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A 3D television is a television that employs techniques of 3D presentation, such as stereoscopic capture, multi-view capture, or 2D plus depth, and a 3D display—a special viewing device to project a television program into a realistic three-dimensional field. 3D episodes became moderately popular in the late 1990s when several shows in the USA used the technique to attract viewers and increase ratings.

A LG Electronics 3D TV at a promotional event

Contents

History

3D imaging dates to the beginning of photography. In 1844, David Brewster introduced the Stereoscope, a device that could take photographic pictures in 3D. It was then improved by Louis Jules Duboscq and a famous picture of Queen Victoria was displayed at The Great Exhibition in 1851. By the Second World War, stereoscopic (3D) cameras for personal use were already fairly common.

3D movie development was parallel to that of 3D pictures and images. Already in 1855 the Kinematoscope was invented, i.e., the Stereo Animation Camera. The first anaglyph movie was produced in 1915 and in 1922 the first public 3D movie was displayed - The Power of Love. In 1935 the first 3D color movie was produced.

In the fifties, when TV became popular in the United States, many 3D movies were produced. The first such movie was Bwana Devil from United Artists that could be seen all across the US in 1952. One year later, in 1953, came the 3D movie House of Wax which also featured 2D sound. Alfred Hitchcock originally made his film Dial M for Murder in 3D, but for the purpose of maximizing profits the movie was released in 2D because not all cinemas were able to display 3D films. The Soviet Union also developed 3D films, with Robinson Crusoe being their first full-length movie in 1947.[citation needed]

Subsequently, television stations started airing 3D serials based on the same technology as 3D movies.[citation needed]

Technologies

There are several techniques to produce and display 3D moving pictures.

Common 3D display technology for projecting stereoscopic image pairs to the viewer include:

Single-view displays project only one stereo pair at a time. Multi-view displays either use head tracking to change the view depending of the viewing angle, or simultaneously project multiple independent views of a scene for multiple viewers (automultiscopic); such multiple views can be created on the fly using the 2D plus depth format.

Various other display techniques have been described, such as holography, volumetric display and the Pulfrich effect, that was used by Doctor Who for Dimensions in Time in 1993, by 3rd Rock From The Sun in 1997, and by the Discovery Channel's Shark Week in 2000, among others. Real-Time 3D TV (Youtube video) is essentially a form of autostereoscopic display.

Stereoscopy is most widely accepted method for capturing and delivering 3D video. It involves capturing stereo pairs in a two-view setup, with cameras mounted side by side, separated by the same distance as between a person's pupils. If we imagine projecting an object point in a scene along the line-of-sight (for each eye, in turn) to a flat background screen, we may describe the location of this point mathematically using simple algebra. In rectangular coordinates with the screen lying in the Y-Z plane (the Z axis upward and the Y axis to the right) and the viewer centered along the X axis, we find that the screen coordinates are simply the sum of two terms, one accounting for perspective and the other for binocular shift. Perspective modifies the Z and Y coordinates of the object point by a factor of D/(D-x), while binocular shift contributes an additional term (to the Y coordinate only) of s*x/(2*(D-x)), where D is the distance from the selected system origin to the viewer (right between the eyes), s is the eye separation (about 7 centimeters), and x is the true x coordinate of the object point. The binocular shift is positive for the left-eye-view and negative for the right-eye-view. For very distant object points, it is obvious that the eyes will be looking along the same line of sight. For very near objects, the eyes may become excessively "cross-eyed". However, for scenes in the greater portion of the field of view, a realistic image is readily achieved by superposition of the left and right images (using the polarization method or synchronized shutter-lens method) provided the viewer isn't too near the screen and the left and right images are correctly positioned on the screen. Digital technology has largely eliminated inaccurate superposition that was a common problem during the era of traditional stereoscopic films.[1] [2]

Multi-view capture uses arrays of many cameras to capture a 3D scene through multiple independent video streams. Plenoptic cameras, which capture the light field of a scene, can also be used to capture multiple views with a single main lens.[3] Depending on the camera setup, the resulting views can either be displayed on multi-view displays, or passed for further image processing.

After capture, stereo or multi-view image data can be processed to extract 2D plus depth information for each view, effectively creating a device-independent representation of the original 3D scene. This data can be used to aid inter-view image compression or to generate stereoscopic pairs for multiple different view angles and screen sizes.

