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3D TV No Glasses

Sky 3D TV

Digital TV Advice is on tour – yes, I’m in Tokyo this week so what a good chance to check out the latest products in the TV world. My first thought was to see if there were any 3D TVs available using the ‘no glasses’ technology, so I paid a visit to Yodobashi Camera in Shinjuku and found that there’s one model out so far, a Toshiba Regza in two different sizes, 20 inch and 12 inch.

I positioned myself 80cm in front of the 20GL1, as instructed by the very helpful assistant, and watched a demo that consisted of a space shuttle lift-off, tropical fish, dolphins and clips from Despicable Me. While the quality was good and you definitely got the 3D effect (fantastic bit where a sea snake comes right out of the screen at you for example), there were also parts of the image that felt blurry, as if you were just starting to need glasses. The most impressive element is the ‘how do they do that?’ factor, but this is reflected very much in the price – just under 240,000 yen or around £1750.

I don’t have 3D TV at home so to compare I went to the next display which was a Sony Bravia KDL-46L900 46 inch LED model with 3D glasses. The quality was much better and the TV, despite being over twice the screen size, was a fair bit cheaper at just under 205,000 yen or about £1475, so it’s the novelty factor you’re paying for at the moment and for some time to come but it will come down like everything else does.

The Regza glasses-less 3d system works by using nine different perspectives of each 2D frame which are then interpreted by the brain as a 3D image. Both models are flat-panel LCD displays with 1,280×720 resolution on the 20GL1 and 466×350 resolution on the 12GL1. Toshiba originally unveiled the models back in October 2010.

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