The Physiology of 3D - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 194 Old 02-26-2010, 09:27 AM - Thread Starter
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With so many companies going "all-in" on 3D, has anyone bothered to address the physiological aspects of watching 3D on a screen? When watching 3D on a screen the brain and eyes give conflicting signals that often result in eye strain. And many of the 3D films are targeted for children. What are the effects of 3D on a developing visual system?
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post #2 of 194 Old 02-26-2010, 10:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hphase View Post

With so many companies going "all-in" on 3D, has anyone bothered to address the physiological aspects of watching 3D on a screen? When watching 3D on a screen the brain and eyes give conflicting signals that often result in eye strain. And many of the 3D films are targeted for children. What are the effects of 3D on a developing visual system?

Exactly:

Researchers say eye strain a concern as 3-D TVs debut

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post #3 of 194 Old 02-26-2010, 11:03 AM
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As a parent of 3 kids, I wouldn't worry about it as the typical child's movie is 90 minutes. If the child complains, then remove the glasses. But no permanent muscular or ocular damage could possibly occur.

There are more than a handful of [op amps] that sound so good that most designers want to be using them as opposed to discreet transistors. Dave Reich, Theta 2009
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post #4 of 194 Old 02-26-2010, 11:35 AM - Thread Starter
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I'm not an alarmist, but I would like a little more research to be done before any conclusions are drawn.

And as a parent of 2 kids, being a parent gives you no advantage in making scientific conclusions about permanent muscular, ocular, or perceptual damage.
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post #5 of 194 Old 02-26-2010, 11:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thebland View Post

As a parent of 3 kids, I wouldn't worry about it as the typical child's movie is 90 minutes. If the child complains, then remove the glasses. But no permanent muscular or ocular damage could possibly occur.

Are ya sure. Has this been tested. As a corollary, if a child has had stabismus surgery, 3D might in fact be good to have the eyes working together.

PF
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post #6 of 194 Old 02-26-2010, 01:16 PM
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What is your hypothesis? This is passive viewing. What very short term passive stimulus could possibly cause damage?

Though not a physician, my background is in physiology and neuroscience.

Likely the content is more damaging!

There are more than a handful of [op amps] that sound so good that most designers want to be using them as opposed to discreet transistors. Dave Reich, Theta 2009
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post #7 of 194 Old 02-26-2010, 02:45 PM - Thread Starter
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I'm not suggesting that there is definitely a long term problem, but there hasn't been a whole lot of study about this, and the studies that have been done so far don't paint a good picture. Headaches are common, and some of those studies say that the problems get worse with smaller, closer screens.

Kids watch a lot of TV. Vendors want to sell a lot of 3D gear. If there is a problem, what happens then? It's hard/foolish to build a whole market segment based on assumptions.
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post #8 of 194 Old 02-26-2010, 04:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thebland View Post

What is your hypothesis? This is passive viewing. What very short term passive stimulus could possibly cause damage?

Though not a physician, my background is in physiology and neuroscience.

Likely the content is more damaging!


First of all, your assuming that it is short term stimulus. I don't have kids but my nephew and many other kids that I have encountered through work are addicted to T.V. and games. What is my hypothesis: long term viewing of 3D material has an impact in the development of binocular neurons in a chld's brain? That good enough???

Money is more important than health - right? right. Cigarettes and alcohol are the most damaging drugs out there - in terms of heath care costs.... and they're both legal....hmmm. So lets not put our faith in companies to determine what is safe and not safe.... . Studies would certainly be reassuring, but that will never happen.

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post #9 of 194 Old 02-26-2010, 05:03 PM
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If those kids are addicted to TV, their parents aren't involved enough in their lives and they'll have other issues more important than 3-D fun.

Bottom line, it is innocuous for the casual young viewer.

Tv addicts ....

There are more than a handful of [op amps] that sound so good that most designers want to be using them as opposed to discreet transistors. Dave Reich, Theta 2009
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post #10 of 194 Old 02-26-2010, 06:35 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by thebland View Post

If those kids are addicted to TV, their parents aren't involved enough in their lives and they'll have other issues more important than 3-D fun.

