06-15-17 01:58 PM
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  1. neil74's Avatar
    I'll be honest that audio quality is starting to become a showstopper for me with the K1.

    Having read a number of reviews it does seem to be felt that the sound chip on the K1 is lacking and my (albeit anecdotal) testing would concur with this. I use wired headphones and compared to my S8+ and IP7+ the sound quality is not as good (or as loud) as either of these.

    I have not tried Bluetooth but with the apt-x absent I am not hopeful that bluetooth will be good, but maybe worth a try?

    I get that the K1 is not marketed as a media device but most people including your typical BB customer uses their phone as their music player so I think it is a really big oversight to scrimp in this area.

    What do others think?
    gquan14 likes this.
    06-12-17 03:42 AM
  2. TheBond's Avatar
    It's not that great. The output is low and the quality isn't that good. For me it's probably the worst thing about KEYᵒⁿᵉ.

    Some reported with higher quality files, it's not an issue but comparing the same source of audio, i.e PlayMusic, high quality, the sound between iPhone 7 Plus and KEYᵒⁿᵉ is night and day in my experience.

    If you don't listen to them back and forth then you'll be fine. Otherwise it's quite depressing.
    Alan Wei likes this.
    06-12-17 09:46 AM
  3. neil74's Avatar
    This is my experience too, Spotify (extreme quality) and Apple Music.

    Have you tried Bluetooth?

    Think this is going to be deciding factor in me ditching the K1. My phone is my music player and this is an area I am just not prepared to compromise on.
    06-12-17 10:22 AM
  4. anon(870071)'s Avatar
    My audio seems to be fine. I use high quality files for my music. SO far no issues and I find it quite loud. FOr wireless I use a Plantronics backbeat go 2 and for wired iem's I use QJAYS. My audio is loud and ultra clear.
    06-12-17 12:13 PM
  5. stanfordprof's Avatar
    This is my experience too, Spotify (extreme quality) and Apple Music.

    Have you tried Bluetooth?

    Think this is going to be deciding factor in me ditching the K1. My phone is my music player and this is an area I am just not prepared to compromise on.
    Please clarify what you mean about Spotify. Do you mean that the quality of Spotify output on the device is extremely bad? Or what? Thanks.
    06-12-17 12:23 PM
  6. paperbackpiles's Avatar
    I find it pretty equal to a Nextbit Robin and a little lower than an HTC One. That said, it's fine for me when i'm corded or bluetooth on a subway despite all the noise. When I skate with bluetooth buds they work just fine and when at home connected to a wired speaker or bluetooth speaker it's not as loud as the other phones i've had but gets the job done. Quality seems good to me, especially podcasts. The built in speaker, actually, is louder than both the Nextbit Robin (a mid range phone spec wise) and an HTC One (higher spec). I was able to hear Google maps instructions without plugging it into the aux which was unexpected.
    06-12-17 12:36 PM
  7. neil74's Avatar
    Please clarify what you mean about Spotify. Do you mean that the quality of Spotify output on the device is extremely bad? Or what? Thanks.
    Spotify as in I use the extreme quality setting
    06-12-17 12:39 PM
  8. neil74's Avatar
    Please clarify what you mean about Spotify. Do you mean that the quality of Spotify output on the device is extremely bad? Or what? Thanks.
    Spotify as in I use the extreme quality setting
    06-12-17 12:39 PM
  9. TymelRory's Avatar
    I use Spotify with my streaming and download quality set to extreme. I have a pair of cheap (but surprisingly good) Anker in-ear bluetooth headphones, and the sound quality for music is fantastic.
    06-12-17 01:00 PM
  10. ajwan's Avatar
    GSM Arena would suggest that the Keyone did "quite splendidly" in the audio department:

    BlackBerry KEYone review: Make or break - page 7 - GSMArena.com

    Of course, these are just synthetic benchmarks.
    06-12-17 01:06 PM
  11. Chris Townsend3's Avatar
    I tried mine again today with some Bower and Wilkins earphones, and compared to my S7 the playback is pretty awful to be honest. If the iPhone gets a 7-8 my Keyone would get a 5 at best.

    Not really a media machine.
    06-12-17 02:48 PM
  12. S1lv1o's Avatar
    Not very constructive answer: It's... A Phone.

    More constructive answer:
    1. Get an Audioquest Dragonfly.
    2. Get Meze 99 Classic headphones.
    3. Prepare to be blown away.

