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UK's Channel 4 To Broadcast In 3D 126

Posted by timothy
from the out-of-thin-air dept.
fatnickc writes "The UK's Channel 4, from the 16th of September, will be broadcasting a few programmes in 3D, the full list of which can be found here. While the likes of a 3D Miley Cyrus concert aren't exactly groundbreaking, this will give 3D viewing at home much more publicity, paving the way for even more interesting projects in the future. In partnership with retailer Sainsbury's, Channel 4 are producing free 3D glasses so that as many people as possible can watch them, although it's unclear which of the various types they'll be. "
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UK's Channel 4 To Broadcast In 3D

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  • by syousef (465911) on Monday November 09, 2009 @05:44AM (#30030424) Journal

    I don't believe it! Miley Cyrus is wooden one dimensional, never mind 2 or 3. This has to be a hoax.

    • by Rogerborg (306625)
      Then just pull a couple of clones out of cold storage and film them from different angles. Do I have to think of everything?
      • by 3waygeek (58990)

        Someone didn't watch last night's Family Guy -- Miley Cyrus is an android, not a clone.

      • by elrous0 (869638) *
        DO you have ANY idea how much it costs Disney to raise those clones? You're talking years on the island, learning dance moves and lipsyncing, before they're even ready for the mouseketeer phase, much less full-on popstar deployment. They can't just "thaw them out," anymore than they can just thaw out Disney himself.
      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        My daughter and I watched Miley's concert in 3D. She's definitely not 1D or 2D. More like DD. It was fun watching her bounce... and wiggle... and gyrate...

        Ooops gotta go.
        Something came up

        • My daughter and I watched Miley's concert in 3D

          No, actually, you didn't. You watched it in stereo - two static viewing angles, one per eye, that give you exactly one perspective on the content. 3D would allow you to see the performance from many viewing angles -- for instance, from the left or from the right. Stereo is a far more limited approach. It is a common error, propounded by bad marketing, that characterizes stereo media as 3D. Geeks should know better.

    • A bit of logic is a refreshing change from the weak logical fallacy-ridden arguments fundies usually spew here. Premium White Pro [ezinearticles.com]
    • by Sockatume (732728)

      Wouldn't 1-dimensionality make her a macroscopic manifestation of string theory? I say, put her in the LHC and see what happens.

    • by Zoxed (676559)

      > I don't believe it! Miley Cyrus is wooden one dimensional, never mind 2 or 3. This has to be a hoax.

      I guess you are unaware of the power of modern CGI tools to fix this :-)

  • 16 Sept 2010? (Score:5, Informative)

    by Malc (1751) on Monday November 09, 2009 @05:45AM (#30030428)

    No, 16th November

  • BBC (Score:5, Informative)

    by Ma8thew (861741) on Monday November 09, 2009 @05:50AM (#30030464)
    Why is this tagged BBC? Channel 4 is independent of the BBC and runs adverts.
    • Re:BBC (Score:4, Informative)

      by IndieKid (1061106) on Monday November 09, 2009 @06:21AM (#30030630) Journal
      Agreed, although the BBC has dabbled with 3D in the past (I seem to remember a 3D episode of Eastenders for either the Children in Need or Comic Relief charity event) this is a completely separate broadcaster.
    • by Goffee71 (628501)
      And won't be a patch on Channel 4's Red Triangle-badged 'mature themes' films season from the late 80s. That was progress
      • by slim (1652)

        Oh, I don't know about that.

        Part of the 3D season is 'Flesh for Frankenstein'.

  • Red Green 3D (Score:2, Insightful)

    by abigsmurf (919188)
    It's got to be Red/Green for the glasses, only tech which will be universal for all TVs.

    Besides which, they're really scraping the bottom of the barrel with the "greatest ever 3D moments". Any 'greatest' list that includes Jaws 3(D) and the American produced Dr Who special really doesn't deserve to exist.

    Still, I love Udo Kier so I'll probably watch Flesh for Frankenstein (and once against try to place his accent)
    • Re:Red Green 3D (Score:4, Informative)

      by jonbryce (703250) on Monday November 09, 2009 @06:21AM (#30030634) Homepage

      I picked up a pair in Sainsburys yesterday. They are blue and yellow.

