back to article Movie-goer punts 3D-to-2D cinema specs

Are you regularly forced to sit through 3D kids' flicks in the cinema, generating inevitable headaches and eyestrain, powerless to do anything except hide behind your popcorn and cower at the daunting visuals? Next time you're dragged into such a situation, bring a pair of these along and convert films back to their regular …


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  1. Thomas 18
    Thumb Up

    The simple ideas

    are the best. <3

  2. Eponymous Cowherd


    You pay extra to get into a 3D screen, suffer the fuzzier and darker picture with poorer contrast, and have to wear uncomfortable specs (over your own glasses, in my case), all so you can sit with someone while *they* "enjoy" the 3D experience while you *don't*?!?

    That someone had better be worth it, that's all I can say......

    1. Dale 3

      Should've gone to a well known high street opticians

      You can already get polarising lenses in prescription glasses. Eventually I expect they will start offering prescription glasses with polarizing lenses which match the polarisation used in cinemas, which is a logical progression from where we are at the moment.

      1. Edwin

        Good idea?

        Possibly not - imagine driving down the road with a low-hanging sun in front of you and glasses with different polarisation for each eye.

        As someone without (decent) stereopsis, I quite like this 2d glasses idea.

      2. Edward Hull

        RE: Should've gone to a well known high street opticians

        I would pay (not much, maybe £10) for a pair of real-d glasses that would survive more than a few cleanings.

        prescription sunglasses use linear polarisation. Real-d is based on circular polarisation, so no, your next pair of prescription glasses won't work in a cinema.

        (a correctly chosen linear polarisation angle helps to reduce reflections from things - one reason it is used.)

        Incidentally, IMAX 3D (disclaimer: London IMAX near waterloo, other imax cinemas vary.) uses linear polarisation. if you tilt your head, things go crazy. even if you keep your head dead flat, there is image cross-talk. The image seems smother because it is being projected from two projectors at once while Real-D uses one projector and switches the polarity of the filter.

        I'd like to see a setup using two projectors and circular polarising filters - I'm hoping for the low (I've not noticed it) cross-talk of real-D and the smoothness of IMAX.

        Mine is the one with the notes on a napkin for adding 3D to a home-built projector

    2. Iain Purdie


      Exactly the post I was about to make. Are you plagiarising my brain? :)

      The only time I will see a film in 3D is if it's not possible to see it any other way (exception is IMAX where the 3D actually works). An annoying number of films are now being released 3D only. With kids' films there's always a 2D version as you're not supposed to expose under-5's to possible eye-strain.

      The forthcoming Judge Dredd film is being filmed in 3D. I asked their publicists if there will be a 2D version and the reply I got was "Well, it's being filmed in 3D so I don't know how they'd manage that". Erm... TV trailers featuring scenes from the film will be in 2D as will DVD, Blu-Ray and later TV releases. I'm fairly sure it's possible.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Recently saw Dara O'Brian's video "This is the show" ...

    "3D movies my arse !"

    he then points out we had 3D in the 50s and 80s, and speculates it goes in 30 year cycles, like Tuberculosis .....

    1. Iain Purdie


      ...and pointless curricular changes in Scottish schools. Just trust me on this one.

  4. DT

    Apple have released a product with similiar function

    It's called the i-patch.

    1. Rich 30


      Umm, great joke and everything, but apple would have called it iPatch, not i-patch. Wouldn't they? Becuase, thats how they write it, and always have done.

      Just like its not an i-phone, i-pad and doubley not an i-touch!

  5. Disco-Legend-Zeke

    Be Sure To:

    ...carefully assemble your homemade version.

    You, too can now be the "Geek with taped glasses."

  6. SteveCo


    So would those polarized driving specs work or do those 2D specs work differently?

    Will anyone produce specs that block out the git in the row in front texting his mates?

    1. chr0m4t1c

      Probably not

      As I understand it, the 3D cinema glasses use circular polarization, but your driving glasses (probably) use linear so all they'll do is make the fuzzy image darker.

  7. Real Ale is Best

    I saw one of these touted as an April Fool

    And it seemed a good idea to me then too.

    I fully agree about the person that you are with be worth it though.

