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Old October 23rd, 2012, 10:21 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default headphone whine with ICS

If you thought the headphone whine was bad at Bionic launch last year, the ICS whine is far worse.

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Old October 23rd, 2012, 10:58 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I have the whining issue as well, no dropped 4g though.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 11:59 AM   #3 (permalink)
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I have the whining issue as well, no dropped 4g though.
Verizon is sending me a Razr Maxx. If I don't like that one, I'll buy a newer phone such as the Note 2, most likely UNLESS the retail price is in the stratosphere.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 12:07 PM   #4 (permalink)
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PLUS, now I'm getting kicked down to 3G service where I normally have 4G 99% of the time and where another bionic is showing 4G at the same moment. I did a SIM card removal to get 4G back. sigh. this is the same BS we Bionic users have been experiencing since day one. So much for "ICS will fix 4G issues". HA!
Stupid question... did you factory default after getting the OTA update? I would try that first, after just going through this and helping dozens of users in the Rezound forum (went from GB to ICS two months ago), a factory reset fixed "strange" issues 98% of the time.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 12:42 PM   #5 (permalink)
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i guess u aren't familiar with the whine that was present last year? resets aren't the answer. a different phone, or waiting and hoping that the NEXT update fixes it, are the only solutions.
True, my son's Bionic never experienced this issue... but I would still try a factory reset first. If it wasn't there before the ICS update, then it is there, and most other people are not experiencing it, it wouldn't hurt to try. Then again, a free Moto Razr isn't a bad deal...
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 12:46 PM   #6 (permalink)
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True, my son's Bionic never experienced this issue... but I would still try a factory reset first. If it wasn't there before the ICS update, then it is there, and most other people are not experiencing it, it wouldn't hurt to try. Then again, a free Moto Razr isn't a bad deal...
yeah, I like the screen a bit better on the Razr line. besides which, I may end up with a Sammy pretty soon anyway. my only expense will be $10 for a shell/holster from Amazon, which I just ordered. of course I won't be able to use the car dock but I hardly used it anyway.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 12:47 PM   #7 (permalink)
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True, my son's Bionic never experienced this issue... but I would still try a factory reset first. If it wasn't there before the ICS update, then it is there, and most other people are not experiencing it, it wouldn't hurt to try. Then again, a free Moto Razr isn't a bad deal...
I agree ... try a Factory Data Reset after the ICS install.

I disagree ... hold out for a Razr Maxx HD.

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Old October 23rd, 2012, 12:59 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I agree ... try a Factory Data Reset after the ICS install.

I disagree ... hold out for a Razr Maxx HD.

... Thom
no way I'm going to spend a few hours reinstalling and setting everything up. I GUARANTEE that it will not fix the whine.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 01:11 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I had no whine before and no whine now and got my Bionic nearly a year ago. The only thing I have ever noticed is when I plug the line in to my car radio, I hear some faint garble which after listening carefully sounds like the built in FM radio bleeding through, but completely disappears when I am on a call or have an app going. Nothing during a call.

It's always possible that your Bionic is just a bad unit. Every product has them. If you believe it's a hardware issue, I don't know why you would want a Razr as, except for the screen and case, it's identical.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 01:13 PM   #10 (permalink)
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no way I'm going to spend a few hours reinstalling and setting everything up. I GUARANTEE that it will not fix the whine.
Since you are going to be sitting there with a Razr Maxx and a Bionic and are going to be removing everything from the Bionic. How about doing us all a favor and check out the problem after you do the Factory Data Reset on the Bionic (before you return it)?

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Old October 23rd, 2012, 01:23 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I had no whine before and no whine now and got my Bionic nearly a year ago.
I don't have the problem either but all Bionics aren't the same, apparently this is a real problem for some.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 01:28 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I don't have the problem either but all Bionics aren't the same, apparently this is a real problem for some.
Oh I know, and every product has it's "bad batches". No way to escape that.

My point is not to talk as if it's an issue for "every" Bionic. Because if someone really believes that this is a hardware issue that affects every Bionic, then not sure why they would want the Razr/Razr Maxx as, except for the screen and case, it's identical, so a person would have to believe the issue would exist in that phone as well.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 01:40 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Different versions of the CPU and other chips in different batches of phones. That's why some people get the 200Ghz speed bump and some don't. I would expect this has something to do with the headphone whine as well.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 02:17 PM   #14 (permalink)
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You don't know the history of the problem AND the history of MY comments about this issue, based on what you just wrote IF you are alluding to me. Last year when this problem was prevalent before the first bionic update, I never said it was a hardware issue. OTHER people did (the "engineer types") and what I had said at the time was to WAIT FOR THE UPDATE. the update, in December, fixed the issue. it is NOT hardware per se. it is a synergistic issue BETWEEN the device and the OS.
My point is how you phrased things. In the other thread you say...
"...gave us back headphone whine..." and in this thread you say, "...Damn Moto for releasing this update with the whine put back into the software...".