    I don't have the dragonfly, since my Passport doesn't seem to support it; I do have the Meze 99 with a Meridian Explorer connected to my Macbook. It's hard not to get up and start dancing.
    06-12-17 04:37 PM
  13. primusd's Avatar
    Not pleased to read this, but I've already bought one and am waiting for delivery... so will give it a run through of my own once its delivered.

    I was looking to see if anyone has done a teardown yet - I'd be curious to see what dac chip is inside, but seems its still too soon.

    At a minimum the usb-c output to external dac/amp is said to work, so there's that option as well...
    06-12-17 04:45 PM
  14. neil74's Avatar
    It is disappointing for sure. I am still curious to try a decent set of wireless headphones, this could turn out to be a case where wireless is a better option?
    06-12-17 05:13 PM
  15. Alloyjane's Avatar
    Nevermind the keyone not being a media player, if you want to take calls using wired headphones, then poor audio quality via headphone jack is going to matter.

    Besides, my 8320 is ancient and it only takes one click of volume to be clearly audible using my Shures.
    06-12-17 06:09 PM
  16. neil74's Avatar
    I am going to borrow my friends beats studio wireless (not the best I know) and test the quality over wireless. I know there is no apt-x, however the iPhones does not have it either and from memory were still pretty decent over wireless.
    Last edited by neil74; 06-13-17 at 03:34 AM.
    06-13-17 03:17 AM
  17. draculito01's Avatar
    Tried a few earphones when I had my k1. Depends on the headphones really. Expensive, high-quality earphones provide good sound quality and acceptable volume. Medium-quality earbuds like most of us have are nothing to write home about.
    06-13-17 03:32 AM
  18. neil74's Avatar
    I actually find the difference more obvious using my b&w p3s
    06-13-17 03:35 AM
  19. anon(10255518)'s Avatar
    I use the included ear buds and feel like the sound is decent. I use them for music. They're clear and there is some bass. I notice they have the gold 🔌.
    06-13-17 04:07 AM
  20. neil74's Avatar
    This is review is interesting and does concur with my ears at least.

    primusd likes this.
    06-13-17 08:11 AM
  21. neil74's Avatar
    Tested the beats studio wireless. They certainly are louder than wired and do sound pretty good.

    Hardly a scientific test but they sounded ok to my ears. So maybe wireless is decent option on the K1?
    06-13-17 04:48 PM
  22. The Chosen's Avatar
    The DAC in the KeyONE doesn't appear to be of the best quality.

    If you're an audiophile then no, the KeyONE sound quality is sub par. Bluetooth if anything will make the sound quality worse due to it's signal compression. Bluetooth is generally quite poor for music.

    The DTEK60 is noticeably better than the KeyONE and my 6 year old Cowon MP3 player blows it out of the water (it is a dedicated audio device, so I would expect nothing less).

    If you're that enthused about audio quality then you'll either need a mobile amp or use a dedicated audio player instead.
    primusd likes this.
    06-13-17 05:32 PM
  23. neil74's Avatar
    The DAC in the KeyONE doesn't appear to be of the best quality.

    If you're an audiophile then no, the KeyONE sound quality is sub par. Bluetooth if anything will make the sound quality worse due to it's signal compression. Bluetooth is generally quite poor for music.

    The DTEK60 is noticeably better than the KeyONE and my 6 year old Cowon MP3 player blows it out of the water (it is a dedicated audio device, so I would expect nothing less).

    If you're that enthused about audio quality then you'll either need a mobile amp or use a dedicated audio player instead.
    Assuming I'm right in thinking that the quality of the DAC only impacts wired quality, I'm wondering if the DAC
    Could be so poor as to see wireless actually be better than wired on the k1?
    06-13-17 05:59 PM
  24. The Chosen's Avatar
    Assuming I'm right in thinking that the quality of the DAC only impacts wired quality, I'm wondering if the DAC
    Could be so poor as to see wireless actually be better than wired on the k1?
    It's definitely a possibility if the Bluetooth earphone's one is using are of high enough quality. But for me personally Bluetooth is never the solution for improving audio quality. I'd go down the route of getting a mobile amp/DAC, but I'm a picky swine when it comes to audio, wired all the way.
    06-13-17 06:18 PM
  25. mhw100's Avatar
    Have to use a dragonfly red to get good sound. Otherwise not so good imo.
    06-14-17 01:42 AM
39 12

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