      • by caluml (551744)
        What/how much do you have to buy to qualify for a pair?
        Or can I just walk in, pick a pair up, and walk out?
        • by jonbryce (703250)

          They were between the checkouts and the door. You can just walk in and pick a pair up.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      >>>American produced Dr Who special really doesn't deserve to exist

      Okay I'm sick of hearing this again-and-again-and-again over the last two decades.

      Yes it aired on FOX, an american network, but it was written by a BBC writer, starred a BBC actor, was funded almost-entirely by BBC money, and first aired on BBC TV. If you don't like that mid-90s series pilot, fine, but don't blame americans since it was largely the BBC in charge of it.

      ALSO: remember it was the British that produced the abomination

  • Blue and Yellow glasses. No color 3D. Nothing to see here, move along.

    • Re: (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Blue and Yellow glasses. No color 3D. Nothing to see here, move along.

      Apparently you have no idea what you're talking about. [wikipedia.org]

      • Blue and Yellow glasses. No color 3D. Nothing to see here, move along.

        Apparently you have no idea what you're talking about. [wikipedia.org]

        Apparently he knows more about it than you do. Try watching something with them. The blue side's so dark it causes a big shift in what you're seeing. The result is very monochromatic and not very believable to boot.

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by TheSync (5291)

          Try watching something with them. The blue side's so dark it causes a big shift in what you're seeing. The result is very monochromatic and not very believable to boot.

          The whole concept of ColorCode glasses is that they allow for better quality color to come through the pale yellow eye than red/green where both eyes have their color screwed up.

          Unfortunately, I think ColorCode perceived quality may be different depending on your eye dominance. If the yellow one is over your dominant eye, it probably looks

    • by craigbeat (706827)
      I picked up the glasses at the weekend and tried them out on the official colorcode 3-d website. The effect works, but the colour is bizarre, as the right eye only sees blue. I tried boosting the contrast and saturation, which does help a bit, but still not brilliant. I don't think it will catch on.
  • Sure, I'd like to see that.

    Why don't just everybody produce thing for free?

  • by Dr_Barnowl (709838) on Monday November 09, 2009 @05:57AM (#30030500)

    They're not the first in the UK to screen a show using this system ; Virgin 1 screened an episode of "Chuck" in this system. I tried to watch it using my red / cyan glasses without knowing this first. They included the glasses with one of our TV guide publication and Virgin 1 has much lower ratings than Channel 4 so I doubt many people saw it in 3D.

    Channel 4 are having a major supermarket chain hand out the glasses free and are much more watched so it could gain some traction.

    From what I can tell blue / orange is supposed to reduce the colour problems that red / cyan has by reducing the luminance in one eye a lot and using it effectively just for depth cues.

    • by jez9999 (618189)

      The only effective glasses for viewing "Chuck" are ones that make you blind.

    • by Sockatume (732728)

      The C4 3D thing will use the same "ColorCode" kind of glasses.

    • by koro666 (947362)

      That would explain what I thought was poor image quality (yellow/blue jaggies around stuff) in that particular episode.

      Back then I just thought it was a bad quality rip.

    • by AmiMoJo (196126)

      I remember trying the blue/red glasses in the 80s with special TV shows. They never seemed to do anything for me.

  • by bickerdyke (670000) on Monday November 09, 2009 @06:19AM (#30030618)
  • if they transmit a 3D boxe match, remember to stay very far from the TV screen, or you will be seriously injured.
  • by Trepidity (597) <.delirium-slashdot. .at. .hackish.org.> on Monday November 09, 2009 @06:36AM (#30030698)

    This sort of thing has been done before, and in the past hasn't exactly set off a golden age of 3d television. The BBC broadcast several 3d shows in 1993, among them a Dr. Who special [wikipedia.org], but the experiment didn't catch on then. Discovery Channel did a 3d Shark Week a few years ago, also.

