1. Notsosure's Avatar
    Decided to make a switch today to S4 from Droid DNA. Gotta say I love the size and screen of this phone. It is definitely a beaut. Plus it operates like a charm. One thing that I noticed is my reception. Im only getting 2 to 3 bars. When I had the DNA the same location im at I typically get 4 to 5 bars. Anyone know what the deal is?

    Sent from my Galaxy S4 using Tapatalk
    05-23-2013 10:09 AM
  2. garublador's Avatar
    Either the signal strength is better on the DNA or they report the signal strength differently. My experience is that those bars don't really do a good job of comparing different phones in the same location. They only do a good job of comparing the same phone in different locations.
    05-23-2013 10:47 AM
  3. Premium1's Avatar
    Decided to make a switch today to S4 from Droid DNA. Gotta say I love the size and screen of this phone. It is definitely a beaut. Plus it operates like a charm. One thing that I noticed is my reception. Im only getting 2 to 3 bars. When I had the DNA the same location im at I typically get 4 to 5 bars. Anyone know what the deal is?

    Sent from my Galaxy S4 using Tapatalk
    What is the dbm reading for both devices? Sometimes they read bars differently and the dbm is more accurate of the actual signal
    05-23-2013 11:08 AM
  4. Notsosure's Avatar
    What is the dbm reading for both devices? Sometimes they read bars differently and the dbm is more accurate of the actual signal
    Can you tell me what is dbm and where to find it on the S4? I no longer have the DNA. I returned it within the 2 week return period.

    Sent from my Galaxy S4 using Tapatalk
    05-23-2013 11:24 AM
  5. Premium1's Avatar
    Can you tell me what is dbm and where to find it on the S4? I no longer have the DNA. I returned it within the 2 week return period.

    Sent from my Galaxy S4 using Tapatalk
    It should be under networks or radios. I can't remember exactly I don't have an s4 in front of me but it should be under the network on settings if they didn't change it I think.
    05-23-2013 11:44 AM
  6. Notsosure's Avatar
    It should be under networks or radios. I can't remember exactly I don't have an s4 in front of me but it should be under the network on settings if they didn't change it I think.
    My dbm is -103, is that good or bad? Is there a range or a scale that is used?

    Sent from my Galaxy S4 using Tapatalk
    05-23-2013 12:05 PM
  7. Jdroids's Avatar
    dbm -103 is a little weak signal. Generally higher the dbm value (negative), it's weaker signal. It's like logarithm value. dbm below -90 is considered strong. Above -110 dbm, 4G LTE gets very weak and may drop out to 3G any time.

    Without knowing how your DNA did over there, it's hard to tell where GS4 stands in signal. Honestly I wouldn't expect GS4 do better than DNA in signal reception as DNA is one of the best reception phone on verizon. You probably didn't get GS4 because your were unhappy with DNA on signal, right?
    05-23-2013 12:22 PM
  8. Cattails_r_Edible's Avatar
    You don't buy a Samsung product for it's radio's!

    Sent from my HTCONE using Tapatalk 2
    Premium1 likes this.
    05-23-2013 12:43 PM
  9. Notsosure's Avatar
    dbm -103 is a little weak signal. Generally higher the dbm value (negative), it's weaker signal. It's like logarithm value. dbm below -90 is considered strong. Above -110 dbm, 4G LTE gets very weak and may drop out to 3G any time.

    Without knowing how your DNA did over there, it's hard to tell where GS4 stands in signal. Honestly I wouldn't expect GS4 do better than DNA in signal reception as DNA is one of the best reception phone on verizon. You probably didn't get GS4 because your were unhappy with DNA on signal, right?
    Lol definitely not. Got GS4 mainly due to the whole reliability concern. DNA has a known issue for SIM recognition. Considering I dont use my laptop I need a working smartphone that I can trust. Plus the battery itself isnt the best having to charge twice a day. I wanted something that I can potentially change the battery with. Also HTC is well known for ditching updates on their phones. Dont get me wrong I do love the DNA. Think its a great phone. But samsung just seem to fit my needs better.

    Sent from my Galaxy S4 using Tapatalk
    05-23-2013 12:44 PM
  10. 318sugarhill's Avatar
    Apparently I'm finding this out. My Rezound could be forced into LTE&CDMA mode basically cutting out 3g in weaker LTE areas. The S4 has no such ability, so the thing is CONSTANTLY going back to 3g. Starting to get frustrated. Never had a problem staying on 4g in my house. The S4 is reverting back to 3g all the time. I really wish one of the LTE switch apps worked on this device.
    05-23-2013 01:03 PM
  11. Jdroids's Avatar
    Lol definitely not. Got GS4 mainly due to the whole reliability concern. DNA has a known issue for SIM recognition. Considering I dont use my laptop I need a working smartphone that I can trust. Plus the battery itself isnt the best having to charge twice a day. I wanted something that I can potentially change the battery with. Also HTC is well known for ditching updates on their phones. Dont get me wrong I do love the DNA. Think its a great phone. But samsung just seem to fit my needs better.

