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  1. #1
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    Default Galaxy S3, secrets revealed: exFAT, Wolfson DAC, Battery life, Apt-X

    If you read our 'reactions to the S III' piece you will have seen us reference the Voodoo Report-generated hardware analysis from Supercurio, in particular the use of the excellent Wolfson DAC (digital to analog converter; the phones sound card if you will, which all but assures class-leading audio quality in the Android phone realm). Well, we've been poring over that report, and also reading a few other things around the net that point to some extremely interesting and unheralded aspects of the S III.

    Read on after the break as we join a few important dots...

    The first thing I stumbled across was a piece at Anandtech on the revision of the iPad2 internals. In its title they mention increased battery life on account of the changeover to a new, 32nm, SoC. Given that much remains unknown about the Exynos inside the S III apart from it's stellar benchmarks, I thought I'd take a look and see what they had to say.

    In the piece they reveal that Apple has adopted none other than Samsung's 32nm high-k + metal gate (HK-MG) LP transistors, the same ones used in the new Exynos. Naturally, being Anandtech, they launch into a great deal of detail about the specifics of Samsung's implementation. I don't want to get into those specifics here, since many of you won't care, and those who do care to know should take the time to read Anandtech's excellent piece.

    There are a few key points I do want to highlight here however. Firstly, their bottom line on the HK-MG tech: "The combination of these two innovations results in less wasted current and more efficient current delivery, which in turn can give us a more power efficient chip." That's all well and good in theory of course, but what actually happened when they put the iPad2 revision up against the earlier one in a series of battery tests? Well, it got close to or better than two hours extra operating time across the board whether that use be watching HD high profile video, playing Infinity Blade 2, or browsing the web. Impressive, and perhaps the knowledge behind J K Shin's apparently blithe assurance at the S3 announcement event that "You don't need to worry about battery consumption."

    One tiny aspect of the S III announcement that caught my eye was the specific mention that the S III supports micro SD cards up to a 64GB capacity. Now obviously this is not news to me, I've been using 64GB cards in my Android devices since a few days after they were released. The noteworthy thing here is that it's the first time an OEM has actually said their device supports more than 32GB cards. The reason? The S III has a proprietary Samsung exFAT kernel driver, as revealed by Supercurio's analysis. It might not be immediately apparent, but that's very good news.

    You see while the 64GB micro SDXC cards work in basically every Android device, they generally only work when formatted to Fat32 rather than the SDXC standards native exFAT formatting system (several devices on ICS work with them formatted NTFS now also, but as a general rule Fat32 is the only option). The problem here is that when you use of these cards Fat32 formatted you impose a 4GB file size limit on them, which can be hassle for transferring HD video to your device, and even worse you curtail the stellar read and write speeds available in the SDXC standard. I for one can't wait to format my 64GB card to exFAT for unrestricted use in my S III.

    OK, this isn't really a secret per se, but it is something Samsung didn't tout and that there isn't a lot of consumer awareness of. To be perfectly honest I hadn't even heard of it myself till about a month ago - in that time it's gone from that position to being a must-have specification.

    Apt-X is a codec developed by CSR that allows lossless bluetooth audio up to around 370kbps for stereo sound. Lossless, as in it sounds the same over bluetooth as it does over a wired connection. If you've ever used bluetooth for listening to music you'll know what a big deal that is (if you're wondering whether it lives up the CSR's claims, my experience with Apt-X on my One X and Samsung's HS3000 Apt-X capable bluetooth headset seem to confirm it).

    While it's certainly my preference to listen to ~1000kbps FLAC encoded files, which will be lossy via Apt-X compared to a wired connection, I really love using bluetooth for listening to music while I exercise. Being able to losslessly listen to 320kbps mp3s in that scenario is just golden, and why I've come to appreciate Apt-X so much.
    http://www.androidnz.net/2012/05/sam...-revealed.html

    Seems Samsung truly went all out with the Galaxy S3 it brings some incredible innovations that we may only see in other smartphones much later, if ever.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Galaxy S3, secrets revealed: exFAT, Wolfson DAC, Battery life, Apt-X

    Connecting a few dots here and it looks near-certain that the S3 will support WiiMotes on stock firmwares over bluetooth, and PS3 controllers via USB OTG, and also have support for midi devices via USB OTG. Pretty cool stuff. http://www.androidnz.net/2012/05/samsung-galaxy-s3-more-secrets-revealed.html"]Details.[/URL]

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Galaxy S3, secrets revealed: exFAT, Wolfson DAC, Battery life, Apt-X

    Thanks a mill! Your website has not only revealed a lot about the GS3 but also things i didnt know my GS2 (and the Galaxy Note) could do

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    Default Re: Galaxy S3, secrets revealed: exFAT, Wolfson DAC, Battery life, Apt-X

    Just to update you I had a couple of hours of hands-on time yesterday with the S3

    Confirmed that the 'secrets revealed' pieces were accurate, and a few more things besides.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Galaxy S3, secrets revealed: exFAT, Wolfson DAC, Battery life, Apt-X

    Awesome thats excellent news! GSMArena's review is up and they actualy praised its Audio Quality and the fact that it handled large HD videos seamlessly, Sammy have put a great deal of brilliant HW and SW in this beast.


 

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