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Why Bad 3D, Not 3D Glasses, Gives You Headaches 255

Posted by Soulskill
from the subset-equal-to-set dept.
Barence writes "The most common complaint about 3D is that the glasses give you a headache, but that's not actually true, according to the man who teaches the pros how to make better 3D. Speaking at the BBC in London, Buzz Hays, chief instructor for the Sony 3D Technology Center in Culver City, California, explained: 'It's not the technology's fault, it's really the content that can cause these problems. It's easy to make 3D but it's hard to make it good — and by "good" I mean taking care to make sure that this isn't going to cause eyestrain.' He went on to detail some of the mistakes made by inexperienced 3D film makers, from poor composition of shots, through uncomfortable convergence settings, to overuse of on-set monitors without viewing their content on a big screen. But the biggest admission Buzz made was that not even the 'experts' know all the tricks yet, which is why 3D should only get better from here. In the same seminar, Buzz also explained why 3D glasses are here to stay — at least for the next few years."
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Why Bad 3D, Not 3D Glasses, Gives You Headaches

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  • by GuyFawkes (729054) on Monday August 02, 2010 @02:30PM (#33113538) Homepage Journal

    As subject, this just for lameness filter.

  • by iammani (1392285) on Monday August 02, 2010 @02:38PM (#33113670)
    As far as your eye knows it really is 3D (if it is wearing 3D glasses of course). So for all practical purposes it can be called 3D.
  • by Scootin159 (557129) on Monday August 02, 2010 @02:39PM (#33113686) Homepage
    Similar complaint here: I can only see with one eye. Thus to me, 3D movies only cost more, have a lower contrast and really blurry without special glasses. Of course, I'll still end up watching more of them than I wish because my wife loves the gimmick.
  • by GameMaster (148118) on Monday August 02, 2010 @02:44PM (#33113770)

    I too have worn glasses since childhood. I've never had a problem wearing the 3d glasses over my normal ones, and I purchase my frames from the "big" sized rack at the eye doctor's shop. Don't you think that, maybe, you're just being a little bit of a drama queen?

  • Re:Depth of Field (Score:3, Informative)

    by Beardydog (716221) on Monday August 02, 2010 @02:52PM (#33113892)
    I think the 85% may be at least partially due to hype, saturation, and (I suppose to a much smaller degree) technical details.

    Avatar was hugely hyped. No other movie since has had so much energy poured into its marketing, particularly focusing on the sweeping majesty of the 3D. I watched in on a crummy screen, in 2D and was so horrified by the film itself that I have no plans to see it... but a kajillion people did. As a science fiction film, it also appealed more to the types of people interested in 3D, and technology. Shrek: Forever After appeals to a lot of people who just don't are about the 3D, or aren't even aware of the option.

    Additionally, several of the movies that came out shortly after Avatar were "faked", with 3D added once the film was in the can. As huge fan of 3D, I am not willing to sit through a film stuffed with someone's idea of appropriate parallax. I want accurate parallax, dammit, or I want no parallax at all.
  • Re:Depth of Field (Score:3, Informative)

    by Daniel_Staal (609844) <> on Monday August 02, 2010 @03:16PM (#33114228)

    With a standard movie, when your eye can't focus on something it just files it into 'pattern on wall' and ignores it. In 3D, your eyes think they should be able to pick out objects and focus on them (because they can switch parallax to them), but they can't.

  • Re:Depth of Field (Score:3, Informative)

    by profplump (309017) <> on Monday August 02, 2010 @03:30PM (#33114404)

    In films that don't pretend to be 3D there's no conflict between the parallax and my focal distance, so I never have any reason to attempt to focus at some other depth. In fact, the limited field of focus is often used to show differing distances, to help make up for the lack of real depth information.

    Plus it's *not* impossible to capture a re-focusable image -- you just need to capture the entire light field as opposed to the 2D projection of the light field captured by traditional photography. While not in common use, such devices actually exist: []

  • by EdZ (755139) on Monday August 02, 2010 @03:37PM (#33114474)
    It depends on the glasses. Simply circular-polarised glasses are dirt cheap. The funky multi-layer-dichroic filters used in Dolby-3D (it's like anaglyph, but with 6 specific wavelengths, 3 per eye. Think RlRrGlGrBlBr) are hella expensive. $50 per pair is what I've seen quoted and mentioned by the engineers. I guess the feel that the money saved on not needing a retro-reflective silver screen is better spent on the initial glasses cost and cleaning them between performances.
    BTW, is the 'pay for your glasses' thing an American thing? Last time I saw a 3D film (in the UK), the glasses were included in the ticket price and gave them back after the performance.
  • by ebuck (585470) on Monday August 02, 2010 @03:47PM (#33114560)

    Exactly. That's why I hate 3d movies, before I get the possible headache.