2D plus depth processing can be used to recreate 3D scenes even from a single view and convert legacy film and video material to a 3D look, though a convincing effect is harder to achieve and the resulting image will likely look like a cardboard miniature.

3D-ready TV sets

3D-ready TV sets are those that can operate in 3D mode (in addition to regular 2D mode), in conjunction with LCD shutter glasses, where the TV tells the glasses which eye should see the image being exhibited at the moment, creating a stereoscopic image. These TV sets usually support HDMI 1.4 and a minimum (input and output) refresh rate of 120Hz; glasses may be sold separately.

Mitsubishi and Samsung utilize DLP technology from Texas Instruments.[4] As of January 2010, Toshiba, Samsung [5], Sony, Panasonic, and LG all had plans to introduce 3D capabilities (mostly in higher-end models) in TVs available sometime in 2010.[6] 3D Blu-Ray players and DirecTV broadcasts are also expected in 2010.[6] Samsung began selling the UN55C7000, its first 3D ready TV, late in February 2010.[7]


The Chinese manufacturer TCL has developed a 42-inch LCD 3D TV called the TD-42F, which is currently available in China. This model uses a lenticular system and does not require any special glasses. It currently sells for approximately $20,000.[8]

LG, Samsung, Sony & Phillips intend to increase their 3D TV offering with plans to make 3D TV sales account for over 50% of their respective TV distribution offering by 2012. It is expected that the screens will use a mixture of technologies until there is standardisation across the industry.[9]

Standardization efforts

The entertainment industry is expected to adopt a common and compatible standard for 3D in home electronics. To present faster frame rate in high definition to avoid judder, enhancing 3-D film, televisions and broadcasting, other unresolved standards are the type of 3D glasses (passive or active), including bandwidth considerations, subtitles, recording format and a Blu-ray standard.

With improvements in digital technology, in the late 2000s, 3D movies have become more practical to produce and display, putting competitive pressure behind the creation of 3D television standards. There are several techniques for Stereoscopic Video Coding, and stereoscopic distribution formatting including anaglyph, quincunx, and 2D plus Delta.

Content providers, such as Disney, DreamWorks, and other Hollywood studios, and technology developers, such as Philips, asked SMPTE for the development of a 3DTV standard in order to avoid a battle of formats and to guarantee consumers that they will be able to view the 3D content they purchase and to provide them with 3D home solutions for all pockets. In August 2008, SMPTE established the "3-D Home Display Formats Task Force" to define the parameters of a stereoscopic 3D mastering standard for content viewed on any fixed device in the home, no matter the delivery channel. It explored the standards that need to be set for 3D content distributed via broadcast, cable, satellite, packaged media, and the Internet to be played-out on televisions, computer screens and other tethered displays. After six months, the committee produced a report to define the issues and challenges, minimum standards, and evaluation criteria, which the Society said would serve as a working document for SMPTE 3D standards efforts to follow. A follow-on effort to draft a standard for 3D content formats was expected to take another 18 to 30 months.[citation needed]

Production studios are developing an increasing number of 3D titles for the cinema and as many as a dozen companies are actively working on the core technology behind the product. Many have technologies available to demonstrate, but no clear road forward for a mainstream offering has emerged.

Under these circumstances, SMPTE’s inaugural meeting was essentially a call for proposals for 3D television; more than 160 people from 80 companies signed up for this first meeting. Vendors that presented their respective technologies at the task force meeting included Sensio,[10] Philips, Dynamic Digital Depth (DDD), TDVision [2], and Real D, all of which had 3D distribution technologies.

However, SMPTE is not the only 3D standards group. Other organizations such as the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), 3D@home Consortium, ITU and the Entertainment Technology Center at USC's School of Cinematic Arts (ETC), have created their own investigation groups and have already offered to collaborate to reach a common solution. Other standard groups such as DVB, BDA, ARIB, ATSC, DVD Forum, IEC and others are to be involved in the process.[citation needed]

MPEG has been researching multi-view, stereoscopic, and 2D plus depth 3D video coding since the mid-2000s;[citation needed] the first result of this research is the Multiview Video Coding extension for MPEG-4 AVC that is currently undergoing standardization. MVC has been chosen by the Blu-ray disc association for 3D distribution. The format offers backwards compatibility with 2D Blu-ray players.[11]

HDMI version 1.4, released in June 2009, defines a number of 3D transmission formats. The format "Frame Packing" (Left and right image packed into one video frame with twice the normal bandwidth), is mandatory for HDMI 1.4 3D devices. All three resolutions, 720p50, 720p60 and 1080p24, have to be supported by display devices, and at least one of those by playback devices. Other resolutions and formats are optional.[12] While HDMI 1.4 cables and devices will be capable of shooting out 3D pictures in full 1080p, HDMI 1.3 just can’t handle it. As a out-of-spec solution for the bitrate problem 3D image may be displayed at a lower resolution, like interlaced or at standard definition.

