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ronch
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DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Thu Dec 01, 2016 11:52 am

So I've had my Acer Liquid Zest Plus for a month and a half now and one of the things I really like about the phone is its support for DTS HD audio which makes my MP3 files sound nicer. In fact, it really sounds good. Rich, clean, very good separation, punchy, clear. Toggling the feature on and off makes a very noticeable difference in audio playback quality when using my earphones. Better than all my other Android devices, I even dare say.

Today I happened to do some exploring and checked for system updates in Settings (I had auto update disabled). Downloaded the update and installed it. Everything went great. Android Security Patch level now says October 5, 2016. Awesome.

This evening I wanted to relax a bit and listen to some tunes, so I took my phone, plugged in my earphones, and fired my favorite number. First thing I noticed was how the sound seemed worse than what I'm used to. Upon checking the sound settings in Android, I found DTS HD disabled, so I enabled it. Problem is, toggling it on and off makes no difference whatsoever in the audio output. Sliding the Bass and Treble bars makes no difference either. Additionally, the DTS HD audio settings (on/off, treble, bass) revert back to default (that is, the DTS checkbox is disabled and bass and treble go back to their default settings) when I reboot the phone. Does this mean DTS HD support was borked in the latest update? Can't imagine why they'd touch such an isolated setting/feature with a system-wide update or security update. Not sure DTS functionality even needs to be touched. Did DTS withdraw their license from Acer because Acer missed paying a license fee?

As expected, Acer support is about as non-existent as dark matter: You know it's there... you just can't find it. I go around in circles on their website and later find myself exactly where I started. That nice DTS HD logo at the back of the phone seems pretty worthless now. With DTS it sounds better than my other phones, without it I'd say it actually sounds worse. So there. Any help would be appreciated.
Last edited by ronch on Thu Dec 01, 2016 11:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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just brew it!
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Thu Dec 01, 2016 12:25 pm

That's what you get for buying a phone called "Liquid Zest Plus". The feature set is... *ahem*... liquid.
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Thu Dec 01, 2016 12:39 pm

Unlock bootloader, reflash previous rom. Root if necessary :(
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Thu Dec 01, 2016 12:51 pm

just brew it! wrote:
That's what you get for buying a phone called "Liquid Zest Plus".

Is that a floor wax or a dessert topping?
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Thu Dec 01, 2016 1:01 pm

Captain Ned wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
That's what you get for buying a phone called "Liquid Zest Plus".

Is that a floor wax or a dessert topping?

Neither; It's I Can't Believe It's Not Butter.
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ronch
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Sat Dec 03, 2016 10:43 am

Well, wasn't really expecting many folks to help, but despite the name of the product I was kinda hoping I won't get mostly ridicule. Thanks anyway, guys.
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Sat Dec 03, 2016 11:01 am

DrDominodog51 wrote:
Captain Ned wrote:
just brew it! wrote:
That's what you get for buying a phone called "Liquid Zest Plus".

Is that a floor wax or a dessert topping?

Neither; It's I Can't Believe It's Not Butter.

Whoosh!


OP:  I'm sorry that I don't have a suggestion for fixing your phone's audio.
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Sat Dec 03, 2016 11:36 am

Since your phone is not exactly a popular model, XDA is probably your last hope. You may run into even more attitude though, similar to a number of elitist Linux forums. Just be courteous and read as much as you can before posting, and you should be fine. I found that less popular device => smaller community => they stick together more. BTW I don't think you are being ridiculed per se. Sometimes you do need to grow a pair instead of having an inferiority complex. There is nothing wrong with an odd-model phone, be proud to walk the path less traveled. ;)
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ronch
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Sun Dec 04, 2016 9:38 am

Thanks, FF. Checked XDA and I can't seem to find my case. Just irked that i lost an important (to me) feature, and even more irked that some folks here would repeat the same jokes they posted on the thread i posted about this phone before.

