How to fix Galaxy S9 sound issues: voice call is like sound in a barrel

Hello and welcome to this day’s #GalaxyS9 troubleshooting article. This post will try to address sound issues reported by some members of TheDroidGuy community. If you’re having audio issues with your own S9, this post may help.

Problem #1: How to fix Galaxy S9 sound issues: voice call is like sound in a barrel

Hello.  We have a Samsung S9 which has intermittent sound issues. Sometimes when calling we can hear the other party fine and sometimes it sounds like they are in a barrel.  The same is true of my end – sometimes they hear great and other times they tell me I sound like I am talking in a barrel or cannot be heard at all. Very frustrating.  The fixes I read didn’t seem to address my problem – or what that just my interpretation of the titles? Any ideas? The S9 was bought Apr of this year. BTW Don’t know what the Android Code is – I’m guessing it’s 10. Thanks.

Solution: Does this problem only occur when talking to one particular contact? If yes, then there’s a fair chance that the issue may lie on your phone or network or on that contact’s phone or network.

If the issue happens when talking to other contacts, then you should prioritize troubleshooting your device. To do that, follow some of the common fixes that you can try:

Install Android and app updates

Sometimes, carriers may release coding enhancements for the modem to improve networking functions. Such enhancements usually come bundled with regular Android updates so be sure to regularly check for updates under Settings > Software update.

You also want to keep your apps up-to-date to lessen the chances of having bugs from incompatible apps.

  1. Open Play Store app.
  2. Tap More settings at the upper left (three-line icon).
  3. At the very top where you see the photo for the selected Google account, tap on the profile photo of the account you want to use.
  4. Once you’ve selected the profile you want, select My apps & games and update your apps.

Verify how voice calling works when SIM is inserted to another phone

In case there’s an issue with your SIM or account, try inserting your SIM card to another compatible phone and see if you can replicate the issue. If voice calling still sounds staticky or if you sound bad, there may be an issue with the SIM or there’s a network issue.

Replace the SIM

This is the best way to fix a problem that’s tied to your SIM. Most carriers will replace SIM cards for free so simply visit your local carrier store and ask for one.

Reset app preferences

Resetting app preferences is oftentimes overlooked in many Android troubleshooting articles but when it comes to an issue like yours, it might help a lot. It’s possible that one or some of your default apps may not be set correctly, causing this glitch to occur. Because there’s no way to know if this guess is true, what you need to do is to simply ensure that all default apps are turned on. Here’s how to do that:

  1. Open Settings app.
  2. Tap Apps.
  3. Tap on More settings at the upper right (three-dot icon).
  4. Select Reset app preferences.
  5. Restart your Note8 and check for the problem.

Reset network settings

Some Android users fix text messaging or connection issues by clearing their phone’s network configuration. If you haven’t tried it before, here are the steps on how to do it:

  1. From the Home screen, swipe up on an empty spot to open the Apps tray.
  2. Tap General Management > Reset settings.
  3. Tap Reset settings.
  4. Tap Reset network settings.
  5. If you have set up a PIN, enter it.
  6. Tap Reset settings. Once complete a confirmation window will appear.

Use another Phone app

If the issue still remains unresolved at this point, you should consider using another app to make calls. There’s a chance the problem is app-related and it’s beyond your ability to fix. There are many apps in the Play Store that you can try so pick one and see if it will make a difference when you try to replicate the problem.

Factory reset

You’ll most probably end up doing a factory reset if our suggestions above won’t work. Be sure to back your files up ahead of time to avoid losing them.

To factory reset your S9:

  1. Create a backup of your data.
  2. Turn off the device.
  3. Press and hold the Volume Up key and the Bixby key, then press and hold the Power key.
  4. When the green Android logo displays, release all keys (‘Installing system update’ will show for about 30 – 60 seconds before showing the Android system recovery menu options).
  5. Press the Volume down key several times to highlight ‘wipe data / factory reset’.
  6. Press Power button to select.
  7. Press the Volume down key until ‘Yes — delete all user data’ is highlighted.
  8. Press Power button to select and start the master reset.
  9. When the master reset is complete, ‘Reboot system now’ is highlighted.
  10. Press the Power key to restart the device.

