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  1. Thread Author  Thread Author    #1  

    Default Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    A few people on other forums are reporting that the Razr M has a signal strength approximately 20 dBm lower than other Motorola phones on Verizon. See, for example:

    [Q] Signal / attenuation issue on the M? - xda-developers

    https://forums.motorola.com/posts/5fb46833c0

    http://www.droidforums.net/forum/dro...tennagate.html

    http://www.droidforums.net/forum/dro...-returned.html

    If this is more than a few isolated incidents, it is potentially a pretty serious concern for potential buyers. If you have a Razr M and if you have access to any other Verizon phones (especially Motorola, but I would also be interested in seeing comparisons to any other Verizon phone), please compare their signal strength while sitting side by side and report back. You can see signal strength by going to Settings -> About -> Network (or something similar). Please report signal strength in dBm, not in "bars" showing on your screen, because bars is not consistent across phones.

    I would greatly appreciate it if people could respond and let us know whether their Razr M has better, worse, or comparable signal to other phones on Verizon to which they have access. If possible, please report both LTE and 3G signal strengths.

    I've posted parallel threads on Androidforums and XDA. No need to reply in multiple threads. I'm just trying to collect as much data as possible and I know that not everybody visits all forums.
  2. #2  
    WAldenIV's Avatar
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    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    Qualitatively, my signal strength is better with my M than my old DX. I don't have the dBm numbers, unfortunately. I certainly have a better 3G signal lock at work than I used to (I would often drop into 1X at work). I get 2 - 5 bars of 4G at home and around town (sorry, all the info I have at the moment). I get 12 - 16 Mbps download with 2 bars and 22 - 36 Mbps with 5 bars.
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  3. #3  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    I didn't have a chance last night to compare the M with the X. I do have a 2yo blackberry here if that is of any use. I'll compare with the X and, if I can find the info, the iPhone tonight.

    M: 1x = -81dBm
    4G = -108dBm

    Blackberry: 1x = -80dBm

    The blackberry is a 3G device, but it has NEVER been able to pick up a decent 3G here at the office. My X usually had no trouble with 3G here.

    Edit: Just a note - I don't get a great signal here - 3G on X and now 4G on M is usually only 1 or 2 bars here.
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  4. #4  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    OK - checked the M and X side by side. The X only gives me a single "signal strength" value - but it had 4 bars of 3G at the time, so I'm assuming it was the 3G value????? The M had 4 bars of 4G.

    M:
    1x = -65dBm
    4G = -85dBm

    X:
    signal strength = -71dBm

    If the X is 3G, then this is pretty much an apples/oranges comparison...

    If you know of a way to get both 1X and 3G values for the X, just let me know and I'll try again. The iPhone isn't home yet, so can't try to check it.
  5. Thread Author  Thread Author    #5  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    Thanks. You can force the M into 3g mode by going into the phone app and typing *#*#4636#*#*, then choosing information, then scrolling down to network mode and choosing cdma only. You should then see your phone's signal switch from 4gto 3g. This would allow you to compare 3g of the M to 3g on the X.
  6. Thread Author  Thread Author    #6  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    I went to a Verizon store today to compare signals myself. The razr M was right next to the og droid razr. 1x and 3g signals were nearly identical. The M's seemed to bounce around between -60 and -70 whereas the og razr's was more consistent at about -65 dBm, but overall both seemed to average mid-60s. This is consistent with many of the posts on forums I have seen suggesting the M gets a solid 3g signal.

    4g was unfortunately a different story. The M couldn't pick up a 4g signal at all. I even tried to force lte only, and rather than picking up a 4g signal, it had no signal of any kind.

    The og razr, in stark contrast, had a solid and consistent 4g signal of about -75 dBm.

    This comparison also seems consistent with reports that the M gets a weak or even no 4g signal at all where other Verizon devices get 4g.

    Honestly I was a bit surprised and disappointed that the M was getting nothing where the og razr was getting strong 4g. Maybe it was attributable to a bad SIM or something, but that was my unfortunate experience.

    Would still appreciate if people could post comparisons, especially if 4g lte signal strength.
  7. #7  
    WAldenIV's Avatar
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    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    Quote Originally Posted by phositadc View Post
    I went to a Verizon store today to compare signals myself. The razr M was right next to the og droid razr. 1x and 3g signals were nearly identical. The M's seemed to bounce around between -60 and -70 whereas the og razr's was more consistent at about -65 dBm, but overall both seemed to average mid-60s. This is consistent with many of the posts on forums I have seen suggesting the M gets a solid 3g signal.

    4g was unfortunately a different story. The M couldn't pick up a 4g signal at all. I even tried to force lte only, and rather than picking up a 4g signal, it had no signal of any kind.

