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Old 08-26-2006, 05:25 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Why is the earpiece feedback on some BB's disabled? I can't hear myself talk!

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Ok, this is probably an easy question for some of you experts out there...

On any good land-line telephone there is a "feedback circuit" which allows you to hear yourself in the earpiece during a conversation, along with the person you're talking to. In other words, you can hear both sides of the conversation in the earpiece. It's been that way for decades...

With some Blackberry's (7130 for example), this feature is largely disabled and you can only hear the other party and not yourself. You might as well be talking to your hand, because you can't hear much of yourself in the call at all.

Good luck if you're in a noisy environment with the phone pressed hard up against your ear, because then it's even more difficult to hear yourself, even through the air or from either of your ears. My problem is that if I can't hear myself, I talk too loud and I LOSE MY VOICE!

Manufacturers remove the feedback circuit because sometimes the delay created in digital phones can create echo problems.

Motorola does a great job with the feedback circuit on most all of their cell phones. They simply mix a small amount of the analog signal coming from the mic back into the earpiece and you can hear yourself just fine. Because they use the analog signal before its digitized, there is no delay and you can hear yourself just fine without any echo.

Some Blackberry phones are better than others - For example, in my experience (with Cingular) the 8700 is much better than the 7130... But I can't think of a reason why they all can't be made to work properly.

Am I missing something here? Can you adjust the volume of the mic signal in the earpiece? Is there an adjustment on the phone to take care of this problem?

Thanks for any help you can give me...

Last edited by bjm007 : 08-27-2006 at 04:42 PM.
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Old 08-26-2006, 05:46 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Wirelessly posted (Cingular 7130c: BlackBerry8700/4.1.0 Profile/MIDP-2.0 Configuration/CLDC-1.1 VendorID/102)

I've never been able to hear myself on any phone. Blackberry or landline. It would drive me crazy.
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Old 08-26-2006, 05:52 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by option94
I've never been able to hear myself on any phone. Blackberry or landline. It would drive me crazy.
You probably just don't realize it, but nearly all the land-line telephones on the planet are like that...

Even analog cell phones and a lot of digital cell phones have a feedback circuit as well. It's only the newer digital cell phones that make it difficult for you to hear yourself in the earpiece.

The next time you're on a land line, gently blow on the mic in the handset while you're on a call. You'll hear it very clearly in the earpiece on 99 out of 100 phones.

Last edited by bjm007 : 08-26-2006 at 11:52 PM.
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Old 08-26-2006, 11:29 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I think you're thinking into this too much. I know what you're talking about on the landline but I've never had a cell phone, BB or many others, that relay your own voice to the earpiece. It's not an option I really miss
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Old 08-26-2006, 11:50 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mymitsu3kgt
I think you're thinking into this too much. I know what you're talking about on the landline but I've never had a cell phone, BB or many others, that relay your own voice to the earpiece. It's not an option I really miss
I understand the point you're making, but most Motorola cell phones work just fine, like a land-line. The Razor and even the old StarTac work great, and you can hear yourself in the earpiece...

I'm in demanding job where I'm on the phone over 3,000 minutes a month. I'm constantly in noisy places trying to talk on the phone and if I can't hear myself, I find myself talking louder than I should and I end up losing my voice by the end of the week...

I'm fine with most other cell phones, especially those made by Motorola - they work ok. Like I said The old StarTac and new Razor are perfect. I can hear myself just fine. Even the BB 8700 is pretty good in this regard, but apparently RIM took the circuit out of the 7130, and I like the layout of the numbers on that one a lot better.

I'm just looking for a PDA that I can hear myself on. I like the layout of the 7130, but I just can't hear myself on it...

Last edited by bjm007 : 08-27-2006 at 03:20 PM.
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Old 08-26-2006, 11:56 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default It's called "sidetone"

Landline phones incorporate sidetone to prevent one from speaking too loudly, which is a natural tendancy. Ever notice how folks who are yacking on their cellphones always seem to be speaking much louder than necessary?

Some wireless phones have sidetone capability, such as certain recent Motorola models.

It would be a wonderful feature to have on ALL phones.
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Old 08-27-2006, 12:00 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PCW
Landline phones incorporate sidetone to prevent one from speaking too loudly, which is a natural tendancy. Ever notice how folks who are yacking on their cellphones always seem to be speaking much louder than necessary?

Some wireless phones have sidetone capability, such as certain recent Motorola models.

