A study published in an optometry journal has found that a viewer’s position relative to a screen showing 3D content can have a large impact on that viewer’s perceived immersion as well as motion sickness and other symptoms.
The study, published in the July issue of Optometry and Vision Science, the journal of the American Academy of Optometry, involved 203 teenagers and adults watching both 2D and 3D content. While 2D viewing resulted in reports of symptoms such as dizziness, nausea, headache, and disorientation in 12 percent of participants, similar symptoms were present in 21 percent of 3D viewers.
Immersion, defined as the perception of objects and oneself moving through space, was highest for participants sitting directly in front of the television screen watching 3D content. Moving 45 degrees off center reduced the feeling of immersion, as did sitting farther away from the screen. Sitting off center and farther away also reduced eyestrain and motion sickness.
Viewers older than 45 reported more symptoms in 2D viewing, while viewers between 24 and 34 years of age reported more symptoms in 3D viewing. Those who had stated they’d had previous problems with 2D viewing generally had similar symptoms during 2D viewing in the study, but there was no such correlation with 3D viewing. Blurred vision and double vision were unique to 3D viewing.
Sitting farther away during 3D viewing might reduce symptoms, the researchers hypothesized, because the two images fail to synchronize correctly to create the illusion of a 3D object when one is sitting too close.
The study was funded by a grant from the User Experience Research Group at Intel Corporation, with participants recruited from Intel campuses in Hillsboro, Oregon. The movie shown to participants was Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs on a 55-inch Samsung television.
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