Mobile phones have become real entertainment gadgets. Apart from incredibly cool apps and video games that users can install, high-capacity phones also allow us to store huge files, including movies and TV shows. Apart from that, various apps can provide the same service, such as YouTube and Netflix. Finally, music is an indispensable part of many people's lives and therefore the sound quality of the mobile phone will be a crucial factor when opting to buy one.
In further text, we will briefly describe what the sound quality is like in the latest three flagship phones – Apple’s iPhone 14, Google’s Pixel 7, and Samsung’s Galaxy S23.
"if something works well, don't touch it." Since the iPhone 7, Apple mobiles have been improving the audio and maintaining the stereo, without restrictions, even for the SE. Unfortunately, from that model of Apple’s mobile phones, we do not see a 3.5-millimeter mini jack and we only find the USB port if you want to physically connect headphones. This year, the sound remained the same.
The remake of the famous Apple sound happened this year around, as the iPhone 14 gives us clear stereo sound with good dynamic range. Covering first the sound that the speakers give us, in the iPhone 14, we find clear and balanced audio. It is a clear sound with good dynamic range, without detecting differences for better or worse with its predecessors.
The volume does not represent a problem either by level or by quality. Increasing it does not mean too much loss in quality, reaching about 119 decibels at the immediate output of the main speaker (which is about 93 decibels in the environment). Be that as it may, you will always have a better experience leaving it at a maximum of 80%, which is also quite sufficient to set the mood for a room.
The system settings in terms of sound do not present many changes, and these are limited to aspects more related to the general configuration. We do not see an equalizer or other options that we are used to seeing in software layers on Android, although we have not missed them either, having also had a good experience with headphones.
Google recently launched the new Google Pixel 7 series on the market, which certainly may have pleased fans of the brand due to its performance and cameras. However, it seems that the same is not true for sound.
According to tests carried out by the DxOMark portal, the sound performance of the new device falls short of even the previous generation models in the line, which can be considered disappointing for some. The entity classified the device with 137 points in terms of audio quality, a value that places it in the 22nd position in the list of devices tested.
There are some positive points, such as the good calibration of tones at different volumes, and excellent performance in terms of spatial sound. However, these qualities are not enough to place the device in a higher position.
Midrange sounds, according to the entity, were the main break in the score, as they are a little different depending on the content that is being reproduced. There are still problems with low-frequency sounds, which end up being muffled in the middle of the rest of the content.
In terms of audio recording, good performances were recorded on the quality of intermediate frequencies, but there are problems such as the recording of excessive noise with no apparent explanation, as well as sometimes the recording was done in mono format.
When we buy a Samsung smartphone, we will certainly find a good sound capacity. Not only in terms of calls but also in terms of what we hear through the speakers. It is undoubtedly one of the great points of honor of the brand. While the phone hasn’t come out yet, with only a few months remaining until its release, we can honestly expect great sound qualities, if the phone retains the same sound as S22, not to mention improving it.
The Galaxy S22 maintains the sound system of its predecessors and adopts two speakers, one at the bottom and another at the place where the sound of calls comes out. Regarding the quality, there is not much to comment on. It's excellent, with great clarity in the voices and definitions of the instruments. At maximum volume, the sound can pop a little, but nothing that detracts from the experience.
Speakers on the S22 are great but can burst at maximum volume. As expected, the cell phone also has Dolby Atmos that works both for music and movies and for games, which just needs to be activated in the sound settings.
It's good to see that the sound part has not been compromised and the S22 has stereo sound with the same power and quality as the S22 Plus. It is a cell phone capable of playing any movie or music with good fidelity, delivering well-distributed bass, mids, and highs.
The sound output, which is stereo, is allocated in a very discreet space at the top of the cell phone. Despite being small, combined with the main output at the bottom, we have a device that makes a lot of noise without compromising sound quality.
As said, in case Samsung retains the same sound qualities or even improves them, which is highly expected, the S23 series will boast one of the best sounds on the market, if not the best.
So, which phone should music and movie lovers choose? Well, based on their performances, here is our listing:
3) Pixel 7. The lowest in quality (but also the price) of the three, Google’s Pixel phones are truly great but not on iPhone and S-series’ level, specifically in terms of sound quality.
2) S23. While it is still unknown what the phone will sound like, and no doubt it will sound amazing, it is unlikely that it will surpass iPhone 14 in this regard.
1) iPhone 14. While there is still room for improvement in some regards when it comes to Apple phones, the sound is not one of them. Once again, iPhone comes on top.