Talk to your network operator

FActory reset is meant to address possible operating system bug that causes calls audio to mess up but if nothing changes, you should contact your carrier for more assistance. They may have an idea what’s going on, especially if there’s a network problem going on.

Problem #2: Galaxy S9 audio randomly disappears during calls or when recording an audio

I have a Galaxy S9 and i have more than one problems linking to audio. I got this phone on my bday on june 28 and i am really sad and frustrated about what has been happening.

So when i tried sending a voicenote on whatsapp or recording a video there is no audio. It is like the microphone isn’t working. When i called persons or received calls, i couldnt hear them and they couldn’t hear me. There are times the earphones don’t work at all and videos play out or there are times when the earphones are plugged in and there is just no sound at all and when it is plugged out there is no sound from videos either through the speakers. The problem comes and goes. I factory reset 2 times. The first time it worked for a day… it worked for about 2 days without problems. the second time around and made me think that it was fixed but 1 of the problems came back till they all did. On and off…on and off.

I recently cleared the cache, that didn’t work. Before I tried the above solutions i tried booting in safe mode. it worked the first time but the second time the problem was still there…there was sound from videos and but earphones didn’t work . I have to say that the earphones work in other phones and that there is never a sign on the phone to show that it is plugged in the S7 whether it is working or not.

For the past 3 days, i have been resetting the app preferences and restarting phone…that is only thing that works but it starts acting up soon after ..the first time i did it worked for a whole…day Like i have to keep on using the above method and sometimes when i do it , the headphones still doesnt work and sometimes it does.

Solution: There’s no easy way to identify where the issue lies based on how you describe the situation. If the issue goes on and off, it can be one of these things:

  • bad app
  • unknown software bug
  • hardware issue

To determine whether the cause is software in nature or if it’s bad hardware, do these steps:

  1. Back your files up.
  2. Factory reset your device.
  3. Check for the problem (make sure you don’t add any app during this stage).

If audio works normally on calls or when recording videos, that eliminates the possibility that you have a hardware problem. It’s now either an app problem or an operating system issue. To know which of them is the problem, add apps individually but make sure to see how audio works after each one. If audio becomes problematic after adding an app, the latest installed one may be the culprit.

If audio remains problematic right after a factory reset, when there are no added third party apps, you can assume a hardware malfunction. In this case, send the phone to Samsung to have it repaired.

Problem #3: Galaxy S9 Bluetooth volume not working properly after an update

Since the update on Friday, my JVC car radio is controlling the volume on my phone. The phone won’t let me turn it to Max, and after you reach the safe indication it no longer increases in volume. So I have to turn up my radio high, and the sound is distorted. Samsung said I need an update to jvc. Of course jvc said they don’t make updates. T-Mobile just told me to do an insurance claim. I really don’t want to do that as I’d rather save my money for the latest note. Thanks for any help.

Solution: Gadgets that uses Bluetooth functionality may receive periodic updates or not all. These updates sometimes bring fixes and performance enhancements although at times, they can also bring major changes that may include ceasing support for some profiles. For smartphones, Bluetooth updates are more frequent compared to other gadgets like car infotainment systems, headsets, etc. And this is where the problem usually occurs. Older Bluetooth gadgets may suddenly become incompatible with newer Bluetooth versions after an update. This happens all the time in both Android and iOS environments. While it may appear a phone update is to blame, that’s really inaccurate. It’s not the fault of Samsung, Google, or Apple that the Bluetooth functionality is more updated, newer, and more secure. While smartphones regularly receive Bluetooth updates, with flagship phones like the S9 sporting the latest in Bluetooth technology software- and hardware-wise, the opposite can be said about car Bluetooth systems. Car makers are often not keen on installing newer Bluetooth systems and it’s not uncommon to see them using older Bluetooth versions.

Samsung is right to point out that it’s JVC’s fault. Unfortunately, car Bluetooth systems don’t usually come in upgradeable versions. If your car’s Bluetooth system was working normally before you updated your S9, then that means there’s now a compatibility issue between the two.  If there’s no way to update your JVC system now, then you’re stuck with it. We know this is not ideal but we’re afraid you just have to accept that fact if you’re not willing to replace it with a new one.

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