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Hardware  » Nthusim Warpalizer and curved screens

14 posts found
  Asm0deus

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Joined: 9/06/10
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OP  5/25/14 5:06:30 PM#1

I was wondering what people though about Nthusim and Warpalizer for gaming with projectors etc. Do any of you use these or game via projectors on curved homemade screens?

What do you think about the technology and software.

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  Solar_Prophet

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5/25/14 5:22:10 PM#2

I think it's awesome tech, but I really don't see myself being able to afford a home with space for such a thing, much less the item itself, anytime in the forseeable future. Plus the prospect of possibly being confronted with a BSOD physically larger than myself is quite terrifying.

 

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  Asm0deus

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Joined: 9/06/10
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OP  5/25/14 5:46:52 PM#3
The prices of projectors and such seem to be coming down though to more accessible prices. Like you say though is does require some room so maybe for renters it is not so easy to find space compared to home owners.

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  Quizzical

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5/25/14 6:52:22 PM#4

What does it do?  Deform monitor images to be "correct" for a curved surface?

Making things look correct for multiple monitors in different planes seems like it should be pretty easy to do if you have geometry shaders available, though I've never seen a game actually do it.  But curved surfaces are a dfiferent matter entirely, as that's not going to play nicely with the fixed-function rasterization stage, and even apart from that, trig functions aren't nearly as fast as linear interpolation.  Presumably this would have to be a post-processing effect, and there's no way to do it without blurring the image significantly if you don't have access to modify the internals of a game engine.

If you are building a game engine around it, you could avoid unwanted blurring with substantial supersample anti-aliasing, but that carries a huge performance hit.  Of course, someone buying projectors and large curved screens for gaming should be able to afford a high end video card that can handle a good bit of SSAA.  It would also only be used by a very narrow niche audience, so it probably isn't worth the effort for a developer.

  Asm0deus

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Joined: 9/06/10
Posts: 800

 
OP  5/25/14 8:05:09 PM#5

Yeah I do believe it is to correct the image for a curve and allows you to overlap and blend out bezels on multi screen applications. I am not expert on it though so couldn't tell you any specifics.

I can however link you some video showing it working on a dual projector set up on a homemade 10 foot wide x 5 foot deep uniform circular screen.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YkdjOpqe2vk

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  Quizzical

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5/25/14 8:12:59 PM#6
Yeah, that's going to blur images a fair bit, as the only way to compute the color of a pixel will be to interpolate between neighboring pixels.  Depending on your priorities, you might still like it.  I'd also mention that you really should look into display latency if you want to use it for gaming, as projectors aren't normally used for latency-sensitive purposes.  If PowerPoint slides or television shows are delayed by 100 ms, no one really cares, but that's enough to make many games only marginally playable.
  Quizzical

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5/25/14 8:17:07 PM#7
Another thing I'll add is that for curved screens, the perspective is going to be way off.  Game images are computed under the assumption that everything is projected onto a flat, rectangular surface and perspective correct from some particular point in space (which is usually a lot closer to the monitor than you'll actually sit).  But that's not going to be accurate for a curved surface, and for strongly curved surfaces, I'd be surprised if it doesn't cause motion sickness for some people.   I have no idea how prevalent that would be, though.
  Asm0deus

Hard Core Member

Joined: 9/06/10
Posts: 800

 
OP  5/25/14 10:44:20 PM#8

 


Originally posted by Quizzical Another thing I'll add is that for curved screens, the perspective is going to be way off. Game images are computed under the assumption that everything is projected onto a flat, rectangular surface and perspective correct from some particular point in space (which is usually a lot closer to the monitor than you'll actually sit). But that's not going to be accurate for a curved surface, and for strongly curved surfaces, I'd be surprised if it doesn't cause motion sickness for some people. I have no idea how prevalent that would be, though.

 

Aye but I think those programs were designed for that very purpose to correct these issues. I also think that is why they require multiple projectors.

I also think some projectors have much better than 100ms times when it comes to latency. For example I believe latency is very acceptable with the Optoma GT720 (older model which I think was replaced with the gt750e) that many have used and I do think many now seem to think the BenQ 1080ST works quite well with the gt720 being a 720p projector and the 1080ST being a 1080p one.

Here is a review of the W1070 and 1080ST benQ projectors.

 


At that time Pete indicated that depending on the features you have on, lag times vary from 0 to 40ms. Even 40ms, is considered acceptable for serious gaming that requires maximum speed.

 

I haven't actually seen any of this in action mind you.


EDIT: Here's is the PC and projectors used in that youtube video.

 


i7 930 @ 4ghz, Windows 7 64 Pro, ASUS 7970 Matrix Platinum, Zotac DP-to-Dual-HDMI Active Adapter, 2x Optoma GT720.

Source

 

Another interesting tidbit is that Nthusim is a consumer application for enthusiasts of IMMERSAVIEW.

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  Ridelynn

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Joined: 12/19/10
Posts: 3360

5/26/14 1:40:52 AM#9

This was several years ago ... but

When I was in college, we had projectors in every room. I suppose this is still fairly standard today.

We used to go in after hours and hook up our laptops and play Quake just so we could see it projected in huge screen glory.

It was cool at first. The novelty wore off very quickly. The image only looked good if you turned out the lights, otherwise it was very washed out. In Quake, at least, it's so dark in the first place, it made terribly muddy. We were limited to 640x480 - now projectors go higher than that today, for sure. Apart from the color, it was a bit laggy (projectors are more or less made for PowerPoint, and latency isn't exactly one of their strong suits) - that may be different today as well. The projector had a somewhat noticeably loud cooling fan for the bulb. And you had to pretty much play in the dark. And we were stuck with sound coming out our laptops, it wasn't like watching a THX IMAX experience with thumping base - that left a lot to be desired as well.