    With 3d movies, since the screen is still flat, only one item can be in focus at any given time. The items in focus are those in the plane where the action is typically taking place, but sometimes something interesting is happening in the background. Attempts to view the background have you focusing on something that will never come into focus. This causes eyestrain and an uncomfortable visual feeling.

    Most of the time people want to see what the director wants them to see; however, there were several scenes in Avatar where I wanted to look at the squad tactics in the background. It was quite disconcerting to know that they were permanently rendered out of focus.

    If there wasn't part of the screen being rendered with tricks to simulate depth, I doubt I would have been so put off by the other parts of the screen failing to simulate depth in the same way.

  • by Dynedain (141758) <slashdot2@anth[ ... m ['ony' in gap]> on Monday August 02, 2010 @04:18PM (#33115028) Homepage

    Get contact lenses. They're cheaper than glasses and you might even get laid.

    Bullshit. My wife and I have both worn corrective lenses since childhood, and have very similar vision problems. We just did the math a couple of weeks ago. Over 3 years usage*, my very expensive "designer" glasses from a boutique shop are less than her average-priced daily contacts** from a low-cost source. And that's not counting the fact that eye exams for contact lenses are significantly more expensive. In fact, my wife is considering laser surgery because it would be significantly cheaper than contacts in the long run.

    * 3 years is the standard warranty on my glasses
    ** My wife had to switch from 2-week lenses to dailies because of a corneal infection

  • by simcop2387 (703011) on Monday August 02, 2010 @04:18PM (#33115034) Homepage Journal

    While it wouldn't be as cheap as making your own, newegg has a set of clip ons for the circularly polarized films. big long ass url here []. I don't know if that set would fit on yours but i'd imagine there are some out there. This might end up more comfortable and last longer than the ones you make yourself.

  • by aamcf (651492) on Monday August 02, 2010 @04:51PM (#33115552) Homepage

    There are no advantages of glasses over contacts whatever.

    Apart from the fact that glasses can correct some vision problems that contacts cannot.

  • Re:Why not? (Score:3, Informative)

    by clone53421 (1310749) on Monday August 02, 2010 @04:56PM (#33115630) Journal

    No. He is correct. Close one eye and shift your focus from something very close to something distant. Everything out of focus is blurry. In a 3D movie, the focal plane of everything (NOT the parallax, but the actual distance at which the image will be sharp and in focus to your eye) is at the same distance.

    There are two different attributes of 3D: Focal distance (how far away it actually is) and parallax (how much it appears to move if you move your head, or perceived by one eye vs. the other).

    Parallax is easy to simulate and gives a very strong sense of 3D; focal distance is impossible to simulate (using current technology – it’d require a hologram) and gives a very weak sense of 3D, at a distance. Focal distance is almost a non-factor for distant objects. For near objects, it is much more noticeable.

    The key – to doing 3D well, and not causing headaches – is to not cause objects to seem so close to you that the focal distance should be significantly different than it really is. Yes, that means you can’t do your lame jump-out-of-the-screen effects. Too bad, so sad...

    Of course the other huge headache-inducer is when the producer decides to play with the lens effects to limit the range of focus... and then half the screen is horribly blurry. If you didn’t want to look at the blurry parts, you’re fine... but as soon as you want to look at something blurry, your eye starts trying to focus on it and can’t. In other words... this can be done, if it is done carefully and the audience only looks at the foreground. However, you had better be damn good at making your audience look where you want them to or else they’ll all hate you.

  • Re:Why not? (Score:3, Informative)

    by thetoadwarrior (1268702) on Monday August 02, 2010 @05:10PM (#33115850) Homepage
    I think it's time to take a break and step out of mother's basement for a breather.
  • Re:Porn (Score:2, Informative)

    by hviniciusg (1481907) on Monday August 02, 2010 @05:41PM (#33116340)

What this country needs is a good five cent microcomputer.