CPM
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Dec 16, 2018

Music Stuttering

I just got the hearphones and found that streaming music has issues.  I'm getting sutters/pops discontinuities fairly frequently when listening to music (every 5 - 50 seconds).

  • My phone is a Samsung A8.  To troubleshoot, I also tried another phone, a Nexus 6P and the behaviour is the same.
  • I have tried rebooting the headset.  
    • no change
  • Clearing the system’s Bluetooth pairing list
    • no change
  • Firmware version is 1.6.5
  • Bose hear version is 1.4.2
  • I do not have this issue with my Bose SoundSport earbuds.  I am able to enjoy music all day with these.
  • This issue is similiar to the problem reported by many users of the QC35 headphones
  • As it is, the hearphones are not really usable.

 

 

 

 

16 REPLIES 16
Community Manager

Re: Music Stuttering

Hi CPM,

 

Thank you for joining the Bose Hear Community. 

 

I'm sorry you have trouble with music stuttering when streaming via Bluetooth.

 

You've done a great job troubleshooting. Please call us on the dedicated Hearphones support line so we can help. Bose Hearphones Support - 1 800-761-2673. 

 

Thank you,

ST

CPM
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Re: Music Stuttering

Thanks ST. 

I phoned the Bose Hearphones Support number you provided.  Customer support concluded my Hearphones are defective and they are sending me a new pair (likely problem with the blue tooth receiver).  I found the support excellent.  I'll update the thread when the new ones arrive. 

Community Manager

Re: Music Stuttering

Hi CPM,

 

That's great news!

 

Thank you for coming back to tell us how things turned out with Bose Support.

 

ST

CPM
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Re: Music Stuttering

The new Hearphones arrived today. Unfortunately, the music stuttering problem still exists with the new Hearphones.

 

Some more information. After connecting to my phone the new firmware version of the Hearphones was installed (version 1.6.5). The new version of the Hearphones has a manufacturing date of July 24, 2018 (newer than the previous set of Hearphones, which was March 21, 2017). My phone is the Samsung A8 with Android version 8.0.0. The Bose hear version is 1.4.2

 

I went through some trouble shooting again and the problem still occurs:

  •  Music Apps used were Spotify as well as Google Play Music
  • Tried another phone, the Nexus 6P (Android Version 8.1.0). Interesting that with this phone, stuttering occured less frequently.
  • Cleared the headphone pairing list according to https://www.bose.com/en_us/support/article/clearing-the-headphone-pairing-list.htm
  • Tried my LE-Bose SoundSport and as usual, these perform flawlessly. I note the music quality is better with these as well.

I really like the world audio processing capability, but music is even more important for me.

 

I'd be happy to help with additional troubleshooting as required.

CPM
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Re: Music Stuttering

To help illustrate the issue, I used an app to generate a constant 440 Hz tone, played that tone over the Hearphones, and recorded the left earbud by pressing it against a microphone. I captured 19 seconds of audio and exported as a wav file.  Three discontinuities were captured.
Audio Wav File and Screen Capture
The png is a screen capture of the data as shown in audacity, and the wav file can be played to hear the problem (at about 3.4, 11.9 and 16.4 second mark).

Community Manager

Re: Music Stuttering

Hi CPM,

 

I'm sorry you're not having a better experience with the Bluetooth connection. Please continue your conversation with Bose Hearphones Support. They are much better equipped to help you with this level of detail. Bose Hearphones Support - 1 800-761-2673.

 

Thank you,

ST

 

CPM
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Re: Music Stuttering

Thanks for the reply ST.  I'll be contacting suppport.

The one thing the community can help me with is to let me know the quality of their experience with music listening.  I want some ecouragement that the Hearphones can be successfully used for bluetooth music enjoyment. I'm especially interested in success with Android devices.

CPM
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Re: Music Stuttering

I've been in contact with support, but so far, no solution.  I'm documenting some information in this thread to assist support, as well as consumers encountering the same issue I am.

I purchased a Bluetooth adapter for my Windows 10 desktop PC to see how music streaming worked on another device.  I found that I did not get any stutters with this setup on my Hearphones.  So the issue so far presents itself on the two Android phones I tried.  Note that my Bose SoundSport earbuds work fine with the Android phones.

CPM
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Re: Music Stuttering

At this point I've reached the conclusion that streaming AAC audio is the problem. AAC is the audio compression stream that is used by default for the Android phones I've tried. 

 

For my phone, the Samsung Galaxy A8 (2018), the audio codec can be set for Bluetooth by activating the developer options.  Once activated, after connecting to the Hearphones, the codec can be changed to the (inferior) SBC codec.  When I did that, the stutters went away.  I note that this is not really a general solution, only some information that helps narrow down the problem.  If I disconnect the Hearphones and reconnect, it will again default to AAC.

I presume that there is some handshaking with the Hearphones to determine what audio stream can be used, and AAC is generally superior to the mandatory SBC support.

I'm also guessing that my PC USB Bluetooth dongle is outputting SBC, but I'm not sure (I'll check later). I'd be interested in getting a better understanding on why stuttering bug exists. Is it a software/firmware problem with the Hearphones?  Is it another hardware problem such as a weak Bluetooth antenna on the Hearphones?