Broadcasts

A diagram of the 3D TV scheme
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3D Channels

As of 2008, 3D programming is broadcast on Japanese cable channel BS 11 approximately four times per day.[13]

Starting on June 11, 2010 ESPN will launch a new channel dedicated to 3D sports with up to 85 live events a year in 3D.[14]

Recently the British Sky Broadcasting company, better known as Sky UK, has announced that they will be launching a Sky 3D channel in April 2010. This will bring content such as sport, entertainment events, and other three-dimensional programming to its subscribers. The system will require a special "3D ready" television and Sky+HD DVR box.[15]

On 1 January 2010, the world's first 3D channel, SKY 3D, started broadcasting nationwide in South Korea by Korea Digital Satellite Broadcasting. The channel's slogan is "World No.1 3D Channel". This 24/7 channel uses the Side by Side technology at a resolution of 1920x1080i. 3D contents include education, animation, sport, documentary and performances.[16]

A full 24 hour broadcast channel was announced at the 2010 Consumer Electronics show as a joint venture from IMAX, Sony, and the Discovery channel.[17] The intent is to launch the channel in the United States by year end 2010.

DirecTV and Panasonic plan to launch 2 broadcast channels and 1 Video on demand channel with 3D content[18] in June 2010. DirecTV previewed a live demo of their 3D feed at the Consumer Electronics Show held January 7-10, 2010. [19]

3D episodes

There have been several notable examples in television where 3D episodes have been produced, typically as one hour specials or special events. One example was the sitcom 3rd Rock From The Sun two-part episode Nightmare On Dick Street, where several of the characters' dreams are shown in 3D. The episode cued its viewers to put on their 3D glasses by including "3D on" and "3D off" icons in the corner of the screen as a way to alert them as to when the 3D sequences would start and finish. The episode used the Pulfrich 3D technique.

Recent uses of 3D in television include the drama Medium and the comedy Chuck.

Channel 4 in the UK ran a short season of 3D programming in November 2009 including Derren Brown and The Queen in 3D.[20]

On 31 January 2010, BSKYB became the first broadcaster in the world to show a live sports event in 3D when Sky Sports screened a football match between Manchester United and Arsenal to a public audience in several selected pubs.[21]

In April the Masters Tournament will be broadcast in 3D on DirecTV and Comcast.

