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LG's latest audio tech goes for the neck

LG's latest audio tech goes fo...
LG Tone Studio is a Bluetooth surround sound system in a neckband
LG Tone Studio is a Bluetooth surround sound system in a neckband
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LG Tone Studio is a Bluetooth surround sound system in a neckband
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LG Tone Studio is a Bluetooth surround sound system in a neckband
LG Tone Studio is a Bluetooth surround sound system in a neckband
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LG Tone Studio is a Bluetooth surround sound system in a neckband
LG Tone Free is a Bluetooth neckband that stows and charges a set of wireless earbuds
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LG Tone Free is a Bluetooth neckband that stows and charges a set of wireless earbuds
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LG's latest foray into wearables looks to be Bluetooth wireless sound systems worn around the neck. The company will unveil a pair of neckbands at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas next month – the LG Tone Studio that sports surround sound speakers, and the Tone Free that stows and charges a pair of wireless earbuds around your collar.

The Tone Studio is a horseshoe-shaped wearable speaker bar of sorts. It features two full range speakers on the top and two that vibrate on the bottom, to provide what the company calls a 3D surround sound experience. It's designed for personal listening to movies, video games or streaming music.

This isn't a totally new concept. At CES 2016, we were introduced to the Music Wrap, a crowdfunded set of speakers worn around the neck.

While wearables might make you think of listening while on the go, the Tone Studio doesn't look to be the best choice for your morning jog, as it would probably flop around quite a bit, although it might be good for a mellow stroll. Instead, LG is emphasizing convenience and audio quality with the Tone Studio, which was designed with help from cinematic sound experts DTS and boasts a hi-fi digital-to-analog converter (DAC).

Tone Studio also features "dual play," which allows for connecting two of the neckbands to share audio from the same source.

LG's second new neckband-based product is Tone Free, which is similar to the Tone Ultra we first saw in 2013, or Phiaton's BT 100 NC, except that it ditches all wires between the neckband and a set of earbuds. Instead, the band is used to stow and charge the fully wireless earbuds when they aren't in your ears. The band also vibrates for incoming calls and texts, and recognizes voice commands to receive or ignore calls.

LG Tone Free is a Bluetooth neckband that stows and charges a set of wireless earbuds
LG Tone Free is a Bluetooth neckband that stows and charges a set of wireless earbuds

There's no word on availability or pricing for either of the new neckbands just yet. We hope to hear more at CES, starting January 5 in Las Vegas.

Source: LG

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4 comments
Derek Howe
Nice, if the price isn't crazy I'll probably get one. It would be great to have for work, beats having a radio cranked up 100 ft away.
Timelord
Actually, the concept of the wearable speaker goes back much further than the Music Wrap. Google "bone fone." It was a wearable radio in the late 1970s that likewise draped around your neck. As I recall, there was a revised version (Bone Fone II?) a couple of years after the product was introduced that included an input for a Walkman or other personal audio players.
Michael Lauzon
This isn't really a new idea, using Bluetooth for it is, for example, lookup the following from the late '70s -- '79 to be exact -- I tried one in early '84:
Bone Fone
It was a radio with speakers that you hung around your neck, yes it failed, but it was cool IMHO!
Wolf0579
This must be a spin-off from that "backpack" rig George W. Bush used to cheat with in his debate with Viet-Nam war hero and senator, John Kerry.