Why I Was Wrong About 3D (Maybe, We'll See)Nikhil Pradhan, 06 Jul' 2011
Consistency is my forte. Well, at least consistency in the way I loathe developments in technology that I don’t immediately like. In the past, I’ve directed my rants towards Internet Explorer 9, the Apple iPad (and tablets in general) and yes, 3D, in ways that would probably cause third party observers to brand me a ‘luddite.’ 3D in particular has got my goat, especially in the completely crass manner in which it has been forced down consumers’ throats over the last year. While I enjoyed Avatar, I don’t think any other movie has really been worth watching in 3D (well, maybe except for Megamind), the chief offenders being Tron and the new Pirates of the Carribean movie.
On the desktop too, while I had a very good first impression of Nvidia’s GeForce 3D Vision, after a while, it just stopped being anything special. Especially since 3D on a desktop monitor added mere ‘depth’ rather than causing things to pop out of the screen. And don’t even get me started on “3D” mobile phones.
It was enough to cause me great surprise (and a little concern) over how genuinely amazed I was by LG’s new CF3D projector, a device that can project full HD content in 3D. It’s a hugely expensive device (Rs. 9 lakhs approximately) and apart from its own price tag, requires a considerable investment in the form of a 100-inch ‘silver’ screen that costs Rs. 60,000 (approx.), a larger than average room with (what I’m guessing is a must) a state-of-the-art surround sound setup.
But since I wasn’t buying the damned things and I was being shown all of this at a press conference, I could just focus on the performance. And boy, did it blow my mind.
LG showed me a bunch of test videos and all of them showed the exceptional potential that 3D has in bringing immersive entertainment into our homes. A video showing a couple of fighter jets had me almost reaching out to touch the nose of the jet as it loomed, what seemed like inches, in front of my face. A video in which a football player kicked the ball towards the camera had me instinctively duck. Although I looked like the proper fool, I really felt like a kid in Disneyland.
Which brings me again to the point that maybe 3D is the next step in home entertainment. However, unless it’s the kind of experience that LG’s 9 lakh projector gave me; it doesn’t look like it will be worth it. Because unlike most new developments that come around, 3D is almost 100% aesthetical in value and therefore needs to be wholly complete. After all, you won’t buy an incomplete painting just because “at least it’s getting there.”
So while I wait for the “complete 3D experience” to get a whole lot cheaper and whole lot easier to implement in my home, I know my views towards 3D have been softened. However, that doesn’t mean I’ve become more sympathetic to the idea of shelling out Rs. 250 to watch the next dim, 3D Hollywood “blockbuster” that leaves me bleary eyed later.
Think 3D is another way for the 'Man' to keep you down? Show me the light on Twitter @postwar
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Nikhil Pradhan is a die-hard PC gamer who pities the fools that look at any other form of gaming. He has lost countless hours in the various worlds that make up Western RPGs and also arguing about why Metallica has never lost their mojo.