PARTNER NEWS: 3D Never Looked So Good
July 12, 2021

PARTNER NEWS: 3D Never Looked So Good

Made possible by Sony's new Spatial Reality Display.
There are a number of 3D monitors on the market, but Sony’s new Spatial Reality Display, which became available this past January, has proven that being different can, in fact, make all the difference. The first hint: Its shape, with a flat 15.6-inch glass screen on the front and multi-geometric panels on the back shielding very special functionality. Meanwhile, a high-speed visual sensor on this personal device follows the user’s eye movement to deliver a 3D image based on the position of the person’s eyes. What’s more, a special micro-optical lens allows for high-res stereoscopic viewing without the use of any accessories such as glasses or a VR headset.

Sony’s eye-sensing technology constantly tracks the position of the user’s eyes down to the millisecond and delivers a clear 3D image to each one — the precisely placed optical lens divides the image into left- and right-eye views. A built-in camera on the front of the LCD display tracks the position of the user’s face and eyes. Based on that information, the images on the display adjust to that viewing angle, giving the person a sense of volumetric viewing without wearing a peripheral device. In fact, the user can move around in front of the monitor — up and down, side to side — and the screen adjusts to the motion accordingly.

The Spatial Reality Display handles very high-quality, high-resolution (up to 4K) 3D images. And since this is a single-person device, it is able to create an especially immersive experience for the user — the display itself has a side panels that can create a theater-type of experience, according to the company.

The device leverages an original algorithm for processing real-time content for each eye without lag, even while the user is moving around. The sensor follows the movement down to the millisecond, sensing pupil position on all three axes: vertical, horizontal, and depth.

The display connects to a Windows-based PC running Sony’s SDK on either Epic’s Unreal Engine 4 or the Unity Engine; it does not support Macs at this time. According to Sony, it is compatible with imagery created in most major digital content creation software, as long as those files can be imported first into either of the two real-time engines.

Sony is working with vendors in a few different industries, including the entertainment segment. Not only does it provide filmmakers with a realistic way to preview character and other designs, but it also enables them to review camera positions and lighting within the environment. For example, Sony recently collaborated with filmmakers from the upcoming Ghostbusters: Afterlife movie. Director Jason Reitman and Production Designer Francois Audouy gave their hands-on impression on how the device can realize filmmakers’ vision, and how the industry can utilize the device to communicate more efficiently and provide/receive more concise feedback.

“It’s an opportunity to really get on the same page from a design sense, and show a director what you’re intending,” Audouy states in a video on the official Ghostbusters YouTube channel In the video, the filmmakers are seen zooming in and out and rotating imagery on the screen using finger gestures, made possible through the addition of a Leap Motion Controller optical hand tracking module.

Sony also sees lots of potential for its Spatial Reality Display in other industries: car manufacturers designing new vehicles, medical experts planning surgeries, architects showing project details to their clients, and even high-end retailers displaying an extensive product line without having to keep every variation in stock.

The Sony ELF-SR1 Spatial Reality Display retails for just under $5,000. More information about the display can be found at