FAQ & How to watch 3D movies

1.1 What is the difference between Anaglyphic and Side-by-Side (SBS)?
  • Anaglyphic is an older version of 3D. It's developed by taking two identical pictures and removing certain colors from each, then replacing the two pictures on top of each other, with a slight stagger. The Red/Cyan or other dual color combination glasses cause your eye to believe there is depth between the two. Draw backs: Colors can become distorted. 3D does not seem as in depth.
  • Side-by-Side or more commonly known as SBS is developed by physically recording the video from two cameras spaced approximately 1.5 inches apart (the same as the human eye). The images are then pasted on the screen on top of one another with a slight stagger. The 3D glasses contain films or crystals that will cause one eye to look slightly to the left and the other slightly to the right, giving the illusion of 3D. Drawbacks: If depths on the record or playback are not set correctly, a ghostly duplicate image can appear in the background of the screen, known as ghosting.

1.2 What are the minimum required components I will need to play 3D movies?
  • A screen of some type is required to play 3D Movies. Depending on the type of movie you wish to play depends on the type of screen you will need. For anaglyphic videos, any old tv or monitor should work with the right software. For SBS movies, a 3d monitor or tv will be required, along with the correct type of software. When playing movies , either anaglyphic or 3d, from a computer, no additional hardware is required, other than the screen. If playing movies from a television, some type of player or DLNA capability will be required. These will be discussed in later portions of this FAQ.

1.3 What basic programs should I have when working with 3D Torrents?
  • - Several different programs exist for working with 3D movies, pictures, and files. These programs range from editing file types, to editing and/or playing video, to manipulating a 2D movie and turning it into a 3D movie. There is such a wide variety of programs out there that I wont be discussing them all. The main ones a basic user will need will be discussed later in other sections of this FAQ as they are required. All programs discussed in this FAQ are free to download and use. Better versions exist, you can try and make informed posts about them in the forum, but these are really the only essential programs you will need, and have been chosen due to their ease of access and use.

    DLNA/Media Server Programs
  • PS3 Media Server (http://www.ps3mediaserver.org/) - PS3 Media Server is a must have and great tool for posting your MKVs on your network so that your entertainment center or PS3 may access them.
  • Serviio (http://www.serviio.org/) - Freeware media server for TVs. I have not used this program, so I have no input on it. I plan to test it and will update this FAQ once I do.
  • Freemake Video Converter (http://www.freemake.com/free_video_converter/) - This is a conversion program, but I also find its great at repairing MKV files for television use.
  • MKVToolNix (www.bunkus.org/videotools/mkvtoolnix/) - MKVToolNix is an ongoing developmental tool used to alter MKV files in many different ways. This will be a must tool for anyone playing videos using televisions or via DLNA.

1.4 What is DLNA and how can I use it?
  • DLNA stands for Digital Living Network Alliance. It has become a standard that is used on most Ethernet or WIFI entertainment center based components. This standard allows DLNA certified products to play media from computes, media players, and other devices such as NAS drives.

1.5 What is an MKV, and why is that the most common format on this site and many others?
  • MKV stands for Matroska media container. MKV has become the standard conversion file for Blu-Ray because of its ability to condense the massive Blu-Ray disc into a smaller file format with minimal loss of quality in the video and audio. Most standard DLNA approved devices can recognize MKV, but may have issues with specifics pieces of the file. Please read the advanced section for these issues.

1.6 When trying to play movies over my Wi-Fi network, the play back starts, but the screen stutters/slows/stops/etc. How do I fix this?
  • Most Blu-Rays/MKVs will play normally over the Wi-Fi network, but 3D movies take an excessive amount of bandwidth that Wi-Fi can not support. This is apparent even more when using the play station 3 as the media server, as it only supports the slower "G" network capabilities. The only two solutions I have come across to remedy this are to hard wire your network with Ethernet, or to play movies directly from a portable hard drive. *Note* PS3's will not recognize the portable hard drives. See 1.7 for more information on this issue.

1.7 I am having issues copying my downloaded files to my Play Station 3. How can I transfer these files?
  • Play Station 3's do not currently have support for files larger than Fat 32's 3.9GB. When plugging in a USB drive to your play station 3, it must be in Fat 32, which is generally too small for 3D MKVs. One work around I have found for this is to copy the file using your network to the PS3's hard drive. This will bypass the 3.9GB limitation. Another work around I have found is to use your TV as your DLNA server. Most TV's now come with USB ports and support for MKV files.

