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3D Gaming, worth it?

Last response: in Video Games
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June 1, 2011 9:05:22 AM

Hi, so I had my first proper play with a 3D tv recently and I was blown away. I thought it was flippin amazin. So when my PC upgrade rolls round next year I was going to invest in the Nvidia 3D vision tech. I am looking £200 monitor, plus £130 for the 3D glasses and a beefy graphics card, (was thinking the 580gtx or similar). I realise this is going to be a pricey upgrade as I havent included 90% of the pc hardware required yet, but.... The question is, is anyone using this at the moment, is it as good as the tv version, are you blown away, pros / cons, is it worth it? I dream of playing BF3 in glorious shiny 3D...
cheers

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June 1, 2011 9:43:25 AM

I am an avid Stereoscopic gamer, been doing in since 2001 with a Ti4200 on a 17Inch NEC CRT @85Hz.

Your going to need a big beefy graphics solution to properly do 3D vision. Because the GPU has to render everything twice you must plan on purchasing double the graphics power. 1920x1080 @120fps is your goal, 60 per eyeball with an active shutter glass setup. Older games are 50/50 for their support of 3D vision. What you end up usually is that the "3D Rendered" part of the game works flawlessly but things that are thrown in post-processing like complex shadows and overlays (onscreen text / menus) tend to render improperly unless the game developer built in a method for it. NVidia does a pretty good job on building in their own profiles for different games and working with developers to get their games properly supporting 3D vision.

A couple of things will happen though. At first you will feel uncomfortable playing in 3D vision and might develop headaches. This is because your brain has spent your entire life accustomed and programed to understand visual depth information from your own eyeballs spacing. Every game will have its own depth level and camera distance, this can be modified through the Nvidia software. You will have to use trial and error to find a depth level and spacing that is appropriate for you. This takes time and is the biggest detractor for those looking to get into 3D gaming, they play with it for a 30 min get a headache and stop then and there. Once your brain gets used to the idea of letting the game control the depth / spacing then you really can experience a different world.

Back in 2001 I used to play Unreal Tournament (Classic) using my shutter glass's and it was epic. Running, jumping and firing become second nature and eventually I got to the point where I could unconsciously aim and fire at anything. Playing Alien vs Predator II was crazy awesome in 3D with surround sound.

Games are designed inside a three dimensional space, but they are then translated to be displayed on a flat 2D surface. Ultimately this is the limit for realism, at best a window representing a world. Your brain see's this 2D image and must internally understand it and map it out to 3D to make decisions on movement / position / targeting. When you are accustomed to playing in 3D this requirement for mapping and translating is removed, the game is rendered in 3D via the shutter glass's. It gets pretty crazy provided the game supports it.

The cons are the added expense. Not only for the 120hz capable screen and the glass's but for the added hardware to process it. Also the headaches and initial calibration time can be pretty brutal if your not experienced with it. Many games don't fully support 3D Vision, mostly its how they render text and overlay elements. Rather then sending them to the GPU as objects they instead use post-processing to overlay them on top of the final 2D image. When your card is processing 2 different images then the text ends up being placed twice in different locations.

Ultimately its something you have to try for yourself and determine if you like it or not. One of my biggest points of advice is that you get used to looking straight at the screen and never ever moving your head away without first taking off the glass's. One day I was engrossed in a game of AvP2 when someone knocked on my door (I was living in the barracks at the time). I quickly turned my head to the left to look at the door and promptly fell off the chair as vertigo hit me. My brain had went from the 3D depth field of the game to the natural field of the inside of my room, the sudden change wasn't conducive to staying upright in a chair.
June 1, 2011 11:53:01 AM

