Which ‘Avatar’ to see? A look at IMAX, Dolby 3-D, RealD (and, yeah, boring old 2-D)

Dec. 25, 2009 | 7:53 p.m.
Avatar1

Our intrepid correspondent Mark Milian digs into the issue that has lots of moviegoers scratching their heads — with the different format options, which version of “Avatar” should they go see?

You might have opened the newspaper to find a two-page spread advertising “Avatar” in its many theater formats and wondered what the heck the difference is. There’s the standard non-3-D version (pass!), RealD, Dolby Digital and IMAX. The final three are the leading competitors in the battle to add depth dimension to movie theater screens.

If you’re not lucky enough to live in a major city, like our fair Los Angeles, the (ahem) entertainment capital of the world, you may not have a choice. Some areas are limited to one — if so it will likely be RealD, which some say is a cheaper investment for theater owners, all things considered.

Dolby boasts some cost benefits, too — theaters can use the same old white screens (as opposed to the format-dedicated silver screens) allowing them to switch between 2-D and 3-D showings. However, the price of the Dolby glasses can seriously add up. In any case, the throwaway paper glasses of yesteryear are gone.

But really, who cares what they cost theaters to install? Ticket prices are about the same either way — although IMAX costs a few bucks more. What we want to know is how these technologies actually perform.

I slapped on the glasses in three theaters and weathered seven and a half hours of pinched ears, blurry vision and blue faces to bring you a message from the sky people: I see you and here is what you need to know about the “Avatar” formats…

IMAX 3-D: Of the three names, this is the one you probably know (oh, and you’ve likely heard of Dolby for its sound systems). You can expect a giant screen and the larger-than-life viewing experience that comes with it. IMAX has been doing 3-D for a while — think cheesy dinosaur movies where giant insects try to attack you and underwater flicks where giant squids, um, try to attack you. Clearly, IMAX knows how to startle you in the third dimension.

It shouldn’t come as a surprise then that IMAX 3-D is the most intense way to see “Avatar.” Things popping out of the screen feel just a couple feet or, in some cases, several inches out of reach. It’s wowing in the sort of gimmicky way people commonly think about 3-D.

Photo

But director James Cameron has been saying all along that this film isn’t meant to be one of those movies in which they’re hitting golf balls at you the whole time (though, come to think of it, that does kind of happen in one scene).

That’s not to say IMAX 3-D is distracting. It’s just the most in-your-face — sometimes to its detriment with a jarring effect. Because the 3-D popping objects are so exaggerated, they can also be rather blurry. Plants and the tips of arrows can look like blobs at times.

The IMAX glasses are oversized, which is good if you need to fit them on top of eyeglasses. But several people complained about comfort and pinching, and that does matters if you’re sitting down for a two-and-a-half hour movie.

Still, with IMAX, you’re getting the most massive, immersive experience. Plus, it’s the only theater where you’ll get to see the preview for NASA’s 3-D movie due this spring, which drew applause during at least one showing. (Find IMAX theater locations)

Dolby 3D: Sometimes referred to as Digital 3-D or 3-DDolby, this may be the least impressive of the three formats. Granted, the picture quality is very similar to RealD — maybe even slightly sharper — but the Dolby glasses are just annoying.

You can tell the glasses are expensive because they assign a worker to stand outside the theater at the end of the movie to guilt you into putting your pair into the bin. Yet, the glasses are comparatively small and narrow — and uncomfortably so if you need to fit them over eyeglasses.

The glasses are by no means a deal-breaker and still provide a better experience than seeing it in 2-D. But, given the option, spring for a RealD-equipped theater. (Find Dolby 3-D theater locations)

Avatar2

RealD: Between Dolby and RealD, visually, the two are similar. So, it comes down to the glasses and whichever theater is closest to you.

The RealD glasses are comfortable and easily fit over eyeglasses. We even heard a few whispers of people saying they’re “stylish.” If you want to sport that hipster look while enjoying the show, these should have you covered. (Find RealD theater locations)

Even then, we haven’t hit on all the 3-D technologies out there. For example, the Cinerama Dome in Hollywood uses XpanD to power its nonstandard-sized screen. If readers have some insights on that one, we’d love to hear about it in the comments section.

But of the big three, RealD offers the best 3-D experience in a standard theater. For a couple dollars more, IMAX is big, loud and eye-popping — if you’re into having things constantly jump at you and can handle the blur. No matter what, we emphasize that you’ll really want to see “Avatar” in 3-D. You know, as long as you don’t have a medical condition preventing you from doing so.

