone was to highlight the weaknesses of the shutter glass and the advantages of using passive glasses.
The scene so far
3D TVs are still expensive and the content isn’t available yet. Quite a lot of people seem to get headaches after watching 3D content for more than 15 minutes or so. There are a few issues with the current active shutter glasses that are used by most manufacturers other the obvious headache issues. The 3D glasses being used are somewhat heavy because of the batteries and the circuitry required in the glasses themselves. Wearing them for long periods of time can get a little tiring.
Active shutter glasses turning dark when placed sideways
There are some other issues as well. The polarized glasses also block out a lot of the light which means that the TV needs to be even brighter. There’s also the problem of flicker which causes the headaches. Crosstalk is another issue where the two images being rendered leak into one another, which causes a kind of blurring which can be really annoying as well.
LG's new 3D FPR Technology
LG has designed a new technology to counter the problems being faced by early adopters of 3D. It’s called FPR (Film-type Patterned Retarder). LG has chosen to go with a somewhat simpler approach where passive 3D glasses are used. There isn’t a need for batteries anymore and there are electronics in the glasses themselves. Most of the work is done by the display itself. Because of the way the FPR technology functions, brightness levels are a lot better than expected.
LG's FPR display with passive glasses still work when placed sideways
The TVs based on the new technology will be tagged as Cinema 3D TVs. There hasn’t been an official date for the launch of the TVs in India or any sort of pricing, but we can only hope to see it here within the next six months or so.
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