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How is the new speaker (sound level or volume) on the iPad2?

SDM44

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I haven't seen any (or any good) reviews on the new iPad2 speaker, nor have I seen any comparison reviews between the weak speaker on the original iPad, compared to the "new & improved' speaker on the new iPad.

Can anybody confirm if the iPad2 speaker is truely much louder than the original iPad's speaker? Can you hear a video playing in a noisy area? (not that you wouldn't want to use headphones, but just wondering if it truely is much louder than the 1st gen iPad).
 

Trky

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I hate the new way the speaker grill is on the ipad2. The way it's positioned, the sound is pushed away from you instead of out of the side. Setting the ipad down on a hard flat surface works great, but for a couch or pillow it will muffle the sound. I'll make a video when I get home to show how terrible it is. The sound level is probably only 50% of what it used to be because of this. The only remedy I have found is folding the smart cover around and holding it in place so the sound can bounce off of the cover towards the front and you can hear it better.

That being said, that's the only bad thing I've found on the ipad2 so far. I use my ipad for light web browsing, heavy movie use via netflix and streaming from my server with Orb, and playing games. So far tonight I have played infinity blade for roughly 4-5 hours, downloaded and installed nova 2 then played for 15 minutes (crap controls), and just fooled around with it in general and I'm at 61% battery life.
 

lawhawk

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I have no basis for comparison (I have never owned an iPad or iPhone before this) but I think the speaker in the iPad 2 is inadequate. At full volume it's acceptable for most things, but not for Garage Band. That was one of the main reasons I pulled the trigger on getting an iPad 2 and I was very disappointed when I cranked up the volume and could still barely hear the sound. I know, get earphones, etc. But if you're going to put a damn speaker on it you might as well make it loud enough on your featured apps.

I will be so, so happy with the current design obsession with hidden speakers is over. I hate it on my TV, I hate it on my phone, I hate it on my iPad. It is the biggest problem on the iPad because there just isn't enough volume.

I have noticed that you can cup your hand around the speaker and make it louder by effectively redirecting the sound. Lame that I have to do this but it works.

I hate to point out a weakness, because I really love the thing (seriously, I love it). But this is a stupid problem.
 

rdclark

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It's really not possible to get acceptable music reproduction from something with the iPad's form factor. It's smaller than any laptop or netbook, after all, and when was the last time you heard bass from a laptop? I don't think it's a reasonable expectation.

That said, I was pleasantly surprised with the sound quality and volume from spoken-word podcasts like "Wait, Wait, Don't Tell Me," or videos like sitcoms streamed from Netflix. Perfectly listenable in a quiet environment.

For music, it's headphones or external speakers.
 

richgalen

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My unscientific answer is ... the new speakers are louder. I watch a lot of old B&W movies so the sound quality isn't important. When listening to audiobooks or music, earbuds are a must. Haven't tried FaceTime so I don't know how it works with no microphone and no earphones.
 

Tinman

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Definitely quieter than original iPad. Compared side by side.

Worse, in my use it is easier to block the grill than on the iPad 1.

I do agree that it might sound a little "clearer" but to me that is nothing great without increased volume too.

Lower volume speaker, crappy cameras.... I'm starting to think it best to wait for iPad 3, unless this is your first one.




Michael
 

chiffchaff

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The new speakers seem as loud or louder to me, as long as they aren't blocked by whatever the iPad is lying on.
 

col.bris

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Use blue tooth speakers if it is such a big deal. You can't have your cake and eat it too Size does matter ......rather super light thin computer than a boom box.

When I am in the car I can listen to games, movies music etc with vibrant sound and great base using my Parrot system. At home via Bluetooth Phillips speakers in kitchen and bedroom. Living room is via Apple Tv through 5.1 surround system


I am using iPad 1 and iPod touch plus iPhones will have iPad 2 ASAP when shipping
 
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Tinman

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It's not about using bluetooth or any other speakers. The thread asked specifically about the internal speaker. It is a legitimate question. Lots of people do not want to have to use an alternative speaker when there is already one built in. And with a larger opening one would assume it would be louder. Yet it's not.

As far as listening in a car.... I don't even care about that as I rarely use my iPad in it, and certainly not when driving.



Michael
 

chiffchaff

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The new speakers seem as loud or louder to me, as long as they aren't blocked by whatever the iPad is lying on.

Maybe to you, but not to my dB meter. :)

Michael

OK, but if I can't tell without a meter it's not a significant difference to me. Perhaps I'm just not a very discerning user, or had inherently low expectations for onboard speakers in a device like this. I have bluetooth speakers I use when I care about the sound level and don't want to wear headphones.;)
 

Tinman

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OK, but if I can't tell without a meter it's not a significant difference to me. Perhaps I'm just not a very discerning user, or had inherently low expectations for onboard speakers in a device like this. I have bluetooth speakers I use when I care about the sound level and don't want to wear headphones.;)
It isn't a big difference...

However, with that large opening, compared to iPad 1, it seemed as if it would in fact be louder. Alas, that is not the case.

As for me, I like having "just" my iPad most of the time. I wouldn't be thinking about speakers or a headset if I am reading news and there is suddenly a relevant news story I want to watch.

But more than that, I often have a podcast or news radio stations streaming in the mornings as I run around getting ready. The iPad 1 was fairly loud for this, but sometimes could use just a bit more volume and was hoping the iPad 2 would deliver that. Instead I have been using my iPhone 4 for that instead, as it can stay in my pocket and still be heard.

Speaking of the iPhone 4.... it is of course much smaller than both iPads and it is just about as loud as my iPad 2--and the iPhone has two speakers to cram in there. So I don't believe size is the issue. Obviously it can be done.



Michael
 
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