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3D laptops explained

Many laptops these days come with 3D capability built-in, however this doesn’t mean that your Excel spreadsheets and Word documents will automatically leap from the screen

Many laptops these days come with 3D capability built-in, however this doesn’t mean that your Excel spreadsheets and Word documents will automatically leap from the screen. For most the 3D aspect will be best used in conjunction with a Blu-ray drive and 3D movie or game.

To really get the full benefit of 3D you need to use the supplied glasses that give added depth to movies and games. The glasses come in two versions: active and passive. Active glasses are synchronised with the screen and, as the name suggests, work in conjunction with the images displayed to create the 3D effect. Active glasses are heavier and require a battery.

Passive glasses, as you’ve probably already guessed, have none of the electronics and are simple lenses with filters. There are some ‘glasses free’ 3D systems out there too where the screen and webcam built-in to the laptop work to track your eyes and display a 3D image.

Some software can even make existing 2D content act as if it's 3D though naturally the results from such manipulations can be a bit less impressive than specifically created 3D content. Nvidia has developed a 3DTV package for its graphics cards that allows you to convert 2D games into 3D and stream 3D movies and a host of other 3D content to compatible PCs from the likes of Dell.

Getting hold of 3D content is straightforward, with lots of films released recently - a quick search of the web for 3D games brings plenty of results that should keep you busy for months.

Visit the Dell Tech Zone for more advice on family computing.

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