When it comes to 3D glasses, do they work with any TV? If you are wondering the same thing, you’re not alone. Click here!
3D technology is one of the biggest leaps ever made in the film industry. It gives people a whole new way to immerse themselves in movies. You’d be hard-pressed to find a major blockbuster that doesn’t offer 3D viewings these days, with classics like The Titanic even being re-released in 3D!
Clearly, people love 3D, and now it’s available right from your home. This leaves many people wondering: Do 3D glasses work on any TV? Can you watch 3D movies on the TV you have right now?
How Do 3D Glasses Work?
First off, it’s important to understand how 3D glasses work so you know what to expect. There are a few different types of 3D glasses, and all of them work similarly. Here’s a rundown on each:
Anaglyph 3D Glasses
Anaglyph 3D glasses used to be the most popular way to watch 3D movies. They’re immediately recognizable thanks to their red and blue lenses. Typically, these glasses are made of cardboard or paper.
Movies that use anaglyph glasses present the picture from two separate angles – one highlighted red, and one in blue. The glasses work as a filter. One lens filters out the blue, and one filters out the red, forcing your brain to perceive the images as 3D.
These glasses work on any TV since the 3D effects are hardwired into the film.
Polarized 3D Glasses
Polarized 3D glasses are the most frequently used in movie theatres. They might come in cardboard or plastic variants. Each lens is darkened kind of like sunglasses.
Polarized 3D glasses restrict how much light enters your eyes. 3D films made for polarized glasses are projected with two superimposed images at once. The screen has the same sort of filter as the glasses, allowing your eyes to see both images at the same time.
This is considered passive 3D technology. It will work on any TV with passive 3D capabilities.
Shutter 3D Glasses
Shutter 3D glasses are the most expensive and advanced. They use “active” 3D technology. Typically, these glasses require batteries or need to be charged between uses.
Active 3D glasses like this give you the best picture quality and effect. Other 3D glasses may appear slightly dark or lose their effect at certain angles. Active 3D looks to solve these common issues.
Each lens on a set of shutter 3D glasses rapidly alternates in darkness. This lets you see the images on the TV in 3D. You can only use active 3D glasses on TVs that have active 3D capabilities.
What Happens If You Watch a 3D Movie Without the Glasses?
Watching a few seconds of a 3D movie without glasses may help you understand how they work.
When you watch a 3D movie without glasses, it’ll typically look blurry. An anaglyph-3D movie will look like a mess of blue and red, and a polarized-3D film will look like the film is playing overtop of itself.
You’ll be able to make out the film, but it won’t be pleasant to watch. It can even damage the eyes. You probably shouldn’t watch 3D films without the glasses for the sake of your eyes.
Do 3D Glasses Work With Any TV?
The short answer is no, 3D glasses do not work with all TVs. However, they do work on a lot of TVs.
The key thing to keep in mind is active versus passive 3D. Passive 3D technology is available on most new LCD and LED TVs. That means you can use anaglyph and even polarized 3D glasses on most TVs, unless they’re plasma.
Plasma TVs can only utilize active 3D technology.
Many older TVs will not support passive or active 3D. A quick Google of your television model or a look at the owner’s manual should let you know. If your TV does support passive 3D, then you can use polarized and anaglyph glasses, including glasses straight from the movie theatre!
Of course, not all shows and films are available in 3D. You’ll have to buy 3D capable films and TV shows.
Many 3D capable films and TV shows, however, require active 3D technology when released for home use. In that case, you’re going to need a TV with active 3D capabilities.
This should be explicitly advertised on the packaging and owner’s manual of your TV. Google can also help you out there.
Active 3D is more expensive but offers a much better image. It’s not practical for real theatres due to the price (making disposable active 3D glasses would be very expensive) so active 3D is mostly relegated to the home theatre. The price point can be a major deterrent for some, but the quality is a major upside.
So, passive 3D will work on passive-enabled TVs, and active 3D will work on active-3D TVs. Consider this before buying a 3D capable TV.
Do I Need a 3D Capable Blu-ray Player?
Beyond a 3D capable TV, you’ll also need a 3D capable Blu-ray or DVD player.
However, you don’t need to worry about active or passive when shopping for a 3D Blu-ray player. All 3D content will work on any Blu-ray player as long as it’s 3D capable.
Where to Buy 3D Glasses
You can buy 3D glasses — both active and passive — from many retailers. You can find them at Walmart, Target, or anywhere that sells 3D televisions. If you’re looking for more flexible deals, try somewhere like Amazon or Newegg.
Always make sure to read what you’re buying carefully before making the purchase. Passive 3D glasses only work on passive 3D TVs, and active only works on active 3D TVs.
Experiencing 3D at Home
Just because you’ve got some 3D glasses from the movie theatre doesn’t mean you can enjoy 3D movies from your home. It all depends on the capabilities of your TV, and what kind of 3D your TV accepts. If you want to enjoy 3D movies from your home, consider this guide and purchase a 3D television that works for you.
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