Being in the gaming industry as I am, there's no way to avoid NVIDIA when talking about graphics, 3D or GPUs and why would I? They make some of the greatest gear in the world in that regard. So when I happened upon an article that they were teaming up with YouTube to offer 3D Vision through the site, my eyes perked up. Yes, I know that would normally be ears, but this is graphics we're talking about.
YouTube was working on 3D video for sometime and we've even covered it in the past. But this is big news. The days of those cardboard red/blue(or green) glasses are over because NVIDIA makes some great active shutter 3D glasses and their 3D Vision setup is around $150 which isn't bad. Of course, you need compatible monitors and graphics cards, so it could run you around $400-500 to get a proper setup.
3D Red/Green Anaglyph is Old School
I wasn't joking about the end of those glasses. They were required for YouTube 3D up until recently. But with the new partnership with NVIDIA, YouTube's 6,000-plus 3D videos may become accessible to active shutter NVIDIA 3D Vision users. They don't know exactly how many will work right away but it seems like they going to keep working on expanding the offering.
"We're excited to introduce HTML5 and WebM support to the thousands of 3D videos available on YouTube," said Jonathan Huang, 3D Product Manager at YouTube. "By embracing these open standards, NVIDIA 3D Vision users now have a great way of experiencing YouTube's library of 3D content."
FF4 + HTML5 = 3D
The setup you'll need to toss those old Creature from the Black Lagoon glasses includes not only hardware, but a specific software setup as well: Firefox 4 and HTML5.
"Firefox with 3D Vision creates a stunning and smooth 3D video experience using HTML5 video based on open standards," said Jay Sullivan, VP of Products at Mozilla. "3D Vision from NVIDIA is a great example of the rich, innovative experiences that are being built on top of the speed and graphics power that Firefox delivers to the Web."
Knowing Google, that won't be it for long. They're sure to be working on a Chrome-compatible version as well. After all, it wouldn't be right if they couldn't pull it off with their own browser, now would it?
If you're itching for some major 3D online action, check out NVIDIA's own 3Dvisionlive.com/YT3D where you'll find more than 100 3D videos and 5,000 3D photos.
Still Experimental Video
Really, this is still more of an experiment than a full-fledged initiative I imagine. After all, you need a good amount of hardware and the specific software (which we all have by now, right?). On top of that there are only 6,000 or so 3D videos on YouTube at present so it's not a major drive.
The area where I can see this definitely taking off is in 3D gameplay videos. The TV and video game industries have been pushing 3D for over a year now. I'm still not on board, active shutter glasses or not. It's just not something I would say to friends, "Hey come over to watch some 3D...oh and bring your own glasses, I've only got two sets."
Until those big screen glasses-free 3D LED TVs come round, I'll stick to the good old standard HD. Then again, if they suddenly come up with great holographic 3D TV, I would be all over that.
Now there are some 3D cameras out in the wild and I think that perhaps I need to get a hold of one for review. JVC, Sony and a couple others are already making cameras and that means consumers will probably start some limited amount of uptake.
All combined I think that there could be some big 3D adoption later in the year when people are shopping for new gear for the holidays. Plus, with the ability to embed the YouTube 3D player almost anywhere, it's bound to start taking off.
If you have got a 3D Vision setup and want to check out YouTube in 3D head to http://www.youtube.com/select_3d_mode