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Tests Description

You are here: Phone Comparison Tests Description

Why are mobile phones still called “phones”? Because their primary function is to provide voice communication capabilities. And they are called “mobile” because they shall provide such functionality in any environment including a very noisy one.
You can find dozens of mobile phone reviews on the Internet, but have you ever tried to search for a qualified, objective review or comparison of mobile phones for how well they perform their main function? We tried and failed so we decided to test leading mobile phones in our audio lab.
Virtually all modern smart phones use a multi-microphone, typically a dual microphone noise reduction technology.

The primary microphone is located at the bottom of the device, close to user´s mouth. The second, reference microphone is positioned at the top, as far as possible from the user´s mouth. While the ambient noise is more or less the same on both microphones, the user´s voice is stronger on the primary microphone. By utilizing this difference a digital signal processing technology may effectively clean the main microphone signal from the ambient noise.

All tests were conducted in our acoustic laboratory.

The mobile phone user in the picture is called Head & Torso Simulator (or HATS) and he is very objective in his tests. He has an artificial mouth which is actually a loudspeaker that can reproduce exactly the same speech many times, which is something a human cannot do.
The loudspeakers around HATS generated noises recorded in typical environments where voice communication over the phone is difficult. Each speaker played slightly different signal thus avoiding noise directionality producing realistic test condition.
HATS made calls with our help and spoke into a telephone from a simulated noisy environments. HATS voice was recorded from the receiving phone for further analysis.

We´ve tested several leading smartphones and we´ll add more in the future. We´ve also tested an older, one microphone Nokia phone as a reference.

As a speech enhancement technology provider, we could not resist to check our dual microphone noise reduction technologies against the competitors used in the leading mobile phones. To test our technology we created a special dual microphone mockup very similar to an iPhone 5 (see the picture above). We connected it to our digital signal processing board and sent the output via the cellular network in exactly the same way as we do with the smartphones under test.

You can listen to the test recordings here

We´ll add more phones to our list in the near future. If you want to test any specific phone, please send it to us.


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