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Ask a 3D Pro: What's the Right 3D Viewing Distance?

Queston: What's the right seating distance from a 3DTV for the optimal 3D effect? -submitted by various visitors

Answer: There has been a great deal of confusion regarding seating distance and 3D. While it may seem there is a different optimum range to better enjoy 3D effects on 3D TVs, based on my experience and what I've read from other industry professionals, the optimum seating distance for active-shutter glasses-based 3DTV sets (the vast majority of home 3D sets) doesn't appear to be much different than the optimum range for regular HDTVs.

That said, the general consensus is that bigger is better for an immersive 3D effect. So, it's better to go larger than smaller if 3D is your primary concern.

Those with auto-stereoscopic (glasses free) sets may have more problems with viewing distances and viewing angles... not that there are many large screen auto-stereoscopic sets out there. Tthe correct viewing spots for these sets will vary, and will be outlined in the user manual for the TV.

The optimal screen size for your room can be quickly calculated by using my simple formulas based on how far you sit from the TV*. Remember that recommended sizes are measured eye-to-screen, not chair to wall.

Maximum Size

If you like the picture to be big, this formula will take you about as big as you can go. Others say you can technically sit a little closer without loss of quality, but I say that anything bigger at this distance will be uncomfortable to watch, and could be a headache waiting to happen.

To calculate maximum recommended size for a given distance, take the number of inches distance eye-to-screen, and multiply by 0.575.

Minimum Size

The formula below will get you an smallest size possible for your distance. Any smaller size will begin to cause eyestrain, and make small text on the display difficult to see.

For HDTVs, to calculate minimum recommended size, take the number of inches distance eye-to-screen, and multiply by .265.

*The viewing distance formulas were originally published in my 2005 TechLore.com article "Factors to Consider When Choosing a TV"

Read More In: Televisions

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Tags : 3d 1013d viewing distance3dtvask a 3d pro

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