Consumers invited to try out 3D television were less enthusiastic about purchasing a system after they were given a chance to view the technology, according to a study of consumer attitudes.

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A viewer wears special glasses to experience Samsung's new 3D TV during a press preview in New York in March. ((Bebeto Matthews/Associated press))

Still, 52 per cent of consumers who tried out 3D televisions said it was a better experience than they had expected, according to a study conducted by The Nielsen Co. for the Cable & Telecommunications Association for Marketing. The study was released Thursday.

"There is a lot of interest in 3D TV but there are barriers that you have to overcome to make it a successful experience," said Char Beales, president and CEO of the association.

Aside from the cost of buying 3D sets at a time the technology is just becoming available, the glasses required to watch them are a major hindrance. Fifty-seven per cent of people surveyed cited the glasses as a reason they were not likely to buy a set. Nearly nine in 10 people worry that it will constrain them from multitasking while the TV is on, the survey said.

It suggests that the true breakthrough for the technology won't come until sets are developed that allow 3D viewing without the glasses, Beales said.

The percentage of people who said they were interested in buying a 3D set during the next year went down when these willing consumers were brought in to see how it worked, Nielsen said.

People are also concerned there is not enough 3D programming available yet to make a purchase worthwhile.

More than three-quarters of people surveyed said 3D viewing is best-suited to special events like sports or movies than regular TV viewing, the survey said.

Seven in 10 regular gamers expressed interest in playing games in 3D, Nielsen said.

Nielsen conducted focus groups and a survey of 425 randomly selected people who answered questions and watched a 30-minute highlight reel of 3D television. The margin of error is plus or minusĀ five percentage points.