Sorry, they didn't "give us" back the whine as not everyone has it, and I seriously doubt that Motorola intentionally tried to make some flaw in the phone with the whine through the software update.

I honestly believe you have a flawed phone. These things happen. When I bough some new memory from my computer, the RAM I ordered was bad. The company was reputable, Newegg is obviously reputable, it's just that these things happen. Of course Verizon should bend over backwards to help you out, and that is the thing I hate about Verizon is how they seem to be anti-customer in this past year, year and a half.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 02:32 PM   #15 (permalink)
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For me, no headphone whine, no dropping to 3G, and no the notification bar icons are not harder to read just because they're blue now (as per the complaint in your other thread). I'm no expert but it makes zero sense to me that a software update could make changes to a headphone jack and bring the whine back or make it worse. I'm sure if it were a prevalent problem, they would have worked on it during all these past weeks that they were trying to get ICS builds approved by Verizon. Must just be your device. Try different headphones?
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 02:39 PM   #16 (permalink)
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If you thought the headphone whine was bad at Bionic launch last year, the ICS whine is far worse. Even using an attenuator doesn't help; nor does changing the various wired sound settings. Damn Moto for releasing this update with the whine put back into the software and damn Verizon for not noticing/caring. Kick me in the ass if I ever buy another Moto phone. Seriously, this is beyond belief.
Quick question. I'm curious if you were ever on the .232 leak? If so, did the headphone whine exist then?
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 02:40 PM   #17 (permalink)
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it's not just my phone. do a search for all the major Bionic forums online, from last September. I'm not going to argue with you about it.
I'm not saying it's just your phone. However, it's not every either which you seem to imply with your "us" and Motorola put the "whine put back into the software" comments.

Obviously there was an issue with maybe a batch of headphone jacks or maybe sound chips which could have affected an entire run. But it's certainly not something that all Bionic's siffer from or Motorola intentionally introduced.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 05:17 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quick question. I'm curious if you were ever on the .232 leak? If so, did the headphone whine exist then?
i dont do leaks. my phone is not a hobby.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 05:29 PM   #19 (permalink)
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i dont do leaks. my phone is not a hobby.
Just figured I would ask. It just made sense to me to run a reversable leak to try it out first before taking any updates to try and avoid the issues you are having now.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 05:47 PM   #20 (permalink)
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I'm getting the headphone whine as well. I listen to alot of music on my phone and it was never an issue till now. Also, I performed a factory reset before updating and afterwards (overkill?). I didn't experience this with my original Bionic last year but I remember it being an issue.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 05:51 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Just figured I would ask. It just made sense to me to run a reversable leak to try it out first before taking any updates to try and avoid the issues you are having now.
no problem. I know it is inevitable that I'll have to install updates (the nag screens drive me nuts!), so i simply waited til OTA and installed immediately as there's no way to avoid being bombarded by the nagging, that I know of. I hope the Maxx works out and if it doesn't I'm switching to Sammy. I put up with the whining in the headphones for months (ameliorated by the attenuation option in my QC15's) and am not about to keep this thing now that the attenuation can't resolve the higher amount of whine introduced by ICS. (not to mention other features I don't like in it). some features are better, but for me, some of them are not so hot.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 06:17 PM   #22 (permalink)
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I had taken it to VZW over the weekend because the data drops had become unbearable, fading in and out by the minute. Seeing as how my warranty is up in three weeks I thought it best to rule out any hardware issues before the update. They swapped my SIM card and told me to wait for the update to see if it corrected the problem. Since updating I'm still experiencing drops, although not nearly at the same frequency. I'll be taking it back this weekend which is unfortunate because, performance-wise, ICS has turned this into a new phone.
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 09:55 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Since you are going to be sitting there with a Razr Maxx and a Bionic and are going to be removing everything from the Bionic. How about doing us all a favor and check out the problem after you do the Factory Data Reset on the Bionic (before you return it)?

... Thom
I candothat. WillbeafewdaysbeforeIgetthereplacement
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Old October 23rd, 2012, 11:40 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Different people have different tastes and you want the Razr. It would be nice to know for other people weather or not the FDR corrects it.

An awful lot of the problems people have seem to be corrected by a FDR. There are of course other problems not corrected.

Thanks.

