Toshiba's 55-inch, Ultra HD, glasses-free 3D TV


September 1, 2011

Toshiba 55ZL2 - 55-inch, glasses-free 3D TV

Toshiba 55ZL2 - 55-inch, glasses-free 3D TV

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Toshiba has taken the wraps off a 55-inch, 16:9 ratio LED backlit TV with glasses free 3D capability and Quad Full HD resolution. That's a massive 3,840 x 2,160 pixels, or in other words, four times as many pixels as a 1920 x 1080p TV. We've just checked out the Toshiba 55ZL2 on the floor at IFA and the consensus is that it looks great.

Billed as the world's first large-screen glasses free 3D TV, the 55ZL2 is designed to allow several viewers to watch 3D content from different positions. Its CEVO-ENGINE calculates multiple wide-angle viewing zones in front of the lenticular screen and face tracking operated by the remote control is used to detect the viewers' actual positions and optimize the nine viewing zones.

The CEVO-ENGINE also handles Auto Calibration which Toshiba says achieves "studio level picture quality" and personalized settings - including the volume level you last had the TV set to - can be stored for up to four users.

Content can be recorded to an external hard drive via USB, SMART-TV functions allow access to Toshiba's Places online platform, Resolution+ converts lower res formats into Quad Full HD resolution and if you have an iPhone, you can download an app and throw the remote control away.

The 55ZL2 can also display 2D content at the Quad Full HD resolution.

So how does it look? Our first chance to see the screen in Berlin today definitely left a positive impression - the 3D image had much smoother depth than the "cardboard cut-out" effect on other glasses-free units we've seen, bringing us hope that the reign of 3D glasses will be short lived.

Overall the 3D effect was more subtle, natural and real, with crisper images that seemed to recede into the background rather than jump out at you. In short, it's comfortable to look at.

Of course, native 3D content in Quad Full HD resolution might be a little hard to come by for a while, but the 55ZL2 could well be a new benchmark for the industry.

"It seems like a step towards maturity for the entire market," says Gizmag's Tim Hanlon. "I can't see the downside. This is a pretty sick TV."

The Toshiba 55ZL2 will be released in Germany in December 2011. Release dates for other European countries are yet to be confirmed and there's no word yet on how much it will cost.


wow...that\'s awesome.

I just bought a 55\" LED Samsung...non 3D, because I don\'t want to wear glasses or get headaches when watching movies. This TV eliminates one of those...hopefully (time will tell) if it will be able to look good...while leaving your head feeling good. 4k resolution is definitely the future, its showing up more and more, yesterday I bought a new receiver that was touting its 4k up scaling abilities.

I shudder at what the price of this beauty will be.......

Derek Howe

You have to hand it to them for going all the way. Now when someone says \"what\'s the best TV you have?\", the answer will be clear... at least until we get to real holography in consumer products.

Charles Bosse


Marvin Grenstein

Does anyone find the idea of facial tracking software in ur tv unsetling.This sort of is going the road of 1984 with tvs watching us not us watching tvs.


Why are they bothering with QFHD? Go for 4K at 4096 x 2160...the resolution most movies are mastered in! (When mastered digitally or converted to digital)


People complain about 3D glasses waaay too much. Most of them don\'t even use the 3D glasses, they just complain based on their assumptions. I use my active shutter glasses to watch 3D on my 60\" Mitsubishi DLP all the time, and the glasses feel just like you\'re wearing a normal pair of glasses. How many times do you hear someone complain about wearing reading glasses or sunglasses? It\'s the same thing!!! The visual clarity of the 3D is 100% natural, it may be somewhat off-looking in the first minute, but your eyes quickly adjust to it, and the longer you watch, the more your eyes actually settle and rest at ease. I\'m 100% happy with 3D Glasses for now. 10 years from now, sure, bring on the glasses free, but I\'m not about to spend $20,000 on that kind of tech just yet. As far as 4K resolution goes, It\'s just ridiculous. 1080P looks absolutely perfect. Once you starting getting past that sort of resolution, the details are not even noticeable to the human eye. I can understand 4K resolution for a 100\" screen size, but not for any consumer sized television. Just a marketing gimmick, nothing more

Walter Costescu

@ Walter - I complain about 3D...because it DOES give me a headache...that said, the only 3D I\'ve seen is the Real3D in theaters...I\'ve never watched a movie wearing the active 3D glasses. I have tried them on in stores (BB) but a couple minutes isn\'t enough to induce a headache... So maybe your right in that the active ones are better...I wouldn\'t know. either way, I plan on waiting for 3D until its glasses free. which (obviously) already exist, and it will be better and cheaper by the time I get a new set (5 years-ish).

Derek Howe

About time somebody got rid of those silly glasses. Way to Go Toshiba keep it up guys


hmm..... getting your brain washed in 3 different directions, all at once.... sounds divine.

Michiel Mitchell

Well REAL 3D I was reading was only 30 fps, and IMAX 3D is a full 60FPS, and a much larger screen. That means that Real3D only gives you 15fps per eye, that is what causes the ghosting and headaches normally. Just pony up for movies that are in IMAX 3D, and don\'t watch 3D on LEDs that are too slow on the frame rates unlike plasma. I see noticeable ghosting there too...

Jake Dhillon

Really? Or another cheap publicity gimmick?

Abdul Beg

I hope I can attend some type of Toshiba tech demo so I can try this glasses free 3d television for myself.


I can\'t wait to try this tech out, but when will it hit the UK market. If price is right, i am surely going to grab this little big beauty for sure! I agree, 3D technology be it passive or active, must be getting weak at the knee\'s with Toshiba\'s monster spec and tech. You can expect prices to be initially very high at launch, but, then again, if they decide they want to dominate the already limited entertainment market with restricted customer funds, then expect it to drop drastically in price very soon in 9 months of general availability.

Still, that will make a great Xmas treat ... for myself & I!

Harpal Sahota

I would like more information on the glasses free 3D. On to my search.

Art Toegemann
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