If you ever wanted the theatre experience without the lineups, sticky floors and talking moviegoers, Sony’s Personal 3D Viewer might be for you. With this futuristic looking headset you can experience your own private movie theatre and play your favourite videos games in HD and immersive 2D or 3D, all with built-in virtual 5.1-channel surround sound.

The package comes with a processor unit to plug into your Blu-ray player or Playstation 3 via HDMI for a 16:9 picture in 24p True Cinema at a resolution of 1280x720 for a serious in-your-face theatrical viewing experience. The head unit weighs 11.64 oz and doesn’t seem like much, but with the way the head straps are designed, you’ll be taking all this weight on your forehead, nose and back of your cranium.hmz_bottom.jpg Black rubber light shields are provided to block out light around the top and bottom, which I found frustrating when they kept falling out. Volume and menu controls are just a touch away on the bottom left of the viewing device in addition to the clarity sliders for each eye to adjust to individually. If you wear glasses, you will want to sport your specs with the device, which I found didn't get in the way at all. The unit does take time to adjust and get to fit comfortably, but it’s worth the effort.  


The intended experience is to feel like you’re viewing a 150-inch movie screen from 12 feet away. You can sit upright or unlike in a movie theatre, lay on your back or side and the screen will still look the same. Once calibrated and comfortably fitted, the viewing experience is completely immersive. I would argue, even more than sitting alone in an IMAX movie theatre. hmz-t29.jpgThe expansive landscapes, vivid colours and special effects of Tron 3D and Prometheus were even more impressive than I remember experiencing in theatres. Since your vision is blocked out from the world and all the sound is focused through your headphones, any and all outside distractiona are eliminated, allowing you to fully get lost in a film. Also, don’t plan on snacking on that popcorn during your feature either since the motion of the chewing can affect the viewing experience (besides, eating anything with earbuds or headphones in is not pleasant) and since you can’t see anything outside of the viewer, you might have a hard time reaching for that Pepsi.

Surprisingly, after two hours of viewing, my eyes didn’t feel tired and I only felt minor discomfort on my nose, forehead and back of my head where the straps and pads were in contact with my head. However, the unit did leave slight indents and red marks on my face. I think an adjustable strap running along the top of the head from the forehead to the back would helpStrap.JPG improve future generation 3D Viewers support the weight of the device more comfortably, but in the meantime Blazin3d has you covered.

Gaming is a shorter story. Racing cars, exploring fantasy worlds and blasting away aliens with your favourite video game is an equally immersive experience, but harder on the eyes. I found my eyes got sore playing video games from having to look around the screen more often to check on ammo quantities, health meters and scan terrain for dangerous foes. For short periods of time, it’s a blast but anything over 75 minutes starts to feel overstimulating and overwhelming. So for all the hardcore marathon gamers out there, be sure to take breaks.


The HMZ-T2 has a 3.5mm audio jack and provides you with a comfortable set of earbuds, which for me fit perfectly, but if you have your own favourite set of Beats or Sennheisers you can definitely use those. I prefer the earbuds because with your head strapped with plenty of tech and weight already, the last thing you want to do is add more mass to your melon.

Currently listed on for $999.99, the cost may be the factor that scares most away but Sony’s Personal Viewer is definitely the most personal viewing experience available to date. It’s definitely not a toy to play with around groups of friends, but definitely an escape if you need to isolate yourself from a roommate or use an an alternative second television set. Whether you’re a casual gamer, film fanatic or just a gadget junkie, Sony’s HMZ-T2 Personal 3D viewer is definitely an impressive piece of tech anyone should at least try.

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