See also

References

  1. ^ name = Donald Allan Mitchell, original unpublished work.
  2. ^ Kenneth Wittlief (2007-07-30). "Stereoscopic 3D Film and Animation - Getting It Right". ACM SIGGRAPH. http://www.siggraph.org/publications/newsletter/volume/stereoscopic-3d-film-and-animationgetting-it-right. Retrieved 2009-03-30. 
  3. ^ http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpl/freeabs_all.jsp?arnumber=4547873 A Simulator for the Cafadis Real Time 3DTV Camera, IEEE (2008-06-20)
  4. ^ "3D TV - DLP HDTV". http://www.dlp.com/hdtv/3-d_dlp_hdtv.aspx. Retrieved 26 December 2009. 
  5. ^ "3D Samsung TV Reviews". http://electrobuzz.com/reviews/televisions/samsung-un55c7000-3d-led-television/. Retrieved 10 March 2010. 
  6. ^ a b [1]
  7. ^ "Samsung UN55C7000 3D TV review". http://www.best-3dtvs.com/samsung-3d-tv/samsung-un55c7000-review/. Retrieved 15 March 2010. 
  8. ^ TV - Tom's Guide US "Give Me 3D TV, Without The Glasses". http://www.tomsguide.com/us/3DTV-autostereoscopic-CES,review-1490.html TV - Tom's Guide US. Retrieved 15 February 2010. 
  9. ^ {{cite web|url=http://www.thirddimensiontv.co.uk/3d-technology.html
  10. ^ "SENSIO®- The worldwide 3D home video standard". Sensio.tv. http://www.sensio.tv/en/default.3d. Retrieved 2010-02-12. 
  11. ^ http://www.blu-raydisc.com/assets/Downloadablefile/BDA-3D-Specifcation-Press-Release---Proposed-Final12-14-08version-clean-16840.pdf
  12. ^ "Manufacturer :: HDMI 1.4 :: 3D". HDMI. http://www.hdmi.org/manufacturer/hdmi_1_4/3d.aspx. Retrieved 2010-02-12. 
  13. ^ "Hyundai Offers 3D TV for Japan Market Only (2008-06-18)". Insidetech.monster.com. 2008-06-18. http://insidetech.monster.com/news/articles/2364-hyundai-offers-3d-tv-for-japan-market-only. Retrieved 2010-02-12. 
  14. ^ Ed Pilkington in New York. "ESPN viewers can watch World Cup matches in 3D – at a price". Guardian. http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2010/jan/06/espn-3d-world-cup-ces. Retrieved 2010-02-12. 
  15. ^ "Sky to launch 3D TV in 2010". sky.com. http://corporate.sky.com/media/press_releases/2009/3d_tv.htm. Retrieved 2010-02-12. 
  16. ^ "HD는 스카이라이프". SkyLife. 2009-12-28. http://www.skylife.co.kr/skylife/center/news_view.jsp?no=2417. Retrieved 2010-02-12. 
  17. ^ http://corporate.discovery.com/discovery-news/discovery-communications-sony-and-imax-announce-pl/
  18. ^ http://investor.directv.com/releasedetail.cfm?ReleaseID=434745
  19. ^ http://www.engadget.com/2010/01/07/eyes-on-with-directv-3d/
  20. ^ "Channel 4 plans 3D shows, The Queen, Derren Brown - ''macworld.co.uk''". Macworld.co.uk. 2009-08-24. http://www.macworld.co.uk/digitallifestyle/news/index.cfm?RSS&NewsID=26984. Retrieved 2010-02-12. 
  21. ^ "Sky makes 3D history". Skysports.com. 2010-01-28. http://www.skysports.com/story/0,19528,11096_5889013,00.html. Retrieved 2010-02-12. 

A 3D television (3D-TV) is a television set that employs techniques of 3D presentation, such as stereoscopic capture, multi-view capture, or 2D plus depth, and a 3D display—a special viewing device to project a television program into a realistic three-dimensional field.

Contents

History

3D imaging dates to the beginning of photography. In 1844, Scottish inventor and writer David Brewster introduced the Stereoscope, a device that could take photographic pictures in 3D. It was then improved by Louis Jules Duboscq and a famous picture of Queen Victoria was displayed at The Great Exhibition in 1851. In 1855 the Kinematoscope was invented, i.e., the stereo animation camera. The first anaglyph movie was produced in 1915 and in 1922 the first public 3D movie was displayed. Stereoscopic 3D television was demonstrated for the first time on August 10, 1928, by John Logie Baird in his company's premises at 133 Long Acre, London.[1] Baird pioneered a variety of 3D television systems using electro-mechanical and cathode-ray tube techniques. In 1935 the first 3D color movie was produced. By the Second World War, stereoscopic 3D still cameras for personal use were already fairly common.

In the fifties, when TV became popular in the United States, many 3D movies were produced. The first such movie was Bwana Devil from United Artists that could be seen all across the US in 1952. One year later, in 1953, came the 3D movie House of Wax which also featured stereophonic sound. Alfred Hitchcock originally made his film Dial M for Murder in 3D, but for the purpose of maximizing profits the movie was released in 2D because not all cinemas were able to display 3D films. The Soviet Union also developed 3D films, with Robinzon Kruzo being their first full-length 3D movie in 1946.[2]

Subsequently, television stations started airing 3D serials based on the same technology as 3D movies.[citation needed] In 2010, video games began to utilize 3D as a new way to play the games.[3]

Technologies

There are several techniques to produce and display 3D moving pictures.

Common 3D display technology for projecting stereoscopic image pairs to the viewer include:[4]

Single-view displays project only one stereo pair at a time. Multi-view displays either use head tracking to change the view depending of the viewing angle, or simultaneously project multiple independent views of a scene for multiple viewers (automultiscopic); such multiple views can be created on the fly using the 2D plus depth format.