    Sent from my Galaxy S4 using Tapatalk
    I see. DNA is known to have SIM card issue for some. But you probably have used it heavily if you had to charge twice a day.

    Back to signal on GS4, I wouldn't worry too much on lower bars as long as signal doesn't drop out or data speed gets too slow. You can't use bars to compare signals of different maker's phones.
    05-23-2013 01:05 PM
  12. anon62607's Avatar
    dbm -103 is a little weak signal. Generally higher the dbm value (negative), it's weaker signal. It's like logarithm value. dbm below -90 is considered strong. Above -110 dbm, 4G LTE gets very weak and may drop out to 3G any time.

    Without knowing how your DNA did over there, it's hard to tell where GS4 stands in signal. Honestly I wouldn't expect GS4 do better than DNA in signal reception as DNA is one of the best reception phone on verizon. You probably didn't get GS4 because your were unhappy with DNA on signal, right?
    With LTE there are a couple ways to report signal and they are significantly different from each other, there is the constant power reference signal (RSRP) which will be considerably weaker than the other way of measuring the signal (RSSI) which is the combined power of the channel rather than just the power of the reference signals. -103 db milliwatts if measuring RSRP is a fairly strong signal.

    To add a bit:
    RSSI is the combined power of the band as seen by the phone. This includes everything in the passband. If you are on a 10 MHz wide channel at 777 MHz then this is the power of everything from 777 to 787 MHz, including neighboring cell towers, noise, everything including the tower you are actually receiving from. Thus the strength of RSSI will be much higher than that of the reference signal and also will be higher if you are receiving on a wider channel (10 MHz vs 5 MHz).

    RSRP is the average power of a reference symbol received on a single antenna port. In LTE, every third subcarrier periodically transmits a reference signal at a known power. The LTE receiving device keeps track of this, and that is a good estimation of how much power the LTE device is receiving on a single subcarrier.

    RSRQ is the quality of that reference signal, how clearly it is heard over neighboring cell towers and other noise.

    So the best environment would be a high RSRP and a high RSRQ (e.g., -50 dbm RSRP and -3 db RSRQ) - lots of power and it's clean, but -103 dBm RSRP if it's a high quality signal would still lead to quite good performance.

    RSSI isn't a very good measure because it's just received power - it could be mostly noise.

    adding a bit more:

    The actual, important number I believe is hidden. CQI - channel quality indicator. This is a number from 0 to 15 which the device itself uses (or reports to the tower) that the tower can use to set it's modulation and coding. Once this value is over 10 the most complex modulation available (64QAM) is used and as the CQI increases the code rate improves (how much of the data is dedicated to error correction decreases). I'm actually not really sure why the phone should show to the user anything other than this value anyway.
    Jdroids and .jpg like this.
    05-23-2013 01:06 PM
  13. Notsosure's Avatar
    So this is not a hardware issue but a software issue that is fixable?

    Sent from my Galaxy S4 using Tapatalk
    05-23-2013 01:41 PM
  14. Cattails_r_Edible's Avatar
    I'm sure Samsung will put out an update to increase the number of bars, and say the radio's are fixed now!

    Sent from my HTCONE using Tapatalk 2
    05-23-2013 01:52 PM
  15. Jdroids's Avatar
    I know about RSRP vs RSSI. But I don't think any android phone with ICS 4.0x and later version is using RSSI any more. Any android phone released within last several months is reporting dbm in RSRP and DNA is definitely one of them. I recall Galaxy Nexus was the first phone reporting dbm in RSRP and this caused a lot of confusion when comparing it to others with GB.
    05-23-2013 02:13 PM
  16. anon62607's Avatar
    I know about RSRP vs RSSI. But I don't think any android phone with ICS 4.0x and later version is using RSSI any more. Any android phone released within last several months is reporting dbm in RSRP and DNA is definitely one of them. I recall Galaxy Nexus was the first phone reporting dbm in RSRP and this caused a lot of confusion when comparing it to others with GB.
    That might actually be the case, but in any event -103 dDm RSRP is not particularly weak and only one factor anyway. You could compare the two phones at the same spot and not be able to judge the relative quality of their antenna complex based on the RSRP between the two.

