Enabling LDAC audio codec in Android?

JoeSoap

Well-known member
Dec 1, 2019
23
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525
Good evening, I have two Android devices, Samsung Galaxy Tab 6 Lite ( Android v11) and Nokia 8 ( Android v9). I have enabled "developer mode" successfully to enable changing the default Bluetooth audio codec to LDAC. With the Samsung, HD audio is greyed out and no audio codecs can be changed. On the Nokia 8 I can successfully change to LDAC but the settings just revert back to SBC. Just leaving the developer screen to go to Apple Music and start playing music causes the LDAC setting to be lost. Clearly there's two entirely separate issues on two entirely different devices. I am using a brand new set of Sony headphones that absolutely support LDAC. It seems there's an issue with both Android devices? No amount of Googling really helps with this. Toggling things on and off, restarting etc..... nothing changes the inability to use LDAC audio codec. All ideas and suggestions welcomed.
Thanks.
 

Tinman1952

Well-known member
May 19, 2021
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Good evening, I have two Android devices, Samsung Galaxy Tab 6 Lite ( Android v11) and Nokia 8 ( Android v9). I have enabled "developer mode" successfully to enable changing the default Bluetooth audio codec to LDAC. With the Samsung, HD audio is greyed out and no audio codecs can be changed. On the Nokia 8 I can successfully change to LDAC but the settings just revert back to SBC. Just leaving the developer screen to go to Apple Music and start playing music causes the LDAC setting to be lost. Clearly there's two entirely separate issues on two entirely different devices. I am using a brand new set of Sony headphones that absolutely support LDAC. It seems there's an issue with both Android devices? No amount of Googling really helps with this. Toggling things on and off, restarting etc..... nothing changes the inability to use LDAC audio codec. All ideas and suggestions welcomed.
Thanks.
I’ve had exactly the same experience….exasperating! That’s the problem with Bluetooth. Yes it’s convenient but you never really know what you are getting. Half the time it’s just SBC (or AAC on iOS ) and the adaptive codecs are just a ‘mystery in a box’. ☹
 

JoeSoap

Well-known member
Dec 1, 2019
23
1
525
I’ve had exactly the same experience….exasperating! That’s the problem with Bluetooth. Yes it’s convenient but you never really know what you are getting. Half the time it’s just SBC (or AAC on iOS ) and the adaptive codecs are just a ‘mystery in a box’. ☹
Thanks. It's not just me then. Googling around this is hopeless too. There are do many different pieces of hardware and different versions of Android, you just don't know where to start. Typically, the "toggle it off and on again" type comments are a waste of space.

I presume you never managed to fix this?
 

Tinman1952

Well-known member
May 19, 2021
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Thanks. It's not just me then. Googling around this is hopeless too. There are do many different pieces of hardware and different versions of Android, you just don't know where to start. Typically, the "toggle it off and on again" type comments are a waste of space.

I presume you never managed to fix this?
No I have to admit I gave up in the end with my Samsung phone. Even a little Sony Walkman NW-A45 where you can specify the codec used was ‘ambiguous’ as I never really knew what I was actually getting! 🙂
 

JoeSoap

Well-known member
Dec 1, 2019
23
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525
Thank you for the input. After some digging around I finally found (what I think is) the multi point feature in the Sony head phone app. It was switched off by default. Switching it on warns you LDAC won't work. Anyway, switching on then off again, LDAC can be selected in Android v9 and v11. But as soon as you switch apps it defaults to SBC (v9) and AAC (v11). I have now given up because life is too short.

I have ordered a decent quality 3.5mm head phone cable that I will plug into my Android devices to listen. I am irritated that I cannot easily use the high quality Bluetooth features that I bought the Sony head phones for last week. Having to revert to a 3.5mm cable was absolutely not part of the plan.

Furthermore, on another thread here I was considering buying a Naim Uniti Atom Head Phone Edition. I decided against it because I needed wired headphones. However........... Even if I bought one now, is seems the Bluetooth connection between my Android devices and the Atom to stream Apple Music Lossless is going to be SBC or AAC, it seems. No point in buying the Naim then for high quality Bluetooth from Android?

I understand that Android devices resample and cripple all streams output to the USB port too. So right now, I see no way that I can achieve a better quality listening experience from my Apple Music account.

It has been a very steep learning curve the last week. Thank you for your input. It is very welcome.

Regards

Soap.
 

JoeSoap

Well-known member
Dec 1, 2019
23
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525
Yes it’s all a bit of a dog’s breakfast at the moment….Apple need to up their game. 🙁
***** Well to be fair, in my case, Apple Music is the innocent party here. My issues are with Android, it seems. The LDAC support is dreadful as far as I can see.

Anyway, just got my new 3.5mm headphone cable here to try. Though the reason I bought the Sony headphones last week was the advanced Bluetooth features. Seems one huge step backwards. Thanks.

***** It seems it is an Apple Music issue after all. See post below.
 
Last edited:

JoeSoap

Well-known member
Dec 1, 2019
23
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Ah...... Quite by coincidence, it is not possible to listen to Apple Music lossless files in Android without a wired headphone connection or an external DAC.