– Mark Milian

RECENT AND RELATED

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COMPANY TOWN: Could ‘Avatar’ hit $1 billion?

James Cameron on ‘Avatar’: Like ‘Matrix,’ it opens doorways

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LAT REVIEW: ‘Avatar’ restores a sense of wonder to moviegoing

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‘Avatar’ designer on Jim Cameron, banshees and ‘Delgo’ comparisons

Michelle Rodriguez says ‘Avatar’ was like making ‘Star Wars’

‘Avatar’ star Zoe Saldana says movie will match the hype: ‘This is big’

Jim Cameron, cinema prophet? ‘Moving a mountain is nothing’

Sam Worthington looks for humanity: ‘I don’t want to be a cartoon’

Photos top and bottom credit: R. E. Milian. Photo middle credit: T.J.  Milian

Comments


33 Responses to Which ‘Avatar’ to see? A look at IMAX, Dolby 3-D, RealD (and, yeah, boring old 2-D)

  1. Tyroc says:

    I saw it at te Cinerama Dome and it looked amazing for the most part (the 3-D effects that is.) I will say the polarized glasses did drown out some of the color of certain shots and make everything darker. I took them off to compare how they looked without and the whole world (Pandora) was much brighter without them.
    It made me wonder which one we were "supposed" to see it in, or why the brightness wasn't turned up to compensate for this.
    Still, while corny and cliched at times in the writing (very much so) the visuals were, well, out of this world.

  2. Jesse Silver says:

    I saw Avatar at the Cinerama Dome last night – the experience was breathtaking, certainly better than any other 3D movie I've seen. I can't say, however, whether that was due to the XpanD technology, or simply the fact that the Arclight theater, where the Cinerama is located, is always the best in terms of screen focus, sound quality, etc…
    The glass are wonderful, however. Without question better than the RealD glasses in that they are active polarization (shuttered) not passive. They are expensive and do not distort the picture.
    Either way, see Avatar at the Cinerama Dome – you will not regret the drive or the cost.

  3. Joel Kehle says:

    Mark Milian forgot one crucial detail – IMAX 3D does not always display on IMAX's "supersized" screens. If you want the giant screen experience make sure you know the screen size. You might be dissappointed to find that the IMAX 3D near you has a regular size screen. If that's the case the Real D experience is just as good in my opinion.

    • Bob L. says:

      Yes. I went to AMC Puente for a non 3D movie, and desided the sound and picture quality was not worth the extra iMax cost. Even the 12 year old with me agreed.

  4. European says:

    Just saw Avatar few hours ago on an XpanD powered screen in Europe (Helsinki, Finland), and it was amazing. Don't know how that compares to the other 3d technologies, but you can't go wrong going to the screens with XpanD.
    Researching on what makes the technology tick, found an interesting video about why Dome chose this technology: <a href="http://www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=1271282351240” target=”_blank”>www.facebook.com/video/video.php?v=1271282351240

  5. Kristal says:

    Thanks so much for doing this! I'll definitely take this info into account when picking where to see "Avatar".
    http://toointerestingfortwitter.blogspot.com

  6. Jeff says:

    Cinerama Dome Review: The glasses are both stylish and comfortable but only if you do not wear eyeglasses. I was smart enough to think ahead and wear contacts. If I had worn glasses it would have sucked.
    As to whether this is better than the other technologies, I haven't seen it in one of the other theaters. Yet. But I plan on going this weekend.

  7. Jon says:

    Wow, I clicked on this link to find out more about the various 3D processes and options offered to me, and what do I get? An article filled with inaccuracies and not a whole lot of real, useable information. Is this really what modern "journalism" has come to? The equivalent of listening to my 15 year-old niece talk about a cutting-edge technology?

  8. Jim Krisvoy says:

    Read this article and found it to be about right on all counts, however, Avatar was created in Digital format and not in Imax, therefore some of those off screen objects, such as tree branches may not seem as sharp as when actually filmed in Imax; although I saw this is Imax Digital and had no problem with it.
    With XPand 3D glasses, there should be no color degradation whatsoever and very little degradation with Real-D.
    As far as Dolby goes, due to the way it encodes and decodes a 3D image, there is some annoying color shifting that I found to be unacceptable in the past and I doubt its been improved after seeing it a year ago.
    Either way, Avatar is a must in 3D, in fact, a must see period.

