A short time ago we shared with you a small tutorial to improve the sound of the phone when connecting a Bluetooth or cable headset. This option is of great help for many users because it is an application that changes the equalization of your headphones in order to enjoy a better acoustic experience. However, another way to improve this experience is by correctly choosing the audio codec of our device.
The codec basically refers to an encoder-decoder, and it is basically what is used to compress and decompress audio tracks, which is why there are different types of codecs with different capacities. Codecs are not exactly the same as audio formats, for example MP3, WMA, AAC, OGC, but all of these formats use different codecs to compress and decompress files.
On mobile devices the most popular codecs are SBC, AAC, LDAC, LHDC, aptX y aptX HD, the latter 2 were developed by Qualcomm to offer lower latency and higher fidelity. Of all these codecs, the most popular is the first, that is, SBC, so practically all bluetooth headphones and Android and iOS devices use SBC, but they are also compatible with other codecs.
Each codec offers different characteristics that distinguish it by its bit rate, sample rate and bit depth, so to listen to music in high definition you need more than just headphones with this capacity, you also need a codec that can handle this bit rate and sample rate.
With the above, it should be clear that to listen to music in Hi-Res you need 3 things to be met: that the phone supports a codec with the ability to play Hi-Res music (such as aptX HD, LDAC and others), that the audio track has been recorded with a high bitrate and sample rate, and that your headphones or sound system also support this codec wirelessly and / or wired.
Of course, the above is just to give an example of music in high definition, but the point is that you can choose the codec that best suits your needs to “force” that codec always be chosen when playing audio.
How do you know which codecs your phone supports and how to choose the one that suits you best?
If you cannot find anywhere which codecs are compatible with your phone, you must first activate the developer options, which are activated by pressing 10 times on the firmware version of your device from the “Device Information” section. Once you enter the developer options, you must scroll to the “Bluetooth audio codec” section, where you will be able to see which codecs your device supports.
Now yes, choose the codec you need so that whenever possible and compatible this codec is used above the others, but remember that your headphones must also support that codec, otherwise the SBC codec will be selected, which as we mentioned , is the universal.
In the following options you can also change the bitrate and the sample rate, but we return to the previous point, if your headphones do not support the same sample rates and the audio tracks do not meet the same characteristics, then it will not do any good to make changes .
In conclusion, if you only listen to music from Spotify, Apple Music or YouTube Music, you can force the codec used to be AAC, because beyond that you will not notice any difference.