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LG’s bendable 48-inch OLED TV is a literal game-changer

LG Display introduces world’s first 48-inch Bendable Cinematic Sound OLED display
LG Display introduces world’s first 48-inch Bendable Cinematic Sound OLED display LG

Dedicated gaming monitors and full-size TVs have been on a collision course for years. Gaming monitors have been getting bigger, with more TV-like features, and TVs, specifically OLED TVs, have been incorporating many of the technologies that gamers demand. But at CES 2021, these two worlds have completely collided in one awesome new display from LG Display. It’s one of the most exciting new TVs at CES this year.

Known simply as the 48-inch Bendable OLED TV with CSO, it isn’t an actual TV you can buy yet, but we’re guessing it won’t be long before that changes, and when it does, it will be a literal game-changer for those who want one no-compromises display for all of their visual media.

LG Bendable Gaming OLED TV
LG Display

At the heart of the Bendable OLED TV is just that: A paper-thin OLED screen that can curve toward the viewer with the press of a button. The curved shape this creates is very pronounced. Most of the best widescreen gaming monitors use a 1,800R radius, which means that if you completed their curved shape into a full circle, that circle would be 1.8 meters (about 5.9 feet) in diameter. The Bendable OLED TV, by contrast, uses a 1,000R radius, which would create a much smaller, 1-meter, or 3.2-foot circle. The tighter the curve, the more immersive the visual experience.

Ready to kick back with a movie or show? Simply press the button and the screen returns to a more traditional, flat profile.

We don’t know for sure if the Bendable OLED TV will feature the full HDMI 2.1 spec (it almost certainly will) but LG has already confirmed two specs that will matter to gamers: The OLED panel has a response time of 0.1 milliseconds, a native refresh rate of 120Hz, and a wide variable refresh rate range from 40Hz to 120Hz.

LG’s 2020 OLED TV lineup was the first to incorporate support for both AMD Freesync and Nvidia’s G-SYNC variable refresh rate (VRR) technologies, so it’s a good bet these will be present on the 48-inch bendable model, too.

Even the sound experience on this TV could be beneficial to gamers. The “CSO” in the product name refers to Cinematic Sound OLED, LG’s name for a clever audio system that uses the entire OLED panel as a speaker. An ultra-thin 0.6mm exciter makes contact with the screen, which creates the necessary vibrations to produce sound. LG claims that it offers a vivid sense of reality, as if the on-screen characters were talking directly to the viewer. It’s not a stretch to think this could benefit certain game genres like racing, or flight simulation.

We’ve already pointed out that the newest OLED TVs are the best way to get a big-screen gaming experience. When LG eventually rolls out its 48-inch Bendable OLED, it will likely become the gaming TV to beat.

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Simon Cohen
Contributing Editor, A/V
Simon Cohen covers a variety of consumer technologies, but has a special interest in audio and video products, like…
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