Light Start: Harman puts Zoom in a car, Sony’s speaker looks bizarre, JBL earbuds raise the bar and LG screens shine like a star

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Sony shows off company’s first 360-degree speakers

When you’re listening to… well, to anything it’s really important that the sound be good. It should envelop you, wrap you up in its harmonies. That’s the idea behind 360-degree audio and while other companies may have beaten Sony to the punch, that doesn’t mean they aren’t responding. The  SRS-RA5000 and SRS-RA3000 speakers are Sony’s first speakers that come equipped with 360 Reality Audio. These monstrous speakers should be able to create an audio bubble around listeners to replicate to provide an all-encompassing music experience.

The SRS-RA5000 comes equipped with three upward-facing speakers, three speakers on every side and a woofer. The smaller version, the RA3000 comes with two tweeters a full-range driver and two passive radiators. Both speakers are able to calibrate the placement of audio based on the room they’re sitting in which is a very cool feature indeed.

While there’s no word on local pricing or availability yet, we know that they’ll cost £500 so expect them to be rather pricey. Both speakers are slated to launch in February of 2021.

Source: The Verge

LG announces 42-inch OLED TV, its smallest OLED panel yet

LG’s one of the indisputable kings of OLED displays. The company has consistently developed some of the best screens out there, especially in terms of OLED displays. Now LG has announced it’s smallest OLED panel yet: a 42-inch TV. In the same breath, LG also announced that it was also releasing a massive 83-inch OLED panel. Nice to have both ends of the size spectrum represented, we guess.

This announcement comes specifically from LG Display, a division in the company that deals mainly with manufacturers rather than consumers. While you might not be able to purchases these displays themselves, you can expect to see the parts used in other brands of TVs beyond LG’s current range. So whether you’re in the market for a more compact OLED or a screen that’ll make the neighbours jealous, it looks like LG display has you covered.

Source: The Verge

JBL launches range of wireless earbuds to take the fight to Apple’s AirPods Pro

Getting out in front of the hustle and bustle of the Consumer Electronic Show was probably a good call on JBL’s part because now we can pay attention to the range of new wireless earbuds it’s releasing out into the world. Four in total, it seems like JBL is really trying to corner the market but providing customers with an option they could possibly be wanting. The new earbuds include: the JBL Live Pro Plus ($180), the JBL Tour Pro Plus ($200), JBL Reflect Mini NC TWS ($150) and the JBL Live Free NC Plus ($150).

Now the specs on these earbuds range dramatically, with each variant designed to appeal to a different demographic. The “Tour” series has supposedly been built to appeal to “business professionals” while the Live Pro Plus earbuds are meant to cater to a market that wants AirPods without selling off three kidneys. Check out Stuff for a detailed breakdown of what each version today. Both the Live Free NC Plus and the Live Pro Plus launch in March with other variants slated for later in 2021.

Source: CNET

Harman wants to turn you car into a game room and a podcast studio

We at Stuff do our share of gaming and spend ample time recording podcasts but never have we wanted to do these things in our cars. Harman, a company which owns an assortment of audio brands such as JBL and AKG, wants to help drivers embrace the idea that their car is an environment to get comfortable. One such example of this still conceptual tech is the inclusion of cabin that redesigns it for those looking at playing games while on the go. Gaming Intense Max is an “automotive experience” that shifts the car’s seats and dims the interior while displaying your game on a QLED or OLED screen at the front of car. One has to imagine that installing such a system depends on your car but if it becomes commercially available, that would be rad.

The other conceptual “automotive experience” (we’ll never get tired of such a dumb phrase) is a Creator Studio. What it really just amounts to is a recording studio that can be used to conduct and host Zoom meetings while on the go. Not literally on the go, mind you. That would be horrifically dangerous, which goes for all of these systems, we suppose.

The last “automotive experience” is Drive-Live Concert which essentially allows drivers and passengers to stream live music straight to the monitor in the car. Using the power of 5G, users will basically just have a better radio that gives them pictures to go alongside the music. The wild part of this is that users can interact with the performers and even vote on which song gets played next. Sure, this could be very handy in a drive-in situation but given how niche something like this, one has to imagine the user base wouldn’t be greater enough to go into mass production.

Source: Road Show

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I completed a Masters Degree just so someone might take my opinions seriously one day. Also writes about video games over at Critical Hit.

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