Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 9th Dec 2016 20:56 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless

Basically: not having a headphone jack might not be enough to deter sales of a phone, but it's still really annoying and requires users to spend additional money to reclaim very basic functionality from their devices. And most of that money flows back to the device vendor, effectively increasing the price of the phone. We've taken something simple and universal, and turned it into something complex and proprietary, for no obvious benefits. It's a bad trade-off. It's... user-hostile and stupid. There's just no getting around it.

There's no tangible benefit to ditching the universal 3.5mm jack - whether Apple does it, or Samsung does it, or anyone else does it.

We're months and months into this discussion now, and to this day, nobody - not Apple, not Samsung, not John Gruber, not any commenters anywhere - has given me a real, valid, tangible reason why removing the 3.5mm jack is a good idea. Lightning audio is stupid because only the iPhone/iPad support it (not even Macs come with Lightning ports), and wireless audio is garbage - something even Apple is only now finding out. Those wireless AirPods Apple unveiled to much fanfare? They have been delayed and delayed, and are actually still unavailable, because Bluetooh audio is complete and utter garbage.

It almost feels like removing the 3.5mm jack was a sociological science experiment to determine just how far people were willing to go to defend and rationalise a deeply dumb idea.

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RE: I disagree
by Earl C Pottinger on Sat 10th Dec 2016 06:15 UTC in reply to "I disagree"
Earl C Pottinger
Member since:
2008-07-12

When I took a look at the Bluetooth I was surprised to see that there was enough bandwidth to support full uncompressed stereo but that Bluetooth insisted in breaking communication into a number of channels when talking to devices.

There is not enough bandwidth in a channel to support uncompressed audio so as far as I can tell all Bluetooth ear-pieces and head-phones are receiving compressed audio.

Does anyone know of any devices that use multiple channels at the same time to receive the full uncompressed stereo sound for a music player?

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: I disagree
by feamatar on Sun 11th Dec 2016 16:26 in reply to "RE: I disagree"
feamatar Member since:
2014-02-25

but why would anyone need uncompressed audio?

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[3]: I disagree
by Kochise on Sun 11th Dec 2016 16:45 in reply to "RE[2]: I disagree"
Kochise Member since:
2006-03-03

but why would anyone need stereo audio?

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: I disagree
by rener on Sun 11th Dec 2016 21:23 in reply to "RE[2]: I disagree"
rener Member since:
2006-02-27

Standard Bluetooth SBC https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SBC_%28codec%29 is a really crappy codec. Much worse than MP3. For many combinations normal users can easily hear compression artifacts and loss in frequency spectrum.

Better codecs like AAC or aptX are only very rarely supported. The later not even by Google Nexus / stock Android.

So we talk re-compression compressed audio with the most crappy codec ever.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[2]: I disagree
by quatermass on Sun 11th Dec 2016 17:11 in reply to "RE: I disagree"
quatermass Member since:
2005-08-03

You're living a a fantasy world.

90% of people don't care if audio is compressed or not.

Bluetooth has APTX LL. You don't buy Bluetooth headphones without this. My Aventree Bluetooth headset has this and runs off batteries for 10 hours.

Sound is sweet.

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[3]: I disagree
by Earl C Pottinger on Sun 11th Dec 2016 18:16 in reply to "RE[2]: I disagree"
Earl C Pottinger Member since:
2008-07-12

For most of audio data that people are listening to being already compressed there is no benefit from use of a lossless audio system.

However, while most audio is compressed, it was possible to play back the lossless audio that does exists out there with the built-in jack.

Reading the WIKI page about AptX there is no way to always have lossless audio with this system. It is still a bandwidth limited interface.

The transmition is only lossless most of the time but for complex audio data it switches to a "near lossless" mode.

As far as I can tell it is presently impossible do such with Bluetooth.

