NVIDIA GeForce 3D Vision Review - 3D Glasses for the Masses
So, it should be clear to you by now that not only am I thoroughly impressed with NVIDIA’s GeForce 3D Vision technology but that pretty much all of the people I showed it to were as well. That does not mean that NVIDIA has an easy road ahead – in fact the idea of having to be person marketing this to the masses is enough to make me ill. Imagine trying to sell a $200 accessory to a consumer without being able to show them what it does? Ever bought a new car based on a text-only description on Craig’s List?
To really appreciate, or decide that you don’t appreciate, this technological advancement in PC gaming you definitely need to see it in person. Images and screenshots will do you no good, videos online or on TV won’t help and even my descriptions and personal experiences can only go so far in convincing the skeptics. NVIDIA knows this and realizes this so expect to see a new type of marketing from them including things like showcases of 3D Vision at public events, kiosks at retail stores to play games on or even knocking on your door all “Wii-we-would-like-to-play”-like. Okay, maybe not that last one, that’s creepy.
The NVIDIA GeForce 3D Vision technology comes at a time when the PC gaming world needs a lift the most and I think any enthusiast (even those that are fans of AMD) can appreciate the chance to show off to their console-loving friends a feature that can’t be matched by one. The PC gaming world has been floundering around a bit since the days of Doom 3’s release and we have slowly seen the exclusive titles on the PC migrate to a “console then PC” model that drives a lot of hardcore PC gamers absolutely crazy. It is my hope that stereoscopic 3D gaming technology will really take off, and not just with NVIDIA but with all vendors from the GPU, display and software development worlds in order for the PC market to once again begin its upward march.
As of today, you should be able to find the GeForce 3D Vision kit for sale are online resellers like Newegg and Amazon and within a couple of weeks you should find them at brick and mortar stores like Best Buy, Fry’s and MicroCenter. If possible, I highly recommend you check out those retail establishments to see if they have a demo unit you can test and get some first-hand experience on before shelling out your hard earned cash.
I feel it is also important to realize that while the 3D effects we are seeing today are really cool and well worth the investment of $199, the future is even brighter for stereoscopic 3D gaming. All of the games we used to evaluate the hardware for this review were built before the NVIDIA technology was really finalized and being pushed by the company. Because of that, there is a lot of unaddressed potential for games to better incorporate support for 3D gaming that will enhance the experience even further. First, developers are likely to code their games in a way that will no longer require the disabling of features to get a great 3D image; things like shadows will likely work across the board and the need for the NVIDIA pop-up help display should dissipate.
Even more exciting is what we’ll see when developers start coding for the possibility of 3D gaming directly. While we didn’t see any out-of-screen effects in our games (but did in the NVIDIA demo) we already have verification of the first implementation of visual method in World of Warcraft. When things can literally come out at you, say a dragon in flight or the dirt from a bullet moving past your head, then I think the immersion of 3D Vision will be even better. In much the same way SLI and CrossFire support have become easier to come by in PC games I think you’ll find 3D effects a much more common trend in 2009 and beyond.
I for one am looking forward to returning home from CES to lay some pain on a few 3D zombies.
Additional Related Reading:
- NVIDIA GeForce GTX 295 Preview - Performance King Returns
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- ATI Stream Computing: From the desktop to the datacenter
- Nehalem Revolution: Intel's Core i7 Processor Complete Review
- Apple and NVIDIA: MacBooks with GeForce chipsets are nearly here
- How NVIDIA will Invade and Change the Apple MacBook Line this Year
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