12-10-2015 06:07 PM
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  1. Climb14er's Avatar
    I've been using Samsung and earlier Motorola Android smartphones for eight years. Prior to that Motorola phones for another fifteen years. NEVER have I experienced a low audio signal, in this case, 4G audio strength as with my current Note 5 on Verizon.

    Being that I've lived in my home for 24 years and was the neighborhood liason between Verizon and Denver to get the nearby cell tower installed, I tend to know signal strength on my devices used in conjunction with the tower.

    In the last month with the Note 5, the signal strength is very weak, running from -99 dbm to -117 dbm. If you know numbers, this reeks of low to NO signal quality.

    Verizon issued a critical repair and response ticket and after testing, they came back to me and said... the problem could very well be the Note 5 and it's inability to operate well at low signal strength areas.

    I also noticed while driving through other cell areas, if I wasn't right by a tower, the other party on the phone would say... I CAN'T HEAR YOU!.

    The Note 5 lost its outgoing audio many times, PO'ING my business connections on the line.

    Verizon is sending me a new Note 5 to test and see if it'll work better with signal strength on audio.

    Has anyone else with a Note 5 had audio problems and low signal power strength?
    12-01-2015 06:16 PM
  2. dkunzman's Avatar
    I'm on ATT and have not seen that. I travel west to east coast and haven't had any issues. Sounds like a bad device.
    I hope!
    12-01-2015 06:52 PM
  3. Climb14er's Avatar
    Hopefully the replacement New Note 5 will have a much greater 4G audio signal from the towers.

    Running at weak cell signals from a tower just 200 meters away, has been a very frustrating and disappointing experience not only for me, but for the business and personal calls that have gone silent.

    It's as if the smartphone, was not a phone!
    12-01-2015 10:23 PM
  4. Trees's Avatar
    I'm on Verizon but live in a major metro area with solid 4G and LTE coverage. Since getting the Note 5, haven't travelled out into more rural areas yet to know if there will be or is a problem. Our house has an aluminum roof, and even with that we haven't noticed any signal issues. But again that could be due to nearby towers providing sufficient signal.

    What I have noticed, and this I think started in the Note 3 or 4 timeframe is with LTE or XLTE, is more dropping down to 3G or weak 4G signal. My understanding is that those technologies can't penetrate into buildings as well as 3G or 4G. So, I have noticed low/poor signal inside buildings/basements, particularly those with lots of steel/sheetmetal, or in larger buildings with plenty of rebar throughout the support columns. It could also be the case that in my work building complex area there are thousand plus people all competing for signal. There are a few good threads somewhere on here in the Note 3 or 4 forums about this topic. Will try to post the link if I run across them.

    Sounds like in your case you should be getting good signal. Hope the new phone solves this.
    12-01-2015 10:41 PM
  5. burwil's Avatar
    I changed carriers over a week ago due to low cell strength. Before the Note 5 I had an iPhone 6 Plus on T Mobile. And of course Apple doesn't want you to know about mundane matters such as cell strength. I did notice occasionally my traffic maps were blank which could point to cell issues. Anyway I had enough of the iPhone and went to a Note 5. Love the phone. Cell strength was horrible! In my office I've never seen worse. Typically around - 110 to - 115. And things weren't updating. Like sports widgets and the app store (couldn't connect). So I have a buddy come by my office with a Nexus 6 (by Moto on AT&T) and he rocked a -78!!! Of course Moto is known for their antennas. So I quit T Mobile. Thank God contracts are a thing of the past. Returned the Note 5 for full refund, switched carriers to AT&T and bought a new Note 5. Signal strength at my office in the mid -80s. I'll take it as it's hard to beat Motos antennas. No battery issues or connection issues. I personally don't think I had a defective phone before since I checked it against demos at different t mobile stores. It was the carrier. BTW I think the Note 5 antenna is decent enough comparing it with other phones a T Mobile.... while I was with them. If you still have issues look into a Moto phone.
    12-01-2015 11:02 PM
  6. plumcrazy's Avatar
    vzw here in a fringe area with hardly any coverage and havent noticed any change. when i get home friday i can take a look at the numbers and let you know but i dont think its changed
    12-02-2015 04:58 AM
  7. MizWylie's Avatar
    The only place I get poor service is oddly enough at my kids school. It doesn't matter what phone I have, I always get two bars of 3G. We call it the black hole.