Edited 2016-12-11 18:26 UTC

Reply Parent Score: 1

RE[3]: I disagree
by allanregistos on Mon 12th Dec 2016 02:27 in reply to "RE[2]: I disagree"
allanregistos Member since:
2011-02-10

You're living a a fantasy world.

90% of people don't care if audio is compressed or not.

Bluetooth has APTX LL. You don't buy Bluetooth headphones without this. My Aventree Bluetooth headset has this and runs off batteries for 10 hours.

Sound is sweet.


Audio engineers and musicians cares about lossless audio.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: I disagree
by CaptainN- on Mon 12th Dec 2016 20:44 in reply to "RE[2]: I disagree"
CaptainN- Member since:
2005-07-07

Who cares if 90% of people can't tell? Most people can't figure out how to download an app from the app store - but we still have one. What kind of sideways logic is this on a technology site? Do you even like technology?

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[2]: I disagree
by delta0.delta0 on Wed 14th Dec 2016 05:22 in reply to "RE: I disagree"
delta0.delta0 Member since:
2010-06-01

I completely agree with Thom, removing the 3.5mm Jack is completely anti-consumer. Apple trying to nickle and dime with $25, £25, €25 converters and having to carry around another dongle, and losing another dongle and all of the headaches of carrying another piece of shit dongle.

With this said. I completely disagree about bluetooth sound quality. APTX has been in most major headphones for a while and it greatly improves quality to the point where I find it almost indistinguishable and I love my music.

There is however another advancement: LDAC
http://www.sony-asia.com/microsite/hiresaudio/ldac.html
http://www.sony.net/Products/LDAC/


Unlike other Bluetooth compatible coding technologies such as SBC, it operates without any down-conversion of the Hi-Res Audio content*1, and allows approximately three times more data*2 than those other technologies to be transmitted over a Bluetooth wireless network with unprecedented sound quality, by means of efficient coding and optimized packetization.


Its literally Sony Shitting on the likes of Apple from a great height, Apple may copy sony design philosophy, but when it comes to audio quality Sony in phones is untouched (I have a samsung s7-edge and just purchased a xperia-xz cos damn the sony phones are just better in every way)

I have an MDR1ABT pair of headphones, which support LDAC and so does the XZ .. Ive already tried it on the Z5(went for the s7edge instead) and it absolutely destroys the samsung s7 edge when its connected wirelessly, in fact I don't rate the audio quality from the s7 edge at all. I didnt try audio quality on the s7 edge until after I bought it.

Review sites don't go into audio quality at all, they just have a little mention about the on board speakers which frankly no one cares about.

The music player on sony phones, is also miles better than google play. Sony stepped away from their own cloud platform and just defaulted to spotify, basically every decision they have been making has been good. I _really_ hope they keep the 3.5mm Jack and I reckon they will.

They haven't upgraded to a 2K screen as battery life is more important. They were the first to introduce stamina mode operations into Android, which dramatically boosts battery life. I would easy get 2 days battery life from Z3, usually 3, im lucky if I get a day from the s7 edge. They have already started rolling out Android N on all supported phones (z3 wont get it, but thats because qualcomm is dropping support for the chipset), my s7 edge is still 6.0.1.

Sorry this is starting to sound like a sony paid advertisement, which this isn't I don't work for them in anyway. Its just that when it comes to stuff like this they have been getting everything right and all they seem to be met with is gnarls and negative reviews, stuff they just don't deserve as what they are doing is actually bang on.

They have the best bluetooth codec implementation going it seems and yet they haven't been forcing users to depart from 3.5mm jacks. They try to get best battery performance, they aren't trying to design ridiculously thin phones. They are just classy and I respect them for it.

Reply Parent Score: 2

RE[3]: I disagree
by darknexus on Wed 14th Dec 2016 15:15 in reply to "RE[2]: I disagree"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Okay then, answer me one question: with all these advantages to Sony's technology, why exactly is it only Sony devices that can use it? Could it be because, perhaps, Sony's licensing is as draconian as it has always been?

Reply Parent Score: 2