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The Samsung Galaxy S3’s Sound is Indeed Powered by Wolfson’s Audio Chips (Updated)

Audiophiles rejoice – Wolfson has confirmed that the Galaxy SIII does in fact, incorporate their WM1811 Audio Hub. If you happened to own a Galaxy S, then it is possible that you disinterred some rather high quality audio, all thanks to Wolfson’s previous Audio Hub, although Sammy chose a Yamaha variant for the SGSII. The two companies are back together again and the chip is to produce, “crystal clear voice call quality” and “enriched audio playback for music and video.”

Update:  Well, according to @supercurio, the U.S. variant does not have the Wolfson chip and instead uses Qualcomm’s own audio chip with the Snapdragon S4. And you wondered why we were upset about not getting that quad-core Exynos. OK, we admit that we had no idea it had upgraded audio, but dammit, now we want it.

From what Kellex and myself have already experienced, I would say that Sammy and Wolfson hit the nail on the head when it comes to audio on the SGSIII. Don’t send me death threats, but everything sounds great when I hook up my Beats by Dre headphones to the device.

EDINBURGH, Scotland–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Wolfson Microelectronics plc, a global leader in the design and development of mixed-signal semiconductors and high definition (HD) Audio solutions for the consumer electronics market, has today announced that its ultra-low power HD Audio Hub, the WM1811, has been selected by Samsung for inclusion in its highly-anticipated new smartphone, the GALAXY S III.

“We are delighted that Samsung has once again demonstrated its confidence in our Audio Hub solutions, this time by incorporating the WM1811 into its flagship GALAXY S III smartphone, the launch of which will further strengthen Samsung’s position as a world leading smartphone manufacturer.”

This announcement builds on Wolfson’s strong partnership with Samsung, having already designed Wolfson’s WM8994 Audio Hub into several of its leading-edge smartphones, including the Samsung Wave and Galaxy S.

Featuring class-leading technology, the WM1811 provides crystal-clear voice call quality and enriched audio playback for music and video while minimising power consumption, enabling manufacturers such as Samsung to create outstanding HD Audio user experiences with long battery life.

Commenting on the announcement, Wolfson’s Chief Executive Officer Mike Hickey said: “We are delighted that Samsung has once again demonstrated its confidence in our Audio Hub solutions, this time by incorporating the WM1811 into its flagship GALAXY S III smartphone, the launch of which will further strengthen Samsung’s position as a world leading smartphone manufacturer.

“Our continued success with Samsung, particularly within its range of smartphones and tablets, is testament to the unrivalled quality of our HD Audio Hubs, and the unique features in our products that allow manufacturers to create differentiated audio experiences.”

Packed with innovative technology designed for humans, the GALAXY S III is effortlessly smart and intuitively simple to make people’s everyday life easier.

Via: Engadget

  • Sam

    are you kidding me? I haven’t tested the call quality but the music playback audio sucks big time! I’m frustrated for the price I’ve to pay.

    • Sam

      It is not played out loud, not through earbuds or headphones. I’ve Dr. Dre beat, the phone sounds nice if the volume set low or medium. The Samsung Galaxy’s I has better audio.

      • Sam

        *it is played out loud*

  • dr kenneth noisewater

    you lost quite a bit of credibility when you announced that you used beats headphones.

  • alby91a

    I swear to pete. Seems like every day another thing comes out to make me feel like i am getting the shaft. I am starting to have buyers remorse and the stupid phone isnt even here yet. Did i make a mistake by preordering this thing from verizon?

  • honk

    Anyone else notice this phone will not landscape? Installed a 3rd party launcher and wallpapers are messed up. Stuck with 1280X720 so landscape it is black bars everywhere. Not the traditional (is it anymore???) square so it scrolls past the image in portrait and looks ok in landscape. I am guessing this is touch wiz and not ICS. I hope so. Guess I am rooting and roming this sooner than planned.

    Also how to nags will not go away on the lock screen.
    Cannot figure out how to mount the cel sans a sd card via the pc either. Though I do not think my OG Droid was able to do this either. The phone arrived before I get around to ordering the memory card.

    So far only complaints about the phone. Have not activated the line since I plan to migrate my verizon #
    Just happy no more FCs due to running out of memory!

