Minimum System for stand-alone display


I am really enjoying my looking glass. I would like to set it up as a semi-permanent stand-alone display with a dedicated computer and I was wondering what the minimum I could get away with is. Can a Nuc, for example, work. I would be interested in what low-cost, low power systems folks have successfully used to drive theirs.


There’s some discussion of this in other places in this forum. Many other folks want the same thing you do, and I’m one of them. The LG is so beautiful I want to use it as art when I’m not using it for something practical.

Some think that an overclocked Raspberry Pi 3 could do it, others are suggesting other small computers. NUC is an interesting solution as well. For me, the ideal thing would not have a fan and would be small enough to attach to the back of the display (I noticed there are some slots there!).

In terms of horsepower, the requirements are USB, HDMI driving exactly 2560x1600 at a reasonable framerate, and the ability to run a full-screen pixel shader at that framerate. After that, you want the ability to read stills and video and play them through that pixel shader. It would be nice to be able to add to and adjust the image/videos shown over the network or using a media card (like microSD). And it shouldn’t cost too much.


Thanks for the feedback, @Dithermaster There are a lot of win10 laptops available for under $200. Anyone use these?

Also, do I need a monitor? Can the Looking Glass be used as the only display? it doesn’t have to be great - just work well enough to launch and navigate the Library.


I laptop is larger than most wanted for stand-lone display use. We want something hidden. But it should work, if it has the horsepower (needs a decent GPU). You might get fan noise. I think it would work with a single display, yes (it’s just a “regular” LCD panel at 2560x1600 with magic optics on top). It’s impossible to read text, so your launcher would need big UI or you could find an icon on the desktop and double-click it. But you could not read menus, etc.


I just tested this with a laptop. My laptop frame rate is pretty crummy but it still drives the display just fine.

Next, I tested it with the lid down to see if I can run with the LG as the only display and the answer is yes. You just have to memorize the text on the button as @Dithermaster predicted it is unreadable. However, I was able to launch the library and select a scene at which point the display switched to 3d mode. So now it’s only a question of what frame rate you want to decide how much to spend on your mini PC.


Hi all,

We’ve seen a lot of interest from folks that want to set up standalone Looking Glass units to play prerecorded, non-interactive 3D content. This is something we’re looking into and if you’re willing to wait for a while, it’s very possible we will have an in-house solution in the next few months – it’s not exactly a secret, @Dithermaster made a very acute observation about the rear slots. :slight_smile:

If you want to run something right now, we’ve had some success with i7 NUCs with HD graphics - they’re barely fast enough to run real-time rendered content at an acceptable frame rate, but should have no problem running pre-rendered content; same applies to AMD V1000 systems. If you’re less price-sensitive and you want the smallest possible system that can run the full suite of live-rendered content at maximum graphics settings and frame rate, we use the Hades Canyon NUCs, which have an on-chip Radeon RX Vega.

We’re aware that beyond the Vimeo channel, there isn’t currently great support for recording and playing back prerendered content – this is largely due to the odd system requirements related to recording, compressing, streaming, and processing video at odd, high resolutions. We’re rolling out a set of tools to streamline this functionality over the next few weeks.

We don’t currently support any x86 or embedded Linux platforms, but if I were working on building Looking Glass support for embedded Linux my minimum SoC spec would probably be a Rockchip RK3399 or thereabouts. It is possible to drive a Looking Glass at native resolution from a Raspberry Pi, but in order to do so you need to hack at config.txt to crank up the pixel clocks. However, GPU acceleration on the Broadcom SoC is designed from a very low level to run at 1080p, so driving a 1600p display will require disabling all native GPU rendering. If you want to experiment with it yourself, here’s the version of config.txt that I’ve tested on a Pi 3 and Pi Zero.

Hope this helps – rest assured that we’re very aware that there’s interest in projects of this nature, and that we hope to make available the relevant resources and products over the coming weeks and months.

Looking Glass


Thanks for the update. Definitely interested and I supposed my laptop will tie me over until I see what you guys come up with. I’d like to see two options: 1) a cheap still viewer that just runs a holo slide show preferably fanless and 2) something that can drive the animated (obviously at more cost).