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[Advanced users] Samsung Galaxy S - kernel-sound-tweak

Discussion in 'Sound Science' started by droid23, Jan 11, 2011.
  1. droid23
    hello community!
    i just found something very interesting for samsung galaxy s (and derivates! > see 2nd post) owners:
    "supercurio", (over at the xda-developer forums) an android developer devoted to sound, just finished a sound tweak for the galaxy s!
    as we know, the SGS has a wolfson wm8994 audio-hub and the theoretical capabilities of this hardware sounded promising.
    the truth is, the SGS had some minor sound-issues right out of the box. supercurio now tried to fix them and tapped the full potential out of this device.
    look at his thread and maybe its a nice solution for us soundfreaks :wink:
    [BOUNTY] Anything related to Sound: features or fix requests First version available!
    i know, it's not easy to implement this and you better have some skills regarding android OS...but at least there is hope [​IMG]
  2. droid23
    soooo...things are developing extremely fine!
    supercurio has worked hard and added many goodies to his "voodoo sound"-tweak. i'm sorry to say, but it is still hard to implement these tweaks on a samsung galaxy s I9000 (and derivates*) and you should be familiar with:
    > flashing a new firmware (ROM) and
    > flashing a new kernel
    > working with "Odin" (an opensource flashing software) and thereafter working with CWM (clockworkmod recovery)
    > downloading an app from the market (that would be the easiest part of the work^^)
    the time and effort you put into applying this onto your device is worth EVERY single second, i promise. and it's absolutely free!
    (but feel free to donate to the mod's if you like what you hear^^)
    *it's also working on GT-I9000M,  GT-I9000T, Vibrant T-959, Captivate, Fascinate, Mesmerize, and Showcase (all depending on which kernel you use)
    again, here is an updated link to supercurio's thread if i haven't put you off so far: [​IMG]
    [BOUNTY] Anything related to Sound: features or fix requests. v2 available (mic!)
    The "Voodoo Control App v0.3" (free!) is the dedicated app on the android market (see the screenshots in the link above). with this app you can control the voodoo-soundtweaks which are implemented in various new android-kernels for various phone-models.
    i have the international version of the galaxy s, the GT-I9000. i cooked my own ROM in the so called "romkitchen" (it's for galaxy s and captivate and the how-to's are linked in the posts 1-3) with "hardcore's speedmod kernel" in his actual version K12Q implemented and all the other apps and tweaks i wanted to include! here's a beginners overview about the choices you can make in romkitchen, a tremendous tool!!
    sadly, this is only for advanced users, too. but a month ago i knew nothing about android smartphones! but now, after a lot of reading though,  i have an extremely speedy android smartphone AND a next to perfect sound (without a dedicated headphone amp)! btw, i use creative aurvana live! headphones with the glaxy s.
    cheers and good luck^^
    edit: here's a list of the things that are already implemented or will be implemented in future releases!!
  3. jakenz
    An emphatic + 1 re droid23's comments that...


    I too have a Galaxy S (I9000 / international version), and just last night for the first time went through the various steps of installing a new firmware / ROM that happened to include the developer Supercurio's Voodoo sound kernel that droid23 refers to above.


    Wow what a difference audio quality wise. 


    Previously the Galaxy S was only OK as a PMP, with a fairly open presentation but not as much dynamic range or absolute volume headroom and my Cowan D2, which incidentally also has something like 5x the battery life.  Suffice to say I hardly used the galaxy as a PMP.


    I think that may have just changed.  Just seconds into the first flac I played significant improvements were immediately obvious. Dramatically greater dynamic range with in particular much deeper and more defined low end bass in particular.  At half (analogue) volume it is about as loud I need to go with my earphones.  Pretty sure it now also has a wider/deeper soundstage also than the D2, but I've yet to A-B them.  Now if only someone could miraculously double the battery life...