    I have a DNA myself which is reporting -107 dBm RSRP, -14 dB RSRQ and -75 dBm RSSI right now, and performance is fine (it also shows 5 bars, but of course everyone must be aware that the bars are only an indication of the 1xRTT signal strength, not the EVDO or LTE signal strength, which I think tends to lead to confusion as well).
    05-23-2013 02:47 PM
  17. SDNick484's Avatar
    Apparently I'm finding this out. My Rezound could be forced into LTE&CDMA mode basically cutting out 3g in weaker LTE areas. The S4 has no such ability, so the thing is CONSTANTLY going back to 3g. Starting to get frustrated. Never had a problem staying on 4g in my house. The S4 is reverting back to 3g all the time. I really wish one of the LTE switch apps worked on this device.
    I realize this isn't solving your real problem, but if you're at home you should switch to WiFi assuming that's available for you. WiFi uses considerably less battery than LTE or 3G even in good cellular conditions.
    05-23-2013 03:23 PM
  18. 318sugarhill's Avatar
    I realize this isn't solving your real problem, but if you're at home you should switch to WiFi assuming that's available for you. WiFi uses considerably less battery than LTE or 3G even in good cellular conditions.
    I've been an HTC guy since the Dinc. But among many reasons I jumped ship to the S4 (and would have even if VZW had the ONE), and I'm on a slight learning curve as it's got it's own variances.....plus 4.2 vs. 4.0. Wifi actually used MORE battery on my Rezound at home. Not really sure why, but it did....and comcast has had some issues here recently that I actually had faster speed on LTE. With HTC, when WiFi was on, the 3g/4g radios went off automatically. But the S4 shows the wifi icon when connected AND the network signal of 1x/3g/4g. BOTH are on. Is this normal? I thought wifi was supposed to turn the radio's off. I'd hate to have to turn off mobile data everytime I turn WiFi on.

    Edit....Of course as I just typed this I look and only the WiFi indicator is on. I SWEAR it was on before.
    05-23-2013 03:35 PM
  19. SDNick484's Avatar
    I've been an HTC guy since the Dinc. But among many reasons I jumped ship to the S4 (and would have even if VZW had the ONE), and I'm on a slight learning curve as it's got it's own variances.....plus 4.2 vs. 4.0. Wifi actually used MORE battery on my Rezound at home. Not really sure why, but it did....and comcast has had some issues here recently that I actually had faster speed on LTE. With HTC, when WiFi was on, the 3g/4g radios went off automatically. But the S4 shows the wifi icon when connected AND the network signal of 1x/3g/4g. BOTH are on. Is this normal? I thought wifi was supposed to turn the radio's off. I'd hate to have to turn off mobile data everytime I turn WiFi on.

    Edit....Of course as I just typed this I look and only the WiFi indicator is on. I SWEAR it was on before.
    Interesting, my previous two phones were HTC (Droid Eris then a Thunderbolt) and at first I thought WiFi would consume more battery, but in practice I found, at least with my Tbolt, it consumed much less. A quick Google search on the topic came up with an interesting paper that drew the same conclusion. It would of course depend on signal strength of both sources, but it made a huge difference for me. I picked up an S4 this afternoon and am curious to see how that goes. I do hope WiFi automatically switches off the data radio, as having to manually do that would suck.
    05-23-2013 03:58 PM
  20. Premium1's Avatar
    I realize this isn't solving your real problem, but if you're at home you should switch to WiFi assuming that's available for you. WiFi uses considerably less battery than LTE or 3G even in good cellular conditions.
    if you have unlimited data why use wifi? You are paying for unlimited might as well use as much as possible. Especially with verizon making a killing and selling you small amounts of data to those who upgrade. Stick it to the man!
    05-23-2013 05:22 PM
  21. anon(156377)'s Avatar
    if you have unlimited data why use wifi? You are paying for unlimited might as well use as much as possible. Especially with verizon making a killing and selling you small amounts of data to those who upgrade. Stick it to the man!
    That's the mentality that killed "unlimited data" in the first place.
    Notsosure likes this.
    05-23-2013 05:28 PM
  22. Premium1's Avatar
    That's the mentality that killed "unlimited data" in the first place.
    no what killed unlimited data was verizon being money hungry. If 95% of people use 2gb or less( like they claim) they are making a killing off of the data that costs them very little to offer to you. I'm sorry unlimited is unlimited they already took it away so why do anything to save verizon some money? I am paying for it, I'm going to use it. Just saying
    rushmore likes this.
    05-23-2013 06:05 PM
  23. rushmore's Avatar
    DNA has great reception. Unless the S4 has broken the Samsung radio curse, seems a given it will not be as good. The S3 radio reception is weak compared to the DNA.

    Shame about that no sd card thing though.

    Like Verizon lying about being able to increase app storage with an sd card on the S4, ditto on their excuse with data caps. It was 100% for more revenue.
    05-23-2013 06:36 PM

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