Toshiba unveils glasses-free 3-D TV

October 4, 2010

Toshiba Corp. believes it has a solution for television viewers who like 3-D but hate the glasses.

The Tokyo-based company on Monday unveiled the world's first high definition liquid crystal display 3-D television that does not require special glasses - one of the biggest consumer complaints about the technology.

Toshiba describes the TVs as being for "personal use." Whether consumers embrace the new TVs remains to be seen. Many might be put off by the fact they'll have to be very close to the screen for the 3-D effect to really work not to mention the steep price tag.

Electronics and entertainment companies around the world are banking on 3-D to fuel a new boom in TV, movies and games. Most 3-D TVs on the market today rely on glasses to rapidly deliver separate images to each eye, which creates a sense of three-dimensional depth.

In its new TVs, Toshiba uses a "perpendicular lenticular sheet," which consists of an array of small lenses that directs light from the display to nine points in front of the TV. If a viewer is sitting within the optimal viewing zone, the brain integrates these points into a single 3-D image.

Japanese electronics company Toshiba unveils the world's first 3D television that does not require viewers to wear special glasses, called the "Regza GL1 Series", at a preview in Tokyo. The new 12 and 14-inch 3D TVs combine image processing technology with a double convex sheet to render depth-filled images from any angle using parallax.

"The result is precise rendering of high quality 3-D images whatever the viewing angle within the viewing zone," Toshiba said in its release.

The system is similar to what's used in Nintendo's 3DS, the company's highly anticipated handheld device that features glasses-free 3-D gaming.

Toshiba will offer two sizes - 12 inches and 20 inches - designed for personal use. The technology isn't advanced enough yet to integrate into larger screens. Suggested viewing distance for the 20-inch model is 90 centimeters (35.4 inches) and 65 centimeters (25.6 inches) for the 12-inch size.

The TVs will go on sale in Japan in late December, Toshiba said. They smaller version will cost about 120,000 yen ($1,400), and the larger one will be double the price.

The company did not release details on overseas availability.

Explore further: Sharp unveils 3D televisions in Japan


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3.7 / 5 (3) Oct 04, 2010
No description of the technology used? Or is this just an advertisement?
3 / 5 (2) Oct 04, 2010
Agree with ShotmanMaslo. "Processing technology" means nothing-- my iMac processes, my food-chopper processes, and they don't make 3D images. Without a quick overview of it does to present a different image to each eye, this article is meaningless.
3 / 5 (1) Oct 04, 2010
Actually LG has been selling a 'glasses-free 3D TV' here in Dubai for at least the last 3 months. And there are other companies so calling this "worlds first" sounds more like and advert and a scream for attention.
5 / 5 (1) Oct 04, 2010
It does say the process is "perpendicular lenticular sheet". That's like those micro-corrugated gimmick '3D' cards and magnets, where the view changes as you rock the panel. Old principle, tricky to get working on large scale and 'live'.
not rated yet Oct 04, 2010
A better technology is Dimensional Technologies around since 1986 and an American company
1.5 / 5 (2) Oct 04, 2010
This monitor would be good for video gaming--but I don't think of this as a commercial television?

3 / 5 (1) Oct 05, 2010
This is retarded, these people are trying to sell us this at exorbant price and these are the results:
your 120hz display turns to 60hz, you either need glasses or the tv is for up-close personal viewing.

Sorry but that don't cut it, I won't ever consider shelling out for this fluff till they come out with a display that is 120hz or higher, doesn't require glasses, isn't distance picky, and isn't limited to a single viewer. This must be a joke.
4 / 5 (3) Oct 05, 2010
@stealthc: not a joke, but an emerging technology. When normal LCD displays came out, they were small and expensive, and they weren't a joke. Sure, these aren't a replacement for my 40" TV, but it's a step in the right direction. They're also about the right size and distance required for computer monitors.

Pull your head out of your rear end and realize that technology doesn't appear overnight and that every step, no matter how small, is an improvement. When they sell these for exorbitant prices, they'll have more money to invest in new technologies. The early adopters who embrace glasses-based 3D will drive the market to provide 3D content, so that there aren't just 3 titles to choose from when your 120Hz glasses-free distance-indifferent multi-viewer screen is released.

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