    Wolfson DAC tweaks


    As I understand it from a bit of casual googling, the tweaks Supercurio has made to date are pretty fundamental to the operation of the Galaxy S' Wolfson DAC/headphone amp:

    1. given us access (via his Voodoo control panel) to the analogue volume control on the wolfson's (analogue) amp stage.  This means one can now set the digital volume control of the galaxy s - the Android system media volume setting - to 100% so as not to lose any of the DAC's bits/dynamic range, and then adjust headphone volume spl to suit using the new analogue volume slider.  This alone is worth the price of admission with the lower noise floor and greater dynamics.
    2. disabled a software auto-volume limiter that apparently wasted another 1.5db of dynamic range.  Doesn't sound like a lot of db but boy you can hear the difference immediately toggling the setting on and off.  Sounds flatter/subdued  with the AVL on vs more open/airy without.
    3. 128x oversampling by DAC.  Gives an option to toggle this on or off.  Very subtle the difference here - I think I can hear it, just - but may be more worthwhile of some material.

    Hmm... could be time to upgrade my earphones once again.  


    (Disclaimer: downgraded from some underused Shure e5c's to some Sonys EX-somethings a few years back so all the above observations are via the Sonys.  Not sure if thats a good or bad thing.)

    [PS unsure sure why the formatting of this post has gone crazy...]
  4. droid23
    jakenz, thank you for your detailed reply! [​IMG]
    i second that! it felt that my headphones just "woke up" after applying these wolfson tweaks. for me, also (around) half the analogue volume (pushed the digital vol. to 100%) seems to be the sweetspot.
    sad but true, this device doesn't have an extensive batterylife. you won't get happy with it on a fieldtrip :wink:
    although you can squeeze out a little more batterylife by
    >deactivating the built in gps,
    >deactivating the network if you don't need the phone functionality,
    [a good, free and practical app i can recommend is "Quick Settings (by Sergej Shafarenka)" on the android market]
    >applying the acclaimed WiFi fix
    > use the free app "Task Manager (by Rhythm Software) to close unwanted software running in the background. very nice tool!
    important: at least, set the clock, calendar, voodoo control app onto the "ignore list". pretty much any other task you can "kill" safely. dont' mind, tasks start again if they are needed automatically...e.g. email sync...so you can't do harm to your phone by "killing" them! ist's all temporarily^^
    and keep having fun :)
  5. furstrated
    I third the above observation
    voodo sound mod really makes a difference
    ive been using speedmod kernel ever since it came out and the recent inclusion of voodo sound mod is simply amazing out of my triplefi10vi with modded adaptor to allow for mic functionality
  6. Arkanius
    I had also made the same thread when supercurio released the first kernel
    It's totally worth it!
    It's the best cellphone in terms of sound quality now in my honest opinion. 
  7. Martin J
    im using this kernel too...this way i dont have to buy a separate dac/amp for the galaxy...but in my wishlist to supercurio, i asked if he could make an LOD script to another portable amp in case we want to use another amp......
    the tweek is great though! very noticeable differences,,,,a word of caution be careful flashing roms.....i soft bricked my phone using heimdall for mac, had to make my own jig to revive the phone from softbrick....used odin again to flash...
  8. ksirc
    I just did this! Rooted my phone, installed the original fw then this kernel.
    First reaction when I played a song, wow! Everything comes to life. Thanks to this thread :)
  9. miow
    Guys, anybody knows if Voodoo works on the Galaxy S MP4 PMP, or just on the Galaxy S phone?
  10. droid23
    hey miow!

    sorry, I do not know if this tweak is apliccable to the Galaxy S MP4 PMP. I'd suggest to ask "supercurio" via PM on the xda-developers forum. He's still very active on this forum and nowadays he's even working together with Samsung (at least that's what I was told).

    The other thing what I want to tell you is, that miraculously I ordered the AKG K167 TIESTO, too and I was following your thread in the last days....just to come across your posting here! lol, I just say "global village" xD

    I'm sooo looking forward to put the K167 on my ears. Today I got the distributor's mail, that they have been sent out to me. Also, since I have a few other cans here for comparative testing (ok, only subjectively^^), I will be happy to post it on your thread.

    so, cU there..

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