Earlier this week, Nvidia unveiled its next generation of 3D vision products for games, movies, and photos. The 3D Vision 2 setup boasts bigger lenses and new Lightboost technology, enabling you to see brighter, more vibrant screens. No news was forthcoming about a second generation of Nvidia's 3D Vision Pro solution for content creators.
Nvidia's previous iteration of 3D glasses has garnered largely positive reactions from buyers, but a rather tepid reception from the gaming industry as a whole. Some users cited the overall poor lighting involved in 3D gaming causing strain on the eye. Others just found the glasses to be bulky and the number of games that actually took advantage of the technology to be, well, limited. Still others question why 3D gaming even gets the meager attention it currently garners.
So this begs the question: what's the appeal of 3D gaming anyway?
Imagine playing Batman: Arkham City in 3D. When Two-Face tosses his iconic coin in the air, you actually see the coin flip through the air, coming towards you. Similarly, laser-sight beams jump out of the environments, and Batman looks like he's standing in front of you instead of part of a static background.
That's the appeal of 3D, and what Nvidia has been demonstrating to the press these past few weeks. To Nvidia, the PC gaming industry is on the upswing; they see potential where others see decline. With a list of impressive titles coming to the PC platform this fall, including Arkham City, Battlefield 3, and Modern Warfare 3?, Nvidia sees renewed interest in the platform. With the definitive versions of many cross-platform games coming to the PC, gamers who want the highest resolution, the best graphics, and the most details in their game will look to the PC as their platform of choice.
And Nvidia's push for 3D technology is a response to that perceived demand. The hardware developer has taken people's criticisms to heart and addressed many of the issues of their first generation of 3D glasses. The second generation glasses were designed specifically for gamers. They are 20 percent larger than the last generation, boasting a wider viewing area and "increased external light blocking." The 3D Vision 2 glasses are also made from "soft composite materials for a more comfortable fit with gaming headphones," claims Nvidia.
With their 3D Lightboost technology, Nvidia claims they'll be able to deliver images "up to twice as bright" with "colors that are far richer than those provided by other 3D display technologies." Unfortunately, with this new technology comes a price: while the glasses cost the same as the previous generation and are backwards compatible, you'll still need a new Lightboost compatible monitor in order to utilize the technology.