    The og razr, in stark contrast, had a solid and consistent 4g signal of about -75 dBm.

    This comparison also seems consistent with reports that the M gets a weak or even no 4g signal at all where other Verizon devices get 4g.

    Honestly I was a bit surprised and disappointed that the M was getting nothing where the og razr was getting strong 4g. Maybe it was attributable to a bad SIM or something, but that was my unfortunate experience.

    Would still appreciate if people could post comparisons, especially if 4g lte signal strength.
    Did you reboot both phones before testing?
  8. Thread Author  Thread Author    #8  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    Nope, definitely should have done that.

    Btw, I went ahead and bought one, and mine hangs on to a decent 4g signal at my house, which is really close to the vzw store I was at yesterday. So I kinda think the signal issue at the store was a fluke. I'll post my full impressions later, but so far I'm really liking the M.
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  9. #9  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    For what it's worth, i have a razr 16 and an M. The 4g signal on the M is not as strong. If i walk the two side by side there is always about 5-10 dbm difference. 16 gets about -95ish and M is around -102ish.

    I love my M but it does seem to struggle with 4g. Thinking of returning it but really don't want to.
  10. Thread Author  Thread Author    #10  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    Quote Originally Posted by PenguiniA View Post
    For what it's worth, i have a razr 16 and an M. The 4g signal on the M is not as strong. If i walk the two side by side there is always about 5-10 dbm difference. 16 gets about -95ish and M is around -102ish.

    I love my M but it does seem to struggle with 4g. Thinking of returning it but really don't want to.
    Thanks for the info. What's the Razr 16? Just the og droid Razr?
  11. #11  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    The signal is not as strong as I had with my Thunderbolt but it is light years ahead of the Galaxy Nexus I had for a week.

    Sent from my Xoom using Tapatalk 2
    You can observe a lot by watching- Yogi Berra
  12. #12  
    tlacour's Avatar

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    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    I live in an area that is on the edge of a 4g area. Holding a RAZR maxx next to the M: the Maxx consistently holds a weak 4g signal. The M stays in 3g. The Maxx definitely has a better antenna
  13. #13  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    Yes, the og

    Hate the signal is not a good but absolutely lob the form factor of the M
  14. #14  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    One other note on my ogdoesm, my M shows -102 or so on 4g but it also shows around -90dbm 1x. My og only shows the 4B.C.

    What is the 1x?
  15. Thread Author  Thread Author    #15  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    Quote Originally Posted by PenguiniA View Post
    One other note on my ogdoesm, my M shows -102 or so on 4g but it also shows around -90dbm 1x. My og only shows the 4B.C.

    What is the 1x?
    1x is 2g. I think it's also what voice calls are made over.
  16. #16  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    Just wanted to chime in here. Yesterday, I visited a Verizon store which has always had very terrible signal. And, well, I can confirm this thread as well.
    Most other phones, including the Razr Maxx and iPhone 5 all held onto a terrible LTE signal, while the Razr M was only on a terrible 3G signal. Something is wrong there.
  17. #17  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    All these posts about poor signal are concerning. My handset seems to be permanently locked on 4G (but I'm in LA, where I believe there is really good coverage). I'm wondering if there are lemon antennas out there or if I can expect things to go downhill from here. I read in another forum that the antenna is placed in the top right-hand corner of the phone (which is in a different placement from the other phones in the Moto lineup). This might have something to do with it.

    Really hope my signal strength holds up.
  18. #18  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    I'm well within a 4G LTE area according to the verizon map (for whatever that is worth), and I only get an intermittent 4G LTE signal on my M.

    typical values: 1x is usually in the -80 to -90 range
    4G is usually in the -105 to -115 range
    3G has gone as high as -125

    Pretty weak reception, isn't it?

    Has anyone been able to compare the razr M with an HD Maxx signal strength wise? I was thinking of trading up if the signal quality differed significantly, even though I like the smaller M size better.
  19. #19  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    Just switched from Droid X to the new Razr M and I can tell you straight up that the Razr M has a lower signal strength. While I don't have the Droid X dBm - the Razr M is -106dBm for G4 and -96 dBm for 1x. I actually called Verizon on it since my data connection is so lousy. They checked my settings, upgraded my OS and still - no better performance.

    I really love my new phone but the poor signal strength is very much of concern. The Verizon guy suggested I try the phone for a few more days to see how it functions, and if my signal strength remains low, to swap it at a Verizon store. He wasn't sure if the antenna of my phone was good and he said another Razr M might not have the same problem. So that's what I will try. Bummer
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  20. #20  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    This is my second Droid M Having the same problem with single Strength. On 4g Mine is 107.dBm then I Have another that says 1x. =dMb and that is 78 .. Husband has the Galaxy 3 His is at -97 dBm. What should the strength be ?
  21. #21  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    What symptoms are people experiencing due to signal strength issues?

