Gadgets, much like fashion, can make style comebacks. For tech: we’ve lived through the ’80s beige keyboards, transitioned to the ’90s with gray and black plastic video game systems plus bright colors for Sony’s Walkman and Nintendo’s Game Boy handhelds, and then, at the turn of the millennium, welcomed the amazing see-through iMacs, N64 controllers, and other gadgets with clear casings.
And just like the return of grunge makeup and baggy jeans, transparent tech is back. See-through devices are leapfrogging over the ’00s piano white iPods, ’10s matte black smartphones, and some of today’s colored aluminum and glass finishes to (hopefully) become the next big trend. Now, we’ve got clear smartphones like the Nothing Phone, see-through earbuds like the Beats Studio buds, colorful translucent shell casings for game consoles, and even chargers and USB-C cables that show off some capacitors for your pleasure.
Jan 17DJI’s wireless Mic 2 adds noise-canceling and recording quality upgrades.
The DJI Mic 2 launched today, with the company known for its drones and cameras producing a second-generation wireless clip-on lav mic that pairs with a transmitter attached to your camera or smartphone. It connects via USB-C, 3.5 analog jack, or Bluetooth.
New features include intelligent noise canceling, a see-through case (you know how we love those), and a slightly larger 1.1-inch touchscreen. It’s out now and will run you $349 for the two-mic kit or $219 for a single.
Jan 12LG’s other transparent TV is the one I want in my living room.
LG’s DukeBox is pitched as a modern-day jukebox, but in person, it’s got much more potential.
A smooth-sounding 3D audio speaker with a 30-inch transparent OLED display that lets you see its retro-style insides and displays album art, the DukeBox is also a TV.
The music controls on the screen are just for show — it’s not a touch screen. But if LG ever ships this concept product it should totally be one. It would make a gorgeous smart display.
Jan 8Samsung’s got its own transparent display.
As a reminder, MicroLED — first seen in “The Wall” at CES several years ago — has many of the same benefits as OLED (like self-lit pixels) without the organic downsides or chance of burn-in. But MicroLED is still too expensive despite the seamless panels getting smaller and more TV-like in recent years.
Transparent display prototypes have had a presence on the CES show floor for many years. They’re a guaranteed way to wow people and showcase the unique capabilities of an OLED panel. But LG has seemingly decided that the time has come to ship a real, bona fide transparent TV that people will actually be able to buy this year. At some undisclosed date. For what’s certain to be an exorbitant amount of money.Read Article >
The company has announced the OLED Signature T (you can guess what the T stands for) here at CES 2024. The product that LG demoed for press in Las Vegas isn’t exactly “final.” The 77-inch display won’t be changing at all, but the company hasn’t decided whether it’ll come bundled with all the side furniture you see in these photos or if it’ll sell those items separately.
Jan 8Sharge’s newest sci-fi power banks look pretty sweet in person.
I’m a sucker for Sharge’s charging gear because it looks like nothing else, and that continues to be true of the new Sharge 170 model and especially the “Internet Hostkey” in my CES hands-on gallery below. Be warned that the Hostkey comes in a wimpy 40Wh capacity model in addition to its reasonable 72Wh one. Here’s my video with a few earlier Sharge products.
Jan 2LG puts vacuum tube audio behind transparent OLED display.
The DukeBox is a modern take on the jukebox from the company’s experimental LG Labs division. It combines front-firing speakers on the bottom and a 360-degree speaker on top with a vacuum tube audio system behind a transparent OLED panel that can display things like track information, album art, or... a fireplace, naturally. It’ll be demonstrated at the big CES show starting next week in Las Vegas.
Nov 23, 2023
Dbrand just sued a rival casemaker for copying its “Teardown” skins that let you see under the back cover of your phone, laptop, or handheld gaming machine.Read Article >
It’s also — purely coincidentally, I’m sure! — announcing a brand-new set of skins that take the idea even farther. No, I don’t mean “further”; I’m talking about going literally millimeters deeper into a device’s components with a 450-kilovolt X-ray, showing details you can’t get just by photographing a gadget with its back cover off.
Nov 9, 2023Here is Valve’s own transparent Steam Deck.
It’s a limited-edition $679 1TB model of the just-announced Steam Deck OLED, and this one’s only for sale in the US and Canada.
Valve says it’s an experiment and is hopeful it can do more colorways in the future. It’ll come with an exclusive case, too, based on the new case within a case that ships with the $649 version.
Oct 27, 2023
The latest entry in the renewed transparent gadget craze: your Asus ROG Ally handheld gaming PC. Today, lauded Steam Deck accessory maker Jsaux is taking the wraps off a $40 frosted RGB rear shell for the Asus handheld that lets you see some of its delightful innards.Read Article >
It might not give you a perfect look through the back, now that I see how much of that frosting blocks the red circuit boards. It also probably won’t enhance your cooling like the company’s Steam Deck backplate, but that frosted surface should bathe nicely in RGB light, not to mention the five light-catching stickers you can place inside.
Oct 6, 2023
Ever heard of Sharge? The company is arguably just as responsible as Nothing for bringing transparent gadgets back — its see-through batteries swarmed social media and have inspired a wave of copycats. Less famously, it sells a kickass charger shaped like a classic Mac that offers 67 watts of USB-C PD charging across three ports despite its tiny frame.Read Article >
They all tend to be pricey, but through October 11th, almost all of its chargers and power banks are on sale for their best prices ever — after you clip the Amazon coupon codes, anyhow.
