How to make a 3D movie

Start gearing up for shooting your own movies in 3D (stereoscopic), as consumer stereoscopic cameras are about to hit the world!

Until not very long ago, if the film enthusiast or independent filmmaker wanted to shoot a film in 3D, he would have to take two similar video cameras and affix them to a flat surface next to each other.  These cameras would then record two streams of video of the same scene but out of slightly different angles. 

Editing these two video streams together was a slight bit of a hassle, as your popular video editing software like Adobe Premiere wasn't really suitable to edit two video streams as one and the process had to be improvised.  There were some lesser known software written by a few people to handle editing two video streams;  still you now had to synchronize the two video streams manually first and make sure you imported two already synchronized video files into these programs that could then render you out an anaglyph stereoscopic video file. 

The whole process of making a threedimensional film this way was fun and exciting;  I've tried it, but it wasn't really practical or easy yet. 

However, come October 2010, all this will change.  Panasonic is going to release the world's first consumer stereoscopic (3D) camcorder!

And it will not be all that expensive either.  The price on Amazon.com is scheduled to be around $1,400 for the Panasonic HDC-SDT750K

Recording 3D video is now as easy as attaching the 3D conversion lens that comes with this camcorder.

In natural vision, people see slightly different images with their right and left eyes. This difference is called visual disparity. The brain uses visual disparity to perceive spatial depth and the appearance of solidity.

With the addition of the 3D conversion lens to Panasonic's 700 series 3MOS system you can shoot 3D video using the same principle as human vision. Left-and right-eye images are simultaneously shot with two lenses. The SDT750 creates 3D images by artificially reproducing visual disparity.

Even without the 3D conversion lens attached, there are many ways to enjoy the SDT750. This innovative camcorder takes an evolutionary leap forward from the many Panasonic models. It is equipped with a wide range of sophisticated functions, including the 3MOS System, which features improved noise reduction (NR) technologies, 1080/60p recording, iA (Intelligent Auto) mode in the new HYBRID Optical Image Stabilization, and a lot of manual controls.

The high-sensitivity 3MOS System has 7.59 million effective motion image pixels (2.53 megapixels x 3). This advanced image sensor separates the light received through the lens into the three primary colors -- red, green and blue -- and processes each color independently. As a result, it offers beautiful images with significantly better color quality, detail and gradation than the 1MOS sensor system.

For viewing your 3D movies, a TV that is capable of side-by-side method 3D playback, 3D glasses, and HDMI cable connection are required. 

Is 3D really here to stay this time?  That's a rather heated debate as I've seen on many internet forums, but if 3D is going to be made this accessable, I say why not?

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Ken Brace
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Posted on Dec 29, 2010