Bottom line, it is innocuous for the casual young viewer.

Tv addicts ....

You don't help your point of view with the "It's harmless because I say it's harmless" argument.
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post #11 of 194 Old 02-26-2010, 07:13 PM
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Mark Schubin has been keeping up with this stuff. You might find some useful links at his site:

http://schubincafe.com/

Yes, calibration is important...every user should be calibrated.

Need electronics repair? A great place to start looking for a shop in your area: http://www.tvrepairpros.com/
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post #12 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 03:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hphase View Post

You don't help your point of view with the "It's harmless because I say it's harmless" argument.

OK.. It's harmless because I say it is...

Please hypothesize how watch Toy Story 3-D will bring about catastrophic physical changes to a child... simply by viewing.. Eye strain and headaches don't count as their are a myriad of other innocuous stimuli that cause those symptoms.

This is a ridiculous argument... especially trying to defend the unknown.

There are more than a handful of [op amps] that sound so good that most designers want to be using them as opposed to discreet transistors. Dave Reich, Theta 2009
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post #13 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 03:48 AM
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Anyone that has seen a well calibrated 1080 set knows what 3D is.
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post #14 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 04:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hphase View Post

You don't help your point of view with the "It's harmless because I say it's harmless" argument.

OK.. It's harmless because I say it is...

Please hypothesize how watch Toy Story 3-D will bring about catastrophic physical changes to a child... simply by viewing.. Eye strain and headaches don't count as their are a myriad of other innocuous stimuli that cause those symptoms.

This is a ridiculous argument... especially trying to defend the unknown.

There are more than a handful of [op amps] that sound so good that most designers want to be using them as opposed to discreet transistors. Dave Reich, Theta 2009
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post #15 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 04:50 AM
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Did anyone notice how people who viewed the 3D demos at CES and at the Panasonic truck tour said that after a while they removed the glasses as they were fatigued and felt some eye strain?

Also, are the different display manufacturers using essentially the same tech or are they enough different to merit closer inspection?

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post #16 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 05:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JimP View Post

Did anyone notice how people who viewed the 3D demos at CES and at the Panasonic truck tour said that after a while they removed the glasses as they were fatigued and felt some eye strain?

Also, are the different display manufacturers using essentially the same tech or are they enough different to merit closer inspection?

If you get out and play a different sport or rigorous activity for a few hours, you might notice some muscles you rarely use are sore afterwards.... same here.

Try wearing prescription glasses for the first time. Headaches and eyestrain a re normal. Eye muscles are trying to accommodate. This is normal until your eyes are able to adapt.

This is a normal response in search of a controversy. Ridiculous, too.

There are more than a handful of [op amps] that sound so good that most designers want to be using them as opposed to discreet transistors. Dave Reich, Theta 2009
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post #17 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 07:41 AM
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Originally Posted by JimP View Post

Did anyone notice how people who viewed the 3D demos at CES and at the Panasonic truck tour said that after a while they removed the glasses as they were fatigued and felt some eye strain?

Sure, but nothing permanent happened to them.

It's no worse than spinning yourself around in a circle and getting dizzy. You haven't scrambled your brain. All you've done is thrown off your equilibrium for a bit.

Stare at one color for a few minutes, then look at the rest of the room. Everything will have a color tint toward the other end of the spectrum for a moment. For example, staring at a green chromakey screen for a few minutes will result in everything looking a bit red or magenta when you look away. That's why when blue screen technology was first being used (before green screen) in movies like "Spaceballs", crew members wore yellow tinted glasses. That odd color tinting in your vision that occurs was thought to be damaging, so wearing the yellow lenses was a "protective" measure until the effects were understood.

If you wear contacts and seldom wear your glasses, you know that when you first put the glasses on for those rare occasions it usually results in a bit of temporary blurry vision.

Now, you can hurt your eyes by exposing them to overly bright lights or light wavelengths known to be harmful, like UV or concentrated LASER frequencies. Illuminated displays will cause eyestrain if viewed for long periods of time, but that can usually be undone with either rest or looking away for a while.