  • James_C_L

    another reason to hate the united states

  • jslafarr

    “Beats suck & skull candy is overpriced” – lol these people.down vote all you want. What are the best headphones?

    • http://profiles.google.com/pnoymagnetix erick magno

      house of marley headphones…lol

    • k_nivesout

      Sennheiser, Audio-technica, Sony, Shure, Grado, AIAIAI, Westone, etc…

  • mjs1124

    Never heard of this chip before a couple of days ago. Then you start hoping its true that the S3 has it. Then its confirmed that its true, the S3 does have it! Awesome! 2 full seconds later I see confirmation that the US version doesn’t have it. Well that was fun, wish I never heard about it now.

  • Jeremy Stewart

    The techrepublic teardown does not indicate that this chip is used in the US variant. It uses the Qualcomm WCD9310: http://www.techrepublic.com/photos/cracking-open-the-samsung-galaxy-s-iii-t-mobile/6370767?seq=56&tag=content;siu-container#photopaging

  • Soofdawg

    You can’t use audiophile and any product made by Monster in the same story…Beats by Dr. Dre in this case.

  • peterf

    call quality is really poor on s3 . people cannot understand me since I have s3 .

    • FortitudineVincimus

      what?

    • http://twitter.com/SSnow02 Sam

      Going out on a limb here, but I’m guessing the phone isn’t the issue…

      • peterf

        call quality really sucks on s3 .

  • Colin Wolfson

    That’s because our chips are the best.

  • MKader17

    Samsung’s attention to detail on this phone seems to be outstanding. The battery is well sized, the camera is amazing, the Audio hub is superb and will result in a great speakerphone, stellar headphone performance and voice call quality. The phones shape is designed to be easy to handle. Gorrilla glass 2 is great. There is removable battery and storage. The screen is fantastic.

    Everyday it seems that more and more positives are stacking up for this phone.

    • MKader17

      Really, a downvote?

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=25001493 Hank Godwin

        Here’s another downvote for caring about downvotes.

      • http://www.facebook.com/LuisElTiburon Luis Rojas

        It feels like reddit in this bitch

        • fixxmyhead

          nah just alot of HTC one X users that are in denial

  • GSAI

    Is this universal across all carrier models? I don’t really know the relationship between SOC and audio card.

  • MKader17


    Wolfson Microelectronics plc has today announced the WM1811, its loudest, smallest Audio Hub yet. This new ultra-low power stereo audio hub is designed to deliver extended battery life and enriched audio quality. The WM1811 is targeted at MP3 music and video playback in smartphones and other portable devices rich in multimedia features, such as tablet PCs, eBook readers and media players.”

    Interesting quote from the WM1881’s press release

  • http://joshbane.wordpress.com/ Josh

    Does the Beats Audio Headphones as good as connected to the Rezound then? I listened to my buddy’s Rezound with Beats turned on and Beats Headphones, it sounded amazing. Like a car system in my ears. I would love that experience with my pre-ordered VZW GS3.

  • bull3964

    The speculation is though, this only holds for the Exynos variants. No one knows for sure if the Krait S4 versions will have the Wolfson.

    • Aardvark99

      This WM1811 is its own chip and not part of the SoC. In fact the teardowns show it about as far away from the CPU as possible. I only hope that the US variants are nearly the same (outside the SoC) electronically as possible. I understand audio recording has shown issues in the Exynos versions only, so maybe that’s not a good sign.

      • bull3964

        It has a different SoC and different radios. I don’t know if that much of the inner electronics are going to be similar. We won’t know for sure until someone does a teardown.

        @supercurio says no however.

        https://twitter.com/supercurio/status/217631114334973952

        • Aardvark99

          Damn…

        • PC_Tool

          Thanks for this. This should go into the article as an update.

          supercurio is the dev behind Voodoo Sound, and has been talking to the Wolfson folks for months regarding the SIII. He knows of what he speaks.

          This pretty much locks it up.

          • radiohead14

            has he mentioned how the S4 audio chip is compared to the Wolfson?

          • PC_Tool

            So far, that I know of, both myself and adrynalyne (another dev) have inquired of this with him.

            I have not seen a response to either reply yet, but as soon as I do, I will update my post.