    Sent from my XT907 using Android Central Forums
  22. #22  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    Quote Originally Posted by nickriviera12 View Post
    I'm well within a 4G LTE area according to the verizon map (for whatever that is worth), and I only get an intermittent 4G LTE signal on my M.

    typical values: 1x is usually in the -80 to -90 range
    4G is usually in the -105 to -115 range
    3G has gone as high as -125

    Pretty weak reception, isn't it?
    I have a RAZR MAXX HD, and my signal strength is consistent with what you see above. 1x is - 88 and 4G is -111. I'm in the Orange County California area.

    Sent from my DROID RAZR HD
  23. #23  
    nw53's Avatar

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    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    The above posts did not say the issues with 4G are running on ICS or JB. M first came with ICS install and there are many posts about it dropping 4G to 3G and have signal strength issues. I'm just checking to see if it was fix with JB. I have a upgrade coming up and thinking about getting the M.
    Last edited by nw53; 12-31-2012 at 10:42 AM.
  24. #24  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    1x - -84 dBm
    4g - -111 dBm

    But to be fair, signal strength on my old Droid 2 Global was crap at this location as well. Heck, I've also tried AT&T and Sprint at my house and they were all weak sauce. My house is in some kind of a radio black hole even though according to carrier coverage maps I should have excellent coverage here.
    Motorola Razr M + stock Android 4.1.2 on Verizon
  25. #25  

    Default Re: Signal strength issues? Post your signal strength here.

    Saw your thread over at XDA developers while searching for signal issues.
    I just got my Razr M as a warranty replacement because I had exchanged FIVE Droid Bionics through Verizon's customer service due to data cutting out.

    As a sidenote, I'm an RF technician for the Washington D.C. Mass transit system, so I know a little about Radio and cellular systems.
    Without any further rambling, here's datapoints for your research:

    Location: 25 miles south of Washington D.C. - Dale City, Virginia. (Strong 4g Coverage but fairly high user load.)

    Signal report fluctuated, so a range over a few refreshes is given.

    Droid RAZR M (With Otterbox Commuter case; All other RF devices in phone, IE Bluetooth and WiFi disabled.)
    1x = -74 to -80 dBm (Sitting on couch... Decreases to -81 to -88 when held in hand.)
    4G = -99 to -104 dBm (Sitting on couch... Decreases to -107 to -112 when held in hand.)

    Forced CDMA/EvDO mode by entering *#*#4636#*#* in phone mode.
    3G = -89 to -94 dBm (Sitting on couch... Decreases to -92 to -97 when held in hand.)


    Comparable phone:
    Droid RAZR MAXX (With Otterbox Defender case; All other RF devices in phone, IE Bluetooth and WiFi disabled.)
    1x (No data displayed, this phone only displays 4G signal.)
    4G = -92 to -95 dBm (Sitting on couch... Decreases to -97 when held in hand. Signal does not vary much in either situation.)

    Forced CDMA/EvDO mode by entering *#*#4636#*#* in phone mode.
    1x = -81 to -83 dBm (Sitting on couch... Decreases to -85 to -86 when held in hand.)
    3G = -86 to -89 dBm (Sitting on couch... Decreases to -90 to -92 when held in hand.)

    Additional point of note:
    The Razr M seemed to refresh or poll signal strength faster/more frequently than the Razr MAXX. It seemed to be once every second or two seconds for the Razr M and once every 30 sec for the Razr MAXX. This is also reflected when switching back and forth from 4G mode to Forced 3G mode.

    The radio is built into the Snapdragon S4 MSM9860 SoC (RAZR M / RAZR HD / RAZR HD MAXX)
    The radio is external on the TI OMAP 4430 (Bionic / RAZR / RAZR MAXX)

    These radio differences will affect your test results due to differences in sensitivity and noise rejection. (Signal-Noise ratio is not displayed on the phone.)
    The polling/refresh rate will affect data connectivity which is what we're really looking for here.

    Additional phones:
    Motorola Droid (The original, with Seidio extended battery, No other casing installed; WiFi enabled/Not on active Verizon Account.)
    3G = -78 to -81 dBm (Sitting on couch... Decreases to -82 to -85 when held in hand.)

    BlackBerry Bold 9650 (No casing, additional batteries, or other accessories.)
    3G = -80 to -87 dBm (Sitting on couch... Decreases to -88 to -95 when held in hand.)
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    Bolt_of_Thunder likes this.
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