    • by uuddlrlrab (1617237) on Monday November 09, 2009 @08:05AM (#30031068)
      Well, TV's have already hit the 1080p pinnacle, Blu-Ray won the format wars, and the whole HD-media-over-wireless... Yeah, well, I've yet to hear about it panning out in a cost-effective form while retaining decent quality along with the tech being over a year or two old now, so I guess the media covering home theater needs something to tout as the Next Big Thing (TM). Until viable high-quality, consumer holographic displays show up along with a viable need/demand in the mainstream market, this [johnnylee.net] is the most interesting thing I've seen in regards to 3d type stuff. And even that is old by internet standards. [encycloped...matica.com]

      To be honest, I've not watched any "new" 3d movies. I've heard that it looks really nice, but then you also need to wear the glasses--srsly, I already wear specs. Hate them, don't want another pair. As far as in home theaters, do you need a special tv that can display it? Or does the movie have to be specially formatted for 3d? Either way, it sounds like paying at least a small (per movie) to large (for a special tv) amount extra over the non-3d version. Until I watch such a film and find myself in need of a fresh pair of pants and my ambulatory extremity undergarments expelled from my personage via sheer amazement, I remain skeptical.
    • by DrXym (126579)
      I'm not surprised it caught on. The screen has to be in constant motion in one direction for the effect to occur which makes it an interesting novelty but little else.
    • This sort of thing has been done before, and in the past hasn't exactly set off a golden age of 3d television.

      This happens every 10-15 years (just like it does in the cinema). I remember Channel 4 (I think) doing more or less exactly the same thing they are doing now some back in the 80s using red/cyan (which, unlike red/green gave some, limited, colour).

      Its easy to pooh-pooh ideas as "never gonna catch on" - but this one has failed to catch on so many times that its about time they got the message. Even if the systems improve, that the fundamental question of how you reconcile a moving, 3D scene with a 20" windo

  • by TheBogBrushZone (975846) on Monday November 09, 2009 @06:43AM (#30030742)
    "it's unclear which of the various types they'll be"
    It has in fact been clear what type they'll be for several months, since this was announced mid-August in fact: ColorCode blue and amber anaglyph filters. Even clearer since you could pick them up from Sainsbury's yesterday (and possibly before). http://www.t3.com/feature/channel-4-to-begin-3d-broadcasts-this-autumn [t3.com]
  • A week ago or so here in Japan they were broadcasting live 3D in a concert, you had to have 3D glasses of course, first time i have seen something like this live. After this they asked the audience to call and vote if they could see it, 96% (or 94%?) said yes.

    You can see the video in YouTube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PTvqRBP9r8Y [youtube.com]

    The right corner is the countdown timer for the 3D broadcast to start (so you can safely skip 45 seconds).

  • by zmollusc (763634) on Monday November 09, 2009 @06:55AM (#30030792)

    Yay! Goodbye brainless 2D crap, hello brainless 3D crap and migraines!

  • downside... (Score:5, Insightful)

    by macshit (157376) <.miles. .at. .gnu.org.> on Monday November 09, 2009 @07:27AM (#30030910) Homepage

    Sooo, presumably the downside is greatly reduced quality and increased annoyance. Almost certainly there will be a large number of viewers without the glasses, or who strongly dislike wearing them (for instance, glasses wearers whose glasses are incompatible with the distributed 3d glasses); for these people, the effect is a fuzzy almost unwatchable program.

    Given that in the vast majority of cases, 3d is essentially a tacky gimmick with little real benefit, what on earth are they thinking?!

    • Almost certainly there will be a large number of viewers without the glasses

      3D GLASSES NOT AVAILABLE IN ALL AREAS! It's like I can touch you [youtube.com]

    • by quarkoid (26884)

      what on earth are they thinking?!

      That's an easy one.

      From the Channel 4 remit as laid out in the statement of programme policy [channel4.com], attached to the Channel 4 licence:

      “[channel 4 shall] foster the new and experimental in television. It will encourage pluralism, provide a favoured place for the untried and encourage innovation in style content perspective and talent on and off screen”.

      Nick.

    • by Sockatume (732728)

      They're testing the waters to see how difficult 3D programming will be to produce, in advance of an anticipated uptake of proper 3D TVs within the next few years. Sky announced that it was developing a software update to add stereo video to its existing HD receivers last year, and 3D was added to the HDMI spec a couple of months ago, so there's a definite push to get people watching 3D content. It seems hilariously premature to me, but it's certainly a worthwhile experiment for a content creator and broadca

    • They are thinking that it is a great way to advertise.... and since this is on /. it worked ....