1.8 How does the quality of .MKV files compare against Blu-Ray Discs?
  • Most MKVs are direct copies from Blu-Ray discs. Their audio is identical to the Blu-Ray unless it has been converted. The video is a bit trickier. Two screens of 1920 x 1080 comes on most 3D Blu-Rays. This totals 3840 wide by 1080 high. Unfortunately in the conversion process to SBS, the screen size is cut in half horizontally. What does this mean? The output is played at one screen that is 1920 x 1080, this is what is known as Half SBS. There is small loss, but it is not heavily noticeable by most people. For those looking comparing the two versions, they will be able to see a difference though.
    Full SBS does not have this loss, but is also a lot harder to play across your network, as it requires more than the standard 100mbs Ethernet connection, the G wifi, and possibly N wifi.

1.9 I downloaded Blu-Ray iso what to do now?
  • You can either burn it on blu-ray disk and watch on your blu-ray player or use a computer as player. To do that you should get Virtual CloneDrive to mount the iso file onto virtual drive then play it using PowerDVD.

Advanced FAQ

2.1 I am trying to play movies directly from my DLNA or USB plugged device to my HDTV. My TV gives me an invalid audio error. How do I fix this?
  • Many modern televisions with DLNA support, support Matroska files, but do not support the default compressed audio or additional audio files inside them, causing the file to not play. Manufacturers such as LG and others do not buy support for DTS audio. To fix this so that my TV will play the correct English or desired language and play the movie correctly FreeMake Video Converter is used.
    • Step 1:

      Download and open Freemake Video Converter (FVC) application.
    • Step 2:

      Click the +video and navigate to your MKV file that needs to be converted. The file will open and you see basic information about your video. The first is the total playtime, the second is the video type and resolution. The third is the audio. The fourth is the subtitles if any. You are primarily looking at the audio in this case. AC3 or MP3 is fine, but if you see AAC, it means the file has DTS audio which will not play with certain brands.
    • Step 3:

      Once you select the file, select the To MKV button at the bottom of the FVC app. A pop up dialog will appear. Select the blue sprocket looking option (edit present). Another pop-up will appear. At the bottom of the screen change audio codec to AC3 or MP3, whichever you prefer, then hit ok. Select an output/save to for your file and hit convert. This will be the final/usable file. This conversion step will repair most audio issues found when trying to play an MKV directly to most televisions. Unfortunately I only have an LG, so I can not confirm or say that this will work for ALL televisions, but should work for any DLNA certified televisions. The conversion process can be lengthy, 1-2 hours per movie. You can do multiple videos at the same time by opening the FVC app multiple times. The FVC app will only process one at a time, no matter how many windows you open, but will move immediately from one conversion to another. I would recommend doing multiples right before bed, as they should be ready for you in the morning.

2.2 I am trying to burn my MKVs to a Blu-Ray, but they do not play. How can I fix this?
  • I am still trying to figure this one out myself. I would prefer to put them on Blu-Rays to save precious hard drive space, but in the meantime, I have bought a NAS. I still plan on researching this, but if anyone already knows how to do this, please feel free to chime in =)

2.3 Adding or changing subtitles from your movie.
  • This is a fairly easy process and similar to altering the audio. Start by following steps 1 and 2 of 2.1 above. Once you open the video file you would like to add subtitles to, select the subtitles section and in the drop down select "Add subtitles" then select your subtitles file. Select the To MKV or applicable option down at the bottom of the screen and follow the options to convert your file to one that now has subtitles.

2.4 How/What do I need to burn an ISO to disc?
  • No special software is needed to burn to disc, but many users prefer to use IMGBurn. You will need a BD-R burner and for any files above 25 gigabytes, it will need to be dual layer (DL) capable. You will also need discs to complete this process. For files under 25 gigabytes, standard BD-R discs will work and for files over 25 gigabytes, DL BD-R are required. Verbatim discs are NOT recommended for DL burns as several users have encountered issues with these discs, and at $8 a piece, they are not cheap to start out with. I would recommend buying at least one DL BD-RW disc to start testing with. Because you can re-write these, fails and mistakes dont cost you and at $12 they arent as hefty on the wallet as failing with one of the permanent discs.

    To burn, simply place the disc in the drive, right click on the file, click burn to disc, and hit burn once the pop up shows up.

2.5 How can I play 3D video's on my computer?
  • There are several programs for playing videos on your computer. Even though I have a 3D monitor, I have been spoiled by my 3D TV and have not tested them yet. I will let you know once I test out the different pieces of software.
Thanks to SnowMan (v2)

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