Bluetooth audio quality - Phone vs NW-A55 Walkman

pedropeter

Standard Member
Just wondering if anyone can through some light on this puzzling issue.

I have been using my Walkman A55 for a number of years, using a range of bluetooth speakers and headphones.
When compared to my Android phone I've always found the audio quality about the same ie no noticeable difference.

However, I have recently bought a cheap but powerful W-King bluetooth speaker for outdoor use. For the first time I am hearing a big difference in bluetooth audio quality from the Walkman compared to my phone. The Walkman sounds flat with very little bass.
Conversely the Android phone sounds well rounded with punchy bass.

Note, when I use a bluetooth receiver plugged into the W-King 'audio in', the Walkman sounds fine. So the problem definitely seems to be a bluetooth issue only between the Walkman and the W-King speaker.
So to recap, the Walkman sounds fine through all my devices except this new W-King speaker.
But the W-King speaker sounds fine when using my phone or via a bluetooth receiver.

Just to add. I am unable to adjust bluetooth volume on my Walkman when using the W-King speaker, I have to do this physically on the speaker.
So does this add weight to my theory that there is some sort of incompatibility between the two devices.

Thanks for any comments.
 

ShanePJ

Distinguished Member
AVForums Sponsor
I suspect you are hearing a better standard of Bluetooth via the W-King from the Sony Walkman depending upon what Bluetooth signals it can receive. If its able to work with BLUETOOTH® technology with LDAC which is built into the Walkman, then this will explain the quality jump to as this is a very high standard compared to normal Bluetooth. As for the Volume levels, I'm unsure if this is normal as I've never used either. But as a rule, computers/phones compress the audio sound with the volume level and if it's making you use the volume on the device, then its output at 100% which also improving the quality
 
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pedropeter

Standard Member
Thanks for your advice. However, just to confirm, it's the other way round:
The bluetooth audio quality from the Walkman to the W-King speaker is bad compared to my Android phone to the W-King speaker.
But the Walkman is fine with other speakers and headphones that I have.
So there is something amiss ONLY with the Walkman / W-King combination.
Note the W-King speaker does not support Aptx or Ldac so these are turned off on my phone and Walkman.
 

ShanePJ

Distinguished Member
AVForums Sponsor
Can I ask what quality (format and bitrate) is the music. From the Android, is this via a streaming service to?
 

pedropeter

Standard Member
Can I ask what quality (format and bitrate) is the music. From the Android, is this via a streaming service to?
I do not use streaming. The formats I use are either MP3 320kbps or Flac (mostly 44.1kHz · 24bit), both on my Android phone and Walkman.
Note that my Walkman (and phone) is on default settings ie no equalizer etc.

Interestingly the W-King speaker also supports playing music directly from an Sd card. When doing this it has the same inferior quality to that of my Walkman via bluetooth.

I realise that none of this makes a lot of sense let alone basic logic!
I can only conclude that the WK speaker seems to be processing signals in different ways, including different bluetooth sources (Walkman vs Android phone).
 

ShanePJ

Distinguished Member
AVForums Sponsor
Although I’ve never played with either of the products. I wonder if something isn’t just right with the speaker. Which model of speaker is it as that could identify the reason. If it’s an entry level, then you can never expect these to deliver sound similar to good quality headphone. If it’s a half decent one and as you are playing FLAC files at CD quality, I wonder if it’s a setting issue if you are unable to hear a difference between MP3 and FLAC. Do you know anyone with a similar product which could identify if it’s the speaker
 

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