3D Volumetric Display

Happy 2011,  I hope everyone enjoyed their holidays. On to business; recently i’ve been working on 3d volumetric display that would be capable of rendering a free floating 3d 360° volumetric object/s. Below are a few videos of a quick prototype i knocked up in few days, at the beginning of the holidays. Hope you enjoy it.

The above video shows a simple 3d vector generated and textured primitive, rotating on its X and Y axis.

The above video shows a 3ds file exported from Autodesk (any 3ds file will work even generated from GOOGLE sketchup) rendered in 360° rotating on it Y axis.

The above video demonstrates how the rendering can be enlarged as well as how the rendering medium can be inverted to allow for varying design situations.

Please enter the url to a YouTube video.

  1. garygary01-04-2011

    please do create a tutorial

  2. Paul D'IntinoPaul D'Intino01-04-2011

    Awesome work mate! I for one would love to see a tutorial on this type of display =)

  3. hillbillyhillbilly01-04-2011

    Tutorial please! :D

    Looks amazing! Imagine combining the rendering power of your prism with multitouch! Good work!

  4. DaveDave01-14-2011

    What happens if you play a video on that?

    Great work btw, a tutorial would be good :)

    • TahaTaha01-14-2011

      it would depend on the content of the video if it were a major motion flick then that wont look nice it would be a regular video on 4 sides of the prism, however if you play a video of a 3d object or objects (without a background/set) thats been optimized with my algorithm then it would look the same as my videos.

  5. AlexAlex01-18-2011

    This is excellent work. Can you please post more specifics? Thanks.

  6. DaveDave01-18-2011

    Please, make a tutorial. It’s awesome

  7. SteveSteve01-18-2011

    That is brilliant. A tutorial would be extremely welcome, I’d love to build something like this.

  8. YonathanYonathan01-18-2011

    Great work! Would be much appreciated if you’d make a tutorial on how to accomplish this.

    Looks amazing!

  9. DerekDerek01-18-2011

    This is AWESOME! Job well done! No flickering too. I love to see a tutorial how to make one!

  10. Harvie.CZHarvie.CZ01-18-2011

    IMHO it’s not real 3D display, just 4 2D displays creating ilusion of 4 2D images floating in approximatelly same place when viewed from 4 different angles. You can reach similar effect by making pyramid out of 4 triangular 2D LCDs (each with render of pyramid containing the 3D object)

    But well… it looks cool even when it’s no 3D, but it’s not more usefull than 2D display with 4 renders on it if you need tool for inspecting 3D object from various angles.

  11. SmileSmile01-18-2011


  12. 44444401-18-2011

    That is amazing, great work.
    Tutorial PLEASE!

  13. StephaneStephane01-18-2011

    The greatest I ever seen, a tutorial on how it made would be more than appreciated!

  14. 33333301-18-2011

    plz plz tutorial :)

  15. TonyTony01-18-2011

    Though I wouldn’t make one myself, I’m very curious as to how you created this. Excellent work !

  16. viniciusvinicius01-18-2011

    Fantastic. Freakin’ amazing, really. PLEASE, make the tutorial! Good job!

  17. DarkinvaderDarkinvader01-18-2011

    Very cool, great work man, we are all wait for a tutorial for this great 3d display. ;-)

  18. InterestedBypasserInterestedBypasser01-18-2011

    Mesmerizing… what an incredible achievement!
    I would, if possible like to see a video where the image inside remains still, and the camera moves up and down around the outside. That way my brain could better comprehend the 3D illusion.

  19. GavinGavin01-18-2011

    It looks nice, but I don’t think you can really call this a volumetric display. It appears to be displaying a pre-rendered rotating image to give the illusion of a volumetric image. If the animations was not rotating, and you moved the camera around, would you still see the object from different angled? or can you view it from below or above? Probably not. The only way to create a true volumetric image currently is to either project image slices onto a swept surface and very high frame rate, or to use a very high powered laser and moving lenses to create tiny dots of light by literally exploding the air. The later example can currenly only create very primitive shapes though.

  20. EcogeecoEcogeeco01-18-2011

    ME WANT!! please show us how to do this! It would be awesome to build this on my own!

  21. GavinGavin01-18-2011

    Its exactly the same as this, just 2d video of a rotating object projected onto a bit of glass at 45 degrees. its not volumetric, or even 3d.

    • TahaTaha01-19-2011

      I can’t comment on the Cheoptics display don’t know the technique used by them or the type of content they render; how ever i can tell you my prism is not at 45deg as you put it nor am i using glass. Now i don’t know what you define as volumetric or 3d but the standard definition is that a “A volumetric display device is a graphical display device that forms a visual representation of an object in three physical dimensions, as opposed to the planar image of traditional screens that simulate depth through a number of different visual effects. ” Now what I’ve created does do this, each of the faces on my prism render a unique view of the the object (i.e. front, back, left and right), Now with the definition of what a volumetric display is you can see my display complies with it as it provides length, breath and width of an object and is what you define as 3D and if an object is 3d then by association it has volume. If you looked at my other videos more specifically the Kinect ones you’ll see that i’m not loading a 2d video, I’ve clearly said that i’m loading 3d content from Autodesk.