  • woadster

    How’s the battery life on the Verizon version?

    • woadster

      O and speaker phone volume?

    • kevin

      Seeing how no one has even seen a Verizon model im gonna go out on a limb here and say that no one knows that…

      • nwd1911

        Dick answer, but it made me lol. And for that I say, thank you.

        • JazzoRenee

          Why is it a dick answer???
          It is quite frankly, the truth!

          I should probably read the whole thing lol

  • jjrudey

    “everything sounds great when I hook up my Beats by Dre headphones to the device.”
    I’m so sorry that you have to listen through such awful headphones.

    • JoshGroff

      I’d rather use my SkullCandy GI headphones. Beats are overpriced for the quality.

      • Ryan Ball

        So are SkullCandys

        • JoshGroff

          I paid 30 for mine, hard to find comparable over ears at that price range.

    • http://www.droid-life.com/ Tim-o-tato

      When you get them for a Christmas present, you don’t argue! I love them vurrry much :)

      • jjrudey

        Fair enough

      • JoshGroff

        Free is always good. :)

      • k_nivesout

        I got a pair of beats for christmas too. Returned em and bought some sennheisers ;)

      • ineedthatpurse

        got me some Bose love recently.. lovin’ that!

    • http://twitter.com/BennyF_Jr Ben Forehan Jr

      Beats suck.

    • http://www.facebook.com/LuisElTiburon Luis Rojas

      Audio Technica M50’s half the price twice the sound

  • Haywood J. Ablome

    Crappy gps & radio, even crappier plastic build materials. 2GB of ram, who cares. Epic Fail.

    • kevin

      cool story brah if you dont want the phone dont buy it. Its still funny that you hate the phone so much yet you are commenting in a thread about it hmmm

      • LiterofCola

        Oh, let me tell about a time of old, when Nexus fanboys would hate on every Razr thread DL pumped out. It was a crazy time I tell ya.

    • http://www.droid-life.com/ Tim-o-tato

      Lol! U Fail :)

      • Firant

        Hawyood Jablome — great troll name.

    • TheWenger

      Plastics are the future. Get over it.

  • woadster

    How’s the speaker phone?

  • Steve Wozniak

    I can get better call quality from two tin cans and a piece of string. Somebody put this PoS out of its misery.

  • http://twitter.com/DCBenson7 David Benson

    This might be a stupid question, but can I buy a S3 on contract to keep my unlimited plan and then sell the S3 when i get it NIB and keep using my D2. That way I can sell the S3 for $400 make a little profit to buy my next phone at full retail to keep the unlimited?

    • kretz7
      • http://twitter.com/DCBenson7 David Benson

        Thanks, just called Verizon Corporate and they comfirmed it would work for me. Also new user can get a SIM card free of charge for their account at a corporate VZ Store.

    • JoshGroff

      Unfortunately you would need a 4G phone (activated and attached to your line, so you would have to use some of the profits to get a cheaper used 4G phone) otherwise if you get a 4G phone later, you will lose the unlimited. Also, you’d probably be able to sell it for 500+ NIB.

      • nwd1911

        I don’t believe that is true. My dad just upgraded at Costco, activated the phone and is now selling it on ebay and keeping his DInc. Keeping unlimited data and making profits from his last upgrade ever :) By the way, Costco may be able to give the ultimate hookup…the local guy is claiming he can swap the 4G phone he just purchased within 90 days and not foul up his contract…time will tell.

        • JoshGroff

          That is true, but if you activate a 4G sim (after reverting to a 3G phone upon taking a 4G upgrade phone) you would be forced into tiered data, if I read into it correctly.

          • http://twitter.com/DCBenson7 David Benson

            I am just trying to buy it, get it, not open it at all and just sell it. Then just keep my D2 3G, not activating it at all. Will that be an issue to keep my unlimited data?

    • Matt Gondek

      I don’t see why not. As long a VZW gets your money for another two years, they probably won’t care what you do with the actual device

    • woadster

      Don’t see why you cant

    • http://www.facebook.com/Br00klynBallin Ryan Kreutzer

      If you are up for an upgrade and you pre order it before the 28th then yes. Someone correct me if I’m wrong.