Introducing Universal 3-D Glasses
XpanD has launched the first pair of universal 3-D TV glasses that can be used to view most 3-D content, regardless of whether its being shown on a 3-D HDTV, a computer or in the movie theater. Universal glasses remove the limitation of manufacturer-specific glasses, a concern that prompted the Consumer Electronics Association to call for a universal standard last October.
“What you want is a situation where you can take your active glasses from your house to somebody else’s and have them work,” Brian Markwalter, the Consumer Electronic Association’s vice president for technology and standards said.
Universal glasses will help drive adoption of 3-D TV, which while small in 2010, is expected to grow rapidly over the next several years. Display Search forecasts that 3-D will grow from two percent of all flat panel TVs shipped in 2010, to 41 percent in 2014.
What many consumers may not realize is that 3-D glasses are a fairly complex technical device that must be worn to view 3-D content. Glasses-less technology is being pursued by Toshiba, but it is at least five years away and, for now, cannot display high definition content.
XpanD universal 3-D glasses use infrared (IR) active shutter 3-D technology and are compatible with 3-D HDTVs manufactured by Samsung , Panasonic, Sony, LG, Philips and Toshiba, both LCD and plasma . The glasses are also compatible with older DLP 3-D capable sets from Mitsubishi.
The glasses have a 170-degree viewing angle, wider than some manufacturer-specific glasses, which allows the viewer to watch 3-D content without having to sit directly in front of the TV.
Brightness may vary from one 3-D TV to another when viewed through glasses.
“Oh, the XpanD glasses proved superior to Panasonic’s RealD-made lenses, offering brighter colors, deeper contrast and blacks, and more 3-D depth,” Stewart Wolpin, reporter for Twice, an electronics trade publications, said in a blog post describing his 3-D exploits at local Best Buy stores.
If you are using a Sony 3-D TV, it must be set to High Brightness mode as opposed to Low Brightness or Automatic.
XpanD glasses will support future TV models with a simple modification to firmware.
XpanD universal glasses are covered under a repair and replacement warranty, and include two extra batteries, three nose pieces to provide a more comfortable fit and a microfiber bag. Batteries are replaceable and provide up to 100 hours of use.
Price: $129. Available from the manufacturer, Amazon and Sears.
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