Unboxing Sony Personal 3D Viewer HMZ-T1

Entering Sony’s 3D World

I just picked up my HMZ-T1, the new Sony Personal 3D Viewer, from the local fed-ex office after missing delivery.  I was surprised it arrived when it did because I had just received the third delay email from Sony.  My wife ordered this for me several months ago off the Sony website as soon as we heard about it.

What is a Head Mounted Display?

The HMZ-T1 is futuristic black and white plastic headgear containing a 3D display created from 2 HD OLED displays and 5.1 channel surround.

HMZ-T1 provides an “Immersed Theatre experience”, or so says Sony copy about it.

It works when connected through its big processing box to an HDMI source like PS3 and retails for $799

Already Disappointed By the Box

I’m already a little miffed that Sony sent me this expensive item in an unprotected box.  It ought to have shipped in a box within the box.  The box also is pretty big, considering the size of the Display.  Hard to imagine why they would need 1 square foot of shipping space for an item that looks quite a bit smaller in pictures.

I’m no less disappointed when I open the box.  Seriously, Sony could learn some packaging lessons from Apple.  Inside the box, the items are a jumbled and unattractive mess of brown cardboard, plastic bags and paperwork.  So far, this item does not look like it is worth the $799 + tax we paid for it.

Less Disappointment Within

The limited paperwork puts a smile on my face.  I’m done with thick manuals I’ll never read. The 1 yr limited warranty and Startup Guide are all I really need since this should essentially be a plug and play item once I size it to my head.

In addition to paperwork, the box reveals an HDMI cable, Forehead pad and other pads, a thick Power cord, and a surprisingly Big Processing Unit.

The Processing Unit shatters my hopes of being able to use this item on airplanes easily.  Sony must have had no delusions of portability because notably absent in the box is a carrying/storage case.  I would prefer to have a way to store the oddly shaped headgear.

First look at the Sony Personal 3D Viewer

I’m shocked by the Huge Cable coming out of the Viewer, reminding me of the cable that plugged Neo into the Matrix to learn Kung Fu.  This plastic viewer somehow simultaneously feels cheap (from all the plastic) and bulky (from all the cables and the Processing Unit.

On the other hand, there is lots of adjustment possible with this device and I’m able to fit it onto my huge head.  It feels heavy but well balanced and the buttons seem accessible in their location on the lower right of the unit (under the right OLED).   The Earpiece pads feel cheap, like 5 dollar headphones from Sony walkman days.

I’m struck by how flimsy HMZ-T1 feels. However, whether I keep it will be determined by how it works.

Trial Started; Review Coming Soon

I’ll plug this into my PS3 and play a few games with it and also will watch a few 3d movies and then I’ll report back here with my review of this new product from Sony.


Super Gadget Guy

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