LG is set to unveil a tube-driven transparent OLED ‘DukeBox’ at CES and be still my beating heart

CES 2024 is nearly upon us and the raft of long awaited products are starting to be teased at a considerable rate. Amongst the expected laptop refreshes and big screen bonanzas, however, there are always some more, shall we say, unusual products that steal the show for many. LG may have set the bar pretty high rather early this year with some reveals from its LG Labs, chief amongst them being a rather stunning looking audio device it’s calling the “DukeBox”.

LG describes it as an “innovative audio product” that aims to combine vacuum tube audio chops with an adjustable transparency OLED panel that can be used both as a control method and as display, or even to create the illusion of a fireplace glowing away over the top of those rather prominent tubes. 

Audio output is handled by front-facing speakers at the bottom and a 360-degree speaker on the top, which in combination with those valves should create something of a unique audio and visual experience.

LG says that the DukeBox is designed to be versatile and even suggests that it could be used to enjoy a movie, although how far the transparency on that gorgeous glass fronted OLED display can be adjusted may well be a deciding factor as to whether you could watch something on it without being distracted by those glowy valves. I can’t imagine myself watching a film on what amounts to a glass-fronted tube-amp, but hey, I guess you could?

That being said, as an object of desire it’s certainly something. Evoking something of a nostalgic air combined with cutting edge OLED technology strikes me as a smart move for a product designed for the high-end market, although given the premium vibes here I’d expect it to be fist-bitingly expensive. I also have some concerns about how fingerprint resistant that frontage proves to be, as nothing ruins the look of a gorgeous panel more than sticky smears and fingerprints all over it

Not one for those of you with children or pets, I reckon. But as an objet d’art it certainly looks like an absolute stunner, and one that’s had us cooing and cawing over in the PC Gamer hardware team group chat.

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It’s not the only unusual product set to be unveiled at the Las Vegas show, as LG will also show off an upgraded version of what they call the “Bon Voyage by LG Labs”, a “customised living space”, or what we in the UK would call a rather fancy caravan/trailer tent. 

This car-towed small space is designed to be furnished with various appliances, including, according to LG, a “Styler and shoe care products”. Certainly sounds like a much fancier version of the caravan holidays I went on as a kid, which involved fry-ups on a gas camping stove and a chemical toilet that was far too small for purpose.

Regardless, visitors to CES 2024 starting on January 9 can check out these products for themselves at the company’s booth, and we’ll be out at the show looking for the latest PC gaming developments, so stay tuned for that. Still, I reckon the DukeBox is the one to look for. I’ve seen enough caravans to last a lifetime. 

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