Jan 8, 2009

Tech - Panasonic bringing 3D HDTV into the home

LAS VEGAS (AFP) - Panasonic Corp. is committed to bringing 3D high-definition television into consumers' homes, the Japanese electronics maker has announced as it enlisted Titanic director James Cameron to make its case.

"3D is not a gimmick. 3D is ready for prime-time," the Hollywood director said in a taped broadcast to reporters at the annual Consumer Electronics Show (CES) here, where Panasonic showed off its new 3D HD home theater system.

The 3D Full HD Plasma (3D FHD) system made its debut at October's CEATEC exhibition in Japan but is being displayed in the United States for the first time at CES.

It combines a 103-inch (262-centimeter) Plasma HDTV and a Blu-ray disc (BD) player to transmit high-definition 3D images to viewers wearing special glasses.

"This goes well beyond conventional 3D and Panasonic is fully committed to making it a reality, and soon," said Bob Perry, executive vice president of Panasonic Consumer Electronics Co.

"You will no longer just be watching a movie, you'll be experiencing the realism of Hollywood film."

Panasonic chairman Yoshi Yamada reiterated the company's commitment to home 3D HDTV and called for the creation of a single standard to encourage the development of more 3D HD content.

Three-dimensional films have been around for years but have been generally seen as a novelty and have even been blamed for making audiences nauseous.

But Hollywood executives speaking at November's 3DX Festival in Singapore said they believed they could become the future of cinema thanks to digital technology.

Fox Sports plans to broadcast Thursday's college football championship game between Oklahoma and Florida in 3D in theaters around the country for fans willing to wear the special glasses and pay for the experience.

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