    Otherwise I have excellent service.

    Did you swap your Sim from a previous phone into your Note 5? A replacement might be in order!

    Posted via the Sapphire Doom Note 5
    12-02-2015 09:35 AM
  8. Climb14er's Avatar
    The only place I get poor service is oddly enough at my kids school. It doesn't matter what phone I have, I always get two bars of 3G. We call it the black hole.

    Otherwise I have excellent service.

    Did you swap your Sim from a previous phone into your Note 5? A replacement might be in order!

    Posted via the Sapphire Doom Note 5
    Yes, I went into Verizon Corporate store, as per Samsung's tech dept's recommendation, got a new sim, and the signal improved in the store, from -102 dbm to -62 dbm, due to the closeness of the repeater there.

    When I got back on the road and to the house, near the cell tower, I restarted the phone to align with the nearby tower.

    Same issue! Low signal strength. -102dbm.

    Right now, sitting in office at house, clear day, bright sunshine, waiting on Fedex delivery... signal weakness at -107dbm.

    Once the phone arrives, and I charge it and use the new sim that will come with the new phone, I will activate it, run it through the paces... and will report back either later today or tomorrow to the Advanced Network Repair Dept in Texas my findings.

    Honestly, this has been the 'weirdest' problem I've ever had with a phone. Other than the poor audio, the Note 5 is running beautifully! No problem anywhere else.
    12-02-2015 10:46 AM
  9. MRBULLRED's Avatar
    Verizon Note 5 here. (-112) FWIW my son's S5 registered -109 sitting right next to my
    Note 5.

    Posted via the Android Central App
    Attached Thumbnails Anyone Experience Low Cell Signal Strength With Note 5? (Verizon or...)-3683.jpg  
    12-02-2015 06:48 PM
  10. Climb14er's Avatar
    Got new Note 5 activated. Had direct phone contact with National Repair Bureau, the main Verizon operating center. Good relationship with them.

    They see through their testing and monitoring equipment that the original Note 5 and the new Replacement one... few facts have emerged.

    1) Original phone had poorer audio and low signal strength, many 'I can't hear you conversations' and dropped audio..

    2) New replacement... clearer audio, similar signal strength, audio is going in and out... looking for stronger signal.

    The case is at a CRITICAL LEVEL, Verizon is reevaluating the quality of the signal of the tower ... and...

    Off the record. .. they're questioning the ability of the Note 5 to work effectively in a low power environment.

    I really like this phone... but it's not functioning well as a PHONE.

    That's why it's important to know how others are doing with their Note 5's signal strength and quality of audio around the country.

    Like I posted, this is the FIRST time ever in 23 years of cell use where the audio is weak and compromised.

    Btw... the cell standby has increased SUBSTANTIALLY with the new replacement phone than with the original. The battery usage has increased. I guess this means it's having trouble with cell tower signal... while operating on wifi 5G. But... the original had GREAT battery life between charges.

    Anyone with suggestions? I'm mysteriously stumped. The repair center will call me tomorrow or Friday as they work on it.
    12-02-2015 09:26 PM
  11. burwil's Avatar
    I had a Note 3 with Verizon that simply stopped picking up low signal towers. At work it was practically non functional. It wasn't always that way. Went back and forth with customer support and finally gave up and left Verizon. My Note 5 at the same location works perfectly well. But with AT&T.
    12-02-2015 09:35 PM
  12. dpham00's Avatar
    Just curious have you tried to disable volte?
    12-03-2015 01:06 PM
  13. BaboziMia's Avatar
    I don't know what my signal numbers are, but I noticed that when I'm at work and try to see some video's
    on snapchat, it just gets stuck trying to load the short video. When I'm using YouTube it takes a little while
    to load. Once it's loaded it's good. No problems with phone calls so far, but I've only had this phone for
    a couple weeks. My 6S+ does not have this issue....I am enjoying using the Note 5.