Wow, thanks dude, that was a good lots of info. I read the toms quide to triple screen 3d (far too expensive, but awesome!!) and it did mention certain games and features / resulutions you may have to adjust to get the game to render properly. I am a BF and left4dead fanboi tho and apparently these work very well in 3d :)  I did laugh at the balance issues you had when stepping away from game tho ^^
The upgrade im looking at is something like this -
Zotac GTX 580 1536 GDDR5 - £370.12
Nvidia GeForce 3D Vision - £119.36
LG W2363D-PF - 23" 3D Ready Monitor - £189.45
Coolermaster Silent Pro 700W PSU - Already Own
Antec 900 Nine Hundred Gaming Case - Already Own
Asus P8P67 Pro R3 P67 Mobo - £131.00
Corsair Vengeance 8GB DDR3 - £90.29
Plus Re-use of existing HDD's, DVDRW, and headset.
Looking at £1064.50 (obviously come upgrade time, prices and models may have changed slightly, but should be fairly close)
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June 1, 2011 2:29:06 PM

+1 to palladin
Even if you are going to play the game on GTX 580, your FPS might get reduced by half, so prepare for that.
June 1, 2011 8:02:33 PM

I have a GTX 560 Ti, and I was thinking of trying some 3D stuff. In the living room, I actually have a 50 inch 3D plasma. I got it for watching 3D Blu Rays and playing Playstation 3 games in 3D (The ones that offer it). I've hooked my computer up to this plasma a few times, but didn't try anything 3D with it. I'd have to buy Nvidia's 3DTV play solution for stuff with hdmi 1.4. (this way, I can use my own Samsung 3D glasses instead of getting the 3D Vision glasses)

The thing is, current HDTV's are limited to 720p in 3D for gaming, because the hdmi bandwidth can't handle 1080p beyond 24 frames per second. (this requires either dual DVI or DisplayPort). So, I could play PC games at 720p, at up to 60 frames per second.

Do you think my Gigabyte GTX 560 Ti SOC would be powerful enough to run various PC games in 3D at 720p? Obviously, I wouldn't expect to play the Witcher 2 or Metro 2033 in 3D, but I'm hoping to run stuff like Mirror's Edge and Batman Arkham Asylum and stuff like that.
June 1, 2011 8:32:10 PM

I can't see myself getting into 3D gaming very much.

Although on that note I am very biased as I have never even taken a look at any 3D games.... I should really look into it.
June 2, 2011 2:28:30 AM

JordoR, That is why I said its a personal thing. You can't really get a feel for it in 30 min, or even a couple of hours. Its going to take a few days minimum if not a week or more to retrain your brain. At first it'll be very disorientating because your brain is having an out of body experience, its perceiving a three dimensional world with depth and moving objects. All those subconscious process's we have for depth perception, movement, balance, and motor control are going to be thrown for a loop. Just try to imagine what happens when your playing "catch" outside. You don't think about catching the ball your brain just automatically judges the distance and moves to catch the ball, its a subconscious process. Well 3D Vision really screws with those process's at first, your brain will become convinced that the information its receiving through each eyeball is real spatial information and it'll cause vertigo, especially when your moving in game yet staying still in real life. The pressure sensors inside your eardrums will tell your brain you are sitting straight and not moving, your eyeballs will tell your brain that your moving, running and jumping. Eventually your brain will get used to this fact and it'll settle down.

For the performance, this is why I say to plan everything to be doubled. Check the reviews and benchmarks. If the review says that a certain solution will play game X at 1920x1080 at 80 fps, then your going to get 40fps with 3D Vision. You want a solution that will play your game at 1920x1080 at 120fps minimum. Most upper end cards can do this by themselves but once you crank up AA and other bells you quickly climb into the heavy SLI region of performance.
February 21, 2013 2:02:23 AM

Guys, do we need to have special TV, special glasses and High end specs computer for the 3d to work?

coz i have decent computer, not great, im using iZ3d software, is this ok?
February 21, 2013 2:35:47 AM

hell911 said:
Guys, do we need to have special TV, special glasses and High end specs computer for the 3d to work?

coz i have decent computer, not great, im using iZ3d software, is this ok?

Yes to all unless you want to use the paper glasses lol.
February 21, 2013 3:33:14 AM

1. but in the iz3d software, there is option for red/cyan glasses, i have the paper ones, these glasses will work or not?

2. also from the iz3d software, my game is turning into blue and red colors, so it works, but the problem is my TV and glasses?
February 21, 2013 5:27:53 AM

You can go that route without a special tv but the 3d effect will be minimal compared to stereoscopic.
February 21, 2013 6:06:34 AM

oh, now that's sad!
!