  9. Bart says:

    I saw AVATAR in IMAX Navy Pier in Chicago. They replaced the screen late summer this year and it's even better than ever! LOVE IT!!!

  10. Eric Tetz says:

    Don't be so quick to dismiss the 2D version.
    When shooting in 3D, two cameras must converge on a position in 3D space, the same way your eyes converge on a position in real life. This means a 3D cinematographer must anticipate where you'll be looking when you watch the movie, and converge the cameras there. If you look anywhere else, it feels off. With the 2D version, your eyes are free to wander more, to examine parts of the frame where the cinematographer didn't not anticipate you looking.
    Cameron did all his composition, framing, editing, etc. in 2D. People who've seen it in 2D (not myself) have said it was just as good, and some actually prefer it.

  11. Dave says:

    I saw "Avatar" in Philly at an IMAX 3-D Theater with a real IMAX screen it was nothing short of breathtaking. I really have nothing bad to say about this movie's special effects.

  12. juepucta says:

    Why not call this section/blog of the Times a "paid advertising section"? Because this is getting ridiculous. Not since the car section has so much ink (or its cyber equivalent) been wasted on such crap. Come on. It is not that good. Eye candy doesn't cover the fact the story blows. How many more posts devoted to this movie?!
    Notice that AICN, the mothership for the nerds this sorta movie is made for, suffers from less tunnel vision. Please. At least do some criticizing, you know, review things.
    When was the last time Hero Complex (really) wrote about something else? And no, switching to 3 months of Iron Man in a couple of weeks does not count.
    -G.

  13. Neal says:

    Great write up–thanks. It was very hard to find a definitive 3D comparison.
    I saw the film in "fake" IMAX. Basically two 2K digital polarized projectors for left and right. The glasses fit easily over my prescription glasses and the 3D effect was very good, but it was definitely not the same resolution, size, or impact as real (film-based) 3D IMAX, which used shutter glasses when I last saw it.
    I think IMAX is running a risk of diluting their brand by advertising everything as "IMAX" when the digital version is definitely not the same. IMAX makes no distinction on their website as to which theater shows which format, yet they charge similar premium ticket prices for both.

  14. Al Magliochetti says:

    Part of the discomfort associated with the Imax presentations of this film is due to the fact that their digital projection systems have a bit of a flaw, in that the image for each eye is 1/3rd of a frame out of sync due to a refresh-delay in the Imax LCD system. This is not a problem in most Imax films as it's only an issue when there is fast moving lateral action or camera movement which, unfortunately, Avatar has quite a bit of . .
    Actual Imax film presentations are in perfect sync, however most of the theaters are using digital projection and this is where the problem occurs.
    Real 3D and Dolby 3D will translate the dimensional aspect far better than Imax and there will be infinitely less discomfort.

  15. LK says:

    I've seen the film twice…the first time in Dolby 3D at the Arclight in Sherman Oaks and the second time in IMAX 3D at the Edwards Renaissance Stadium 14 in Alhambra. Admittedly, I'm no expert in 3D technology, but in my experience, the visuals looked better in the Dolby 3D format (and for the record, the 3D glasses were very comfortable).
    I think The Arclight is currently the best theater chain in LA because their projectors and sound system are top-notch, so this may have had something to do with the quality of my first viewing. There's also some talk that not all the screens being advertised as IMAX 3D are IMAX screens in the truest sense…perhaps I saw it the second time on one of these "fake IMAX" screens? Either way, the differences between the two viewings were subtle, but I would recommend seeing the film in Dolby 3D over IMAX 3D. Just my opinion!

  16. LK says:

    Further to my post above, after doing a little Googling, yes, as it turns out, my IMAX 3D viewing was indeed a "fake IMAX" viewing in IMAX Digital. Ugh.

  17. stunsail says:

    Over in Melbourne, Australia, I've seen it at Jam Factory in 3D, Melb Central in 3D, Rivoli in 2D and IMAX Melbourne in 3D (3rd biggest screen in the world apparently). 2D was okay but proved you have to see it in 3d, really.
    The IMAX was the biggest letdown, as the screen is scratched and pockmarked and also the image is like a window in the middle of the screen, not the whole screen (like I remember The Dark Knight doing at the world's biggest screen in Sydney). Sure the image size is probably bigger than most screens, but I was disappointed as I was expecting the whole screen to be filled for my $22.
    Anyone else have this experience?