    My carrier is also Verizon
    12-03-2015 01:41 PM
  14. dswatson83's Avatar
    I seem to have very bad results with the Note 5 and Verizon...seems to be worse than my Note 3. I went in the store and checked the signal of their display Note 5 and it was the same as mine so I concluded it wasn't just my Note 5.
    12-03-2015 02:56 PM
  15. Climb14er's Avatar
    Just curious have you tried to disable volte?
    Got text this morning from NRB... we discussed update with system engineer involved. They asked me to disable volte on the New Note 5.

    Few hours later, was on an hour's long call with one of the VZ specialized RF techs. He ran his own tests and made explicit comments to NRB regarding the dropped and muffled audio he experienced on the 1X frequency with volte disabled.

    He commented to me... "in my thirteen years working the RF at VZ... you're THE FIRST person ever to my knowledge who is in direct communication with the NRB. .. and at high levels".

    Evidently the problem is considered critical and being with VZ for years... they're taking the issue with VOLTE, new FLAGSHIP phones and poor RF reception very seriously.

    So for now, they're running tests on the calls and I'm running the Note 5... volte disabled.
    12-03-2015 04:27 PM
  16. Climb14er's Avatar
    Got call from head system engineer in Denver. Long call... he sees the problem with volte.. and 1X non volte.... knows the cell tower in question very well.

    He's coming to my home tomorrow morning... how about that! Will bring specialized equipment to test all signals and trouble shoot the problem.

    With volte gaining popularity in equipment, with VZ rolling out wifi calling soon and VZ transitioning to 4G only sites, it's important for them to get answers to the dropped and muffled audio.

    I'm making special espresso on my 1977 Swiss Cremina 67 for the engineer tomorow.

    I call this exemplary customer service based on loyalty and VZ wanting to figure out the problem.
    Trees and droidman2177 like this.
    12-03-2015 06:38 PM
  17. droidman2177's Avatar
    Whoa, was thinking of ditching my moto x pure on vzw to try the note 5, but now I don't know. Will follow your thread and be eagerly waiting the results of your issues! Good Luck
    12-06-2015 11:34 AM
  18. Climb14er's Avatar
    Excellent meeting on Friday with Systems Engineer lasting 3.5 hours. Very good man, we hit it off well. 28 years with VZ. Unbelievably knowledgeable, arrived in vehicle, seven antennas, laptop on swinging cradle for car and that he brought in house, many modems for laptop, each with their own frequency, three cell phones, Samsung S6, two Motorolas, each with their own expensive software THAT READS EVERYTHING!

    We did tests around the house, neighborhood, nearby in the cemetery, testing the tower's sectors, possible blind spots, strength and frequencies.

    He confirmed my thoughts that the tower's signal strength to my house has degraded, now running on the higher bandwidth 2100 frequency rather than the more penetrating and powerful 700 original frequency. He's looking at logs of tower and the 'backhaul' of the audio to find out why audio from me to tower has dropped. They'll do inspection of antennas on tower, it's software, etc.

    We both enjoyed one another's company and his being blown away about my knowledge of the tower and it's history of signal strength. I was as mentioned IMPRESSED with his insight.

    The replacement Note 5 is handling the lower strength better than the initial one I received. Earlier device. .. had issues from factory regarding RF capture. New phone also exhibited issues but so far not as many. As I suggested to NRB, both tower and phone. .. combo is the problem. .. that could very well be fixed.

    Volte he discussed about in depth with me and there are things that I promised not to share. It's a great step forward but many of the phones, as in my case, have difficulty capturing the low signal strength of many towers. It's not like the old analog days on 700 frequency where you could grab almost any call from almost anywhere.

    Phones are being asked to do tons more and the phone aspect of them, well... sometimes even the venerable VZ quality connection, suffers.

    There's more I can share, will know more once some of the tests can be reviewed.

    It was an incredible time, looking into the direct workings of the RF system. I believe the engineer and I became friends and he said the NRB and VZ were appreciative of my loyalty to the company.

    If you have a question and I can answer, I'll try to.
    12-06-2015 12:25 PM
  19. droidman2177's Avatar
    Great info. Really interesting! Haad a buddy that did all that stuff for them @ one point. Miss all that inside input. Thanks for all this. Still not sure if I should try a note 5. Ugh.

