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May 2, 2019

Re: Bose Soundlink II around ear wireless: Microphone not working

I wanted to share my experience with these headphones.

 

I bought mine from amazon.co.uk on 2 April 2019. The package arrived on 5 April. As many posters explained in detail, it also had the microphone threshold problem. Below about 50% of the output volume, the microphone becomes muffled. I also did a few tests by recording my voice at different volume levels. Above 50%, each volume step reveals a different sound quality, some more treble, some with more background noise etc.

 

I contacted the UK technical support and after the following their standard checklist (update, reboot etc.) over a couple of emails, they proposed to exchange it. Seeing that it would take about two weeks to go through the Bose's own exchange route, I decided to make the return through Amazon which is much faster. My new headphones arrived on 13 April. Exactly the same problem. So either the batch given to amazon.co.uk is faulty, or Bose (for some reason) is deliberately not acknowledging a wide-spread issue.

I then wrote back to the UK technical support, sending a link to this thread. I asked the following three questions:

1. if this is a hardware issue, will you recall this product and offer users replacements?

2. if this is a software issue, when will you have a firmware update to fix this?

3. is this by design?

 

They answered with:

"Normally, if we have a common fault with a specific model of headphones (multiple reports, calls, and emails) reported by our customer, we will create an update to rectify the issue (if failure is situated with the software) or design/hardware configuration (if failure is with the hardware). Here's what we can suggest to you for the meantime, go with the replacement order and we would have your headphones replaced with a new pair free-of-charge and if the problem still persists with the new unit, we will then create a report ticket and forward it to our engineers for them to create a software update for this microphone issue to be rectified."

The reply sounds like I am the first person to complain about this issue, right? Anyway, I returned my product again, but this time to Bose, and the replacement arrived today, 2nd of May, exactly 1 month after my first order!

 

Lo and behold, the problem still persists.

 

If I was told that this threshold was by design, and was given a technical explanation, I could have convinced myself to keep it. If there was any indication that Bose was aware of issues with their products, e.g. acknowledging the existence of their own community forums, I could convince myself that they could fix this issue eventually, maybe through a software update. However, after spending this one month and many email exchanges, I am surprised that the technical support people are not recognising that there is a wide spread problem and I see no indication that this issue is escalated to beyond customer support. With no light at the end of the tunnel, I now highly doubt that this issue will be resolved in time.Needless to say I am very disappointed. I wrote a final email to the technical support to see what they suggest, but I will probably return the item for good before amazon's return deadline.

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May 2, 2019

Re: Bose Soundlink II around ear wireless: Microphone not working

Following up on my previous post, I received another email from a Technical Support Representative, who proposed to go forward with an exchange. That means, I'm done. It is now clear that the so-called technical support does two things: 1. follow a step-by-step troubleshooting list; 2. go ahead with an exchange. Now that it is clear that they have no intention on competenly addressing this problem, I no longer have any intention to use a Bose product. Shame.

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Mar 8, 2019

Re: Bose Soundlink II around ear wireless: Microphone not working

Hello, EmirG

I posted a while back about the same issue. I'm now on my third pair, for the same reason. I did try to go with another pair, which were slightly cheaper and had sound cancelling built in, but they just couldn't compare to the quality of Bose, and they caused horrible headaches.

The microphone issue may be an outdated firmware for the bluetooth, or quite possibly overrated, as in it only works with higher, more recent versions of bluetooth (bluetooth 5 and up).

I had a Samsung Galaxy S6 and have a Microsoft Surface Pro 3 and both had the microphone issue, until I upgraded my phone to a Samsung S8 with Bluetooth 5. The headphones work beautifully now. I haven't had one issue in terms of connectivity with it and my phone. The surface still has the issue.

I agree that Bose can and should rectify the problem, however, from what I've seen only a few people (at least on this forum) have complained about this issue. In order for it to be a "widespread problem" I'm guessing Bose needs to have hundreds more people to complain for them to make it financially worth the research and cost for recall.

As annoying as it is, and as fed up as I was when I hadn't figured it out, I still found the quality and performance to be much more outstanding than what I could otherwise find.

