Tag Archives: 3D

LG lets loose G-Slate specifications, spring release window

In early January at CES 2011 Motorola and T-Mobile took their respective stages to announce the upcoming Honeycomb-powered tablets. While Moto’s Xoom was almost fully fleshed out (exact release date and price are still up in the air), T-Mobile did not provide any details surrounding LG’s G-Slate besides saying it will be the “first 4G Android 3.0 powered tablet.” Well I happy to report that since then both the carrier and the manufacturer of the mysterious tablet have come out with hard specs and a release window. Lets get to it. The G-Slate (otherwise known as the LG Optimus Pad across the pond) packs a 8.9-inch (1280×768 WXGA) multitouch display and runs on a 1GHz dual-core Tegra 2 processor. Other specs include 32GB of internal memory, built-in WiFi, gyroscope, accelerometer, and adaptive lighting, and Adobe Flash support. But don’t let me bore you to death; the G-Slate features something the other Honeycomb launch tablets don’t have–2 cameras at the rear for stereoscopic 3D video recording. Working together the two rear-facing camera can capture 1080p HD content that can be viewed on the slate itself (the display is in fact 3D-capable, limited to 720p HD, however) and 3D video (in 1080p resolution) can be pumped out to an external 3D-capable HDTV through HDMI output. One of the rear cameras doubles as a 5 megapixel camera for standard photo capture (with flash) and there’s a third 2 megapixel front-facing camera for video chat. It’s important (and rather unfortunate) to note that pesky glasses are required to view 3D content on the slate’s display. Oh well–but it still remains a differentiating factor when it comes to making a purchasing decision between this, the Xoom, and Samsung’s Galaxy Tab 10.1.

The G-Slate will release this spring (likely in March) exclusively on T-Mobile’s network in the States, and as mentioned before it will take advantage of T Mo’s “4G” HSPA+ speeds. To end things on an even brighter note, the slate’s expected to ship as a Google Experience device, meaning it will come preloaded with a fresh version of Honeycomb, free of any LG and T-Mobile bloatware. Cheers to that! Pics below, video and PR after the break.

[Via Engadget 1, 2]

READ MORE LG lets loose G-Slate specifications, spring release window

‘Tron: Legacy’ comes to Blu-ray April 5

The visually splendid, perfectly scored flick Tron: Legacy is yours to own on Blu-ray Tuesday, April 5, as is “TRON: The Original Classic Special Edition.” Disney’s been holding out on releasing the original Tron so that they could give it proper state-of-the-art digital restoration and enhanced high-definition sound it rightfully deserves. In addition to Blu-ray, Legacy will be released across various platforms including Blu-ray 3D, DVD, Digital Copy, Movie Download, and On-Demand. The BD release will boast 1080p visuals and 7.1 surround sound and pack in-depth bonus features on the making of the film. Disney is going to ship three Legacy bundles ranging from $40 to $80 in price. The motherload is a “5-disc 2-movie Blu-ray combo pack” that includes flick on Blu-ray, Blu-ray 3D, DVD, Digital Copy, and the original, remastered Tron. Bonus features include the “Derezzed” Daft Punk music video and featurettes called “The Next Day: Flynn Lives Revealed,” “Launching the Legacy,” and “Disc Roars.” In addition, all Blu-ray packs will include Disney Second Screen support. The Second Screen companion application can be accessed on any Internet-connected device (iPad, laptop, etc.) and it allows you to explore the story behind the film while you’re watching it. For example, you can engage with elements including 360-degree vehicle turnarounds and interactive progression reels. Look after the break to see the full breakdown of every release bundle.

Oh, and there’s one more thing. Along with Legacy and the original Tron, Disney is also releasing TRON: Legacy RECONFIGURED, an album featuring 14 remixes of the original motion picture soundtrack scored by Daft Punk. Let’s just say April 5 is going to be a wonderful day.