  18. Joe says:

    I was hoping for additional info about the aspect ratio. Does anyone know what the film was shot in? It wasn't until my third viewing (hey, I love the film) at the San Francisco IMAX that I realized it's a pretty squarish screen. Looks like a big 4:3 TV to me. I strongly suspect that, as a tradeoff for what was an incredibly immersive experience, I'm missing a substantial amount of the frame.

  19. There seems to be a serious, serious inaccuracy in this article:
    "It shouldn't come as a surprise then that IMAX 3-D is the most intense way to see "Avatar." Things popping out of the screen feel just a couple feet or, in some cases, several inches out of reach. It's wowing in the sort of gimmicky way people commonly think about 3-D."
    The 3D effect isn't determined by the display method at all. The 3D effect is locked in when the film is shot (or rendered). This is determined by the "interocular", the distance between the two recording cameras.
    Therefore, the amount which objects appear to reach out to you are entirely the same in IMAX, Real-D, Dolby 3D, or any other 3D format.
    Personally, I saw it in IMAX (digital) 3D and, immediately afterward, I waltzed into the Real-D. Here are my major opinions: (1) it makes minimal difference what format you see it in (including 2D). (2) The IMAX definitely looks superior (and, in fact, it shows more footage at the top and bottom of the screen – 1.76:1 vs. 2.35:1 in Real-D) and the sound is also more rigorously maintained.
    But, even though the IMAX presentation was indisputably superior….the audience in the Real-D theater (which was dimmer, had a cropped image, and dim sound) was actually far more exuberant about the movie! They (we) were clapping and cheering throughout.
    So IMAX is the best, but, truthfully, it makes virtually no difference in how much you'll enjoy (or, for a few people, not enjoy) Avatar.

  20. big price, tiny glas says:

    I saw Avatar IMAX 3D tonight at the AMC theater in Woodland Hills. Decided to spend the extra money after reading this article that the IMAX experience is superior than regular 3D mainly because the glasses are so much more comfortable. An usher gave me glasses on the way in. I'm a grown woman who wears glasses. The theater was already darkened and previews were showing. When the screen indicated, I put the glasses on over my own glasses and was surprised that they were so small. They sort of pinched and fell down several times. Remembering this review, I thought that perhaps the regular 3D glasses were paper and that these must be better because at least these were plastic. I kept remembering, these are the comfortable ones. I eventually adjusted, although several times I did have to rearrange the glasses because they pinched. I got absorbed in the film and didn't think of the unpleasant fit after awhile. Upon my exit, I saw the hoards of people throwing their glasses in the bin, huge plastic glasses. I put on a pair over my glasses and indeed they were extremely comfortable and fit nicely. The usher had given me a child's size. The adult size was three times as big. The manager was there and I showed her the glasses I was given to put over my glasses upon entering. She said, "Well, why didn't you come out of the movie and get a bigger pair? You sat through the entire thing." I had to explain to her that I didn't know they were children's. I thought they were the regular IMAX 3D glasses and was unaware that they were available in two sizes. As far as I know, Avatar is the first mainstream film offered in IMAX 3D and it was my first experience with having the choice of 2D, 3D and IMAX 3D, thus the new experience with glasses. She argued with me and was pretty tacky about the whole thing. I was pretty upset that I had spent nearly three hours in an uncomfortable state, needlessly. It ruined the experience for me. They maybe had run out of the adult glasses and gave lots of adults the children's size, knowing most people wouldn't know enough about them to know the difference. After berating me, the manager grudgingly offered a reimbursement. I had to wait in line for a half hour to get the reimbursement. The whole thing gave me a headache.

  21. CompuDude says:

    I've now seen Avatar in 3D twice.
    First time at the 12:15 am showing at the Sherman Oaks ArcLight (Cinema 3, it seems), near the center of row K. Nearly perfect… I was stunned. The glasses (Dolby 3D with new small glass lenses… different from what I've used in the past) were very lightweight and comfortable to wear and didn't seem to impair my vision (or colors) in the slightest.
    A couple of days ago, I joined a group of friends seeing it at the Bridge on their giant 62×82' IMAX screen, with their 3D system (can't recall). The screen was massive and beautiful, but I was very surprised to realize the 3D at the ArcLight was better. It just seemed more "crisp". I didn't notice a shift as much when I tilted my head at the ArcLight… maybe I was just more still, but it was VERY bad at the Bridge if I tilted my head even a little. The glasses were much heavier than the new ones at the ArcLight, and really started to hurt the bridge of my nose for the last hour or so of the movie….
    I'd call the audio a draw… very good in both locations. The ArcLight is much closer to home, and I'm relieved about that, because given a choice, I doubt I'd spend the extra money for the Bridge's big IMAX screen given the superior overall experience at the ArcLight.

