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Apr 6, 2012

You Can Watch All High-Quality YouTube Videos in 3D Now

3D video is somewhat of a gimmick, but movies that leverage the technology properly can really be enhanced by the new "dimension." Of course, 3D has come out of theaters and made it onto regular TVs and even online.

YouTube has had support for 3D videos for a while now, but it's important to realize that not all 3D videos are created equal. For example, few videos are "true" 3D videos, shot with stereoscopic cameras.

Many though are converted, from regular videos shot with regular cameras. 

That's the way most Hollywood "3D" movies are made, the bad ones in particular and, if you've been unfortunate enough to see one you may have noticed that there is a clear difference between a true 3D and a converted one.

Still, if done with care and, importantly, science, even a converted video can have a noticeable and pleasing 3D effect.

YouTube has been enabling users to convert their videos to 3D, if they so wanted, in a beta program. The program is now open to all YouTube users. Any short-form video that's uploaded in 1080p can now be converted to 3D, meaning you can enjoy quite a lot of videos on your 3D TV.

"You can select 3D viewing in the Quality settings (click on the gear icon) on the YouTube player, then pop on your 3D glasses and see YouTube in another dimension. Here’s one of our favorites," YouTube explained.

YouTube explained how it's able to convert any high-quality video on the fly. For one, it's got the processing power to do it, but that's just part of the equation. The more important part is the algorithm used for the conversion.

YouTube boasts that it's been working on improving the quality of the algorithm. For example, YouTube analyzes all the true 3D videos available to determine how to extract depth from a monoscopic video. The site is confident enough in the technology at this point to enable it for all videos.


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