It would be a wonderful feature to have on ALL phones.
There ya go... Somebody who understands the issue! Thanks...

Is "sidetone" an industry term, or just the way you're referring to it?

Now if we could only find a way to fix it

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Old 08-27-2006, 02:25 AM   #8 (permalink)
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PCW - Thanks for getting to the bottom of this for me... At least I know what to call the problem now. Looks like I'm not so crazy after all.................

For all the rest of us, here's a few links to some industry definitions for the term "sidetone" :

Echo and Sidetone - voip-info.org

Sidetone - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Now if RIM could just get the 7130 wired up like the 8700, all would be well in the world

Last edited by bjm007 : 08-27-2006 at 03:16 PM.
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Old 08-27-2006, 03:31 PM   #9 (permalink)
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What's the best way to contact RIM to find out if the amount of "sidetone" on the 7130c is user adjustable? Or adjustable by a tech?

Does RIM have a back-door tech support number? I checked their website and it looked like a maze to keep the general public out....... I wonder if its possible to talk to one of their engineers...

Do you think this is a RIM question or a carrier question? In my case Cingular.......
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Old 08-27-2006, 03:59 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjm007
What's the best way to contact RIM to find out if the amount of "sidetone" on the 7130c is user adjustable? Or adjustable by a tech?

Does RIM have a back-door tech support number? I checked their website and it looked like a maze to keep the general public out....... I wonder if its possible to talk to one of their engineers...

Do you think this is a RIM question or a carrier question? In my case Cingular.......
I doubt that it is adjustable. Call your service provider first. If they can't do anything they will esculate your call to RIM. RIM does not take calls directly unless you have a TSpupport contract.
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Old 08-27-2006, 04:03 PM   #11 (permalink)
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I have *never* had a cell phone - and I've had a lot - that had "sidetone" to the earpiece. Never.
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Old 08-27-2006, 04:24 PM   #12 (permalink)
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The 8700 has got a LOT of sidetone, both on the handset and headset. It's a major complaint when there's wind, not only can the other person not hear, you can't either. Which is why most handsets have less sidetone than wired phones or none at all--they're designed for nosier environments.
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Old 08-27-2006, 04:37 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJBlackBerry
I have *never* had a cell phone - and I've had a lot - that had "sidetone" to the earpiece. Never.
Nice to have a Mod chine in here. Thanks...

Have you ever owned a Motorola phone? If you have, then you've owned a phone with sidetone.

Have you tried the Blackberry 8700? It also has lots of sidetone...
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Old 08-27-2006, 04:39 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsuen
The 8700 has got a LOT of sidetone, both on the handset and headset. It's a major complaint when there's wind, not only can the other person not hear, you can't either. Which is why most handsets have less sidetone than wired phones or none at all--they're designed for nosier environments.
All the reason to make it user adjustable.

Some people like it and some don't..............
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Old 08-27-2006, 05:10 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjm007
Nice to have a Mod chine in here. Thanks...

Have you ever owned a Motorola phone? If you have, then you've owned a phone with sidetone.

Have you tried the Blackberry 8700? It also has lots of sidetone...
Thanks for the input. I have had several Motorola phones, from the original flip phone to a V600.

As you said, some people like it and some don't.
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Old 08-27-2006, 06:14 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I love to hear my own voice.

Jon
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Old 08-27-2006, 06:24 PM   #17 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonberry
I love to hear my own voice.

Jon
Most people do, whether they realize it or not...

The most obvious corollary to this issue is what is done in the recording studio. A singer needs to hear himself in the headphones along with the backing tracks in order to sing! Trust me, among other things I own a studio and the singer's ability to hear himself in the headphones is the single most critical thing in doing a good vocal recording.

It also helps the person speaking to be able to hear themselves in a conversation.

That's just a no-brainer.......

Last edited by bjm007 : 09-06-2006 at 08:31 PM.
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Old 08-27-2006, 08:32 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Wow, you know, I never really thought about the technical reason for it, but that would explain why I so prefer Motorola phones for outdoor conversations.

The whole reason I got rid of my old 6210, was that it was impossible to use while walking down a busy street. My Razr worked fantastically in the same environment, as does my 8700 with a Bluetooth headset. Now when I really think about it, that was exactly the problem. Not that I couldn't hear the person I was talking to, but that I was never sure if they heard me, because I couldn't hear myself.

Interesting.
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