I chose this phone because I love alternative brands and it seemed to offer a lot for the money, and it does. It's just too bad they broke a major feature with the latest update. I hope Acer is aware of the issue and is working on a fix. All the hype on their website is worthless if they keep screwing up.
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ronch
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Sun Dec 11, 2016 10:44 pm

Well, just an update. I was able to contact tech support for my country but they were a bunch of monkeys that just wanted to wash their hands and get their paycheck. I described in detail my issues regarding the DTS menu settings no longer doing anything so they asked for screenshots of the Android build etc. and the DTS menu, which I gladly obliged to thinking I'm onto something. Their reply was disappointing, which was akin to saying, "See, the DTS feature is there, contrary to what you're saying." Maddening.

After some running around I saw this Acer BYOC app on my phone which has a method for sending feedback to Acer so I used it to tell Acer about my issues. I know the app has nothing to do with DTS or Android system updates but I took a shot to see what happens anyway. The next day an Acer rep contacted me via email and told me he'll forward my concerns to the right department and they'll contact me again. That was Dec. 6 or 7. No word from the 'right department' yet so far.

Not content with trying to reach Acer only through just one person I also posted about this on the Acer community forums on Dec. 1 but I only got a reply on Dec. 10. My irritated tone probably got their attention and an Acer rep there asked me to PM him screenshots of the relevant Android info. Some forum bigwigs also came to help. Just as encouragingly several folks also came out of the shadows and said they're having the same issues and they apparently noticed them after the latest system update as well. I'm more confident than ever that Acer did bork DTS in their latest update.

Right now I'm holding on to hope that Acer will take this seriously and issue a fix. Guess proper Acer support may exist after all. If my Acer overall ownership experience is OK I just might put Acer on my white list the next time I buy a phone, or heck, even a laptop.
Last edited by ronch on Sun Dec 11, 2016 11:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Sun Dec 11, 2016 11:35 pm

Maybe try to find an alternative audio player that has its own internal "audio enhancers".

BTW, not sure why they're calling it "DTS HD" as I don't think it has anything to do with DTS nor DTS HD?
 
ronch
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Sun Dec 11, 2016 11:44 pm

Yes, I'm using Black Player and I had to enable the Equalizer and do some fiddling to help put audio playback quality as near to pre-update levels as I can, but I know it's still not as good. Yeah, DTS rocks. It'll probably be the one reason I'll buy another Acer phone again.

Even so, audio from pretty much everything else from games to ringtones to Viber notifications sound significantly softer/weaker and muffled through the loudspeaker, and slightly softer and muffled / dull through the 3.5mm jack.
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ronch
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Sun Dec 11, 2016 11:56 pm

Regarding this phone's DTS HD credentials I'm not sure if there's a special codec in there or if it's just a software solution but it does sound better compared to, well, probably most if not all of my other Android devices. Rich, clean, clear, good separation, punchy. I look for those things.
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Mon Dec 12, 2016 1:50 am

If you care enough about it, do you want to risk going back to the older firmware?
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ronch
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Mon Dec 12, 2016 3:37 am

I'd rather they issue a new build that fixes DTS and retains the improvements that are part of the current build. The current build seems to have fixed touchscreen response and has a later Android Security Patch Level, and who knows what else. If they take forever to fix DTS though, I might gradually start to think of rolling back.
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Fri Dec 30, 2016 12:45 pm

This works for me.
Go to Google Play, Settings, Equaliser. Turn on but with all settings off or normal. Go to DTS and turn on.
Good luck buddy.
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Re: DTS HD in Acer Liquid Zest Plus

Fri Dec 30, 2016 3:00 pm

ronch wrote:
Well, wasn't really expecting many folks to help, but despite the name of the product I was kinda hoping I won't get mostly ridicule. Thanks anyway, guys.

You got help already upthread - you're going to need to 1) root the phone, 2) unlock the bootloader, 3) find and download an older version of the factory Android to re-enable the feature, install that (from the phone's local Flash, not via USB from your PC) and 4) disable updates. I don't know that model myself, but I'm guessing that it has a forum on XDA-Developers where you can look up instructions.

Also, I didn't comment on the phone name myself, since that was already done perfectly well by other posters. Hopefully the lack of piling-on by me helps you feel a bit better.

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