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Stereo Maker Tools to Get Started with 3D Imagery

If you're intrigued by the possibilities of 3D stereography, then you can get started experimenting with making and viewing your own stereo images and videos without requiring buying expensive new equipment and software.

As described in my article on 3D - The Next Dimension (see earlier post), you can download sample 3D files of images and video to try out, and even use your existing 2D digital camera and camcorders to create your own stereo imagery.

Then to view and edit and share the 3D material, you can get started with the 3D software tools from the Stereo Maker site. This extensive collection of tools is being actively updated, and includes StereoPhoto Maker, StereoMovie Viewer, Stereo Movie Maker, and Stereo SlideShow Maker.

StereoMovie Player is a 3D video player that works with the common video file types supported by Windows Media Player, including MPEG, AVI, and WMV. It supports a variety of stereo file formats, including side-by-side, above/below, and interlaced, including the 3D-AVI format used by the Fujifilm Real 3D W3 digital camera (see earlier post).

And StereoPhoto Maker is an extensively-featured photo viewer and editor, again supporting a wide range of still image file formats (including MPO from the W3). It has tools for image correction and enhancement, including auto alignment and color correction.

Even better, these extensive processing options also are available in batch mode to process, auto align, auto correct, and convert entire folders of files. (Show here is the the Multi Conversion dialog with extensive batch processing options.)

You then can add stereo text, logos, and borders to your images, and share the results as a slideshow, animated GIFs, or HTML, or print hard copy as multiple images, or stereo cards.

The Stereo Maker tools also support a wide range of stereo display types, including free-viewed side-by-side, monochrome or color anaglyph, horizontally-interlaced, vertically-interlaced (Sharp 3D LCD), and page-flipped (shutter glasses). They also are listed as NVIDIA 3D Vision Ready.

I found these tools very helpful for quickly showing files for demos, and, in particular, StereoPhoto Maker is great for demoing the different common 3D formats. You can also set it up to flip back and forth between the left and right image to help show the difference between viewpoints only a few inches apart.

For creating more extensive productions, you can move on tools like Roxio Creator 2011, which takes the venerable digital media suite into stereo, with 3D video editing and sharing your 3D productions on DVD or Blu-ray disc (see earlier post). Creator also supports 2D to 3D conversion to add a sense of depth for both photos and videos.

See my accompanying article on 3D - The Next Dimension
    - Part 1 - Seeing 3D: Market, Technology, Formats
    - Part 2 - Using 3D: Products, Shooting, Editing

    Find Roxio Creator 2011 and Creator 2011 Pro on Amazon

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