Known as “Cinema 3D,” the tech works by encoding “multiple parallax barriers in one display, such that each viewer sees a parallax barrier tailored to their position. That range of views is then replicated across the theater by a series of mirrors and lenses within Cinema 3D’s special optics system.” This solution, the team notes, solves the two main problems with glasses-free 3D viewing on a large scale: the “unavoidable tradeoff between the range of angular images supported by the display and its spatial or angular resolutions,” and the fact that “parallax is usually observed only when a viewer is positioned at a limited range of distances from the screen.”
Currently, the working prototype of the screen isn’t nearly large enough for an actual theater experience, as it’s only a bit bigger than a sheet of paper. Fifty lens and mirror combinations are used to achieve its 3D effect, and while it works, it’s still a ways away from being broadly implemented in a theater near you. That said, it’s now conceivable that one day in the (hopefully, near) future, your 3D experience will be glasses-free. Who knows — maybe you’ll even be able to install a home theater system with Cinema 3D.
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