Stylin’ HMD

Watch out, these sunglasses are actually a head mounted display. [Staffan] says he’s wanted dataglasses since ’95, but whats currently out there makes the user look ridiculous, and we have to agree. While his forum posts are a little lacking in detail, he’s promised us more info soon. And for now lets us know at least the resolution, well sort of: Its either 480×1280 or 480x427x3, you can be the judge. Update: [Staffan] has clarified “The resolution is 480*1280 true pixels. It is accomplished by spanning the screen across two Kopin CyberDisplay VGA modules.”

Regardless, [Staffan] is looking for help perfecting the glasses, with what in particular we’re not sure, but the project looks promising and we hope he keeps up the good work.

22 thoughts on “Stylin’ HMD

  1. The screen resolution is 480*1280 true RGB pixels. That means each pixel is made up of three sub-pixels (red green and blue). No funky sales-trick, and I’m by the way not selling anything either.

    What I want is that AR glasses will now finally take off. I want as many as possible in the hacker community to first copy what I’ve done, then to improve on the concept.

  2. If I were interested in buying a pair of those bad boys would i be possible? and if so how much would it set me back? Because those are gorgeous!!! I would like to help but unfortunately I dont know a thing about that technology; any suggestions on a good learning point?

  3. Someone needs to build a pair of HMD glasses with Android built-in, along with a camera, gyros/accelerometers/compass/gps, so that apps like Layar can be used more comfortably than held up on a phone in front of you.

    And yes, i understand how much of an undertaking that would be.

    Point is, it needs to be a full augmented reality setup to be really useful.

  4. You should seriously consider making some income from this when you get the system and design perfected for “the consumer market”. (don’t want sued because someone actually walked in to a wall and somehow managed to cut their eye on a blunt prism… how do they manage it?)
    Even if it is just selling it on some sellers website as you do them, still better than nothing.

    A lot of people would love to get their hands on a decent HMD. I sure would.
    Last one i had was when i was 9-ish and that was some basic reflective 2x 8-grid LED counter thing for a laser tag game. Man, i miss those glasses.

  5. I’ve the opportunity to examine these glasses currently, and the resolution is indeed 2*3*640*480, using two Kopin CyberDisplay VGA modules. The display driver chip (SSD1502) is capable of addressing the two displays separately, and we plan to use this to achieve a dual screen look, thus the 1280×480. As yet the driving electronics aren’t modified, so we haven’t had a good picture to record how it looks from the inside, but we’ll get there.

  6. The reason high-res inexpensive 3D glasses are not widely available is mostly because of aggressive patent nonsense, followed by the need for pretty elaborate tweeks needed to ensure that:

    a) the images are mapped correctly over a variety of viewer’s ocular conditions It’s a long story, but it boils down to being a non-trivial exercise in mapping the eye’s photorecepters and changing the display in real time to account for eye movement. All doable, but then you start running into patent walls.

    b) No damaged is accrued by the eye – liability is ridiculous, which means our only hope is lotsa no-name asian knockoffs who can vanish at the first lawsuit

    c) we need pixel by pixel brightness control, color control and muxing tricks alone won’t pull this off. Electronics isn’t at the point where such things can be done in minature and with negligable power consumption. It’ll happen, but who knows when.

    In the meantime – good work! Good luck.

  7. I would immagine its a battery issue, I mean having dual LCDs hurts the battery enough but Bluetooth (lets assume we would use that) would drain even more power, plus the juice needed to run the CPU/RAM for the little device that would have to handle the video decoding, and ten where are you going to put that new little board? room isn’t exactly plentiful (and if it is it would be ugly). even the new future bluetooth 4 standard will be to big and to demanding probably. I would prefer a nice sleek cable over only having 2-3 hours of use.I just wish there were some way to not need the ear-buds for sound. I would make them separate to be honest. I mean what happens when one breaks? or if you need a 4/3 prong instead of what it comes with? Then again this man (and who ever might help him) is doing something way beyond my ability’s.

  8. Awesome build! Do want!

    (no, seriously, how much?)

    As for wireless, Bluetooth 2.0 doesn’t have the bandwidth to deliver 640x480x3 video. I have Bluetooth audio headphones, which most audiophiles won’t touch due to quality degradation, and those already tax the standard to the limit.(I can’t use my mouse and headphones at the same time on the same Bluetooth unit) Your framerate would be measured in “seconds per frame.”

    Having a processing system mounted behind the head on a headband might work, but I don’t think there’s any realistic escape from a wire running to your glasses within the next 5 or 10 years. Not that I mind any.

  9. Gumstix, Fit PC2 (or even the actual board without the case), and several others could all be used for a device like this.
    You could probably even go as far as building a circuit yourself with some components without any board, boards just waste space*, solder + wires + components is all you would need on this scale.
    The only part that is really going to need cooling would be a GPU, maybe.

    *Boards limit creativity and are, in my honest opinion, why we are still stuck with crappy 2D boards in almost every piece of hardware out there.
    It isn’t an issue of standards or blocking airflow, just lack of evolution.
    In fact, some 3D structures can even improve airflow and are already used for wave control, as well as metamaterial cloaks.

  10. @Volfram
    True 2.0 doesn’t but 4.0 will, although I still dont like the thought bluetooth video; maybe when revision 5.0 or 4.1 comes out along with wireless power/better batterys to allow at least 5 hours of use.

  11. it does need a camera. the only point to having one of this is to be able to zoom in real time, take pictures, have night vision on demand, facial recognition, you know… terminator stuff

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