Oct 5, 2023
The Flipper Zero — which the company calls a “portable multi-tool for pentesters and geeks in a toy-like body,” Verge friend Chris Person calls “a Swiss Army Knife of antennas,” and my kids call “the meebo” because I use it to emulate Amiibos for them — is now available in a limited edition with a transparent shell. I could have made several sentences from that info, but it felt appropriate to the spirit of Flipper Zero to cram it all into one.Read Article >
Aside from the casing, the limited-edition translucent model is just like the other Flipper Zero units, with (among other things) RFID, NFC, sub-GHz, Bluetooth, USB-C, and a row of GPIO ports along the top so you can interface with other hardware. In July, the company added an app store, which makes it easier for dilettantes like me to find cool software for the Flipper Zero.
Oct 2, 2023
Gaming accessory company Human Things is coming out with new Genki ShadowCast external capture cards that feature higher-quality recording for livestream sessions, plus a slightly souped-up new Covert Dock GaN charger for Nintendo Switch. The company is crowdfunding its new “Alpine collection” on Kickstarter, including ShadowCast 2, ShadowCast 2 Pro, and Covert Dock 2.Read Article >
The Genki ShadowCast 2 Pro capture device supports up to 4K video at 60 frames per second and can handle HDMI passthrough with HDR and VRR. The company claims it has an instant setup process — just plug your gaming system (for example, a PS5) into the ShadowCast 2 Pro hardware, then plug in a USB-C iPad or a computer. You can capture video through Genki Studio (now on iPad), OBS, or other software and also view it on a TV plugged into the second HDMI port. You can even capture at 144 or 240 frames per second if you drop the resolution to 1440p or 1080p, respectively. There are also two 3.5mm audio ports for monitoring and mixing.
Sep 26, 2023
Angry Miao usually specializes in bespoke mechanical keyboards with zany or nonsensical designs that cost small fortunes. But today, its new Japan-based sub-brand, Dry Studio, is announcing a Lamborghini-inspired gaming keyboard that looks like a futuristic race car on your desk, yet it clocks in at a price some of us mere mortals can actually stomach.Read Article >
It’s called the Black Diamond 75, a pre-built 75 percent mechanical keyboard (switches, PBT keycaps, and PCB-mounted stabilizers all included and preinstalled) with an integrated wrist wrest, and it starts at just $240 on Indiegogo ($204 on an “early bird” special) — with expected shipments in November.
Sep 25, 2023
Another special edition of the Analogue Pocket handheld is on the way. Later this week, the company will be launching a new transparent version of the device, which will be available in seven different colors: clear, smoke, red, blue, orange, green, and purple.Read Article >
Like the recent glow-in-the-dark version of the Pocket, Analogue says that the transparent handheld will only be available in “limited quantities.” It goes on sale on September 29th at 11AM ET on the company’s site and will cost $249, a slight bump from the base model’s $219 price tag. Units are expected to start shipping two weeks later.
Aug 27, 2023I have never wanted a PDP gamepad until this very moment.
I’m a sucker for transparent tech. But PDP’s new Switch and Xbox gamepads aren’t just see-through — as Verge alum Alice writes at Polygon, they’re dioramas. Sega, Nintendo, and Hasbro are all helping put figurines and graphics inside. Wired start at $40, wireless at $60, arriving as soon as September.
Aug 23, 2023Transparent batteries are hot.
I wouldn’t say they’re practical, but I absolutely love how they look — and the new $59 Icemag even has its own tiny RGB fan.
These three batteries are all from Sharge (I think it rhymes with “Charge”) and I can’t wait to see what the Shenzhen company does next. While I don’t own these batteries, I did Kickstart its tiny transparent SSD enclosure, where my old Steam Deck drive will hopefully soon live.
Aug 18, 2023It’s like if the Game Boy Advance SP was even tinier.
That’s the best way I can describe the FunKey S, a very adorable, but extremely tiny, retro gaming console. It comes in a bunch of colors including the late 90s-early 2000s classic Atomic Purple and should be able to emulate consoles up to the original PlayStation.
But given it looks like it was made for ants I wouldn’t anticipate either the most pleasing gaming experience or the longest lasting one.
Naturally I ordered one as soon as I saw it because I want to see what Syphon Filter looks like on a 1.54-inch screen. I’ll report back once I find out.
Jul 21, 2023Jsaux’s Steam Deck RGB transparent cover and docks are now on sale.
Don’t miss our report on how Jsaux rode the Steam Deck to escape the Amazon wilderness.
Jul 20, 2023See-through VR headsets should be a thing.
The transparent PS VR2 has been shown, and here’s a special edition clear Quest Pro unit from Meta CTO Andrew Bosworth, posted during the launch of Threads. Since Meta’s shutting down production of these, we don’t expect to see it released, but at least it exists.
Jul 12, 2023If you own a Steam Deck, it should be (at least partially) see-through.
But the best part of this excellent deal isn’t even that the user-replaceable shell comes with a heatsink for better cooling, or that it also includes swappable rear buttons to choose your preferred feel. No, the best part is that these shells come in six fantastic colors, and one of them is atomic freakin’ purple!
Jun 30, 2023Jsaux’s RGB transparent back cover for Steam Deck is $40 next month.
They tell us the $40 PC0106 has its own battery, but it’s not clear what kind. Is that a USB-C port and a button on the back to fire up the LEDs, right beneath the Deck’s volume keys? Seems like! We’re asking.
More here, including Jsaux’s new RGB dock — which has an expanding stand so it can work with other handhelds as well.