I'm also in Canada, so it's not just a batch to the UK. If that helps.
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Re: Bose Soundlink II around ear wireless: Microphone not working

Hi r1zd1z,

Thanks for the information. Although I agree that this is not a major problem, the way Bose handles this issue is my main concern about what's to come in the future. I really wanted to keep these headphones, and as I wrote earlier, if someone confirmed that this threshold was included by design or would be fixed in a software update, I could have convinced myself to keep them. I already had read your theory regarding the BT versions <5 causing a problem, which indeed sounds plausible, but even in Bose's own community forums, this was not confirmed by Bose, they simply thanked you! This is my problem. I received three different headphones, two from amazon.co,uk and one from Bose Belgium, and the fault is present in all three. I tried 6 different devices, granted all with BT versions 4.2 and below, but without a confirmation, it would be a risk to keep the headphones. I think that the way the issue is handled reflects how slowly a more serious problem would be addressed in the future. In the end, at 200£, a pair of headphones with a temperemental microphone is simply overpriced. 

 

Amazon accepted my return request and I have just posted them. I still have my old fashioned OE2, which I will continue to use until I find a good alternative to Soundlink II.

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May 6, 2019

Re: Bose Soundlink II around ear wireless: Microphone not working

I have the same problem as everyone experienced here. I got my brand new Soundlink AE2 in mid Dec 2018 and within a day i noticed the problem with the mic. I tried making phone call using the headphone and realised that the person over the phone can't really hear me at all and complained that my voice sounded muffled. After Christmas I went to Bose store in the Trafford Centre (I'm based in the UK) and got it replaced. For the second pair the microphone is having a similar issue but the threshold seems to be slightly better than the first. Hence I'm been keeping it till now while waiting for the issue to be fixed by Bose.

 

Like many others here i've tried resetting and updating the firmware but the problem persisted. I am using iPhone XR which comes with the latest bluetooth 5 version so i don't think the issue is bluetooth related unlike suggested by r1zd1z. There's no problem with listening using the headphones, it's just the mic isn't working normally. I've tried it on my iPad air and macbook pro but no joy.

 

P/s: I tested the demo AE2 headphone in Currys PC World and noticed that there is no issue with the mic sounding muffled when connected to my phone. So it could either be that the demo unit hasn't been updated to the latest firmware or it was produced before December 2018.

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Re: Bose Soundlink II around ear wireless: Microphone not working

Hi DinoKev, 

 

Thanks for your post and welcome to the community. Have you attempted the other troubleshooting methods as suggested in this thread? 

 

Kind Regards, 

Hector B 

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May 6, 2019

Re: Bose Soundlink II around ear wireless: Microphone not working

I've received AE2 SoundLink headset as a promo gift to my Bose A20 Aviation Headset. But the AE2 headset suffers precisely the the same problem with poor microphone audio level as described in this thread by other users. When the volume is set below 60%, the audio output from the microphone is muffled, and the other party doesn't understand me during the phone call. Even the Siri in iPad doesn't understand my voice commands. The phone is the Samsungs Android device. There is something wrong in the headset.

 

The point is, I don't know how to ask for a headset replacement when it comes from the promo.

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Mar 26, 2019

Re: Bose Soundlink II around ear wireless: Microphone not working

Hello DinoKev,

 

Thanks for reaching out, I am sorry to hear that you are having issues with your headphones. I would recommend that you call us on the customer care line as they will be able to assist you further with this issue, to find out how to contact us please follow this link https://bose.life/2f4nJid.

 

I hope this helps, should you need anything else please get back in touch.

 

Kindest regards,

Zoe_C

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Re: Bose Soundlink II around ear wireless: Microphone not working

@Hector_B and @Zoe_C - yes i've tried all the troubleshooting methods mentioned in the thread. From a customer service point of view i don't think there's anything that can be done unless the new batch of headphones are fixed; a new firmware fix is made available by the software team or there is a product recall. I know customer care will offer to exchange the headphone but for now it's not a solution as it will not fix the on-going issue.

 

@MarSarK - I'm having the same issue with Siri too! I can see Siri struggling to hear and dictate my commands. I got mine from a promo too and it's covered under the 1 year warranty. For me I went to Bose store and was asked to produce the confirmation email showing the date the headphone was sent as the start date of the warranty. Had it replaced without any issue. But the muffled mic problem presisted.

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Re: Bose Soundlink II around ear wireless: Microphone not working

 
@DinoKev According to the Bose Connect app, Bose produced my headset at the end of February, and I received it third week in April. The headset is considerably new. I'm afraid that Bose's engineering teams ignore this issue or don't know about it. I would expect a more progressive attitude from Bose to solve this issue because of it a system design failure affecting a lot of customers.