If you haven't been thrilled about the prospect of shelling out $150 for a pair of active-shutter 3D glasses that will only work with one brand of TV, there's some good news on the horizon: Later this month, you'll be able to buy interoperable 3D glasses that will work with almost any 3D TV. Unfortunately they won't be a lot less expensive than glasses from the TV manufacturers, but they will be a bit more stylish.
The new sleeker X103 3D glasses, from a company called XpanD, will be priced at $129 when they become available later this month. The company says they'll work with 3D-ready LCD and plasma TVs, as well as with some rear-projection DLP microdisplays and LCD desktop and notebook PC monitors, provided they can play 3D-encoded content at 120 frames per second. Fashion-conscious viewers will be able to choose from among several different eyeglass-frame colors.
But the company says the glasses don't just look better, they work better, thanks to a fast-switching liquid crystal cell, called the “Pi-Cell,” that acts as a shutter to alternately block views to each eye without noticeable flicker.
We'll try and get our hands on a pair or two as soon as they become available, so stay tuned for an upcoming blog on how well they work.
—James K. Willcox