Various other display techniques have been described, such as holography, volumetric display and the Pulfrich effect, which was used by Doctor Who for Dimensions in Time in 1993, by 3rd Rock From The Sun in 1997, and by the Discovery Channel's Shark Week in 2000, among others. Real-Time 3D TV (Youtube video) is essentially a form of autostereoscopic display.

Stereoscopy is the most widely accepted method for capturing and delivering 3D video. It involves capturing stereo pairs in a two-view setup, with cameras mounted side by side, separated by the same distance as between a person's pupils. If we imagine projecting an object point in a scene along the line-of-sight (for each eye, in turn) to a flat background screen, we may describe the location of this point mathematically using simple algebra. In rectangular coordinates with the screen lying in the Y-Z plane (the Z axis upward and the Y axis to the right) and the viewer centered along the X axis, we find that the screen coordinates are simply the sum of two terms, one accounting for perspective and the other for binocular shift. Perspective modifies the Z and Y coordinates of the object point by a factor of D/(D-x), while binocular shift contributes an additional term (to the Y coordinate only) of s*x/(2*(D-x)), where D is the distance from the selected system origin to the viewer (right between the eyes), s is the eye separation (about 7 centimeters), and x is the true x coordinate of the object point. The binocular shift is positive for the left-eye-view and negative for the right-eye-view. For very distant object points, it is obvious that the eyes will be looking along the same line of sight. For very near objects, the eyes may become excessively "cross-eyed". However, for scenes in the greater portion of the field of view, a realistic image is readily achieved by superposition of the left and right images (using the polarization method or synchronized shutter-lens method) provided the viewer isn't too near the screen and the left and right images are correctly positioned on the screen. Digital technology has largely eliminated inaccurate superposition that was a common problem during the era of traditional stereoscopic films.[5][6]

Multi-view capture uses arrays of many cameras to capture a 3D scene through multiple independent video streams. Plenoptic cameras, which capture the light field of a scene, can also be used to capture multiple views with a single main lens.[7] Depending on the camera setup, the resulting views can either be displayed on multi-view displays, or passed for further image processing.

After capture, stereo or multi-view image data can be processed to extract 2D plus depth information for each view, effectively creating a device-independent representation of the original 3D scene. This data can be used to aid inter-view image compression or to generate stereoscopic pairs for multiple different view angles and screen sizes.

2D plus depth processing can be used to recreate 3D scenes even from a single view and convert legacy film and video material to a 3D look, though a convincing effect is harder to achieve and the resulting image will likely look like a cardboard miniature.

TV sets

These TV sets are high-end and generally include Ethernet, USB player and recorder, Bluetooth and USB Wi-Fi.

3D-ready TV sets

3D-ready TV sets are those that can operate in 3D mode (in addition to regular 2D mode), in conjunction with a set-top-box and LCD shutter glasses, where the TV tells the glasses which eye should see the image being exhibited at the moment, creating a stereoscopic image. These TV sets usually support HDMI 1.4 and a minimum (input and output) refresh rate of 120 Hz; glasses may be sold separately.

Panasonic already has several sets in the market (like the Panasonic Viera TC-P50VT200 which are 3D capable and come shipped with glasses. It has a retail price of approximately US$2,500. The Samsung UN46C7000 46-Inch 3D TV can be purchased for US$2,000.00 or less. There are numerous, relatively inexpensive models available from a number of manufacturers already in the summer of 2010.

Mitsubishi and Samsung utilize DLP technology from Texas Instruments.[8] As of January 2010, Samsung, LG,[9] Toshiba, Sony, and Panasonic all had plans to introduce 3D capabilities (mostly in higher-end models) in TVs available sometime in 2010.[10] 3D Blu-ray players went on sale in 2010, and Sky began 3D broadcasts in the UK on 3 April 2010. DirecTV broadcasts began with the 2010 FIFA World Cup in June 2010.[10] Samsung began selling the UN55C7000, its first 3D ready TV, late in February 2010.[11]

Philips was developing 3D television sets that would be available for the consumer market by about 2011 without the need for special glasses (autostereoscopy).[12] However it was canceled due to the slow adaptation of customers going from 2D to 3D.

