Livin’ the 3D Sec’ Life

Klee 3D

Kirstenlee’s Viewer has always been bleeding edge; it is the Viewer for the serious SL photographer and Machinimaist.

At the end of May, the Viewer took another leap forward as it went…3D!

I hadn’t been able to test it myself, due to a lack of any appropriate glasses. However, a trip to the local cinema solved that problem, so this afternoon I got to have a paddle with it.

The first thing I will say is that my PC is not top-of-the-line, nor is my graphics system. That said, it handles shadows reasonably OK, if with something of a performance hit, so I was pretty sure 3D would work – and it did! I’ll be honest, there was a performance hit (GeForce 9800 card with 1 Gb, btw, running with a Q6600 2.63 Mhz processor & Win 7 32), but it was nowhere near as massive as when enabling shadows. My normal 40-50fps tumbled to around 25-28. The glasses I have from the cinema perhaps weren’t the greatest (after all, your supposed to be sitting tens of feet from a big screen when wearing them, not sitting a dozen nose lengths away from a table-top screen), but with some jiggling of the sliders, I got a reasonably impressive result and spent 20 minutes bimbling around my sky platform.

Given my GPU / CPU, I didn’t hold out too much hope of running shadows and 3D effects – and I was right. While both enabled, I was left with a frame rate of 1 fps. Erp, as the spokesperson once said, but not surprising.

The only real problem I had lay with the fact that while the in-world view was 3D, my HUDs weren’t – and the colour separation on them was appreciable to the point of making text illegible.

The 3D controllers can be found in the PREFERENCES -> VIEWER -> MISC tab, and comprise a check box to enable and a couple of slider controls – adjust with care. If you try it, be aware that the Build 8 Viewer is experimental and may do Unpredictable Things.

As photos don’t really do the 3D justice, here’s a video made by Chantal Harvey showing off the results:

S21 Build 8 is currently only available in for Windows; Mac and Penguin versions to follow.