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3D Blu-ray: should it feel like I'm watching 12 Hz video? (1 Viewer)

DaveF

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I've got a 3D Projector and 3D Glasses and I've not gotten into 3D at home. I'm playing around this evening, and I know why: the movie looks worse.

A (2D) Blu-ray plays at 24Hz (23.976 Hz, precisely). A 3D Blu-ray feels like it's playing at half that rate per eye -- 12 Hz -- giving me a sense of flicker at times and image shearing during fast motion or horizontal pans. When a scene is cut I can sense the wipe from one eye to the other as the scene transitions in a two-frame increment.

I'm using an HTPC connected to my Sony VPL-HW40ES projector, wearing Sony PS3 IR glasses. I might chalk it up to the vagaries of HTPC voodoo, but I'm pretty sure it was the same watching a 3D Blu-ray on my PS4 (I should double check).

Is this how 3D is at home? Do all the 3D fans just tolerate this image flicker? Or is there something askew with my setup? I'm not sure if this is a software or hardware question.

Thanks!
 

Matt Hough

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I've never had flicker on either my plasma or OLED, but they're, of course, panels. Others with 3D projectors may have different experiences.
 

Mike Ballew

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I have a 5-year-old Optoma projector (HD66) and a Sony Blu-Ray player of like vintage (cannot offhand recall the model). Everything still runs seamlessly. Not one bit of flicker in 3-D or 2-D. Like so many others, I often prefer my home experience to seeing a film in a theater.

I am not as knowledgeable as others, Dave, but I am confident something has gone wrong in your particular setup. I hope you are able to troubleshoot and correct it.
 

Josh Steinberg

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I haven't had any flicker issues either. I do remember years ago seeing one member with a HTPC saying the only discs he actually still watched on disc were the 3D ones.
 

DaveF

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So does 3D blu-ray run at 48 Hz, with 24Hz per eye? Because if it's 24Hz split over two eyes, it has to be 12Hz per eye and that creates intrinsic flicker.

How important are the glasses? I'm using $20/pair PS3 IR-synced glasses.

I need to double check with my PS4 that's it's not the HTPC.
 

DaveF

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I think having a projector that doesn't run at 120Hz or 240Hz is the problem. Viewing at native 24p will gic flicker.

From PowerDVD's website:
“Modern LCD 3D displays and televisions are capable of displaying 3D video with separate left and right-eye pictures in an alternating sequence. To avoid flicker, a refresh rate of 120 Hz or higher is used. A 120 Hz 3D monitor displays a full resolution frame for one eye for a 120th of a second, followed by a full resolution frame for the other eye for the next 120th of a second. Each eye will see 60 frames per second, but for less than half the time that the video is playing.”

https://www.cyberlink.com/stat/3d-support/enu/index.jsp#3d-primer
 

Robert Crawford

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[QUOTE="DaveF, post: 4530268, member: 283394"]I think having a projector that doesn't run at 120Hz or 240Hz is the problem. Viewing at native 24p will gic flicker.

From PowerDVD's website:
“Modern LCD 3D displays and televisions are capable of displaying 3D video with separate left and right-eye pictures in an alternating sequence. To avoid flicker, a refresh rate of 120 Hz or higher is used. A 120 Hz 3D monitor displays a full resolution frame for one eye for a 120th of a second, followed by a full resolution frame for the other eye for the next 120th of a second. Each eye will see 60 frames per second, but for less than half the time that the video is playing.”

https://www.cyberlink.com/stat/3d-support/enu/index.jsp#3d-primer[/QUOTE]
You might be on to something.
 

OliverK

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There will be some flicker with all LCOS and SXRD projectors like the HW40ES.
This is due to their refresh rate of 96 Hz with 3D - this comes out to 48 Hz per eye that in simple terms look a bit like 48 Hz on a CRT used to look like - flickering especially in bright parts of the picture.

To avoid this you can either get an Epson with 3D that has a 120 Hz rate or a DLP as they go up to 144 Hz. The Epson will show the good old 3:2 pulldown and the 144 Hz DLP units will have neither flicker nor 3:2 pulldown issues.

The other artefact you describe is probably due to your HTPC setup and should not be an issue with 3D, that should be gone with the PS4.
 

Mark-P

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While I have the an Epson 3D projector (and I'm still getting used to it), I don't see any flicker at all with 3D content, but I do notice that motion does look a little bit different than what I'm used to with 2D. I do know that there are some people who claim that they can detect the flicker of active shutter lenses while most people can not. Perhaps you are one who is sensitive to the technology?
Also maybe Ron can chime in here, as he has a VPL-HW55ES which I believe has the same specs as your projector, and he raves about its 3D performance.
 