[Via Engadget] READ MORE ‘Tron: Legacy’ comes to Blu-ray April 5

3net, a 24/7 3D network, set to launch Sunday on DirecTV

I know you’ve been waiting with so much anticipation since late December 2009 to hear this news. DirecTV is nearly ready to launch the 24/7 3D network dubbed 3net, the joint venture of Sony Corp., Discovery Communications, and IMAX Corp. On Sunday, February 13 at precisely 8PM ET 3net will be accessible exclusively to DirecTV customers. The network plans to premiere original 3D series and programs every night at 9PM ET. Sony, Discovery, and IMAX hope that the network will “serve as a critical driver for consumer adoption of in-home 3D entertainment” with their goal for the channel “to offer viewers the largest library of native 3D entertainment content in the world by the end of 2011.” China Revealed, Into the Deep, and Forgotten Planet is the Feb. 13 lineup, so if you’re a satellite subscriber and own a 3DTV tune to channel 107 to experience TV in an entirely new dimension. Official PR after the break.

[Via Engadget] READ MORE 3net, a 24/7 3D network, set to launch Sunday on DirecTV

Nintendo 3DS launch details: coming March 27 for $249

Today Nintendo’s Reggie Fils-Aime took the stage in New York City to discuss the Nintendo 3DS launch details we’ve been waiting for.  The 3D-enabled DS handheld will release on March 27 in the US for $249.99.  It will come in two color variants: Cosmo Black and Aqua Blue.  Ninty promises that over 30 3DS games will be available during the launch window (that is, between the March 27 and the E3 Expo in early June).  These include a mix of first and third party games.  Though Nintendo did not specify a solid list of launch titles, the press release mentions the following games: Pilotwings Resort, which has players soaring acrobatically over iconic Wuhu Island; nintendogs + cats, a new version of the Nintendo DS classic with a feline enhancement; and Steel Diver, a side-scrolling submarine adventure that gives the illusion that the player is peering into an aquarium.  The ones you really want to play like the 3D versions of The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time, Star Fox 64, Mario Kart, Animal Crossing, Paper Mario, plus the return of fan favorite Kid Icarus in Kid Icarus: Uprising are simply “in the works” with no release dates attached just yet.  Some third party games mentioned at the event include Super Street Fighter IV 3D Edition (Capcom), Madden NFL Football (EA), and LEGO Star Wars III: The Clone Wars (LucasArts), but again no release dates were specified.

So that pretty much does it for launch details.  However, in addition to announcing price, release date, and games support, Fils-Aime took time to talk about the 3DS’ hardware and expand upon the some of the pre-installed software.  Like its DS predessors, the 3DS packs two screens; the bottom one’s touch-sensitive and the top one’s 3D-enabled (no pesky glasses required).  A 3D Depth Slider can be used to manipulate the 3D effect during gameplay; the slider can turn off the 3D effect entirely and all 3DS games can be played in traditional 2D.  In addition to the D-Pad, a new Circle Pad provides a full 360 degrees of direction and allows for a higher level of precision during gameplay.  The 3DS also packs built-in motion and gyro sensors, so it can react to the motion and tilt of the system.  You’ll also find three camera built into this thing; one on the inside (facing you during gameplay) and two on the outside.  Combined the latter two can capture 3D pictures and you can view them on the top 3D display.  Other hardware notables: the 3DS comes bundled with an adjustable stylus (for use on the bottom touch-sensitive display), a 2GB SD memory card, and a charging cradle.

The Home Menu is where all your apps live.  Mii Maker is just what it sounds like and works similarly to how Miis are created on the Wii.  The difference here is that the Mii Maker will ask you to take a photo of yourself and the software will try its best to convert your real-life features into a Mii avatar.  If the conversion doesn’t sit well with you, manual customization options are available to fiddle with to make things right.  You also have the ability to import your Mii avatar from your Wii console by way of SD card transfer.  The augmented reality-based game Face Raiders lets you take pictures of your friends and turn them into shooting targets.  It’s a simple game that highlights the built-in gyro sensor since it requires you to physically lean and turn to search around for the targets and aim high and low to hit them.  AR Games works similarly, but they take advantage of the pack of AR cards that come bundled with the system.  All you have to do is place one of the AR cards onto a flat surface, point the outward facing 3DS camera at it, and targets come to life.  Animations are superimposed into the scene; so for example if you place a card on your kitchen table the backdrop for the targets will be the kitchen table (that’s augmented reality gaming in a nutshell).  The Activity Log tracks both your gameplay activity, much like the Wii Calender does automatically.  It notes which games you’ve played and how long you’ve played them, as well as your physical activity, counting every step you take while carrying your Nintendo 3DS.  Even when the system’s in sleep mode, it acts as a pedometer and tracks the distances you travel; the more you walk the more Play Coins you will earn.  These coins can then be used to purchase in-game bonus content, if the game’s developer decides to support it.  The Nintendo eShop offers access to downloadable games.  In addition to DSiWare games, Virtual Console games pulled from the Game Boy and Game Boy Color catalogs will be available to download.  Game videos, screenshots, demos, and ratings will also be browsable here.  Titles can be purchased with either a credit card or prepaid cards.  Other software notables: StreetPass Mii Plaza (more on this below), Internet Browser, Camera app (capture and view 3D pictures), Video app (watch 3D content), Sound app (listen to music in MP3 or AAC format from the SD card, plus record and play with sounds using the 3DS’ built-in mic); oh, and the 3DS is backwards compatible with all Nintendo DS games.