  8. Gianni Straniero

    Obligatory Amazon review

    See here:

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    $8/£5 seems a bit pricey

    Most cinemas charge £1.50 for a pair of 3D glasses. Buy two of those, making a total of £3; pop the left lens out of one frame and the right lens out of the other, swap them over and pop them back in, and you have two pairs of 2D glasses for 30 seconds'-worth of effort and around half the price of a single pair purchased from this guy....

    1. GrumpyJoe

      At the risk of making a fool of myself...

      I'm not sure that'd work? The lenses are polarised in two different directions (left vertical,right horizontal or somesuch setup).

      So you have two pairs of glasses:-

      V - H and V - H

      swap the left lense on the first pair with the left lens of the second pair - what have you got?

      V - H and V - H

      Or have I just blundered into the obvious trap of replying to this?

      1. GrumpyJoe

        Replying to myself

        posted then realised - you mean PHYSICALLY turn the lenses around first and then put a left in a right and a right in the left - that works if the glasses have circular lenses - if they don't they won't fit/leave gaps? Are the lenses in these glasses symetrical?

        Only been to one 3D Film (Toy Story 3) it was crap, wasn't paying much attention to the things on my face.

      2. 8-{>

        H, V and C

        Real3D uses left and right circular polarised filters. Older tech used horizontal and vertical plane polarised filters which were reputed to give more eye strain than circular polarisation. So as long as you take RC-LC and RC-LC make a pair of RC-RC and LC-LC or H-V and H-V to make H-H and V-V depending on cinema (IMAX Waterloo showed Avatar in H-V when I saw it) you will be able to enjoy your over priced 3D in 2D.

  10. Simon Harris
    Thumb Up


    The customer reviews are well worth a look.

  11. Miek

    Thank F**K for that ...

    I can just imagine rows of people wearing 3D glasses in the 3D feature. I for one welcome our binary dimensional overlords.

  12. Paul Stimpson
    Thumb Up

    Great for special needs

    My kids have autism and the family is active in the local Autistic Society. A fair number of the children can't cope with 3D movies but some others can. I was about to make a pair of these glasses for someone to try and fix the problem that one of their kids wants to see 3D and the other doesn't. Their whole family will be able to go and see the same film.

    I agree it's not for everyone but this does solve a real problem we have.

  13. T.a.f.T.
    Paris Hilton

    Could have been rich...

    if I started making lots of these when I made some for my other half. (she managed about 3/4Hr of Avatar before watching the rest in bleard 2D)

    Paris, my other half looked just like her while peering over the 3D specs... honest. (well OK she is red head with much bigger boobs)

  14. stupormundi

    only in the cinema?

    can I get those 2D glasses for meatspace as well pls?

  15. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    @Good idea

    Unless the sun is a laser on your planet it isn't polarised.

    It is polarised when it reflect soff surfaces, but that's a linear polarisation and cinema glasses are vertically polarised so either way round 2different or 2 same will have exactly the same effect

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      RealD glasses and projectors

      are _circularly_ polarised. It means you can roll your head about without losing the stereo effect (try it with linear polarised glasses- it screws up much worse than in the cinema).

      You can also see the effect if you look at an LCD monitor with them- the linear polarised glasses have a totally different effect to the circular polarised ones.

  16. sisk


    you could just refuse to pay the extra for 3d and wait for the 2d DVD to come out like I do. That way your can contribute to the much needed and hopefully quick demise of this fad and get back to focusing on technologies that actually make the movies look better instead of worse.

  17. Haku

    Mark Kermode showed us these last Jan 2010

  18. brainwrong

    Not New.

    Mark Kermode done this ages ago

    You take 2 pairs of 3d glasses, and swap the left lens of one with the right lens of the other.

  19. Grease Monkey Silver badge

    Selected Cinemas

    OT I know, but I just can't help laughing when I see those ads for 3D films that say "2D available in selected cinemas". That wording seems to say to me that they think 2D is better than 3D.

    1. sisk

      It is

      3D has severe limitations on both picture quality and framerate. Plus it gives people headaches and kids aren't supposed to watch it because it'll damage their eyes.

      All in all, yes, 2D is MUCH better than 3D.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward


        Every 3D film I've seen so far has been crap. I don't mean the 3D was crap, I mean the content of the film is crap. It's pretty standard Hollywood practice, when there's some new bandwaggon like the current trend for 3D they will push any old crap on that bandwaggon hoping that the bandwaggon alone will sell the movie. Unfortunately for those who have faith in human nature it seems that Hollywood is usually right.

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