OliverK

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While I have the an Epson 3D projector (and I'm still getting used to it), I don't see any flicker at all with 3D content, but I do notice that motion does look a little bit different than what I'm used to with 2D.

This is due to the 120Hz refresh rate - no flicker but they have to use a 3:2 pulldown. Another rule is that with bigger screens brightness decreases and flicker is less apparent which may result in a person who is less sensitive to flicker not seeing any with a 3m screen while a more sensitive person with a 2m screen will really suffer and possibly not enjoy his 3D at all.
 

Peter Apruzzese

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No flicker with my Optoma DLP projector running 3-D at 144 Hz.

Ron E. has a Sony PJ, perhaps he can help here.
 

RolandL

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I have a 2012 Panasonic AE8000U 3D Projector and Sony 3D Blu-ray player and notice no flicker.
 

Malcolm R

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Admittedly I'm new to 3D (watched only two films so far), but it looks great on my Optoma projector. No flicker.
 

Stephen_J_H

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It's a question of going through the hardware and software chain when it comes to HTPCs, starting at the source:
1. What playback software are you running and have you optimised it for 3D playback? Is it the latest version?
2. What video card are you using, and is it running the latest drivers? You'd be surprised what a difference this can make. My son's gaming PC was defaulting to anaglyph 3D because he didn't have the latest drivers.
3. Are your HDMI cables 1.4 spec or higher? Generally, if your cables are marked "high speed", you should be ok.
4. How long is the HDMI "run" to your projector? The longer the run, the more glitchy things get.
5. Have you tried other 3D glasses? I'm not throwing shade at the PS3 glasses, but sometimes, some glasses will work better than others for different reasons.
6. Is your projector updated with the latest firmware? [yes, PJs have firmware; that's what the network connector is there for, among other things]

All 3D displays are to have a minimum refresh rate of 120Hz [it's in the MVC spec], so if everything is up to speed, you shouldn't be getting a 12Hz flicker. You've seen 144Hz mentioned here, which is derived from the RealD format. 144Hz was selected for that format precisely becuase it minimises flicker by "flashing" each eye's image 3 times. Displays that run at 240Hz are even better, because they flash the image 5 times per eye. If, for example, your software is restricting the rate to 48Hz, flicker will be perceptible, since you're only getting only getting one "flash" per eye per frame, which would be similar to the old field sequential 3D format.
 
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John Sparks

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I have an Epson 3D/4K 6040 projector going thru a Sammy 3D/4K K8500 player and the 3D picture is perfect...all the time!
 

Josh Steinberg

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4. How long is the HDMI "run" to your projector? The longer the run, the more glitchy things get.

That's absolutely true -- you can use a "redmere" cable which boosts the signal to counteract that. Any HDMI runs over 25 feet should either have a signal booster or use a Redmere cable.

But honestly, I think this is a HTPC issue. I think it's telling that BD3D is the one format that I've heard other HTPC enthusiasts mention that they watch directly from the disc rather than from their computers. There's something about the authoring, encoding and/or playback of those discs that seems to be going screwy here.

The projector Dave owns is a fantastic model, and other HTF members have had success with its 3D. I believe he has the model that's a step up from what Ron Epstein is using, and Ron is loving his 3D quality.

Plug the BD3D player directly into the projector, and I'd be willing to bet almost anything that the problems go away. If that didn't work, my next guess would be to get the official glasses designed for that PJ rather than a third-party, but since I've had success with third-party glasses on my machine, I don't want to rush to that conclusion.
 

DaveF

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Thanks for the feedback. I have some tests to run with the PS4 and living room blu-ray player. (The HTPC and PS4 feed into a Marantz AVR, which outputs to an HDMI-over-Ethernet for the 20'-ish run to the projector. The connection is otherwise pristine with no video defects seen. I can connect the spare blu-ray player directly with a 15' HDMI cable to test a "normal" config.)


Technically I understand the reason that 3D should have a 144 Hz or 240 Hz refresh rate to eliminate apparent flicker. What's confusing is the Sony projector manual lists 1080p24Hz and 1080p60Hz as the highest supported 3D display settings. There's nothing about 96Hz , etc for 3D.
 

Josh Steinberg

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I think the manual is referring to the underlying number of frames that are actually present, and not how it's actually projected -- on a BD3D of theatrical material, it's still 24 frames per second. Your display may be showing each image more frequently, but the number of unique frames in the master is 24 per second. That's probably what Sony is getting at in the manual - that it can play 3D that was recorded at a native 24fps or 30fps, which is all that is available on BD3D anyhow. I take that line in the manual to mean more that, if it were somehow presented on disc this way (which it's not), your projector couldn't properly display the movie "Billy Lynn's Long Walk Home" at 120fps in 3D as that film was originally shot.
 

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