Will Sony Bloggie 3D bring mainstream to 3D?

New toy just arrived: 3D Sony Bloggie. Will try it out as soon as it is charged.

I bought a Sony Bloggie 3D last week because I am researching 3D. Vizio gave me a 65-inch 3D TV to help in this research and to give me a screen for the studio I’m building, too, but that will be the point of a future look at 3D.

Yesterday I shot video at a six-year-old kid’s birthday party. You’ll need 3D glasses and you’ll need to setup YouTube on first play to view this video.

Most people I talk with on Twitter hate 3D. Most of them complain about glasses and headaches, but a good chunk complain about no content. My brother-in-law returned a 3DTV because there wasn’t any content, so he thought he’d save the hundreds of dollars it cost extra.

I just upgraded my Comcast line to the latest cable box. Not even one channel is in 3D right now.

The folks who run TV stations tell me they aren’t about to buy 3DTV cameras and broadcast equipment. They say the move to HD nearly bankrupted them.

So, what is the Sony Bloggie 3D? And, will home movies be enough content to get people excited by 3DTV (at least the part of the market that doesn’t care about wearing glasses or doesn’t get headaches watching?)

It’s a small video and still camera that looks a bit like the FlipCam. Except it takes still and videos in 3D and has on its back a new 3D screen that doesn’t require glasses.

Will being able to shoot your baby in 3D save 3D?

Not yet, is my review.

Why not?

Because the software sucks. I still can’t figure out how to use it to do 3D photos on my computer (they work great when you hook the camera up to your TV screen via an HDMI cable). Editing is a major pain in the behind, although I figured out how to do it that was only because GoPro’s team (another 3D camera I’m testing) showed me how to do it and how to upload it to YouTube properly. Even there, you’ve got to add a special tag to enable the 3D player and you’d only know that if you when looking.

Also, does it really add much? Actually it does. I love seeing my kids in 3D and my family loves watching them. But is that enough to spend several hundred dollars more on a 3DTV? And then $250 on the Sony Bloggie 3D? And then potentially even more on 3D glasses (the Vizio came with four sets of glasses, which isn’t enough if you are throwing a 3D viewing party, which you most certainly will if you have the only 3D TV in the neighborhood).

Some other things to pay attention to:

1. The screen on the back of the Bloggie isn’t all that good. The screen on other cameras I’ve seen is better. It’s hard to see, and the 3D effect on that screen isn’t very pronounced. Don’t worry, on a good 3DTV the effect is much better.

2. The menus aren’t all that good and aren’t consistent.

3. Battery life is pretty short. I was at one bar after not shooting very long at the birthday party yesterday. I’m used to getting a lot more out of my video cameras.

4. Focus isn’t all that good and it’s nearly impossible to see on the screen whether something is in focus or not. So, you just have to shoot and pray it came out.

5. Editing tools aren’t setup for 3D. iMovie or FinalCutPro doesn’t know how to do 3D titles, or other effects. So, trying to edit is very frustrating. I have some tools from GoPro (they bought another startup that does 3D editing software, but it’s woefully incomplete and hard to use too).

That said, for $249 I’m happy, but I’m an early adopter who likes nearly every shiny new thing that I get my hands on (the video I shot at a friend’s six-year-old kid’s birthday party yesterday is pretty good). I sure wouldn’t recommend this for a normal user. Not yet.

So, 2D lives on to see another day.

You can order one and look at customer reviews on Amazon.