      It's a gimmick and nothing else.... all these 3D system's are low resolution, eye strain inducing, and will put people off who don't have the glasses, or cannot use them

      In a 3D cinema you expect to wear glasses and expect to sit through a movie length presentation ... at home you channel surf and get on with other things while watching ....try that with glasses ...

      When 3D at home is without glasses and can be vi

    • by clickety6 (141178)

      essentially a tacky gimmick with little real benefit

      A phrase which describes a lot of the output from Channel 4, so no change there.

      (Deal or No Deal, The 50 Greatest..., The 100 Greatest..., Wife Swap, Come Dine With me, How to Look Good Naked, Real Housewives of New Jersey, Gok's Fashion Fix, Gordon Ramsay (anything he's in really)...and the liost goes on!)

    • by slim (1652)

      Given that in the vast majority of cases, 3d is essentially a tacky gimmick with little real benefit, what on earth are they thinking?!

      Where's your sense of fun? We get a couple of hours of entertainingly tacky gimmickry, and then once we've had our fun, things go back to normal.

      I'm thinking back fondly to the time the cinema I worked at did had a midnight showing of Creature From The Black Lagoon in 3D.

  • Why, oh why? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Xest (935314) on Monday November 09, 2009 @08:26AM (#30031152)

    Yes, 3D in cinemas is impressive, quite stunning in fact, a far bigger, better improvement to film than HD and probably the most important change to film since colour in fact- I'd argue it beats surround sound for sure.

    But from what I understand they use special lense caps on the projectors and this technique can't be imitated on TV panels. Instead they're still using this crappy old technique that never really worked and that has flopped numerous times.

    Why is it that because the new technique in use at cinemas is impressive and works they think this shitty old version that never really worked well will take off?

    In fact, I'm not even convinced living room TV wants 3D terribly often, I think having to find your glasses to watch certain programs would become an annoyance after a while even if you don't mind it for the odd film.

    • by dkf (304284)

      Yes, 3D in cinemas is impressive, quite stunning in fact, a far bigger, better improvement to film than HD and probably the most important change to film since colour in fact- I'd argue it beats surround sound for sure.

      If only it worked for me when I tilt my head over on one side. Yes, it's a silly habit I picked up somewhere, but I really do have an issue with the 3D systems based on polarization because it's really hard for me to stop. Color works better, but then you're watching in (effective) monochrome.

      The best system I've seen was a special monitor (this was back in a lab in 1994!) that directed a different image at each of about 16 directions at once. This meant that your eyes picked up different images naturally,

    • Why is it that because the new technique in use at cinemas is impressive and works they think this shitty old version that never really worked well will take off?

      I think C4 know full well that it's ineffective, but they are attempting to jump on the 3D bandwagon mainly to attract advertisers (snoop around their press office and you can find an appeal to advertisers, asking if they'd like to be the first to broadcast a 3D commercial)

    • A bad movie is a bad movie, no matter how many gimmicks you throw at it.

      The heart of a good movie is a good screenplay, that is a good, consistent, plot.

      Most people that have watched 3D films so far agree that 3D adds precious little to what makes a film good or bad, 3D is mostly a gimmick aimed at children first (or child like minded people) and at piracy second, which is why you will see several efforts in the next couple of years to translate the 3D experience to TV screens: they will want to replicate t

  • by bziman (223162) on Monday November 09, 2009 @08:42AM (#30031262) Homepage Journal
    I avoid 3D movies, and I'll avoid 3D video. Generally the 3D technology is only used for "gag" effects in children's and horror movies anyway. And regardless of how good the effect is, I am not wearing any moldy 3D glasses out of the 1980s for any reason.
    • by Sockatume (732728)

      "Gag effects" can be quite fun, though, and I'll always take 90 minutes of vertigo and manhandling my "duck" reflex over 3 hours of robots arguing about matrices and sparks when it comes to winding down my brain on a Friday night. My Bloody Valentine also showed occasional flashes of what might be possible, from an artistic perspective, once you start playing around with depth: one dialogue scene was staged as though for the theatre, using the 3D to support the movement of the characters through the space t

      • by bziman (223162)

        I'll always take 90 minutes of vertigo and manhandling my "duck" reflex over 3 hours of robots arguing about matrices and sparks

        It took me a second, but I think you're referring to a Transformers movie... and I can only imagine you don't realize that there was an epic animated version released back in the 80s that didn't suck. Go find a copy, and revel in Orson Welles last great role. In stunning Two Dimensions!

