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Published on December 16th, 2012 | by Kirit Thadaka


The 3D in 3DS

Personally I’ve never been that big a fan of Ninetendo’s gaming consoles. I’ve always preferred the Sony or Microsoft consoles. Nintendo doesn’t appeal to the hard core gamer as much as the other two. But when I heard about the 3DS I was mind blown. Nintendo truly took things a step further by bringing 3D into the world of gaming. When I first played the 3DS I was amazed at how brilliantly Nintendo made 3D work so well in the gaming world. After playing the 3DS a countless number of times I finally took the effort to figure out how the 3D works. So here I am now, sharing my wisdom with you all.

First we must understand how 3D works. 3D is possible because of something special that all of us humans are blessed with, Binocular Vision. Have you noticed that is harder to catch a ball from a height with one eye closed than with both eyes open? This is because when both eyes are open our binocular vision kicks in. When we look at an object, the left and the right eye receive two images slightly apart. The brain processes these two images and perceives depth. So to make a 3D movie the things you need to do are, project two images on to the screen and then make sure the two different images go to the two different eyes. To do this we make use of 3D glasses. Remember those old funny looking 3D glasses where once lens was red and the other blue? What happens with these is that one lens allows only image to enter each eye. These two sets of images into the two eyes are processed as one 3D image. Of course 3D glasses have become less ugly over the years. So the next time you see some big ugly monster reaching out of the screen trying to grab you, you know how it’s happening.



Nintendo was brave enough to try and create a 3D console that didn’t require those annoying 3D glasses. God bless them. What Nintendo managed to do, was make sure that when the images left the screen they would be directed to the two different eyes instead of filtering the images after reaching the eye. For this to work, they used something called a ‘Parallax Barrier’. The Parallax Barrier sends the two images to the two eyes. With the 3DS we get the option to turn the 3D ‘on’ and ‘off’ by turning the Parallax Barrier ‘on’ and ‘off’. The Parallax Barrier, like all other wonderful things has its vice too. To observe the effects of the barrier, you have to be in a specific position. But for hand held consoles this isn’t much of a problem because you’re never too far from the screen.


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About the Author

Technology, football and music. Enough said. Follow me @Kirit93.

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