LG’s upcoming OLED TV claims to make sound without speakers

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LG debuted its new 97-inch OLED.EX TV during the K-Display 2022 event in Seoul, South Korea and it's taking an unusual approach to audio on OLED displays.

The OLED.EX TV sports LG's new Film CSO (Cinematic Sound OLED) feature that allows the display to vibrate and generate audio without the need for external speakers. Instead, a 5.1 channel sound system is embedded inside the display which the company claims can create “a cinematic level of immersion.” A typical 5.1 system is made up of a center speaker with four others surrounding it and a subwoofer for bass.

Embedded audio

Not much is known about Film CSO or how the sound system will be arranged in the OLED.EX TV. It does, however, remind us of Sony's Acoustic Surface Audio Plus system which can be found on the Sony A80K TV. Ultimately, we don't know how similar LG's feature will be as there's very little information on Film CSO, but we can look at Sony to guess at how it might work.

Sony TVs with Acoustic Surface Audio Plus has four front-facing speakers, two actuators, and tweeters in the back for immersion. It's the actuators themselves that vibrate the screen delicately to output sound and ensure audio is synched with the visuals. Audio Plus can even be enhanced with an amplifier to have the display serve as the main speaker.

We contacted LG and asked for more information on Film CSO. Specifically, we want to know how does the sound system not interfere with the display, assuming there aren't any actuators. This story will be updated if we get a response.

Better and brighter

Aside from the audio system, the OLED.EX is slated to have some impressive visual fidelity.

LG claims its 97-inch display is the “biggest OLED TV panel ever made”, which isn’t really true. Earlier this year, it launched the 97-inch G2 OLED, so the company already reached this milestone. Perhaps it would be more accurate to say that LG debuted the biggest OLED TV with OLED.EX technology. There are other TVs with this feature albeit smaller at 48-inches and 77-inches being developed by Philips

OLED EX technology first debuted back in December 2021 with LG claiming it can improve OLED brightness by 30 percent. This is thanks to a substance called deuterium (also known as heavy hydrogen), which is an isotope of hydrogen that packs an extra neutron. Without getting too deep into the scientific details, this unique atomic structure allows for brighter screens.

LG also claims its TV can output realistic colors and finer details thanks to “personalized algorithm-based EX Technology''. We reached out to LG again to find out what that term means. We’ll update this story if we hear back. 

The price tag is unknown, too, but for reference, we can look at the 97-inch LG G2 display. It costs around $27,000.

See-through TV

Also at the K-DIsplay 2022 event, LG showed off more of its transparent OLED displays, which were first seen back in December 2021.

We've seen how they would look in a store setting, but we got a preview of how transparent screens might work in an office. LG revealed a new model, the  Transparent OLED Solution for Conference Room; also known by its more succinct name, the E-Crystal.

The E-Crystal is a glass wall equipped with OLED panels that can be used as a monitor to display charts. It's designed to free up space in conference rooms that might normally be taken up by multiple monitors. Release dates and price tags for all of LG's Transparent OLED displays are unknown. We’ll be eagerly waiting for more news.

For those interested in display technology that's not see-through but flexible, Samsung just held its Unpacked 2022 event where the tech giant revealed the new Galaxy Fold 3 and the Watch 5 Pro. We recommend checking out our recap for a quick summary. 

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