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Old October 24th, 2012, 12:17 AM   #25 (permalink)
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no problem. I know it is inevitable that I'll have to install updates (the nag screens drive me nuts!), so i simply waited til OTA and installed immediately as there's no way to avoid being bombarded by the nagging, that I know of. I hope the Maxx works out and if it doesn't I'm switching to Sammy. I put up with the whining in the headphones for months (ameliorated by the attenuation option in my QC15's) and am not about to keep this thing now that the attenuation can't resolve the higher amount of whine introduced by ICS. (not to mention other features I don't like in it). some features are better, but for me, some of them are not so hot.
Darn... If you was happy on gingerbread, I wish we would've met sooner... There is a way to stop an update nag. Thing is, you have to be rooted. Both my bionics are set not to receive updates. The one that's still under warranty, I did do the OTA today, but it is blocked from receiving any updates. My other bionic is and will remain on gingerbread primarily for weptop uses, it is also blocked. Of course nothing is permanent, I just renamed a couple of files and I don't get pestered to update. And if one ever slipped by, it won't install anyways. If you decide for what ever reason you don't want to update another Motorola, let me know.
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Old October 24th, 2012, 06:38 AM   #26 (permalink)
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It is critical before you root your Bionic that you acknowledge that you are assuming total responsibility for whatever happens. If you aren't prepared to replace your Bionic at full retail from your own pocket then you should not root.

Please post all messages requiring root in ... Bionic - All Things Root - Android Forums.

... Thom
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Old October 24th, 2012, 07:06 AM   #27 (permalink)
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For what it's worth, I've had my Bionic since April... never rooted, no leaks loaded, and I never had audio issues until the OTA update to ICS yesterday.. now I've got the high pitched whine, and the overall audio quality sounds a bit more tinny as well.

Otherwise, it's like a brand new phone.
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Old October 24th, 2012, 08:44 AM   #28 (permalink)
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For what it's worth, I've had my Bionic since April... never rooted, no leaks loaded, and I never had audio issues until the OTA update to ICS yesterday.. now I've got the high pitched whine, and the overall audio quality sounds a bit more tinny as well.

Otherwise, it's like a brand new phone.

I am having the same issues. After the update yesterday I had my phone hooked up to my car aux port and notice the quality of my music has gone down a ton. I didn't even think of linking it to the ICS update. But it is really bad, almost unbareable to listen to now. If there isn't a fix for this soon I will be asking for a replacement phone because I listen to music every day(in my car/ running/ at home)

As far as the data drop, its pretty much gone away for me which was a huge plus. But I've lost one problem and now have gained another.
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Old October 24th, 2012, 08:56 AM   #29 (permalink)
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Did you do a Factory Data Reset?

... Thom
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Old October 24th, 2012, 09:26 AM   #30 (permalink)
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No, but I'm willing to try. What information will I lose by doing so? And what should be backed up (and how)?

Forgive the ignorance, I've just never done it, and would prefer it to be as painless as possible lol.
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Old October 24th, 2012, 03:31 PM   #31 (permalink)
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For those of you with audio quality issues go to settings > sound > wired stereo devices and uncheck 'Enable audio effects'. This doesn't fix the whine problem but it might help when listening to music in the car.
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Old October 24th, 2012, 03:44 PM   #32 (permalink)
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Ok, just did a factory data reset, and the whine is still there.

Lovely....
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Old October 24th, 2012, 04:03 PM   #33 (permalink)
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Ok, just did a factory data reset, and the whine is still there.

Lovely....
Thanks for testing that out, looks like we are stuck until the next update.
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Old October 24th, 2012, 04:22 PM   #34 (permalink)
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It is critical before you root your Bionic that you acknowledge that you are assuming total responsibility for whatever happens. If you aren't prepared to replace your Bionic at full retail from your own pocket then you should not root.

Please post all messages requiring root in ... Bionic - All Things Root - Android Forums.

... Thom
Most excellent point. I wasn't going to root my upgraded phone, but... Before I rooted I did a check on the root checker in stock recovery and it indicated that my phone is currently rooted when it wasn't! ! It read 1/1. This, after I fxz'd back to unrooted stock and took the upgrade and had not yet rooted it. So, I figured I had nothing to lose anyways.
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Old October 24th, 2012, 04:55 PM   #35 (permalink)
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For those of you with audio quality issues go to settings > sound > wired stereo devices and uncheck 'Enable audio effects'. This doesn't fix the whine problem but it might help when listening to music in the car.
I already did that. didn't help AT ALL.
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Old October 24th, 2012, 05:59 PM   #36 (permalink)
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Most excellent point. I wasn't going to root my upgraded phone, but... Before I rooted I did a check on the root checker in stock recovery and it indicated that my phone is currently rooted when it wasn't! ! It read 1/1. This, after I fxz'd back to unrooted stock and took the upgrade and had not yet rooted it. So, I figured I had nothing to lose anyways.
As reported in another thread and in other forums. The 0/0 1/1 1/0 seems to be unique to Razr(s). My never been root-ed Bionic reports 1/1.