In August 2010, Toshiba announced plans to bring a range of autosteroscopic TVs to market by the end of the year.[13]

The Chinese manufacturer TCL has developed a 42-inch (110 cm) LCD 3D TV called the TD-42F, which is currently available in China. This model uses a lenticular system and does not require any special glasses (autostereoscopy). It currently sells for approximately $20,000.[14]

LG, Samsung, Sony & Philips intend to increase their 3D TV offering with plans to make 3D TV sales account for over 50% of their respective TV distribution offering by 2012. It is expected that the screens will use a mixture of technologies until there is standardisation across the industry.[15]. Samsung offers the LED 7000, LCD 750, PDP 7000 TV sets and the Blu-ray 6900.[16]

On June 9, 2010, Panasonic unveiled a 152 inches (390 cm) 3D-capable TV (the largest so far) that will go on sale within 2010. The TV, which is the size of about nine 50-inch TVs, will cost more than 50 million yen (US$576,000).[17]

Full 3D TV sets

Full 3D TV sets include Panasonic Full HD 3D (1920X1080 p, this is, 2 Mp; and 600 Hz).

Standardization efforts and standard

The entertainment industry is expected to adopt a common and compatible standard for 3D in home electronics. To present faster frame rate in high definition to avoid judder, enhancing 3-D film, televisions and broadcasting, other unresolved standards are the type of 3D glasses (passive or active), including bandwidth considerations, subtitles, recording format and a Blu-ray standard.

With improvements in digital technology, in the late 2000s, 3D movies have become more practical to produce and display, putting competitive pressure behind the creation of 3D television standards. There are several techniques for Stereoscopic Video Coding, and stereoscopic distribution formatting including anaglyph, quincunx, and 2D plus Delta.

Content providers, such as Disney, DreamWorks, and other Hollywood studios, and technology developers, such as Philips, asked[when?] SMPTE for the development of a 3DTV standard in order to avoid a battle of formats and to guarantee consumers that they will be able to view the 3D content they purchase and to provide them with 3D home solutions for all pockets. In August 2008, SMPTE established the "3-D Home Display Formats Task Force" to define the parameters of a stereoscopic 3D mastering standard for content viewed on any fixed device in the home, no matter the delivery channel. It explored the standards that need to be set for 3D content distributed via broadcast, cable, satellite, packaged media, and the Internet to be played-out on televisions, computer screens and other tethered displays. After six months, the committee produced a report to define the issues and challenges, minimum standards, and evaluation criteria, which the Society said would serve as a working document for SMPTE 3D standards efforts to follow. A follow-on effort to draft a standard for 3D content formats was expected to take another 18 to 30 months.[citation needed]

Production studios are developing an increasing number of 3D titles for the cinema and as many as a dozen companies are actively working on the core technology behind the product. Many have technologies available to demonstrate, but no clear road forward for a mainstream offering has emerged.

Under these circumstances, SMPTE's inaugural meeting was essentially a call for proposals for 3D television; more than 160 people from 80 companies signed up for this first meeting. Vendors that presented their respective technologies at the task force meeting included Sensio,[18] Philips, Dynamic Digital Depth (DDD), TDVision [3], and Real D, all of which had 3D distribution technologies.

However, SMPTE is not the only 3D standards group. Other organizations such as the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), 3D@home Consortium, ITU and the Entertainment Technology Center at USC's School of Cinematic Arts (ETC), have created their own investigation groups and have already offered to collaborate to reach a common solution. The Digital TV Group (DTG), has committed to profiling a UK standard for 3DTV products and services. Other standard groups such as DVB, BDA, ARIB, ATSC, DVD Forum, IEC and others are to be involved in the process.[citation needed]

MPEG has been researching multi-view, stereoscopic, and 2D plus depth 3D video coding since the mid-1990s;[19] the first result of this research is the Multiview Video Coding extension for MPEG-4 AVC that is currently undergoing standardization. MVC has been chosen by the Blu-ray disc association for 3D distribution. The format offers backwards compatibility with 2D Blu-ray players.[20]

HDMI version 1.4, released in June 2009, defines a number of 3D transmission formats. The format "Frame Packing" (left and right image packed into one video frame with twice the normal bandwidth) is mandatory for HDMI 1.4 3D devices. All three resolutions (720p50, 720p60, and 1080p24) have to be supported by display devices, and at least one of those by playback devices. Other resolutions and formats are optional.[21] While HDMI 1.4 cables and devices will be capable of transmitting 3D pictures in full 1080p, HDMI 1.3 does not include such support. As a out-of-spec solution for the bitrate problem, a 3D image may be displayed at a lower resolution, like interlaced or at standard definition.

