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Circuit Breaker

Soundwall’s touch-controlled artwork doubles as a speaker

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A thing you didn’t ask for

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Soundwall

Today, Soundwall is updating its line of speaker artwork — spartwork, if you will — with the launch of its new Nova line. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Soundwall, the idea is that you can pick out a piece of art or upload your own, and Soundwall will ship you an aluminum piece that not only looks nice but also functions as a speaker. Yes, you read that right. The Soundwall is made of aluminum, and the art is transferred onto it using a process called dye sublimation. Two things for the price of one! What a deal! Except that a Soundwall piece starts at $900, so while it might be a deal, it’s an expensive one.

The new Nova line includes a touch bar to control the speaker — you can play, pause, or skip songs — as well as mood lighting in a range of colors that can be customized. There’s also a presence sensor on the bottom of the frame that can detect motion to activate the lights. Soundwall connects over Bluetooth or Wi-Fi and has to be plugged into the wall for power.

Now, I can’t speak to the sound quality or the subjective art quality of Soundwall, but I can say that there are other art displays already on the market. Granted, those art displays don’t double as a speaker but they at least offer the option of changing artwork. Soundwall might be a more enticing if I could rotate my artwork continuously, like on the EO2. What if you get sick of your floating astronaut?