Fils-Aime mentioned that the 3DS is Nintendo’s most connected video games console ever made, and he’s not lying.  First let’s get this awesome update out of the way: friend codes are no longer specific to each game you buy, there is only one code and it’s attached to your 3DS.  Once you swap friend codes with someone, they will remain on your friend list and you can always check their online status no matter what game you’ve got running.  Now to some fun new features: StreetPass and SpotPass.  StreetPass is capable of exchanging game information with other Nintendo 3DS systems as owners pass one another.  An example of StreetPass functionality is the aptly titled StreetPass Mii Plaza.  Much like its Wii counterpart, the 3DS’ Mii Plaza will congregate your Mii avatar with all the other 3DS owners you happen to pass by, say, on the street (and your avatar will jump onto the 3DS of the person you pass).  In addition to sharing your avatar, other information can be exchanged over StreetPass including maps for games, high scores, and custom character data for different games.  This might be obvious but it’s worth pointing out–if you don’t want any information to exchange on the fly (because all this can happen while the 3DS is in sleep mode tucked away in your pocket) you can disable the StreetPass function.  Next up is SpotPass and this essentially connects to 3DS up to public or private at-home WiFi hotspots.  Once connected, the system can receive new content and updates even when it’s in sleep mode or charging.

Peer in the gallery below to get a closer look at the 3DS hardware, and look after the break to watch the 3DS virtual tour and catch a sneak peek at the software launch lineup.  Also, don’t forget to check out my hands-on preview of the 3DS from E3.

[Via Nintendo]

READ MORE Nintendo 3DS launch details: coming March 27 for $249

Man invents the glasses-free 3D solution?

French filmmaker and artist Francois Vogel believes he has discovered the long sought after solution to experience 3D without the annoying and up until now requisite glasses.  In the bizarre demonstration above, Vogel simulates the 3D active shutter process by attaching two modules to the temples on either side of his head.  After being “turned on” by two remote controls, the modules in some way force his eyes to blink at a rapid rate that reproduces the active shutter effect.

I’ve got a few gripes I need to share here.  This demonstration is freaky to say the least, and I’m not really buying into it.  For something so technically natured you’d think that Vogel would back up his invention with some science behind it.  Besides uploading this single video to YouTube (his channel only includes this video), he also created a website that is noticeably absent of anything remotely helpful to his cause.  Besides stating on his YouTube page that the tech requires 120Hz monitor displays to work, he fails to provide any other information regarding how the modules work.  And what about those remote controls that “turn on” said modules?  It just doesn’t sit well with me.  But that could be because the demonstration is downright disturbing.  Whether or not Vogel’s 3D glasses-free solution is fair game is left up in the air until he comes out with more evidence supporting it.

[Via Engadget]

Disney opening vault to release classics and modern flicks in Blu-ray 3D for 2011

If you’ve purchased a 3DTV then you already know that exciting 3D content is annoyingly absent from the retail space.  You can’t even pick up the best 3D feature film Avatar unless you buy it with a Panasonic set.  But I’ve got some good news for you, so listen here.  Walt Disney Studios has made plans to release “at least” 15 Disney films in 3D this year.  The selection includes older classics such as The Lion King and Beauty and the Beast as well as modern hits such as Tangled and Tron: Legacy.  Disney promises that the latter two films will release in 3D day-and-date and packaged with the Blu-ray 2D version.  Be sure to look after the break for the full PR which lists other Disney hits getting the Blu-ray 3D treatment in 2011.