    Posted via the Android Central App
    12-06-2015 12:54 PM
  20. dpham00's Avatar
    Volte he discussed about in depth with me and there are things that I promised not to share. It's a great step forward but many of the phones, as in my case, have difficulty capturing the low signal strength of many towers. It's not like the old analog days on 700 frequency where you could grab almost any call from almost anywhere.
    Interesting, I never knew that Verizon ran 700MHz analog in the old days. I always assumed that 700MHz that Verizon had was from the fcc auction in 2008 and used only for lte. I am assuming that 700MHz was in addition to 850 and 1900mhz? Weird that I never heard of cellular 700MHz analog before though. Can you provide more information?
    12-06-2015 12:55 PM
  21. Climb14er's Avatar
    I should have mentioned the older two band phones... analog and digital when the systems were being changed and adapted , here's where the confusion might have been. This is what I was referring to. During that time, when analog was slowly being phased out... over a few years, and digital was being introduced, the analog band, and I did not ask the frequency, was very strong, and covered Many miles from one remote 14K summit to a tower way in the distance. At that time, the lower frequency 700 on VZ was able to penetrate to my house from the tower... much stronger than the 2100 AWS now being sent in my direction.
    12-06-2015 03:20 PM
  22. dpham00's Avatar
    I should have mentioned the older two band phones... analog and digital when the systems were being changed and adapted , here's where the confusion might have been. This is what I was referring to. During that time, when analog was slowly being phased out... over a few years, and digital was being introduced, the analog band, and I did not ask the frequency, was very strong, and covered Many miles from one remote 14K summit to a tower way in the distance. At that time, the lower frequency 700 on VZ was able to penetrate to my house from the tower... much stronger than the 2100 AWS now being sent in my direction.
    After doing some research, Analog kicked the bucket in 2008. Verizon's first 700MHz capable phone was the Thunderbolt which came out in March 2011.

    2100mhz is band 1,and Verizon has no frequency in that band. Aws refers to 1700/2100 mhz. There is no such thing as 2100mhz aws. Also Verizon's aws spectrum buyout from the cable cos was approved in mid 2012, though it wasn't deployed until 2013
    12-07-2015 08:00 AM
  23. Climb14er's Avatar
    "The carrier did not name the 22 new markets in which it has deployed AWS spectrum. Verizon has dubbed its deployment of 1700/2100 MHz AWS spectrum for LTE its "XLTE" network to bolster capacity on its 700 MHz LTE network, which covers around 306 million POPs and is built in a 10x10 MHz configuration".

    The 2100 is an AWS band!

    His instruments and modems were able to separate the 1700 from the 2100! We were able to watch the numbers coming through the relays from the towers to the computer on the separate bands! The 2100 AWS stood alone and was viewed as a separate band! NOT ONCE did he call it 1700/2100. He called it 2100 AWS! I personally watched the signal change on the 2100 AWS band... and the 700! Not once did I see the 1700 mentioned on the screen. Why? Because he was looking for only the 2100 vs the 700 signal strength!

    You call it 1700/2100.

    The engineer calls it 2100 AWS. I'll take HIS WORD any day of the year!

    BTW, I know analog here in Colorado very well! I used it solo since 1993 and in conjunction with digital on the two band phones until it was discontinued. Analog was used very well on the high peaks and in the remote locations of Colorado's back country and mountainous regions. Analog had saved many folks in safety situations. The digital that replaced it is a weaker signal then the analog. I still wish analog would be available here in Colorado and the West. It's long distance capture of signal was phenomenal!
    12-07-2015 09:07 AM
  24. updatedapps's Avatar
    i m using on warid telecom and its working fine here.
    12-07-2015 09:15 AM
  25. Golfdriver97's Avatar
    Comparing my Net capability at work between my Nexus 5X, and the Note 5, yes. I am seeing some lower cell signal strength.

    This isn't very scientific, but near the front door to where I work, I was getting 3G at best on the Note 5. On the 5X, I had a solid LTE signal, sitting in near the same spot.
    12-07-2015 10:36 AM
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