Japanese Kyocera Corporation has merged a piezoelectric actuator with a special resin film to produce an ultra thin piezo film speaker.
The speakers have already been adopted into the LG 55 inch curved screen OLED TV with other companies already showing an interest in the technology. While it is currently being used in state of the art televisions, there is potential for the technology in devices such as tablets and even smartphones.
The Smart Sonic Receiver was the first design, created in 2012 for smartphones sold in Japan and North America. It used a ceramic actuator to send vibrations ‘“via tissue conduction and traditional air conduction through display screens without the need for a traditional earpiece or loudspeaker’. The newer Smart Sonic Sound uses the same basic technology but with ‘a different implementation that amplifies air conduction’.
The LG television has a thin edge thickness of only 4.3mm and traditional speakers would cause problems for such a thin panel. Kyocera say “As organic light-emitting displays (OLED) and 4K high-definition screens create a superior visual experience, it has become necessary for audio technology to rise to new heights as well.”
The Smart Sonic Sound is available in three sizes. The larger speaker measures 70 x 110 x 1.5 mm and weighs 23g with a frequency range of 200hz to 20khz. The medium sized version measures 35 x 65 x 1.0mm and weighs 7g with a frequency range of 500hz to 20khz. The smallest speaker is 19.6 x 27.5 x 0.7mm, weighing just 1g with a frequency range of 600hz to 20khz.
Kyocera claim that their new speaker design offers more balanced directional projection of sound waves when compared against a traditional speaker. It can produce sound across a 180 degree range. The company say that the Smart Sonic Sound is capable of reproducing ‘delicate and minute sounds such as raindrops and background effects with greater clarity’.
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Kitguru says: Super slim audio tech for the future. We like.