  22. Stuart says:

    IMAX is stupid. I will never see another IMAX movie again. The only good thing is that it's 70mm. It was the wrong aspect ratio, screen was 1/4 of the size I thought it was gonna be, and far less spherical. I guess I was thinking of IMAX-dome/Omnimax. I think I saw it in "fake IMAX". The 3D seemed to have less depth than in Real-D. Don't see Avatar in IMAX, go see it in "regular screen" Real-D.

  23. Steve K. says:

    Another vote for the XpanD System at the Cinerama Dome in Hollywood. Saw Avatar there the first night and it was really great. Saw it again at the Sherman Oaks Arclight in Dolby 3D. I would NOT recommend seeing it there. It is very lackluster in comparison to the Cinerama Dome the the XpanD Technology. I still hope to see it on a real IMAX screen at either Universal or The Bridge and see how the RealD system holds up. So far Dolby 3D is really NOT the way to go at all. If anything – all of them could be a bit brighter.

  24. Kieth says:

    I saw Avatar at a Imax theater in Burnsville Minn. xmas morning (there were not many at this showing) I'm from SW North Dakota – so this was a big thrill
    But no one had on any kind of glasses ?
    It was good – but did we get jyped ?
    should we have had glasses to get the full 3D expirence ?
    I plan to see it again & found this article interesting

  25. Julia Lancaster says:

    I saw Avatar first in the RealD and it was stunning. I went to see it in IMAX hoping for even better image quality but was very dissapointed. So much of the sweeping movement that was breathtaking in RealD just came out blurry with the IMAX. I should note that I was sitting four or five rows back in the IMAX so that may have also affected the image quality. Many times I noticed blurry double images instead of the crisp detail I had seen with the RealD. I'm curious if viewers in the middle of the IMAX theatre had a similar or better experience to mine.

  26. Francois says:

    Saw Avatar in IMAX 3D, xpand and regular 2d in Moscow, Russia.
    I concur with the article, the IMAX is the most "in your face", but colours look just a tad washed out after xpand and 2D; the brightness is also a bit worse. I didn't check out realD, but of those technologies that I did check out xpand looks the most natural, the colours and brightness are almost as good as 2D.

  27. Patrick says:

    Just saw Avatar at a Dolby 3D system, and the glasses pretty much ruined the film for me. The attendant pointed out that they were "the highest quality available", but I find it hard to believe. They were horribly streaked, and reflected the dim lights above. I just couldn't get comfortable with them. They were good contrast and color wise, but just didn't work with my glasses. I really should've acted on my urge to walk out and get my money back instead of having it draw me out of the film.
    Not to say RealD is much better. Remembering Up, it had the same issue of blurring in high motion. I remember them being more comfortable at least. Looking up the difference makes me think it wouldn't have been much better, if at all, so this review is a bit interesting in backing up my disgust.
    I really should've seen it in 2D first…

  28. Donald Webb says:

    I just saw Avatar in Dolby 3D at the Regal 14 at L.A. Live in their premier auditorium and was shocked that it was presented in "flat" aspect ratio at this theater. Previously I saw the film at a Rave Motion Pictures theatre in Birmingham, AL where it was presented in Real D in full 2:35 cinemascope and was a much better viewing experience. I cannot believe that a brand new theatre in Los Angeles would present this film with half the frame cut off. Although the sound was exceptional, I will not visit the Regal 14 again as I want to see the entire aspect ratio that a film is supposed to be presented in.

  29. BALAKRISHNAN RAJENDR says:

    IT IS NOT AT ALL A CINEMA TO SEE. TOTALLY AS RELIGIOUS MISINTERPRETATION. IT IS VERY DARELY AGAINST RELIGIONS.
    THE GOD'S VERSES-A BOOK BY GOODFRIDAY FORCE.
    JAMES CAMERON COLLPASED AVATAR OF HINDUISM.
    NIGHT SYAMALAN LEFT 'SKY' OF ALLAH. AIR,WATER,LAND AND FIR.
    SKY VERY DARELY LEFT IN 'AIR BENDER' IT LEADS TO A PROBLEM.

