Producing 3D Movies

Screen Shot 2013-12-06 at 18.03.13Producing a 3D movie is not as complicated as you might think. There are a few different formats of 3D file that are played on various devices. Here, I’ll explain how to produce a side-by-side movie, which seems to be the most common for playing on a 3D TV. A side by side movie made up from a pair of HD files (std HD is 1920×1080) will total 3840×1080 pixels, and as the name suggests, the image pairs are sewn together along side each other.

  1. Producing the image pairs. The two cameras used should be a matched pair, identical to each
    2 NR5 cameras, sync'd for 3D filming

    2 NR5 cameras, sync’d for 3D filming

    other, and positioned side by side, at a distance which means that no part of the image is more than 4% of the image width away from that same image feature in the other image. The cameras ideally should be sync’d (genlocked) together, so each image pair is taken at exactly the same time. IDT cameras are easy to synchronise together, and setting up for 3D is made easy with MotionInspector software, which includes an option to show two live camera views as an anaglyph (red/ cyan; creating a 3D view when viewed with red/ cyan glasses)

  2. Creating a 3D file from a left and a right. The pair of images now need to be sewn together. There are some specialist packages available for this, but there’s a handy tool in MotionStudio which will work well with AVI files. The Tile Utility imports two AVI files and creates one double sized file, either side by side or one over the other – exactly whats required for a 3D file.
  3. Formatting for display on a 3D TV. The above steps will produce a side by side image, but different TV’s demand different file formats, and possible require sound, so the final stage is to compress to a suitable format, adding a soundtrack (Neither of the above IDT softwares handle sound, as IDT cameras (high speed cameras) don’t record sound). A good value package for this VideoMach.
  4. Watch your movie. Putting the resulting movie onto a memory stick, and inserting into the USB port of your 3D TV should allow playback of your movie. I have had success with compressed AVI’s with only some codecs, and WMV files. Both required sound too (Samsung 3DTV model 6100)
  5. Share your successes below – we’d love to hear how people are getting on.

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