Your brain is a very advanced and complicated computer. It's very adaptable, but sometimes takes a short time to do it fully. Your eyes will adjust to 3D viewing slowly (which is why you stop noticing it so much as the movies go along unless something really jumps out at you) and will adjust back to reality slowly (hence some dizzyness, eyestrain or fatigue).

Over time, your brain can adjust to about anything, including the loss of an eye completely or color blindness.

One can certainly assume that the longer you view a 3D presentation, the longer it will take to re-adjust after, but it's really not much different than adjusting to bright lights after being in a darkened room.

The reason for the odd feeling afterward is simple: you're brain is used to being fed images at the same exact moment from the same source. With 3D, there is a deliberate offset of the images that you can't process consciously, but your brain realizes is there. It's not hurting you so much as requiring your brain to switch gears faster than it normally would.

Now, if there was a way to slowly "bring you out" of 3D (like slowly fading up the lights in a theater), I'll bet few people would experience any negative symptoms. Instead, we yank off the glasses and walk out into the real world without taking time to adjust. It's no wonder you feel weird.
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post #18 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 08:07 AM
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Originally Posted by BWDinc View Post

Anyone that has seen a well calibrated 1080 set knows what 3D is.

That doesn't make sense. Could you elaborate on how viewing an accurate 2 dimensional image makes the viewer "know" what a 3D image looks like?

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post #19 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 08:14 AM
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That doesn't make sense. Could you elaborate on how viewing an accurate 2 dimensional image makes the viewer "know" what a 3D image looks like?

I think the intent is that a well calibrated display with a good HD source almost looks 3D. This is because the elements front to back seem to pop more due to the sharpness and color of the image. This is unlike a muddy SD image where everything looks flat due to edges blurring together.
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post #20 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 08:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NetworkTV View Post

I think the intent is that a well calibrated display with a good HD source almost looks 3D. This is because the elements front to back seem to pop more due to the sharpness and color of the image. This is unlike a muddy SD image where everything looks flat due to edges blurring together.

Well, frankly, a properly calibrated set will probably NOT "pop" more than the typical LCD/Plasma with default showroom settings. Calibration is about accuracy - not about exaggerating the colors and adding artificial enhancements to make things look sharper.

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post #21 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 09:11 AM
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The thing that causes the eyestrain in the first place is the fact that your eyes are not doing what they normally do. In "3D" displays your eyes must keep focus at one distance (where the screen is) but become cross-eyed to see close things and the opposite for far away things. It is not natural at all and therefore your eyes get tired. If a young brain is actually learning how to see 3D in the first place, I wonder how "3D" displays will affect that learning.
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post #22 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 09:43 AM
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Originally Posted by HokeySmoke View Post

The thing that causes the eyestrain in the first place is the fact that your eyes are not doing what they normally do. In "3D" displays your eyes must keep focus at one distance (where the screen is) but become cross-eyed to see close things and the opposite for far away things. It is not natural at all and therefore your eyes get tired. If a young brain is actually learning how to see 3D in the first place, I wonder how "3D" displays will affect that learning.

Adaptation. The human body is a formidable piece of 'machinery'. One eye seeing differently than the other is something little to be concerned about with casual viewing. Kids with eye injuries wear eye patches for prolonged periods of time without long term issue. This defeats binocular vision completely. The eye is simply a sensory device. It simply reacts to stimuli. The brain only does the processing and would not sustain irreversible damage by any stretch. I'm sure someone will dream up a possible disastrous consequence... there's always one in a crowd.

There are more than a handful of [op amps] that sound so good that most designers want to be using them as opposed to discreet transistors. Dave Reich, Theta 2009
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post #23 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 09:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HokeySmoke View Post

The thing that causes the eyestrain in the first place is the fact that your eyes are not doing what they normally do. In "3D" displays your eyes must keep focus at one distance (where the screen is) but become cross-eyed to see close things and the opposite for far away things. It is not natural at all and therefore your eyes get tired. If a young brain is actually learning how to see 3D in the first place, I wonder how "3D" displays will affect that learning.

Since the screen is a fixed distance, there's no need for any convergence with 2D or 3D.