Quoted from Apple, link below -
"How to listen to lossless on your Android device



What you need
You can listen to lossless on an Android device with the latest version of the Apple Music app using:
  • A wired connection to headphones, receivers, or powered speakers
  • To listen to songs at sample rates higher than 48 kHz, you might need an external digital-to-analog converter.*"

So there we have it. It's an Apple Music issue all along when I was thinking it was an Adroid problem. Well I never.

Anyway, I am presently listening to and enjoying Van Morrison on my Sony headphones on Apple Music playing lossless. Given the faff involved in plugging, unplugging, enabling Bluetooth etc.... I haven't done a direct Bluetooth v Wired A to B comparison. Yet.

Hope my finding helps others out there.

Link -

 

Vincent Kars

Well-known member
Mar 6, 2021
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It's an Apple Music issue all along when I was thinking it was an Adroid problem.
No, it is a hardware issue.
Phones (be it iOS or Android) most of the time have a DAC running at 48 kHz.
As a consequence all audio had to be resampled to this rate.
Obvious listening wired won't overcome this limitation.

An alternative is a USB DAC. A lot of phones do support UAC1 (96 kHz) or UAC2 ( any sample rate).
 
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JoeSoap

Well-known member
Dec 1, 2019
23
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No, it is a hardware issue.
Phones (be it iOS or Android) most of the time have a DAC running at 48 kHz.
As a consequence all audio had to be resampled to this rate.
Obvious listening wired won't overcome this limitation.

An alternative is a USB DAC. A lot of phones do support UAC1 (96 kHz) or UAC2 ( any sample rate).
Thanks. However, I understand that all bit streams output by Android device USB ports are resampled (and crippled?) anyway. Therefore, the only advantage I could see to an external USB DAC connected to Android device USB port is that the Android device DAC costs a few pence where the sky is the limit for external DAC in both price and quality. Given a resampled bit stream from the Android device USB port, then the potential upside in using an external DAC is limited?

As you can see, my learning curve is exponential here. I am open minded though and if members can point me in the direction of a worthwhile external DAC for reasonable money, I will definitely try it. (Budget say, up to £200). Thanks.

Soap
 

Vincent Kars

Well-known member
Mar 6, 2021
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However, I understand that all bit streams output by Android device USB ports are resampled (and crippled?) anyway.
I doubt if this is correct although a lot of voices on the internet says so.
Likewise a lot of voices say you should use Ivermectin to avoid Covid .

I think they are most of all referring to the onboard audio and old versions.

Recent Android simply implemented UAC1 and/or UAC2 (the USB Audio Class, the standard for audio over USB) so no reason to assume it will work different from any other OS having UAC2 like Linus, OSX and Win10.

Unfortunately my DAC doesn't have a display to tell the bit depth/sample rate.
So I cannot check playing audio.
If I run a tester on Android, is reports itself faithfully as 24 bit / 44,48,88,96
So the device enumeration is correct.

I have no reason to assume Android is not UAC compliant.

Have a look her for a sub 200,- solution: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/topping-e30-dac-review.12119/
 

JoeSoap

Well-known member
Dec 1, 2019
23
1
525
I doubt if this is correct although a lot of voices on the internet says so.
Likewise a lot of voices say you should use Ivermectin to avoid Covid .

I think they are most of all referring to the onboard audio and old versions.

Recent Android simply implemented UAC1 and/or UAC2 (the USB Audio Class, the standard for audio over USB) so no reason to assume it will work different from any other OS having UAC2 like Linus, OSX and Win10.

Unfortunately my DAC doesn't have a display to tell the bit depth/sample rate.
So I cannot check playing audio.
If I run a tester on Android, is reports itself faithfully as 24 bit / 44,48,88,96
So the device enumeration is correct.

I have no reason to assume Android is not UAC compliant.

Have a look her for a sub 200,- solution: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/topping-e30-dac-review.12119/
Thank you for the input. That's really useful. I will continue my education looking at the external DACs.

Like many urban legends, if something is repeated often enough it becomes "true". It maybe anyway that as Android develops, what was once true no longer is.

Soap.
 

Tinman1952

Well-known member
May 19, 2021
1,036
578
1,570
I doubt if this is correct although a lot of voices on the internet says so.
Likewise a lot of voices say you should use Ivermectin to avoid Covid .

I think they are most of all referring to the onboard audio and old versions.

Recent Android simply implemented UAC1 and/or UAC2 (the USB Audio Class, the standard for audio over USB) so no reason to assume it will work different from any other OS having UAC2 like Linus, OSX and Win10.

Unfortunately my DAC doesn't have a display to tell the bit depth/sample rate.
So I cannot check playing audio.
If I run a tester on Android, is reports itself faithfully as 24 bit / 44,48,88,96
So the device enumeration is correct.

I have no reason to assume Android is not UAC compliant.

Have a look her for a sub 200,- solution: https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/topping-e30-dac-review.12119/
Well my understanding is that the Android operating system resamples everything to 48 kHz unless you use something like USB Audio Player Pro. Certainly John Darko believes that too!
 

JoeSoap

Well-known member
Dec 1, 2019
23
1
525
Well my understanding is that the Android operating system resamples everything to 48 kHz unless you use something like USB Audio Player Pro. Certainly John Darko believes that too!
Yes, I read that a couple of days ago at the Darko site. Hence my thinking that a USB output from Android to an external DAC has limited upside potential.

Soap
 

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