The iPhone 7’s second speaker isn’t where you think it is

Discussion in 'iPhone 7' started by Rafagon, Sep 16, 2016.

  1. Rafagon

    Rafagon Genius
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    The second speaker grille at the bottom is purely cosmetic.

    The actual second speaker is the earpiece at the top, which is now two times louder.

    This may create visual symmetry, but wouldn’t it create asymmetrical stereo sound—having one speaker at the top and the other at the bottom? This puts the right speaker considerably closer to your ears than the left speaker. But what do I know, I’m not a sound engineer.
     
  2. ednygma

    ednygma Contributor
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    I was under the impression that the 'stereo' effect was meant more for when you are holding your phone watching media or using it as a loudspeaker/speaker rather than when you are using it as a phone and the device is against your head.
     
  3. Europa

    Europa Moderator
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    That's correct. I'm pretty sure he was thinking the directional sound would be different if one comes from the bottom rim and the other from the top screen portion of the phone (opposed to both rims). It doesn't work like, though. The stereo audio sounds great.
     
  4. Napoleon PhoneApart

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    The second speaker was exactly where I thought it was. What a slap.in the face to our users' intelligence. ;)
     
  5. Rafagon

    Rafagon Genius
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    I am thinking precisely of that—holding my phone watching a video or listening to a song. But I watch a lot of videos with the phone in portrait mode—many people don’t.

    You’ll get a more “symmetrical” stereo effect when in landscape mode, as the author of the article pointed out towards the end: “the iPhone 7 won’t deliver as consistent stereo channel separation as your headphones.”

    I’m not doubting that it sounds excellent—for a phone. I’m also certain that it’ll sound several orders of magnitude better than any previous iPhone. But if you were setting up a stereo system at home and you only had two speakers to make do with, you’d place the left and the right speakers equidistant from a “sweet spot” in the center. The placement of the speakers in the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus means that no matter which orientation you’re using, portrait or landscape, you’ll never be able to truly get equal power of audio on the left side as on the right side. The audio from one side is going to be ever so slightly louder on the side with the speaker closest to you—the right one if you’re using portrait mode, or the left one if you’re using landscape mode.
     
  6. Napoleon PhoneApart

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    The stereo effect is perfectly fine with the asymmetrical speakers. I'm listening to therm right now.
     
  7. Rafagon

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    In your opinion, does it sound slightly better in landscape than in portrait mode, or exactly the same in both orientations?
     
  8. Europa

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    Why would you watch videos in portrait mode?
     
  9. Napoleon PhoneApart

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    I really don't hear a difference. I usually listen in landscape, since I would never position "real" speakers in a vertical configuration.
     
  10. Rafagon

    Rafagon Genius
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    I have portrait mode lock on almost all the time. I prefer it for most activities. If it’s any video 5 minutes or under that I stumble upon while surfing the web, I don’t want to bother switching to landscape mode. It save a bit of time; not much, but a little.

    If it’s an entire movie or one of the longer music videos (8 minutes or more), then I’ll bother unlocking portrait mode and watching the video in landscape mode.
     
  11. silvermoon

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    Why not keep portrait mode unlocked at all times? It's easier to switch between portrait and landscape when watching videos. Do you use landscape mode for other activities on your phone? I watch videos on landscape because it offers a better view and the screen doesn't feel squished.
     
  12. Rafagon

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    Because I read in bed a lot, which means that I often end up holding the phone in landscape mode but wanting the text to remain in portrait orientation. I've been on portrait orientation lock pretty much ever since the feature was introduced years ago.
     
  13. Mthoroughbred

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    [/QUOTE]

    Non of the grills at the bottom of the iPhone 7/7 plus are cosmetic. The right grill is the loud speaker and the left is where the mic is located
     
  14. Napoleon PhoneApart

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    None of the grills at the bottom of the iPhone 7/7 plus are cosmetic. The right grill is the loud speaker and the left is where the mic is located[/QUOTE]

    This is true. If I recall correctly, there is one actual hole in the left grill for the microphone. The others are faux.
     
    #14 Napoleon PhoneApart, Sep 17, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2017
  15. up10ad

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    I suspect that Apple has adjusted the volume of the top spealer to compensate for that, they are kinida sticklers for that sort of thing. I think it sounds great and presents a fine stereo effect in landscape mode as long as you are close enough. It obviously fades at a distance but the extra volume helps in that instance.
     
  16. Rafagon

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    Now that I actually on an iPhone 7 Plus, I can share my first-hand experiences with its sound.

    It sounds beautiful indeed! You can actually discern the stereo channel separation.

    However, try this: Watch a music video in landscape mode, holding the phone normally. It sounds great. Now, remaining in landscape mode, hold your iPhone 7/7 Plus with your left hand and cup your right hand over the speaker grille at the bottom of the phone (currently located at the right because you’re using landscape mode), so as to direct the sound waves from that speaker towards you.

    You’ll easily notice a significant improvement in the sound quality.

    Conclusion: If both speakers were firing in the same direction, the user would experience improved sound quality. My original assumption, even before I owned the iPhone 7 Plus, was correct. The user doesn’t have the best possible sound experience with the speakers in their current orientations. Yes, the sound experience is great, but not optimal.
     
    #16 Rafagon, Jan 14, 2017
    Last edited: Jan 14, 2017
  17. RoofMonkey

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    What if I rotate the device clockwise and the bottom of the phone is to the left? :ROFLMAO:
     
  18. Rafagon

    Rafagon Genius
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    Then you’d be holding it wrong. Try not do to that. :)
     

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