[Via Engadget] READ MORE Disney opening vault to release classics and modern flicks in Blu-ray 3D for 2011

Avatar in 3D is stuck with Panasonic until 2012

I’ve got some bad news for you early adopter folks.  If you purchased a 3DTV recently in hopes to revel in everything Pandora has to offer in the comfort of your own living room, this won’t be happening until 2012. Earlier this month Panasonic became the exclusive seller of Avatar 3D on Blu-ray; if you want a 3D copy of the flick you must purchase a Panny VIERA 3DTV.  The exclusive deal was expected to end sometime next year, but the electronics manufacturer has confirmed that the deal will run through February 2012.  Happy bidding!

[Via Gizmodo]

Spider-Man reboot is getting the RED EPIC 3D treatment

Spider-Man reboot cinematographer Jason Schwartzman beat Peter Jackson to the punch!  Just about one week after Jackson announced his crew would be using 30 RED EPIC cameras to shoot The Hobbit in 3D, Schwartzman started production on Spider-Man using 3 EPIC cameras mounted on 2 3ality rigs.  This makes the Spidey reboot the very first major studio motion picture to be shot using the highly lauded RED EPIC configuration.  Schwartzman shared his initial thoughts after the first day of shooting.  “I can say for certainty the camera does exist and boy is it ready for primetime, as a matter of fact it’s a true game changer.  We shot in 3D…including running high speed and the images look stunning!”  Watching a movie in 3D is hotly debatable topic, but there’s no arguing against the 5K super hi-def resolution that EPIC camera make possible.  The Hobbit and Spider-Man are going to look good.

In related Spidey news, actress Emma Stone returned to her blonde roots for her Gwen Stacey role.  Let’s just say it’s a natural fit.

[Via Engadget; RedUserForums]

You can get Avatar in 3D on Blu-ray …if you buy a Panasonic 3DTV

There have been so many versions of Avatar released into the market it’s hard to count them all.  But this latest edition is especially sweet.  Why?  Because it includes the 3D version of the highest grossing flick!  The only way to get it (for now) is to purchase a Panasonic VIERA 3DTV.  When you pick up a Panny set you can also get the “Panasonic 3D Full HD Ultimate Pack” which includes Avatar in 3D on Blu-ray and two pairs of rechargeable Panasonic 3D glasses.  If you happen to have purchased a VIERA 3DTV between between March 10 and November 30 you are eligible to receive a copy of Avatar in 3D via a mail-in request program (hope you saved the receipt!).  So if you’re in the market for a new HDTV, you should definitely consider a VIERA 3D set because you will be able to watch Avatar on it the way it was meant to be seen.  Expect the Panasonic-Avatar in 3D exclusivity to end and a standalone release in 2011.  Full PR after the break.

[Thanks, Kristen Sweeney] READ MORE You can get Avatar in 3D on Blu-ray …if you buy a Panasonic 3DTV

TRON NIGHT summary & impressions

On October 28 Tron fans were treated to an early glimpse into the upcoming Disney movie Tron: Legacy.  Across the world select IMAX 3D theatres hosted TRON NIGHT, “a free exclusive 20+ minute sneak peek” of the movie.  I attended the special screening tonight, and here is a summary interjected with my impressions.

When I got to the theatre about an hour before the 7PM screening, there was already a small line forming.  While movie-goers waited on line we were handed Tron swag including promotional material about the size of a postcard; one is an image of Daft Punk in costume promoting the upcoming Tron soundtrack and the other is an image of a Tron program character and on the other side a promotion for an Asus laptop (they sponsored the event).  We were also required to check-in and wear a bracelet with the TRON NIGHT logo on it.  Don’t think I’ll be taking that off any time soon.  Before entering the IMAX 3D theatre, we were forced to leave our cell phones behind (for obvious reasons) and a security officer quickly scanned our bodies with a wand to make sure we weren’t harboring any electronic devices.  Crazy, right?  After receiving a pair of 3D glasses, we entered the theatre and took our (perfect!) seats.