      • MaxMax01-19-2011

        Not trying to belittle what you have achieved here, seriously – but: a display can be called true 3D when it supplies two slightly different views of something for your left and right eye.

        At the very least, that requires 2 different rendered images, viewable at the same time (and not on different sides – here you still see the exact same image with both your eyes when you look at one side, right?)

        Still, even that would work from a single point of view. A “Star Wars/R2D2″ type display that you can view from different angles would actually require you to create an infinite (well, _large_ anyway) number of renderings, which ones the eyes see depending on where one looks from (similar to the 4 you create here, but here all 4 of them are single images, not 3D-pairs).

        As you can imagine, rendering that many images real-time is no simple thing, but the only alternative is to _actually create the object surface_ in 3D hovering in the air – which is exactly what the “laser, creating plasma dots mid-air” technology does.

        • MaxMax01-19-2011

          Actually, THIS is what I was talking about: http://gl.ict.usc.edu/Research/3DDisplay/

          It generates a 100 different renderings at any given moment (projected onto the mirror one by one for each complete revolution), and it’s true 3D because your eyes actually DO see different images from slightly different angles (like nr.34 and nr.35, or nr.88 and nr.89, probably)

          Even so, the display is only 3D in the VERTICAL direction for the ONE viewer who’s position it actively tracks (for whom the displayed 3D model gets rotated) – every time the camera tries to look at the top of the model’s head, everybody else in the room sees the head tilting as well. So yeah, proper 3D is hard, I guess…

  22. krishnakrishna01-19-2011

    awesome ! ,am sooo waiting for this tutorial.

  23. WolfWolf01-19-2011

    Is it possible doing it with only a 3-projector view?
    Astonishing by the way…

    • TahaTaha01-19-2011

      yes it is.

  24. Jason BowlingJason Bowling01-19-2011

    I’d be extremely interested in a tutorial – that’s exceptional work.

  25. RZ500RZ50001-19-2011

    Great, Totorial Please, I’ll like to try one

  26. meGomeGo01-19-2011

    wow please do create the tutorial. I’d love to have this in the middle of my igloo for our annual igloo party.

  27. TonyTony01-19-2011

    So, how far off are we from having enough positive comments about a tutorial for a tutorial to be made?

    BTW – count this as one more. A tutorial (or even a bunch more details on what is involved) would be great.

  28. Nicholas TeepleNicholas Teeple01-19-2011

    +1 on tutorial ! Great job!

  29. MaidenMaiden01-19-2011

    OMFG i need to build one of those! tutorial please!

  30. NeilNeil01-20-2011

    Great work!! Would love a tutorial on this one.

  31. Muhammad Talha MufteeMuhammad Talha Muftee01-24-2011

    wow! unbelievable!! Sir I cannot quantify my awe!

  32. Hi,

    Your prisma is made with a common acrylic or glass?

    • TahaTaha01-31-2011

      Neither the the prism is made using glass substrate with a special coating on it to enhance brightness and contrast and to remove ghosting.

      • KeithKeith02-01-2011

        Is that the same glass type as they use in a rear Projection display tv?

        • TahaTaha02-01-2011

          I’m not sure, i don’t know what they use in side a rear projection TV, I’ve never opened one up.

      • KatenkaKatenka02-02-2011

        Taha, congratulations for the excellent work!
        I already use many materials to make my projection, but I have many ghosts in the image, can u please tell me what kind of special coating are you using?

        • TahaTaha02-03-2011

          Yeah my initial designs suffered the same problem the only way to remove them is to use AR coatings and they arent cheap specially when you want them to applied to large objects

  33. KeithKeith02-09-2011

    Could you explain how you got the lcd panel to project onto the prism like you did?

  34. David WalkerDavid Walker05-24-2011

    Brilliant !! A tutorial would be great ! Keep up the awesomeness

    • TahaTaha05-24-2011

      A tutorial is coming shortly, i’ve been busy optimizing and getting the software working perfectly. To ensure everyone can use it with ease. Also been busy adding new features to it all will be revealed shortly.

  35. anshansh06-08-2011

    awesome work…
    which kind of glass you use for making prism???
    really need a tutorial

  36. sohaibsohaib06-22-2011

    hi taha. really an awesome work. we really need a tutorial for making this wonderful thing. plzzzzzzzzzzz make a tutorial as soon as possible. best of luck for future.

  37. exhibit standsexhibit stands04-07-2012

    You actually make it appear so easy along with your presentation but I in finding this topic to be actually one thing that I believe I might never understand. It seems too complicated and extremely huge for me. I am having a look forward on your subsequent post, I’ll try to get the cling of it!

    • TahaTaha04-09-2012

      I’ve actually spun my work off into an Interactive Technology Lab/Agency (http://www.knode.ca), as such i don’t plan on releasing details on construction for this display.

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