Cinema 3D: Large Scale Automultiscopic Display


Netalee Efrat1     Piotr Didyk2     Mike Foshey3     Wojciech Matusik3     Anat Levin1

1Weizmann Institute      2 Saarland University, MMCI / MPI Informatik      3 MIT CSAIL

Fig 1. - The standard approach to the design of automultiscopic 3D displays attempts to cover the angular range of all viewer positions. However, there are usually unavoidable trade-offs between the angular range and resolution of such displays. Therefore, an application of automultiscopic technology to real-sized 3D cinema, where viewing range is usually very wide, would typically involve poor spatial/angular resolution (left), or a restricted range of screen distances. In contrast, we suggest a 3D display architecture that only presents a narrow range of angular images across the small set of viewing positions of a single seat, and replicates the same narrow angle content to all seats in the cinema, at all screen distances (right).


While 3D movies are gaining popularity, viewers in a 3D cinema still need to wear cumbersome glasses in order to enjoy them. Automultiscopic displays provide a better alternative to the display of 3D content, as they present multiple angular images of the same scene without the need for special eyewear. However, automultiscopic displays cannot be directly implemented in a wide cinema setting due to variants of two main problems: (i) The range of angles at which the screen is observed in a large cinema is usually very wide, and there is an unavoidable tradeoff between the range of angular images supported by the display and its spatial or angular resolutions. (ii) Parallax is usually observed only when a viewer is positioned at a limited range of distances from the screen. This work proposes a new display concept, which supports automultiscopic content in a wide cinema setting. It builds on the typical structure of cinemas, such as the fixed seat positions and the fact that different rows are located on a slope at different heights. Rather than attempting to display many angular images spanning the full range of viewing angles in a wide cinema, our design only displays the narrow angular range observed within the limited width of a single seat. The same narrow range content is then replicated to all rows and seats in the cinema. To achieve this, it uses an optical construction based on two sets of parallax barriers, or lenslets, placed in front of a standard screen. This paper derives the geometry of such a display, analyses its limitations, and demonstrates a proof-of-concept prototype.

Materials for download:

Paper (PDF, high res, 23 MB)
Paper (PDF, low res, 1 MB)
Supplementary appendix (PDF, 600 KB)
Design details and geometry files (zip, 21 MB)
Simulation results
Images from our prototype
Comparison to different displays


Netalee Efrat, Piotr Didyk, Mike Foshey, Wojciech Matusik, Anat Levin
Cinema 3D: Large Scale Automultiscopic Display
ACM Transactions on Graphics 35(4) (Proc. SIGGRAPH 2016, Anaheim, California, USA)

	 author = { Netalee Efrat and
		    Piotr Didyk and
		    Mike Foshey and
		    Wojciech Matusik and
	            Anat Levin},
	 title     = {Cinema {3D}: Large Scale Automultiscopic Display},
	 journal = {ACM Transactions on Graphics (Proc. SIGGRAPH)},
	 year = {2016},
	 volume = {35},
	 number = {4}}