I was a pretty big fan of Sony’s HMZ-T1 3D head-mounted display when it first came out a couple of years ago. With its HD OLED screens, it created an insanely immersive personal viewing experience. However, it had a few major shortcomings, and Sony hopes to rectify those with the newly revealed HMZ-T2 model.
Like the original HMZ-T1, the T2 has a pair of high-contrast 1280×720 OLED screens for displaying discrete content to each eyeball. This produces a crosstalk-free 3D image, and a simulated screen that’s like sitting in a small movie theater. The biggest problems with the original model were that it was very uncomfortable for even relatively short periods of time, and that it also required that you used the mediocre, built-in earbuds. With the HMZ-T2, Sony has improved on both of these issues, plus added a few other tweaks.
The updated HMZ-T2 personal viewer lets you remove its earbuds, letting you listen to movies with headphones of your choice, or a surround sound system if your interpretation of “personal viewing” includes waking the neighbors. It’s also got something called a “harmonics equalizer” which is said to improve sound quality no matter what device you listen with. In addition, the T2 claims to improve upon the biggest problem with the original – it’s weight and discomfort. The T1 weighed quite a bit and put significant pressure on the forehead and bridge of the nose. The new version has a larger forehead pad, weighs a little less (330g vs. 500g), and comes with more adjustments for its headstrap, so hopefully you’ll be able to wear it for longer viewing sessions. They also added a technology which gradually adjusts color temperature as your content plays, easing eye strain. That idea sounds a little odd to me, but perhaps it’ll work. Hopefully, you can disable that if it causes issues with image fidelity. Sony also added a 24p “true cinema” mode for 24 frame-per-second cinematic playback.
Sony hasn’t announced a release date for the HMZ-T2 yet, nor a price, but I’m guessing it’ll be out in time for the holidays, and will list for the same $799(USD) that the original did. Hopefully, Sony can ramp up production better this time, as the original model was frequently sold out and being sold for ridiculous prices on eBay.