LG Display’s new OLED gaming monitor can switch between flat and curved modes on the fly.
One of the first decisions to make when purchasing a gaming monitor is whether it should be flat or curved. Both have advantages and disadvantages. Curved screens provide greater immersion in games and can reduce eye strain, but they are prone to glare and aren’t ideal if you work with straight lines.
LG, the Korean display specialists, has a different solution. LG Display will demonstrate a 48-inch OLED gaming monitor that can switch from flat to curved with the press of a button at CES 2021: the Bendable CSO (Cinematic Sound OLED) display.
Given that LG produces some of the best televisions on the market, this is a very exciting development, and the company promises that the screen will provide “a uniform viewing distance from the center of the screen to its edge.”
The screen, in addition to unfolding to a curvature radius of up to 1,000R, has some other tricks up its sleeve, including the ‘cinematic sound’ mentioned in the working title. A 0.6mm film exciter beneath the panel converts the screen into a speaker. LG claims that hearing sound directly from the screen will make your gaming sessions more immersive.
OLED technology is gaining traction in the TV and phone markets, but it has yet to gain traction in PC gaming. It does have some advantages, such as each pixel emitting its light for an infinite contrast ratio, resulting in superb picture quality. LG promises a response time of 0.1 milliseconds, which should be sufficient for even the most twitchy shooters.
However, for the most discerning gamers, there is a weak point: refresh rates. While LG Display’s Bendable CSO supports a variable refresh rate from 40Hz to 120Hz, which is comparable to the best TVs (120Hz has only recently become available via HDMI 2.1), the best gaming monitors typically hit a minimum of 144Hz and go all the way up to 360Hz. The refresh rate has a direct impact on the number of frames per second that can be displayed (for example, a 120Hz screen will cap at 120fps), so it’s important for performance gamers.
Still, 120fps isn’t exactly slow, and many gamers may be willing to overlook that drawback in exchange for the ability to switch between curved and flatscreen gaming with the press of a button. For the time being, however, this is just a concept with no price or release date in sight. However, if it captures people’s attention at CES 2021, LG Display’s bendable OLED could be commercially available soon.