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Build Your Own: Wall-Sized 3D Gaming, Just Like Theaters Do It

Test System And Benchmarks

For the purposes of this article, we're using a Core 2 Duo E7200-based system. Yes, the CPU is an older processor, but it's a cool-running component and a good representation of a chip that someone might use in a home theater PC.

As for graphics cards, we're testing both a Radeon HD 4890 and GeForce GTX 260. These are powerful graphics cards, but are probably the minimum you'd want to use when it comes to 3D gaming because performance takes a big hit in stereoscopic 3D mode. Also remember that dual outputs are necessary because you need to use one for each projector.

We'd like to show you how these games look in 3D and we're offering a way to experience the 3D depth without spending any cash on a 3D monitor. It is called “cross viewing.” The image on the left is for your right eye and the image on the right is for your left eye. A good trick to use is to hold your finger about halfway to the screen in front of the images you are trying to cross view. Focus your eyes on your finger and move your finger towards or away from the screen until there appears to be three identically sized images behind it instead of two. Then, shift your focus to the center image and move your finger out of the way. If done properly you will see what appears to be three images: a clear 3D image in the center and blurry 2D images on each side. For some people it is easier to accomplish this by increasing the distance between your eyes and the monitor. Not everyone will have success with cross viewing, but it is a nice option for folks who can experience it.

This is a crossview 3D image. Follow the instructions above to view it in 3D, and click on it for a larger version.

To get a better view, click on the cross view image for a pop-up window that features a larger version.

For viewers who can't wrap their eyes around cross viewing, these images can still be used to point out any anomalies between right- and left-perspective views.

3D Test System
CPUIntel Core 2 Duo E7200 (Wolfdale), 2.53 GHz, 3MB Shared L2 Cache; Overclocked to 2.61 GHz @ 275 MHz Front Side Bus
MotherboardAsus P5N7A-VM nForce 730i, BIOS 512
NetworkingOnboard Gigabit LAN controller
MemoryKingston PC2-6400  2 x 2,048MB, 330 MHz, CL 5-5-5-15-2T
GraphicsATI Radeon HD 4890 Reference850 MHz Core, 975 MHz Memory, 1GB GDDR5Asus GeForce ENGTX260 Matrix 576 MHz Core, 1,242 MHz Shaders, 999 MHz Memory, 796MB GDDR3
Hard DriveWestern Digital Caviar WD50 00AAJS-00YFA500GB, 7,200 RPM, 8MB cache, SATA 3.0 Gb/s
PowerThermaltake Toughpower 1,200W1,200 W, ATX 12V 2.2, EPS 12v 2.91
Software and Drivers
Operating SystemMicrosoft Windows Vista Ultimate 32-bit, SP2
DirectX versionDirectX 10
Graphics DriversAMD Catalyst 10.2, Nvidia GeForce 196.21
Benchmark Configuration
3D Games
CrysisPatch 1.2.1, DirectX 9, Medium Settings
Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2Version 1.0.0, Highest Settings, 4x AA
Burnout Paradise: The Ultimate BoxHighest Details, 8xMSAA, SSAO off
Left 4 DeadVersion 1.0.1.5; Highest Settings, 4x AA
Dungeons and Dragons OnlineVersion 1.11.0.8125; Ultra-High Details, DirectX 9, 4xAA
Star Trek OnlineVersion 2010.03.22.11.32; Recommended Quality, 4x AA
  • MiamiU
    seems like being a hardcore gamer just keeps getting more and more expensive...
    Reply
  • Don't gives too big an image to try and see it 3d. A monitor can't handle: 800px × 248px!!!! That's just crazy big!!!
    Reply
  • Icehearted
    As for poor folk like me, we'll just settle for those still images where we cross our eyes, and cry because $2,565 is far away from "comfortable".
    Reply
  • winner4455
    I can see this becoming main stream and the next few years... In 3d too.
    Reply
  • tigerwraith
    2.6k now but you know things like this keep getting cheaper and cheaper. Maybe by this time next year, the 1080p 2600 lumens will drop to 500, and the drivers will better support dual projector setups.
    Reply
  • tigerwraith
    But I do have a question would of mattered if you used LCD projectors?
    Reply
  • gti88
    Great article! Thanx a lot.
    But as I can see, 3D stereo is not there yet.
    Almost no movies are available at 3DS, and game developers don't focus on stereo optimisation. Thus, we have some glitches and inconveniences.
    Reply
  • pojih
    ahh, something else to cost an arm and a leg...

    not saying that many people here don't want the fastest and most expensive....

    but it was clearly shown that many people looking at this site want something that performs for what it costs, as seen by the fermi release and the comments .....
    Reply
  • skora
    Whats the next price bracket up for a projector with higher res?

    I like the idea of dual projectors better than the alt-image standard, but they didn't ask me.

    Here's a wild thought, soon, everyone will have their own glasses that not only do the shutter for 3D, but will also be able to be personal monitors. Connect to any computer/phone/TV with your glasses. Displays might even become unnecessary. That will be the next wireless mainstream device. The iShades. Phone, mobile pc and display, earbud is right there. Have pants that have built in keyboard. We'll all just be sitting there with our shades on and never see the person next to us as we get lost in the cloud. And it all starts with 3D glasses. :P
    Reply
  • djab
    IceheartedAs for poor folk like me, we'll just settle for those still images where we cross our eyes, and cry because $2,565 is far away from "comfortable".
    No, you can at least use red/cyan paper glasses with iz3d drivers and a normal display.
    That is not that bad!
    Reply