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May 17, 2013

Samsung Galaxy S4 Headphone Issues Crop Up on XDA Developers Forum and Reddit

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It would appear that several Samsung Galaxy S4 users are taking to the forums to complain about a peculiar bug with their devices’ headphone system. Posts on both Reddit, XDA Developers are mystifying to say the least but users are experiencing audio clipping problems on their units, as many have observed crackling noises if they increase their volumes to a certain level. Buzzing noises, which are almost as irritating, have also been reported.

The issue looks to be exclusive to Galaxy S4 variants powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 quad-core processor, and low-impedance headphones plugged into the device’s jack. A specific reason for this bug has yet to be determined.

Experts believe that the bug may not be a software issue, as the output level can be adjusted by means of a digital-to-analog converter. Still, the peculiar thing about the bug is how certain types of headphones seem to work just fine on the Galaxy S4, while others don’t. And even the best efforts of the developer’s community don’t seem to have helped much.

“Jensign”, a member of the XDA forums, tried running some tests on the Galaxy S4, but unfortunately, the tests only seem to have complicated things. He did find out, however, that the issue happens at certain frequencies and certain volume levels; for instance, distortion was noticed at the 1 KHz mark, but not anywhere past 10 KHz.
When there are bugs, there are temporary workarounds, but none of them have been working. A few users have tried having their phones’ software updated, but the problem has still persisted, while others were refused assistance by stores. Samsung has yet to provide an official statement regarding the audio clipping issue.
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Dave Thornton

Senior Editor

Senior Editor
Been involved in technology for many years, more than I care to remember. Live in Dundee, Scotland. I like Android, Windows Phone OS, BlackBerry OS and iOS, and love writing about all things techie. Currently have a Honor 6+, Elephone P6000, Nexus 5, Chrombook C720, HTC One M7, Nokia Lumina 625, Microsoft Lumia 435, Blackberry Q10, HTC Hero and iPad mini