Wednesday Sony Electronics confirmed that its Personal 3D Viewer, the HMZ-T1, is arriving here in the States this November for $799 USD. The 2D/3D headset has reportedly launched in Canada according to Sony Canada, but the company didn't specify an actual release date or pricing. Given that the headset doesn't even land in Japan until November 11 for 60,000 yen ($784 USD), we’re betting the same time frame and price point applies to the Canadian schedule.
As reported last week, the headset packs a pair of 3D-capable 0.7-inch (diagonal) Ultra-Small High Definition Color OLED panels which receives input from an HDMI source like a Blu-ray player, a PC, Sony’s PlayStation 3 console and other 3D hardware and media. The screens also use Sony's 45-degree optical lens technology to reduce 3D crosstalk to nearly zero.
To the viewer, Sony's visor offers both 2D and 3D content up close and personal, spread out across a theater-like virtual screen, or rather, a large screen approximating 150-inches from 12-feet away (750-inch virtual screen, virtual viewing distance approximately 65-feet away). Sony has also adapted its original virtual surround signal processing technology to deliver the acoustical equivalent of a 5.1 channel surround-sound system.
"The HMZ-T1 achieves HD picture (1280 x 720) quality that makes full use of the OLED display’s high contrast, wide color gamut, and fast refresh rate," the company said. "In addition, the device adopts the dual panel 3D method which displays an independent HD picture to each eye in order to achieve a more natural 3D image. The viewer enjoys a bright 3D picture that is crosstalk-free."
The 3D specs come with an additional processor unit that is equipped with a built-in HDMI output switcher so that users can switch between the Personal 3D Viewer and an additional connected HDTV. It also charges the headset when it's not in use – Sony says that a wearable sensor automatically turns off the two screens when the viewer isn't donning the futuristic specs.
"The hardest part for us was to make it as small-sized as possible, while maintaining high definition, but we succeeded," said Sony vice president Shigeru Kato. "People can enjoy watching a favorite movie or play a videogame on their own without bothering other family members."
Sony's HMZ-T1 Personal 3D viewer will likely land in North America after its release in Japan on November 11. Given its $799 price tag, consumers will likely find the headset at Best Buy and other electronics retailers offline, and various storefronts established online.