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HolidayBuyer's Guide

Overview

Comfort

Controls

Controls

HMD output

HDMI in and out

Headphones

Conclusion

The HMZ-T1 "3D personal cinema" consists of two small OLED screens inside a big headset with built-in stereo headphones. It's a little more subtle in design than the original prototype we saw at CES 2011, with just a single blue power light.

While the Sony HMZ-T1 personal headset is capable of some of the best 3D effects we've ever seen, its images suffer from blurriness.

Caption by / Photo by Sarah Tew/CNET

The headset weighs 14.8 ounces, which Sony describes as "surprisingly lightweight." The headset comes with adjustable rubber straps and a number of different cushions for spectacle wearers and nonwearers, though it was still difficult to achieve a comfortable fit.

Caption by / Photo by Sarah Tew/CNET
The T1's controls are mounted under the visor and include volume and lens focus.
Caption by / Photo by Sarah Tew/CNET
The headset contains two 720p OLED screens that enable 3D replay with zero crosstalk.
Caption by / Photo by Sarah Tew/CNET
The proprietary HMD (head-mounted display) output connects to the visor via a 11.6-foot cord.
Caption by / Photo by Sarah Tew/CNET
Caption by / Photo by Sarah Tew/CNET
The headphones offer 5.1 simulated surround but are rubbish for music.
Caption by / Photo by Sarah Tew/CNET
Who is this headset aimed at? I'd say if you're looking at quick bursts of gaming or a bit of 3D TV, then the HMZ-T1 will serve admirably. Its lack of portability is an issue and, aside from an adult movie, there's really nothing short of bloody-mindedness that would have users choose this over a cheaper 3D TV in the long term. Will it start a trend? Probably not, but for what it's worth, this is definitely the best video headset I've ever used. I look forward to seeing (and hearing) where this technology can go next.
Caption by / Photo by Sarah Tew/CNET
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