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What is 3D?
3D is short for 3-dimensional (e.g. width, length, and depth). Our physical environment is three-dimensional and we view the world in a 3D way every day. Human have two eyes which are about 2 inches apart so we are able to perceive the spatial relationship between the things just by looking at them. Thus we see the surroundings objects from two different perspectives which will be processed together in the brain and generate the sense of depth for a 3D visual experience.
What is 3D movie?
3D movie uses a particular filming technology, which presents two individual images simultaneously to each eye and provides a stereoscopic vision to the viewer. It has been enhanced to offer a perception of depth of image to the audience with tinted glasses, who will be tricked to have a sense of true depth and feel that the objects in the 3D movie is extending out from the screen.
There are several different setups when viewing a 3D movie:
Anaglyphic Processing (Red/Blue Filters)
It is the original 3D movie system. In such 3D movie, the image from one projector is tinted blue or green and the image from the other is tinted red. The views wear special glasses with tinted lenses which blocks one of the images tinted by the other color. In this way, each eye of the view will perceive two slightly different angles of the same picture, which leads to a sense that the appearance of objects in the movie seem to jump off the screen.
Polarized Light System
It is a new and most common 3D system for cinemas. In such 3D movie, no tinted lense is used while each image is polarized instead. That is to say, the waves of light for each image are oscillated in different orientations. Thus, each eye of the audience with a pair of particular 3D glasses will perceive only one of the image which is passing through a special direction of light oscillations. Similar with the red/blue version, the audience will be provided by a feeling of depth for a 3D visual experience.