We pull on Sony's HMZ-T3 wearable display at IFA to bring you our first impressions
Sony’s HMZ-T3 is the third iteration of the somewhat unusual surround video headset – it gains Wireless HDMI and MHL support over the outgoing model, and will set you back a whopping £1300. We put it through its paces on the Sony stand at this year’s IFA show.
The headset itself is incredibly customisable when it comes to fitting, with multiple head straps to get the right fit and adjustable eyepieces to get the twin OLED displays perfectly aligned with your line of sight. Our fit was initially a little loose, leading to some blurred images, but after a quick adjustment we were good to go. It was comfortable to wear without being too tight, obscuring our forward vision but letting us glance downwards to prevent any feelings of claustrophobia. It also doesn’t weigh too much, mainly because the battery pack is external. It’s much more convenient than the previous, mains power-only model, although you should only expect three hours of playback when using wireless streaming.
Connected to an Xperia Z smartphone, we watched the trailer for upcoming sci-fi thriller Elysium. Despite being mere inches from our eyeballs, the HMZ-T3W does a fantastic job of convincing your brain you are watching a massive 750in cinema screen – although it doesn’t completely fill your vision, it’s still very absorbing and detail is superb, despite only being 720p. OLED means vibrant colours and excellent black levels, even with bright whites on-screen at the same time. It’s able to display 3D content too, but unfortunately there was none for us to try during our hands-on.
The addition of 7.1 surround sound makes a huge difference too, creating a personal cinema that you can retreat to at any time. All the controls are found on the underside of the visor, which takes some getting used to, but we imagine once you learn where the volume and menu controls are it will swiftly become second nature.
As a luxury gadget, we think the HMZ-T3 is a fantastic idea. It’s far more immersive and has a superior interface to Epson’s Moverio BT-100 googles, takes up much less room than an actual home cinema and can be taken on the move too. However, at £1,300 it’s going to stay on the wish list for now.
Hopefully we’ll be able to bring you a full review a little later in the year.