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Old October 24th, 2012, 06:51 PM   #37 (permalink)
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UPDATE. just realized the Maxx was shipped out yesterday. i suspect I'll not be posting here much longer, which I'm sure will please many of you. eventually I should be migrating from the maxx to a samsung and will be asking questions in the correct forum but I know it wont be for headphone whine.

EDIT: got the maxx, activated it (what a hassle) and the first call I made was to Verizon to recover a password. the speaker phone is awful on the maxx (probably defective) so I told them to reactivate the bionic for now. what a bummer for me. i like the size and screen of the Maxx, but I need a phone that is listenable. guess for my upcoming trip I'll transfer a ton of music to my tablet and use that on the plane instead of the bionic.
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Old October 25th, 2012, 04:05 PM   #38 (permalink)
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Motorola, Please tell me this is a bad joke!!! - Page 3

seems I'm hardly alone with this issue.

Resets haven't fixed it for people on that forum. One person mentioned changing audio settings helped. didn't help me or others on that thread.

I'm sure some of the same people from this forum, posted on that thread.
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Old October 28th, 2012, 10:34 PM   #39 (permalink)
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Fyi . I did a reset because of problems with battery life. It did not fix the whine.I knew it wouldn't
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Old October 29th, 2012, 02:33 AM   #40 (permalink)
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Fyi . I did a reset because of problems with battery life. It did not fix the whine.I knew it wouldn't
This is going to seem like an odd question ...

Have you had someone other than you try your headphones on your Bionic?

(I'm thinking back to a person-to-device issue that we worked on a year ago where a user when typing on the keyboard would get extra letters inserted. A different person using the same keyboard and typing the same letters did not get the extra letters. The solution there was to get a non-Bionic.)

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Old October 29th, 2012, 09:39 AM   #41 (permalink)
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This is going to seem like an odd question ...

Have you had someone other than you try your headphones on your Bionic?

(I'm thinking back to a person-to-device issue that we worked on a year ago where a user when typing on the keyboard would get extra letters inserted. A different person using the same keyboard and typing the same letters did not get the extra letters. The solution there was to get a non-Bionic.)

... Thom
my wife hears the whine although she isn't quite as bothered by it as she has some hearing issues. not sure of what you are getting at. My hearing is excellent and it is very easy to hear the whine. I have all sorts of devices to listen to headphones on. the whine didn't appear until ICS. The problem is simply that Moto has screwed up something in the update, returning some of us to the headphone whine that was present at launch time last year. Are you not aware of the history of this problem??
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Old October 29th, 2012, 10:33 AM   #42 (permalink)
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my wife hears the whine although she isn't quite as bothered by it as she has some hearing issues. not sure of what you are getting at. My hearing is excellent and it is very easy to hear the whine. I have all sorts of devices to listen to headphones on. the whine didn't appear until ICS. The problem is simply that Moto has screwed up something in the update, returning some of us to the headphone whine that was present at launch time last year. Are you not aware of the history of this problem??
I wasn't trying to raise a problem or accuse anyone of anything.

The issue with the touch pad seemed to be some problem with the body chemistry of that user and the Bionic hardware.

I was just curious if this was a factor.

From the testing of you and your wife it apparently isn't.

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Old October 29th, 2012, 10:55 AM   #43 (permalink)
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I wasn't trying to raise a problem or accuse anyone of anything.

The issue with the touch pad seemed to be some problem with the body chemistry of that user and the Bionic hardware.

I was just curious if this was a factor.

From the testing of you and your wife it apparently isn't.

... Thom
no problem. i'm just confused about your previous question. Last year, there were tons upon tons of complaints about the whine and many people tried more than 4 phones at various verizon stores to see if all samples had the whine--they all did. However, SOME respondents to this topic said they could never hear the whine (a friend of mine is in that category) on their own Bionics (this is all before the December 2011 update). So one would conclude that 1) it's their hearing, or 2) their headphone sensitivity, or 3) SOME Bionics don't have the defect that was obviously brought out by the initial release of the OS--these three scenarios should be applied (logically) to the issue going on at the moment, with ICS and the Bionic.
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Old October 29th, 2012, 11:16 AM   #44 (permalink)
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It's mostly noticeable when it's quiet, but it's there as long as there is sound being output via the headphone jack.