A minute before showtime the event coordinator welcomed everyone to the screening and implored us to share our excitement for Tron: Legacy with friends and on the Internet (what do you think I’m doing right now?).  The lights went dim and we were presented with a brief message from the movie’s director Joseph Kosinski.  In a typed note, he told us that the scenes we were about to see take place in the first half of the movie and that it is OK to wear the 3D glasses during the 2D scenes.  Just in case you are not aware of this, the “real world” scenes were shot in 2D and the “Tron universe” scenes are in 3D.  After this brief introduction the sneak preview started right away (that’s right–no trailers).  The 23 minutes of (not entirely) never-before-seen footage was split into five scenes.  I will detail them as best I can below.

Scene 20: Sam’s Garage– This first scene was set in the “real world”, so it was shot in 2D but still looked brilliant with 3D glasses on (as the director promised it would).  The scene takes place in Sam Flynn’s (Garrett Hedlund) garage.  You’d recognize this scene from the trailer.  In it Sam and Alan Bradley (Bruce Boxleitner) engage in conversation and Alan tells Sam that he received a page from Flynn’s arcade.  Alan: “These are the keys to the arcade.  I haven’t gone over there yet.  I thought you should be the one.”  Sam: “Alan, you’re acting like I’m gonna find him sitting there working.  Just, ‘hey kiddo, lost track of time.'”  These lines are in the trailer, you’re starting to remember now.

This next part is included in Scene 20, but it sure felt like an entirely new setting as it took place elsewhere.  It cuts from Sam’s garage to the vacant and dusty Flynn’s Arcade.  Sam decided to take Alan’s advice and check out where the mysterious page could have come from.  Sam finds the circuit breaker and turns on the building’s power.  All of the arcade games light up and make so much noise.  On top of this Jouney’s “Separate Ways” plays loudly from the arcade’s sound system.  Sam looks at the dusty old Tron arcade machine and decides to play a round.  He inserts a quarter but it falls to the ground.  He is curious about a precise crack in the floor and manages to move the Tron machine to reveal a hidden passageway behind it.  Inside he finds a door with a key occupied in its hole and he enters a room.  It appears to be his father’s secret office where he stored a certain computer.  Sam looks around the room and we are shown images of a young Sam with his now-missing father and a blueprint labeled “Grid.”  Sam sits down at the touchscreen computer desk, wipes a thick layer of dust off it, and it turns on from standby mode.  He begins to type away but has no luck accessing the system since he doesn’t know the login information.  “Let’s try the back door,” he whispers to himself.  All of a sudden, a large laser projector-like machine turns on behind him.  It emits this whirring sound and suddenly a bright white light flashes and the scene ends. READ MORE TRON NIGHT summary & impressions

Star Wars franchise is going 3D in 2012

Early this week it was reported that George Lucas is very much interested in rereleasing all six Star Wars films in 3D.  For years Lucas publically denounced 3D technology in film.  According to various sources it was James Cameron’s Avatar that brough him over to the stereoscopic side.  Here’s the plan.  Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace will undergo the 3D conversion process first, which takes at least one year to complete, with a planned release date in early 2012.  The remaining five films will follow suit over the course of consecutive years.  Why the long wait?  Purportedly Lucas has been waiting for the 3D front to explode, both in cinema and at home.  Lucas’ Industrial Light & Magic special FX company will oversee the 3D conversion, and 20th Century Fox is backing the rereleases.

Though 3D converted films have been panned in the past (I’m thinking about you, Clash of the Titans), as compared to movies shot in 3D (like Avatar), the Lucas and the conversion house promise to deliver a worthy 3D experience come 2012.  “Getting good results on a stereo conversion is a matter of taking the time and getting it right,” says John Knoll, ILM visual effects supervisor.  “It takes a critical and artistic eye along with an incredible attention to detail to be successful.  It is not something that you can rush if you want to expect good results.  For Star Wars we will take our time, applying everything we know both aesthetically and technically to bring audiences a fantastic new Star Wars experience.”  We shall see.  Are you an impacient Star Wars fanboy/girl?  Don’t forget that the franchise is coming to Blu-ray next year.  Or you can get yourself a Star Wars branded Droid R2-D2 smartphone.  Go nuts!

[Via THR; LATimes]