If you made a DIY simulator and wanted to make a full field of view screen - I could see incorporating something like that. Just be ready to sink a whole load of cash into your passion there, and don't skimp on the audio or the simulation part (the chair, the setup, etc). If you just want to play games and have it be huge, get a big monitor, it'll be tons cheaper, the picture will look a lot more vivid, you have a lot more options, and it'll still be a big picture.

  Quizzical

Guide

Joined: 12/11/08
Posts: 13309

5/26/14 7:15:34 AM#10
Originally posted by Asm0deus

 


Originally posted by Quizzical Another thing I'll add is that for curved screens, the perspective is going to be way off. Game images are computed under the assumption that everything is projected onto a flat, rectangular surface and perspective correct from some particular point in space (which is usually a lot closer to the monitor than you'll actually sit). But that's not going to be accurate for a curved surface, and for strongly curved surfaces, I'd be surprised if it doesn't cause motion sickness for some people. I have no idea how prevalent that would be, though.

 

Aye but I think those programs were designed for that very purpose to correct these issues. I also think that is why they require multiple projectors.

I also think some projectors have much better than 100ms times when it comes to latency. For example I believe latency is very acceptable with the Optoma GT720 (older model which I think was replaced with the gt750e) that many have used and I do think many now seem to think the BenQ 1080ST works quite well with the gt720 being a 720p projector and the 1080ST being a 1080p one.

Here is a review of the W1070 and 1080ST benQ projectors.

 


At that time Pete indicated that depending on the features you have on, lag times vary from 0 to 40ms. Even 40ms, is considered acceptable for serious gaming that requires maximum speed.

 

I haven't actually seen any of this in action mind you.


EDIT: Here's is the PC and projectors used in that youtube video.

 


i7 930 @ 4ghz, Windows 7 64 Pro, ASUS 7970 Matrix Platinum, Zotac DP-to-Dual-HDMI Active Adapter, 2x Optoma GT720.

Source

 

Another interesting tidbit is that Nthusim is a consumer application for enthusiasts of IMMERSAVIEW.

An extra 40 ms of display latency is roughly the difference between a high end and low end gaming rig.  That's not "game won't run", but it's very much a problem.  If different options can reduce the projector to only adding a few ms of display latency, then that's a lot more viable.

And no, they're not correcting the perspective.  They're deforming the image so that it covers a curved screen.  Correcting the perspective is a different thing entirely.  As I said, for strongly curved screens, that's going to cause motion sickness for some people, though I have no idea whether "some people" means 0.1% or 50%.  It might depend some on the game; the demo of a racing game is far less likely to be problematic than something where the camera spins around a lot.

  Asm0deus

Hard Core Member

Joined: 9/06/10
Posts: 800

 
OP  5/26/14 11:04:12 AM#11

Will be interesting to see how this tech plays outwith the Oculus Rift  and morphues on the way. Myself I am waiting for the OR consumer version to come out.

This tech seem pretty neat for someone looking to make a simpit I hope these problems eventually get resolved.

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  Quizzical

Guide

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5/26/14 11:26:13 AM#12
I think that the technically superior way to do it is to have the projector(s) project onto flat areas--possibly multiple adjacent flat areas, like the corner of a room.  That way, a game engine could readily make it perspective-correct--and using exactly the same code as to do it for multiple monitors.  Of course, I've never seen a game engine do that for a simple multiple monitor setup, either, but I don't think it would be all that hard.  Maybe commercial game engine programmers find homogeneous coordinates in projective spaces too confusing.
  laserit

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Joined: 3/24/10
Posts: 1416

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5/26/14 12:30:48 PM#13

Curved screens and multi projectors have been used in simulations for quite some time now. With 3 projectors you can achieve a 225 degree field of view and room sizes are getting smaller thanx to short throw projectors, some can produce a 100" image over a 24" distance. With the big drop in large screen led prices,  some are playing with 5-50" led televisions to a achieve the 225 degrees. Both have their positives and negative's

 

Along with MMO's I'm heavily invested into flight simulation I have about 30k invested in hardware and software, I've been working on a 737 simulator over years. Currently I'm running 3-42" monitors. Being patient and waiting for significant technology improvements (bendable screens) before I invest the big bucks.

 

MMORPG should actually add flight sims to their list of games lol. They are actually more MMO then most MMO's when using Vatsim or IVAO.

 

There is also a F2P combat simulator called "DCS World" that puts "World of Warplanes" to shame if anyone is interested.

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  Asm0deus

Hard Core Member

Joined: 9/06/10
Posts: 800

 
OP  5/26/14 7:51:07 PM#14
Originally posted by laserit

Curved screens and multi projectors have been used in simulations for quite some time now. With 3 projectors you can achieve a 225 degree field of view and room sizes are getting smaller thanx to short throw projectors, some can produce a 100" image over a 24" distance. With the big drop in large screen led prices,  some are playing with 5-50" led televisions to a achieve the 225 degrees. Both have their positives and negative's

 

Along with MMO's I'm heavily invested into flight simulation I have about 30k invested in hardware and software, I've been working on a 737 simulator over years. Currently I'm running 3-42" monitors. Being patient and waiting for significant technology improvements (bendable screens) before I invest the big bucks.

 

MMORPG should actually add flight sims to their list of games lol. They are actually more MMO then most MMO's when using Vatsim or IVAO.

 

There is also a F2P combat simulator called "DCS World" that puts "World of Warplanes" to shame if anyone is interested.

That's a lot of money invested! That DCS World looks interesting and I agree it would be nice if that type of game was included in here.

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