  30. Will says:

    I’ve seen Avatar in three types of theatre:
    - IMAX 3d
    - IMAX Digital 3d (‘fakemax’)
    - Real D 3d.
    I’ll try and give an unbiased viewpoint on all three
    Firstly, IMAX and IMAX Digital, the only difference here is that one is using a digital projection system and one is using real film. There are pros and cons to either system – the digital projection system used by newer ‘fakemax’ projectors eliminates all of the speckles/artifacts that you might see on a real film IMAX, but it comes at a price: As other posters have said, the 3d projection technology used by Digital IMAX means that if there is extreme motion on the screen, you will get ghosting, in particular if objects are moving from the far left of the screen to the far right. You will notice this in e.g. the part of Avatar where Trudy, Jake, Norm and Grace first go out in their Samson and fly past the bird like creatures. IMAX film 3d projectors eliminate much of this ghosting (but not all of it, see later). The more recent times I’ve seen IMAX (film) 3d versions, I have noticed the artifacts on the screen e.g. dust and hairs, this will only continue to get worse as the film gets more worn until it gets packaged up and cleaned in March (when Alice in Wonderland releases)
    IMAX 3d (both digital and film) will project further out of the screen than Real D 3d. By ‘further out’ I mean that objects that are close to the viewer will seem to hover close to the viewers eyes, while distant objects will ‘stop’ at just beyond the IMAX screen. Compare this to Real-d where the depth of the screen will be futher away from the viewer, and objects will not ‘poke you in the eye’ as you often see in IMAX projections. You can test this yourself, by looking down below the bottom of the visible screen to where it finishes, and seeing where the focus of your eyes is. In IMAX you will think you are looking a few rows ahead of the screen, but in Real-d you will be on a z-plane level with the silver screen. IMAX plays some fancy tricks with your eyes.
    Depending on the movie you are watching in 3d, this difference in the depth perception is important. James Cameron has stated in interviews that he intentionally steered away from the ‘poke you in the eye’ type of 3d, and instead intends viewers watching Avatar to see the screen as a ‘window into Pandora’, where the viewers will slowly get more and more absorbed into the film and sometimes even forget it’s in 3d.
    For this type of film then, the depth perception that real-d gives you compared with IMAX is more suitable, indeed, the times I’ve seen it in real-d, I think I have been more impressed with the vistas and the scenes with a lot of depth going into the screen (e.g. the scene near the start with the interior of the ISV).
    Real-d for reasons I don’t understand also gives less ghosting under movement. As mentioned above, IMAX digital will have more ghosting than IMAX film, but both have more than Real-d.
    Real-d has circular polarisation glasses, so the angle of your head relative to the screen will not distort the 3d, unlike in IMAX where it is very important that your head is kept perfectly horizontal (try and remember than when Jake is looking at his avatar in the tank!). IMAX glasses are larger so if you wear spectacles that could be important. Real-d glasses are smaller but one-time-use so they will always be spotless, IMAX needs to be cleaned after each showing.
    The sound system is better in IMAX purely because of the higher level of sound quality that the IMAX corporation impose on the theatres. Even in a fakemax (digital IMAX projection) the sound will still be better than a normal (real-d) screen.
    Finally, and this is probably a deal breaker for me: The aspect ratio is different from IMAX and real-d! Avatar was filmed in a 1.78:1. In IMAX, it’s projected at 1.78:1 which gives the appearance of a narrower screen (I even noticed the black bars the time I saw it after watching it in real-d and thought I was being conned) but in fact you are getting 25% more top and bottom screen space. Do a search for leyshan imax real to find a good blog post about this.
    I can’t comment on dolby 3d since I haven’t seen Avatar in Dolby 3d.

  31. Raul says:

    Saw this film at Waterloo, London IMAX. Full-screen 26 metres wide by 20 metres high. I was seated in the sweet-spot: back row, dead-centre.
    And to be honest… IT TOTALLY BLEW MY PUNY LITTLE MIND!! It's the most immersive cinema experience I've ever been to. As if I was actually there. Even the characters in the film seemed more 'real' by virtue of the depth – just like being in the same room at a live theatre play. Picture was pin-sharp, no ghosting, perfect colours – as if watching a normal 2D pic… but with the illusion of real depth-of-field. The only thing missing were the smells of the forest and the gunpowder. Glasses weren't a problem for me despite being a bit too large but the screen did cover about 90% of the field of view.
    The story was nothing new, but if you can sit back, chill out and enjoy the ride, the film ain't half bad!
    It's just another step towards fully immersive entertainment. More accommodating than what VR headsets were… We need VR caves!

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