Also, at least on my phone, it is at a constant volume level...so it doesn't get louder if you turn up the music.

And it's there even if the sound is turned all the way down while listening to music, so it's something that appears when audio to the headphone output is activated. It begins as soon as I press play (noticeable before the music actually starts) and it's there for a second or so after I pause or stop the music.
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Old October 29th, 2012, 03:38 PM   #45 (permalink)
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It's mostly noticeable when it's quiet, but it's there as long as there is sound being output via the headphone jack.

Also, at least on my phone, it is at a constant volume level...so it doesn't get louder if you turn up the music.

And it's there even if the sound is turned all the way down while listening to music, so it's something that appears when audio to the headphone output is activated. It begins as soon as I press play (noticeable before the music actually starts) and it's there for a second or so after I pause or stop the music.
You just described the whine exactly. and because I don't like to blast out my eardrums, I don't play music too loudly; hence the whine is annoying as hell.
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Old October 29th, 2012, 05:55 PM   #46 (permalink)
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The VZW store that I purchased the phone from blew me off for a third time. I was finally able to get through to customer support. I dealt with a fellow Bionic user that was experiencing many of the same issues as me (headphone hiss, increased battery drain, and inconsistent charging). After 5 mins of looking for a replacement she offered me the Nexus, was unable to locate one and ended up offering me a white S3. It shipped this morning and, Sandy permitting, should be here Tuesday.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 04:20 PM   #47 (permalink)
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You just described the whine exactly. and because I don't like to blast out my eardrums, I don't play music too loudly; hence the whine is annoying as hell.
You were dumping the Bionic and getting a Razr Maxx. It apparently arrived and you apparently could not tolerate the speakers and sent it back.


You have a friend who has never experienced the problem ...
  • Have you tried listening on his Bionic? Did you hear it when he didn't?
  • Did he try listening on your Bionic? Did you hear it when he didn't?
Have you tried an iPnone? Did it have a problem?

You could consider buying a Bionic on Eba with 5.9.905 installed and never upgrade to ICS.

I wear hearing aids (both ears) and when I listen on a wired headset I remove them both . I have never heard the whining. I am not a good subject.


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Old October 31st, 2012, 06:16 PM   #48 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by Thom Little View Post
You were dumping the Bionic and getting a Razr Maxx. It apparently arrived and you apparently could not tolerate the speakers and sent it back.


You have a friend who has never experienced the problem ...
  • Have you tried listening on his Bionic? Did you hear it when he didn't?
  • Did he try listening on your Bionic? Did you hear it when he didn't?
Have you tried an iPnone? Did it have a problem?

You could consider buying a Bionic on Eba with 5.9.905 installed and never upgrade to ICS.

I wear hearing aids (both ears) and when I listen on a wired headset I remove them both . I have never heard the whining. I am not a good subject.


... Thom

he is at the opposite end of the country. I would LOVE to hear a non-whiny Bionic with ICS. I'll be within a few hundred miles of him this weekend, but that's still not close enough to hook up.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 06:30 PM   #49 (permalink)
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he is at the opposite end of the country. I would LOVE to hear a non-whiny Bionic with ICS. I'll be within a few hundred miles of him this weekend, but that's still not close enough to hook up.
If you really think the whine is either the fault of the Bionic and/or ICS, then I am curious as to why you were looking forward to a Razr Maxx. Since you didn't say it was the HD model, I can only assume you meant the original Razr Maxx and you do realize that the Razr/Razr Maxx's are merely Bionics with an AMOLED screen. So with your thinking it's either the Bionic's fault or ICS's fault or a combination thereof, you would have to expect to have the whine on the Razr Maxx as well.
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Old October 31st, 2012, 06:40 PM   #50 (permalink)
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What you learn when you have a hearing loss (and you learn it reluctantly) ...

My hearing aids are digital. Each one has 15 amplifiers that amplify a specific frequency range. So picture the audio spectrum broken into 15 slices.

What happens over time is that people loose the ability to hear specific frequency ranges. The most common loss is the higher frequencies that allow people to easily distinguish words in a conversation.

The solution is to measure each of the 15 ranges and set the volume on each of the 15 to bring the total into a usable end.

Every person who is measured is different.

Here's a guess ... it is only a guess ... there are a small number of people (you included) who hear a specific frequency range BETTER than the rest of us. The whine is always there. It is only heard by a small number of people.

You working with someone who doesn't hear it when you do and using the exact same equipment would go a long way in proving this theory.

My guess is that the only long term solution will be for you to try a number of different devices until you find one that doesn't whine and stick with it. It is obviously critical to you. You should expect that the results will vary from one software release to another on the same device.

... Thom
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