    • Generally the 3D technology is only used for "gag" effects in children's and horror movies anyway.

      Be at least honest. Thats not the fault of ANY 3D technology. This WILL have to end, if 3d wants to really stay alive.

      • Meh. I expected the same, but went to a "3D" movie that I wanted to see anyway. I have to say, it was pretty cool. The movie avoided the typical cheezy in your face shots, so I'm sure that helped. Big Thumbs Up for "Cloudy with a chance of meatballs" if you're into silly kids movies.
        • if you aren't, go and try if you can find the 3D-Version of "Dial M for murder" somewhere.

          And from what I saw in the "Christmas Carol" trailer et al - avoid the other 98% of 3d movies!

    • THE TERMINATOR ONE MILLION IS GOING TO STAB YOUR EYES OUT RAWWWR!!!!! [wikipedia.org]

      (some gratuitous lowercase letters with a sprinkling of spaces for good measure)
    • That's what they said about photography, computer games, theme parks, and pretty much any other form of entertainment out there.
      "It's just a fad. It will never become serious. No matter how much progress humanity makes, and how many new use cases spring up. Never ever ever something new will become a normal part of life! Gaaahhh!!"

      Wait for porn to save it again! :P

    • by fgouget (925644)

      Generally the 3D technology is only used for "gag" effects in children's and horror movies anyway.

      I thought so too, but I had to watch Up [imdb.com] in 3D (didn't notice the theater only showed it in 3D until it was too late) and came away pretty impressed. No "gag" effect that I can remember. Instead I had the impression of looking through a window, rather than looking at a poster on a wall.

  • Maybe OT, but Sainsbury's are also selling Modern Warfare 2 for &pound;26 (less than half RRP), so now there's two reasons to shop there...
  • Real 3D, as seen on a theater screen or an IMAX screen, is mind-blowing. Broadcast tv red/cyan stereo is terrible.

  • I don't know if they're being developed but I suspect that we'll see TVs/monitors that are capable of producing differently polarized light for each eye. It's much better system since you don't get the awful color distortion of the blue/orange system. It seems to me that it would be fairly easy to do since LCD screens already operate by manipulating the polarization of light to tune the intensity of each pixel. One more liquid crystal layer and a quarter-waveplate would do it so the technology is clearly th
    • There was a product designed to do this ; I think it had the existing polarised layer composed of 1-pixel wide vertical stripes of alternate polarization. I'm not sure how well it actually worked.

  • Not 3D. /pedant
  • I have a $2500 3D setup at home. 2 720p projectors, each going through polarized lenses, onto a silver screen that maintains polarization of reflected light. I took my gaming computer (cost not included), installed the iz3d drivers, and now every game I play is in full 3D. Yeah, I have to wear glasses, but so what? I wear glasses when it's bright outside, too. Other 3D gamers use 2 monitors, polarized sheets, and a teleprompter's mirror. If you have something with a high refresh-rate, you can also use shutt

    • by pwfffff (1517213)

      nVidia looks like they have a nice, simple solution. I'll be buying their monitor + shutterglasses combo soon. My graphics card is a bit dated though (9600 GTX); hopefully it can handle rendering the extra frames. I just need 120hz right, not 120fps?

      • Yep, 120 Hz. I used the nVidia driver for a while. Though it worked, I'd really recommend trying the iz3d one, too. The nVidia one didn't let you change the depth and separation like I wanted. Check out Meant to be Seen [mtbs3d.com].
  • Welcome back to 1990. Same dodgy 3D glasses that probably every household in England had, same rubbish colours and fairly iffy 3D once the novelty wears off. Only with blue/yellow instead of red/green. Progress!

  • by Hurricane78 (562437) <(deleted) (at) (slashdot.org)> on Monday November 09, 2009 @04:48PM (#30037934)

    It's stereo.

    Similar to stereo audio not being binaural audio.

    Because there is only one fixed viewing angle and focus plane. Which is also the reason for the additional eye strain.

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