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Comment Re:Hardware (Score 1) 368

"There is also A2DP, which still uses lossy compression, but at a much higher bitrate, stereo, and at 48KHz sampling - good quality audio, as the compression noise is below what human hearing can detect."

I've got a pair of custom-built wireless+wired headphones. It uses Polaroid PBT598 hardware. It connects using A2DP. It also has an aux-in input jack.

You can EASILY tell the difference between the same audio track over A2DP vs the aux cable jack. A2DP adds way more of ye olde MP3 'underwater' effect.

Comment Charging is a big issue (Score 1) 368

Bluetooth can work fine if you don't use something a lot, but headphones are the kind of thing you may wish to use for extended periods. I've never seen a BT device that isn't massive that has any staying power. Like I have a Plantronics Voyager Legend. This is a new, high end, and fairly large ear piece. It curves over your ear and has a unit that sits behind with electronics and a sizable battery in it. For all that, it is lucky to get maybe 6 hours of talk time fully charged (which will only get worse as the battery ages). Less if you use the high quality audio mode.

That's not great, and that is for a bigass part. You take something small, like the Earin phones one of our students has, and it is a bit over an hour if you are lucky. On the other hand my little Shure earbuds will work as long as the device feeding them will. Despite the cord, they are actually no larger to carry than the Plantronics earpeice as well. Oh, and they work with my computer, my phone, my receiver, and so on with no fiddling, just plug and go.

I don't hate BT audio devices, but earbuds have good reasons to exist.

Comment Re:Headphone Jack is Pretty Crappy (Score 1) 368

Ya unless Apple makes really shitty connectors on their products, I'm failing to see how this isn't a case of user error (or someone making shit up). I can't think of the last time I've seen a 3.5mm TRS plug fail. I make a lot of use of them between my personal devices for listening to music and connecting computers to capture/presentation setups at work. I really honestly can't remember when I last experienced one fail on me. I'm not saying it never happens, but it is rare enough that it isn't even a problem I consider. They are quite reliable, in no small part because they are dead fucking simple.

Comment It's fanboy rationalization (Score 1) 368

You see it all the time with fanboys of a given brand. When that brand does something stupid or something they don't like, they have to rationalize it away how it isn't just not bad, but is actually a GOOD thing. That way, they can continue to be a fan and needn't reevaluate their position, which is important since being a fan of a brand often means having your ego tied up in the success of that brand.

You see it a lot with Apple fans since Apple is known for changing things on a whim with no warning or input.

Doesn't even have to be changes either, fans will do it when something is just disappointing. I saw a funny one with one of our former students who was a total Apple fanboy. The iPad 2 was coming out and he'd really hyped himself up for it. I told him that some of the things he was hyped for (like a high DPI display) weren't going to happen, tech just wasn't there yet. So it launched and was underwhelming to him at least. It was just a bit of an update to the old one. Now I don't see an issue with that, makes sense to refresh your products with the latest tech, even if the refresh is just minor. Just means that they are more for new customers than people upgrading. However he was very let down.

But then, over the course of about 5-10 minutes, he managed to find all kinds of rather stretched reasons as to why it was better and he had to have one, and then placed an order. It went from "I am disappointed," to "I must have this ASAP," in the course of just a few minutes. Nothing changed, no new information, he just rationalized the decision he'd already held: That he wanted a new toy from the brand he was a fan of.

Comment Re:What? (Score 1) 58

Why does the market bear so much?

Because it's a bear market. And Microsoft is a has-been who can't make anyone want to "upgrade" to their newest OS even for free. So their future, if they are to have any, is in acquiring other, possibly relevant companies, and that's best done in a bear market when they're cheap.

Comment Also, you have options (Score 1) 368

It isn't like all phones are doing this. In fact, usually if some companies start doing something stupid and not giving people what they want, someone else will make and advertise products with those features.

For example I'm not a fan of the "no removable battery, no SD card" trend. Lots of phones have gone that way in the name of thin... however LG apparently figures there's a market for people who want those features and the LG G5 has them. So guess what phone I've ordered?

It really isn't that difficult a problem, unless you are a fanboy who is overly dedicated to a given product. If you don't mind a feature going away, ok no problem, buy the new unit and be happy. If you do mind, go and buy another product that has what you want.

However what I can't respect and get annoyed with are fanboys who will cry about something like this, and then go and buy the product anyways, acting like this had no choice in the matter and they "had" to upgrade. They are the problem.

Comment Re:Smartphone size? (Score 1) 368

This is Apple we're talking about. They're not going to standardize a new audio jack, not the way you're thinking at least. Their idea of "standardization" is to make up their own all-new interface, patent it, then charge every huge licensing fees to use it. So a $5 set of minibuds will now cost $45, with $40 of that being Apple's licensing fee.

Comment No, it was FUD (Score 1) 368

Basically what happened is one "security researcher" who wasn't that good at the "research" part of his job upgraded a system to Vista and had audio issues. He then wrote a blog piece about how Vista sucked and theorized that it was DRM causing issues. This got echo-chambered over the Internet tons and because "Vista's DRM won't let you have good audio."

It amused me since, when I read it, I had Cakewalk Sonar loaded in the background and was working with pro audio at the time, in Vista, no issues at all.

What had really happened is his system had a old, low end, integrated soundcard. The manufacturer provided poor quality Vista drivers that didn't work well in full duplex (recording and playing back) mode. So if you were using the mic and output, sound quality was degraded. This was a function of the sound chip and its drivers, not Vista. It was, and is, fully capable of doing 24-bit 192kHz or greater multi-channel audio in and out, as are subsequent versions of Windows.

The DRM that showed up in Vista related to audio is "protected audio path" and is only relevant to shit like Blu-ray playback. The media industry won't give out licenses to AACS and BD-J unless the whole setup it DRM'd including the drivers. So Vista added this capability (and subsequent Windows versions keep it). A program can say "I am playing DRM'd content, you need to protect this" and the driver will then make sure that screenshots/recording can't happen, that it only plays on HDCP enabled outputs and shit like that. However normally all that is turned off and it affects nothing if you don't use it. While it is silly, it was either implement it, or Windows would never be able to (legally) play Blu-rays.

Comment Re:Bluetooth simply doesn't work in most metro are (Score 1) 368

Cars with BT audio usually also have USB ports. Does yours not?

My 2015 Mazda has BT audio as well, and a USB port. I've never used BT audio (though I do use BT for making phone calls through the hands-free system, and also for reading texts sometimes; the system will read them to me aloud). Instead, I just bought an inexpensive 32GB USB thumb drive, copied my whole music library onto it, and that was that.

No, I don't want to listen to streaming audio from the internet; I don't have unlimited data so that would be quite expensive.

Comment Re:Headphone Jack is Pretty Crappy (Score 1) 368

So instead you want to break your power charging plug hole, the one you now generally use once per day and that with a fixed battery. So instead a potential proprietary socket, that will wear out, destroying the phone because no it connects to nothing and you can not pull out a flat battery and replace it with a charged battery. Yep, gullibly being sold another B$ marketing line. So with an existing ear socket phone you can listen through the usb socket with the right hardware and software but not fucking while you are charging the phone but that's OK you can swap out the battery and charge it separately, oh wait no you fucking can't.

Yep, this is what Apple buyers are happily signing up for.

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