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Tips for Setting Up a 3D Home Theater

by Stewart Wolpin on January 08, 2010

When you swapped out your old, fat, square analog TV for a flat-screen HDTV, you probably changed more than a piece of equipment. You likely had to do some redecorating—the HDTV needed either a bigger cabinet to sit on or a blank wall to hang from, for instance.

If you plan to upgrade to 3DTV, get ready for additional room changes.

First, you'll want a bigger HDTV. All the demos for 3D have been shown on large screens in pitch-black rooms to enhance the immersive 3D effect. Be warned that small-screen 3D in ambient room light will look just plain silly. Even in low light, the 3D effect seems faded and flatter, with critical depth washed out.

In order for 3D not to look gimmicky and to lose its effectiveness, you'll likely want at least a 60-inch screen and a room as dark as you can make it. You'll also want to sit a foot or two further back than you’re used to, giving your eyes a fighting focal-depth-perception chance.

Viewing angle isn't as big a problem, however. Most of the 3D effect holds up even in extreme off-angle seating positions, although sitting way off to the side obviously isn't optimal for any TV viewing, especially with LCD TVs.

Your biggest lifestyle change is likely to be keeping track of the 3D glasses and keeping them charged. You'll want to set up a charging spot somewhere near the HDTV to keep them handy. While glasses can run for 250 viewing hours and automatically shut themselves off when they don't detect an image, you'll be better off keeping them connected to power when not in use—if for no other reason than so you know where they are. The last thing you want to hear is an alarming crunch when you sit down on the sofa.


Music and Video, Video Players & Recorders, TVs & Video Players, Tips & How-Tos, 3DTV, Tech 101

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