When it comes to home 3D entertainment, the Mrs. and I have fallen on hard times. Our Vizio 3D HDTV shorted out a while back and we didn't have the money to get it completely repaired; thus, while we were able to get the picture back, it would've cost us an extra few hundred to get the part of the TV fixed that sends the 3D signal out to the active 3D glasses. We loved having our high-definition screen back, but our 3D glasses and 3D Blu-ray discs began to collect many layers of dust because there was no way to use them.
I've seen many attempts to transfer 3D entertainment over to television and for a very long time, most of them were spectacular failures. When I was growing up during the '80s and cathode ray tube (CRT) TV sets ruled the world, I remember several attempts on both network and syndicated television to provide 3D content through a passive anaglyph (i.e., red and blue) format. Unfortunately, even the best efforts were only intermittently successful, since CRT screens lacked the image fidelity and color consistency to maintain the illusion of depth. The only successful 3D TV I saw on a CRT screen was through a Virtual FX 3D converter unit, which used shutter glasses (i.e., active 3D) to great effect. Through that experience, I reached the conclusion that active 3D was the best way to go for home 3D entertainment and we bought an active 3D HDTV when the opportunity presented itself, even though the shutter glasses cost extra (dammit).
A Virtual FX 3D Converter, with shutter glasses.
Thankfully, times have changed. We recently picked up an LG Electronics Cinema 3D LED HDTV with passive 3D glasses and it is amazing, showing that passive 3D really does have a future in home 3D entertainment after all. In contrast to the Vizio shutter glasses, the LG passive 3D glasses are lightweight, included with the TV, and require no batteries or charging--you just put them on and you're ready to go. Just about everything we have watched on our LG HDTV looks almost flawless with minimal ghosting, regardless of whether the video source was a Blu-ray disc, a 3D rental from our cable service, or an on-demand 3D title from Netflix. (Of course, the quality of a 3D viewing experience is just as dependent upon the source material as it is on its means of presentation, so even the best 3D TV still can't fix a poor 3D transfer.)
The LG set we have is spectacular and its passive 3D looks even better than the active 3D Vizio system, so it's appears that passive 3D is the way to go for cost-effective three-dimensional home entertainment. If you're a 3D fan who is looking to buy a new 3D HDTV or upgrade to another 3D HDTV, I highly recommend what LG has to offer.