Moss Points North

inspired ramblings of a designer

3D glasses


This past weekend I went to see Avatar 3D in an IMAX theater.  Now I had not seen anything 3D since probably Disney World in 5th grade – add in the huge screen at the IMAX and I was prepared (albeit a little nervous) to be completely blown away by this experience.  While I won’t comment on the movie itself, the experience indeed was a good one – after my brain got used to what was going on, I was able to watch quite comfortably.

Since I had not been to anything 3D since 5th grade, I was still under the impression that you wore those red and blue lensed paper glasses.  Much to my surprise, I was handed yellow rimmed plastic glasses that looked like cheap sunglasses.  Being a curious person, I decided to look up how these ‘sunglasses’ worked to bring me this 3D experience.

Without going into too much detail (hopefully the image explains fairly well) I gathered that the reason we ourselves see in 3D is that we interpret through two eyes, each seeing a different image – our brain then puts these two images together to ‘see’ a 3D object.  Applying the same principle to the screen – we need to view two different images in order to see 3D.  The blue filters everything so we only see the red image and vice versa.

The glasses I was given however, did not have blue and red lenses – they looked fairly normal.  It seems that they instead have different polarizations for the lenses.  They actually shoot the movie with a camera that takes shots from two different lenses (much like our eyes) and then they play one with horizontal polarization and the other view with vertical – we then see the different perspectives seperated and our brain can interpret the 3D!

Pretty neat!

To read more – I got my info here and here.  Images from here and here.


2 thoughts on “3D glasses

  1. Thanks for including my anaglyph on your page! Can you make it link back to its flickr page when you click on the image?

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