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post #24 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 10:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HokeySmoke View Post

The thing that causes the eyestrain in the first place is the fact that your eyes are not doing what they normally do. In "3D" displays your eyes must keep focus at one distance (where the screen is) but become cross-eyed to see close things and the opposite for far away things. It is not natural at all and therefore your eyes get tired. If a young brain is actually learning how to see 3D in the first place, I wonder how "3D" displays will affect that learning.

You contradict yourself. A fixed focus distance means your eyes don't need to move to view objects that appear closer or further away - which is part of the problem.

To avoid eyestrain, your eyes need to periodically refocus - something that doesn't happen when staring at any screen - 3D or not.
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post #25 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 10:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kal Rubinson View Post

Since the screen is a fixed distance, there's no need for any convergence with 2D or 3D.

Have you read the articles/papers?

Researchers say eye strain a concern as 3-D TVs debut

3D's Immersive Experience at Home:
Why the home 3D experience will Not Rival that of the Theater

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post #26 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 10:39 AM
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I have no problems viewing stereographic slides with a quality viewer (glass, color-corrected lenses). No eyestrain.

Trying to "freeview" stereographic photographs (by forcing the eyes to combine the images without glasses) can be a bit straining in the long run (from experience).

My opinion is that the 3D "craze" will pass just like it did in the 1950's once the novelty wears off. Every system of combining two images into one whether it be polarized, anaglyph, LCD shutter or lenticular has (ultimately) irritating trade-offs in both picture quality and overall viewing experience.
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post #27 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 11:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NetworkTV View Post

You contradict yourself. A fixed focus distance means your eyes don't need to move to view objects that appear closer or further away - which is part of the problem.

No. If you want to see things that are supposed to be closer then your eyes need to move towards each other. Otherwise you would see double. Normally at this point you would refocus your eyes, but you don't for these "3D" displays. This is why you get a feeling of being cross-eyed, which is in fact what happens.
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post #28 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 11:18 AM
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I don't buy it.

There should be no worse eye strain than just staring at the screen. The image isn't being transmitted through the glasses.

The issue is with equilibrium cause by the frequency the images are reaching each eye, which, with 3D, throws you off balance. I think people are confusing those symptoms (dizziness and headaches) with eye strain.

However, the information you cited does get one thing right: distance matters. When you sit 6 feet from the screen, you're going to get eye strain, 3D or not.
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post #29 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 04:12 PM
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I don't think I buy it either. Sure, some folks will not be able to see 3-D, some will have eye problems that 3D might exacerbate or make it plain look bad . But that's not the issue addressed below - seems a tad alarmist to me.

Quote:


One of the main issues the researchers are studying is the so-called convergence-accommodation conflict. People watching stereo 3-D content have to adjust what they see at one point on a flat screen to information in the content that tells them that object is at another point in 3-D space. Such adjustments are not needed in the real world, so the human brain is not wired to handle them smoothly.

That's from the first article. I bolded the bit that applies to 2-D presentations as much as 3-D presentations. Even in 2-D the brain knows that the hills are far away, the trees are in the mid-ground and the car-wreck is in the foreground, with blood spattered all over the camera lens in super-near foreground. Why were there no worries when film was turned into movies? We've always focused on the plane of the screen ...
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post #30 of 194 Old 02-27-2010, 04:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Many here are missing the basics about what one of the problems is.

The offset between the images in a 3D image makes the eyes cross slightly, which tells the eyes about how far away the image should be. When the eyes try to focus at that distance, they can't get a sharp image, because the image is really on the projection screen or TV screen, not where the eyes "think" it is. The eyes have to change what they have been taught do, and this can cause eye strain.

How bad is this problem? Nobody knows. "Adaptation" doesn't work here because you don't watch "3D" TV/movies and wear 3D glasses all the time.

Can young children watching "too much" 3D give themselves long-lasting problems? Nobody knows.

Nobody knows. That's the problem. It may not turn out to be a problem at all, but you can't assume one way or the other unless you test. This isn't about lawyers ... yet!

Remember when smoking was "healthy"?

We did learn that TVs were dangerous, and steps were taken to reduce x-ray emissions. If we just assumed that nothing was wrong and didn't test, there could have been lots of problems.
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