Is Your Motorola DROID Bionic Suffering From A High Pitched Noise? [Forum Talk]


We received a tip from our very own Android Forums on an issue that seems to be plaguing the newly released Motorola DROID Bionic. A lot of users have been reporting a high pitched buzzing sound when listening to any type of media through their headphones. After some input with more users the issue is apparently caused when the headphone jack powers on and delivers audio to your headphones. It can be more easily heard when the volume is cranked all the way up and when treble boost turned on in the EQ.

I just came across this issue and I wanted to alert some of those early Droid Bionic adopters before their 14 day return window is expired through Verizon. Hopefully Motorola takes note of the issue and issues a software update of some kind. Any of our readers notice the high pitched squeal?

[AndroidForums and MotorolaSupportForums]

Chris Chavez
I've been obsessed with consumer technology for about as long as I can remember, be it video games, photography, or mobile devices. If you can plug it in, I have to own it. Preparing for the day when Android finally becomes self-aware and I get to welcome our new robot overlords.

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  1. only audio wierdness ive heard so far is with the netflix app. When watching any movie I get a loud fast clicking sound. It makes watching netflix impossible. Pandora on the other hand is fine.

  2. Yep this is exactly why I returned mine 2 days after I got it. And it wasn’t just a lemon. I tried 3 others in the store, they all had this issue

  3. I have it too. I bought, went through four of them and they all suffer the noise. It is some kind of grounding or shielding error. You won’t notice it if you are using cheap ear phones. But use a quality pair of earbuds, you will notice it. To hear it, play your music, pause it and listen. It is there. The noise stops when the amplifier switches off. It is NOT affected by the volume control. You’ll also hear the noise in silent spots on videos and after a ringtone goes off. I never hear it in the phone’s speaker. There is a fix. Buy an inline headphone volume control (attenuator). I got mine at radio shack. You turn the volume up on the phone and down on the inlline headset volume. This in effect filters out the noise because it is a lower amplitude. Crappy fix, but it works. I may still return because it is not right. Or, maybe when Motorola fixes it I’ll use the insurance to get a new one. It bugs me because I know it is NOT right. But it is a rockin’ phone. I wish they stuck with the Tegra 2 processor though

    1. why do you wish they stuck with the tegra 2? i was under the impression that the omap4 was better anyways

      1. Benchmarks on droid x2 with tegra 2 were faster. i would have purchased that phone if it was 4g. However, in the real world outside of benchmarks this phone is fast. I think it lags in GPU performance though, but I am not a big gamer. I just like to know I have the latest and greatest!

  4. i only hear it when i have the car charger also plugged in

  5. Haven’t noticed it yet on mine audio plays great

  6. I hear it on mine too. The strange thing is that I hear it when I play it through Bluetooth in my car too! That makes me wonder if it’s a software issue…

  7. Yep I had the same thing. I ended up returning it. Mostly for the Bionic bouncing back and forth between 4G and 3G and mostly staying on 3G in a widely 4G area.

  8. Mine is BARELY noticable and when the music or video starts you cant hear it. Im willing to deal with it until they fix it.

  9. Not mine..but im mostly deaf to such high pitched sounds


  11. Mine is fine. Sounds great with speakers or buds. I use pandora, fm tunein and podcasts. All sounds fine.

  12. I wonder what the age range of the people who hear the sound is. People under 30 generally (obviously, YMMV) hear high-pitched sounds better than their older counterparts. I don’t have a Bionic, if someone has one who can hear the noise, try it on a few people 15-20 years older and see if they can hear it.

  13. Honestly I’ve used my headphones with my Bionic quite a bit and haven’t noticed a single thing. I’m using some decent apple headphones (in ear) so maybe they aren’t nice enough to notice, but I’ve plugged it into my stereo as well and still no noise. Maybe I got lucky?

  14. Don’t think your Bionic has the issue? See here.

    High Pitch Noise Test & Stats

  15. I haven’t had a problem at all with this…I haven’t watched any Netflix videos on my phone (I don’t have Netflix), but I have streamed music off of Google Music, Zumocast, and I have found no problems at all. I have to turn the volume down in my car because it’s quite loud, and I think I heard a bit of it then, but when it’s turned down and I can actually get an accurate volume control on my car’s stereo I haven’t seen any problems in either car. I haven’t tried my Beetle’s stereo yet, but I hook it up Bluetooth in there and there doesn’t seem to be problems with bluetooth, just the headphone jack.

  16. I get that same clicking when watching netflix

  17. Awwww man, I was so looking forward to buying a Bionic in the next week. Even played with it at the store today and loved it. I’m a musician though and *hopefully* have good enough ears that this would probably be noticeable.

    Total bummer…

  18. yup, i get this high pitched noise from any app that makes noise in addition to using the phone itself through the ear piece. just have the other person on the line stay quiet for a minute and you’ll hear it. netflix is a different issue that sounds like its constantly clicking. there’s also the frozen black screen issue that happens once in a while where a battery pull is the only fix. such a shame, phone is going back this week.

  19. I also had this same exact type of problem with my Motorola Cliq.

  20. It’s a 30 day return window in California, that is state law for ALL Carriers here.

    1. Not true, http://ag.ca.gov/consumers/general/refund_policies.php
      They can let you know before hand about their policies. Costco has a 90 day return policy, so it makes sense to purchase there.

      Best Buy has 30 day return policy and Verizon has a 14 day return policy if bought online or in stores.

  21. Aren’t you in SoCal Chris?

  22. mine is suffereing some random reboots

  23. bionic SUCK compare to gs2!!!

  24. Yes

  25. Ive been getting these issues too. The high pitched noise only happens in certain apps, like Netflix. My Bionic has randomly rebooted itself twice now. Oh well, the rep that sold me the phone really wants one but has to pay full price. Maybe I’ll sell this to him when the Prime comes. ;)

  26. My friends, this is a hardware issue. Using quality earbuds that can deliver a frequency that high and assuming your hearing is intact you should hear it unless motorola released a defective lot that has been repaired. But, this is a widely reported problem. To hear it, just put in your earbuds, play a song and pause it. You will hear the whine for a second or two until the amplifier switches off.. You can also go into settings, select a notification ringtone and listen when the test tone stops. It is there again until amplifier switches off. I love this phone but that problem bugs me. Anyone know if verizon is releasing something better before the end of the year? Anyone ever have the phone warranty before? I purchased one for the fist time this time. Do you think they will take it back and exchange it for a good one when motorola fixes this? I have tried a total of four phones in two stores all with the same problem.

  27. I have listened to pandora, Netflix, podcasts, & mp3 files and have not heard the noise. I have listened via high quality sony earbuds, my car stereo directly wired, and through a decent pair of PC speakers. The only issue I had was on the first day when I was downloading podcasts OTA and was getting a clicking sound every 15 – 30 seconds. I have not heard that again and have chalked it up to either interference from the antenna or a slow down of the processor from a heavy download.

  28. I’m yet to experience this bug on my bionic. I’m using power amp as my music player. Is it an issue with the stock music app?

  29. This kind if things shouldnt be happening, it only shows the quality is work moto had put into it. Not good for our little andy

  30. i have my bionic next to my desk top speakers and every few minutes. The desk top speakers will make a strange buzzing noise.

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