DVB 3D-TV standard

DVB has established the DVB 3D-TV Specification. The following 3D-TV consumer configurations will be available to the public:[22]

  • 3D-TV connected to 3D Blu-ray Player for packaged media.
  • 3D-TV connected to HD Games Console, e.g. PS3 for 3D gaming.
  • 3D-TV connected to HD STB for broadcast 3D-TV.
  • 3D-TV receiving a 3D-TV broadcast directly via a built-in tuner and decoder.

For the two broadcast scenarios above, initial requirements are for Pay-TV broadcasters to deliver 3D-TV services over existing HD broadcasting infrastructures, and to use existing receivers (with firmware upgrade, as required) to deliver 3D content to 3D-TV sets, via an HDMI or equivalent connection, if needed. This is termed Frame Compatible. There are a range of Frame Compatible formats. They include the Side by Side (SbS) format, the Top and Bottom (TaB) format, and others.

Broadcasts

File:3D
A diagram of the 3D TV scheme

3D Channels

As of 2008, 3D programming is broadcast on Japanese cable channel BS 11 approximately four times per day.[23]

Cablevision launched a 3D version of its MSG channel on March 24, 2010, available only to Cablevision subscribers on channel 1300.[24][25] The channel is dedicated primarily to sports broadcasts, including MSG's 3D broadcast of a New York Rangers-New York Islanders game, limited coverage of the 2010 Masters Tournament, and (in cooperation with YES Network) a game between the New York Yankees and Seattle Mariners.[26]

The first Australian program broadcast in high-definition 3D was Fox Sports coverage of the soccer game Australia-New Zealand on 24 May 2010.[27]

Also in Australia, the Nine Network and Special Broadcasting Service will be bringing the State of Origin (matches on 26 May, 16 June and 7 July 2010) (Nine) and FIFA World Cup (SBS) in 3D on Channel 40 respectively. [28]

Earlier this year (2010) Discovery Communications, Imax and Sony announced plans to launch a 3D TV channel in the US with a planned launch in early 2011.[29]

In Brazil Rede TV! became the first Terrestrial television to transmit 3D signal freely for all 3D enabled audience on 21 May. But despite their technology, its programming is still in poor quality.[30][31][32][33]

Starting on June 11, 2010 ESPN launched a new channel, ESPN 3D, dedicated to 3D sports with up to 85 live events a year in 3D.[34]

On 1 January 2010, the world's first 3D channel, SKY 3D, started broadcasting nationwide in South Korea by Korea Digital Satellite Broadcasting. The channel's slogan is "World No.1 3D Channel". This 24/7 channel uses the Side by Side technology at a resolution of 1920x1080i. 3D contents include education, animation, sport, documentary and performances.[35]

A full 24 hour broadcast channel was announced at the 2010 Consumer Electronics show as a joint venture from IMAX, Sony, and the Discovery channel.[36] The intent is to launch the channel in the United States by year end 2010.

DirecTV and Panasonic plan to launch 2 broadcast channels and 1 Video on demand channel with 3D content[37] in June 2010. DirecTV previewed a live demo of their 3D feed at the Consumer Electronics Show held January 7–10, 2010.[38]

In Europe, British Sky Broadcasting (Sky) lunched a limited 3D TV broadcast service on April 3, 2010. Transmitting from the Astra 2A satellite at 28.2° east, Sky 3D broadcast a selection of live UK Premier League football matches to over 1000 British pubs and clubs equipped with a Sky+HD Digibox and 3D Ready TVs, and preview programmes provided for free to top-tier Sky HD subscribers with 3D TV equipment. This was later expended to include a selection of films, sports, and entertainment programming launched to Sky subscribers on 1 October 2010.[39]

On September 28 2010, Virgin Media launched a 3D TV on Demand service, [40]

Several other European pay-TV networks are also planning 3D TV channels[41] and some have started test transmissions on other Astra satellites, including French pay-TV operator Canal+ which has announced its first 3D channel is to be launched in December 2010. Also the Spanish Canal+ has started the first broadcastings on May 18, 2010 and included 2010 FIFA World Cup matches in the new Canal+ 3D channel.[42] Satellite operator SES Astra started a free-to-air 3D demonstration channel on the Astra satellite at 23.5° east on May 4, 2010 for the opening of the 2010 ANGA Cable international trade fair[43] using 3D programming supplied by 3D Ready TV manufacturer Samsung under an agreement between Astra and Samsung to co-promote 3D TV.[44]

3D episodes and shows

There have been several notable examples in television where 3D episodes have been produced, typically as one hour specials or special events.

