While the initial buzz surrounding 3D has settled to a more reasonable volume, it hasn't disappeared from the conversation. 3D and the technology needed to support the format has become less of a selling point and more of an added feature - at least in the HDTV marketplace. One area where 3D is still somewhat in its infancy among consumers is in the front projection market. 3D front projection, like 3D HDTVs, is a specialty affair requiring either active glasses or a 3D compatible screen, and sometimes both. It's the added accessories that make 3D hard to swallow for many, especially front projection enthusiasts, for 3D compatible screens (never mind projectors) can get real expensive, really quickly.
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For the well-heeled home theater enthusiast or video purist, 3D is equally difficult for 3D capable screens tend to differ from their 2D counterparts in that they are designed, primarily, to combat 3D's lower light output. This is fine for 3D but not necessarily ideal for 2D. One solution would be to have two unique picture settings stored on your front projector, one of standard 2D viewing and another for 3D. Why this may seem like the easiest (and cheapest) solution, anyone who's viewed non-3D material on a 3D compliant screen will note that there are aspects of the image that don't appear "right." In my personal experience many 3D compatible screens tend to crush blacks, artificially boost contrast and over saturate colors, all the while artificially enhancing brightness and in some instances introducing surface shimmer when viewing non-3D content. Of course these items become less of an issue when viewing 3D material, for you want added contrast, bright colors and deeper blacks, not to mention excessive brightness. Another solution to the 3D problem is to employ two different screens, one for 2D and the other for 3D, which may seem unpractical at first but not wholly impossible.
The Daily Dual screen from Stewart Filmscreen is such a design, utilizing two screens, one for 2D material and the other for 3D, housed within a single chassis. This isn't the first time two screens have been housed in a single chassis; Vutec and Elite Screens both offer dual screen solutions, but the Daily Dual is the first design (to my knowledge) that uses two screens in order to solve the 3D conundrum. Unlike Vutec's and Elite Screen's dual screen offerings, the Daily Dual is a fixed screen solution, designed to be professionally installed by a custom installer in high-end screening rooms where the need for dual surfaces is necessary. Because the Daily Dual is a custom installed product, prices vary depending upon size, screen material and installation costs. For the most accurate pricing please contact your local Stewart Filmscreen dealer. The Daily Dual can be outfitted with any of Stewart's wonderful screen materials from the lauded FireHawk G3 to StudioTek 100 G3 and everything in between. Obviously if you're using the Daily Dual as a dual purpose 2D/3D screen you'll want to choose a 3D compliant screen material as one of your surfaces, materials such as Silver 3D (for polarized applications) or Reflections Active 170 3D (for active applications). However, if 3D isn't your bag but you want ultimate front projection flexibility for, say, nighttime and daytime viewing, you can easily outfit a Daily Dual screen with non-3D compatible screen materials as well. The way the Daily Dual works is simple: one screen remains fixed while the other electronically descends over top within the same frame.
Read about the high points and low points of the Daily Dual projection screen on Page 2.