The first-ever 3D broadcast in the UK was an episode of the weekly science magazine The Real World, made by Television South and screened only in the south-east region of the UK in February 1982. The programme included excerpts of test footage shot by Phillips in the Netherlands. Red/green 3D glasses were given away free with copies of the TV Times listings magazine, but the 3D sections of the programme were shown in monochrome. The experiment was repeated nationally in December 1982, with red/blue glasses allowing colour 3D to be shown for the first time. The programme was repeated the following weekend followed by a rare screening of the Western Fort Ti starring George Montgomery and Joan Vohs.

The sitcom 3rd Rock From The Sun two-part episode "Nightmare On Dick Street", where several of the characters' dreams are shown in 3D. The episode cued its viewers to put on their 3D glasses by including "3D on" and "3D off" icons in the corner of the screen as a way to alert them as to when the 3D sequences would start and finish. The episode used the Pulfrich 3D technique.

Recent uses of 3D in television include the drama Medium and the comedy Chuck. The show Arrested Development briefly used 3D in an episode.

Channel 4 in the UK ran a short season of 3D programming in November 2009 including Derren Brown and The Queen in 3D.[45]

On 31 January 2010, BSKYB became the first broadcaster in the world to show a live sports event in 3D when Sky Sports screened a football match between Manchester United and Arsenal to a public audience in several selected pubs.[46]

The 2010 52nd Grammy Awards featured a Michael Jackson Tribute Sequence in 3D, using anaglyph format.

In April 2010, the Masters Tournament was broadcast in live 3D on DirecTV, Comcast, and Cox.

On 29 May 2010, Sky broadcasts Guinness Premiership Final in 3D in selected pubs and clubs.[47]

Fox Sports broadcasts the first program in 3D in Australia when the Socceroos versed The New Zealand All Whites at the MCG on May 24, 2010

The Nine Network broadcasts the first Free-to-air 3D telecast when the Queensland Maroons faced the New South Wales Blues at ANZ Stadium on May 26, 2010.

The Roland Garros tennis tournament in Paris, from May 23 to June 6, 2010, was filmed in 3D (center court only) and broadcast live via ADSL and fiber to Orange subscribers throughout France in a dedicated Orange TV channel.[48]

25 matches in the FIFA World Cup 2010 will be broadcast in 3D.

The Inauguration of Philippine President Noynoy Aquino on June 30, 2010 was the first presidential inauguration to telecast in live 3D by GMA Network. However, the telecast was only available in select places.

The 2010 Coke Zero 400 will be broadcast in 3D on July 3 on NASCAR.com and DirecTV along with Comcast, Time Warner, and Bright House cable systems.

The 2010 AFL Grand Final will be broadcast in 3D from the Seven Network.

Avi Arad is currently developing a 3D Pacman TV Show.

Satellite delivered Bell TV in Canada began to offer a full time pay-TV, 3D channel to its subscribers on 27 July 2010. In September 2010, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's first 3D broadcast will be a special about the Canadian monarch, Queen Elizabeth II, and will include 3-D film footage of the Queen's 1953 coronation as well as 3D video of her 2010 tour of Canada. This will mark the first time the historical 3D images have been seen anywhere on television as well as the first broadcast of a Canadian produced 3D programme in Canada.[49]

The 2010 PGA Championship was broadcast in 3D for four hours on August 13, 2010, from 3–7 pm EDT. The broadcast was available on DirecTV, Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks, Cox Communications, and Cablevision.[50]

FioS and the NFL partnered to broadcast the September 2, 2010, pre-season game between the New England Patriots and the New York Giants in 3D. The game was only broadcasted in 3D in the northeast.[51]

Singapore based Tiny Island Productions is currently producing Dream Defenders, which will be available in both autostereoscopic and stereoscopic 3D formats [52].

Health effects

Some viewers have complained of headaches and visual problems after watching 3D TV and films. There have been several warnings, especially for children. [53]

See also

References

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