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Old 02-07-2011, 09:30 PM   #51
jtt777
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 101101 View Post
I'm not sure about your Outback, but in my Impreza there are screws. Use a flathead screw driver to remove the clear portion covering the light bulbs and you can see the philips head screws holding the assembly on.
Thanks, i did see some notches there. I will do that...
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Old 02-08-2011, 09:32 AM   #52
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I've got an aftermarket Pioneer DVD/NAV headunit in the car (AVIC-Z120BT) which has it's own bluetooth mic. It's actually taped right over the stock mic location. Absolutely no problems with it working (all the steering wheel controls work with it too!). I have, however, heard others complain about the stock setup. My guess is that maybe the mic is simply bad quality. Not sure if there is a way to fix this on a stock setup tho...
what steering wheel control adapter did you use? All of the bluetooth buttons assigned and working?
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Old 02-11-2011, 03:22 PM   #53
RichM
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Anyone find an aftermarket directional mic yet?
Might higher density sound deadening, like Dynamat work better than straight craft foam?
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Old 02-12-2011, 10:20 AM   #54
luisv
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I've been following this thread and just wanted to add my own experience. I was previously using a Blackberry Curve and just switched to the iPhone 4. To be totally honest, the difference appears to be amazing... my wife says that I sound crystal clear now without any of the hiss / crackle noise that I had with the BB. Has anyone tired different phones or updated firmware on their phones to see if any differences are noticed? I am fully aware that the culprit should be the crappy mic, but I wonder if the bluetooth connectivity / firmware on the phone has any effect on the quality of the signal transfer between the phone / head unit. Just seems too coincidental that I switch phones and I now sound much better than before... interesting to say the least...
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Old 02-12-2011, 10:22 AM   #55
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I just got my 2011 STi Limited and have an iPhone4 and I have asked many people how I sound and they say they can hear me easily. Sounds about right luisv.
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Old 02-13-2011, 08:16 AM   #56
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So it's not coincidental... interesting... thanks for confirming that I'm not going nuts...
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Old 02-13-2011, 08:57 AM   #57
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Funny....been having the same issues with my Foz's nav/BT HU.
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Old 02-14-2011, 11:01 AM   #58
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I pulled down the map light cover and added some weather stripping foam (3/4 inch) around the backside of the mic this weekend. Friends that I called said it helped a little but not greatly.

One person originally said it helped a lot but a minute later changed their mind and said it was just as bad as before. They said it was worse (in the middle of my town) when in 3G than when I was driving in the middle west Texas on an EDGE system. One person described it was "... talking in a wind tunnel with bumble bees". Which makes me believe that some, if not all, of the voice quality issue is dependent on the quality of the cell phone carriers signal.

Next step is to stuff some "egg-crate" foam between the headliner and the roof.

I also hope to see if there is a difference between a GSM (AT&T) phone and a Verizon (CDMA) phone in my area.

I have an iPhone 3GS on AT&T (GSM) in a place that barely has 3G towers. So if your familiar with AT&Ts advertising, I'm in that last 1 percent of the 95 percent of America covered by 3G. I wish AT&T would spend more money upgrading their 850 Mhz UMTS system and less on advertising.
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Old 02-14-2011, 10:20 PM   #59
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichM View Post
I also hope to see if there is a difference between a GSM (AT&T) phone and a Verizon (CDMA) phone in my area.
For reference, I have Verizon (an LG enV3 -- terrible phone, my dad and I both have one and they both have issues) and I have bad sound quality. Getting a new phone in a few months; hopefully it'll help (as others have said it did for them).
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Old 03-17-2011, 01:53 PM   #60
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anyone have any updates if they replaced their mic or if anything else they did made it better?
i talk on the phone a lot with my gf while im driving and end up not using my BT
cause it's too loud on her end once i start driving highway.
especially with the spt exhaust..doesn't really seem to make it better lol

i'm getting fed up with it so i just ordered a jawbone icon off amazon for $47
really would want to fix the BT on the car tho..would be way more comfortable to use than a jawbone.
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Old 03-17-2011, 02:10 PM   #61
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I can see how the phones hardware/software can make a difference but I still say the Subaru mic is the real issue here. Also, I did make a note on how the placement of the phone does have an effect on the call quality, so interference is always gonna play a factor, whether big or small, on the call quality. However, placement of the phones and lowering the gain level to 1 helps, and of course packing the dead/open space between the map light and roof helps as well, but it's not the right solution to this. Ultimately, this problem should fall back on the manufacturer itself.

Can anyone make this happen?
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Old 03-17-2011, 02:42 PM   #62
minjae
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we should make a petition to fix em..it's just dead weight in my car..-_- (not really..but ya know what i mean..)
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Old 03-21-2011, 11:03 PM   #63
RichM
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I sent out an email to Subaru with a link to this thread. I suggest others do the same. Hoping someone fixes a problem usually starts with them being made aware of the problem.
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Old 03-22-2011, 09:28 AM   #64
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Honestly, while the quality isn't great it is no worse than my girlfriends ford focus. The wrx is in the end based on a cheap economy car and you're just not going to get a high quality system. My gf has mentioned it can be loud when im on the highway but other than that no one complains.

Emailing Subaru may help, but i doubt it. The stereo sucks all around. Is a slightly better BT mic going to change everyones opinion on that?
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Old 03-22-2011, 01:40 PM   #65
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I went back to using my Parrot BT speaker that clips on the visor. It has no background noise. The only down side is it doesn't turn on/off with the car like the factory HU does. However, I receive and make so few phone calls that it doesn't really matter.
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Old 03-22-2011, 02:30 PM   #66
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I normally don't receive many calls myself, but when I do, I don't answer them because I know the road noise is going to make the conversation unbearable and frustating. So, although it's not a HUGE deal, it is still an issue. I mean, are we supposed to just accept the fact that talking while driving is not possible cause of the "wind tunnel" noise we will experience? Or should Subaru be held accountable for selling a BT device that will only properly work when the car is not in motion? C'mon! It's like a cell phone company selling a phone that is 4G, but only if you're not moving. Otherwise, your data will have interference and may become unintelligible.
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Old 03-22-2011, 04:38 PM   #67
RichM
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This is the response I got from Subaru.
I'm disappointed but not really surprised. .
Quote:
Dear Rich,

Thank you for contacting Subaru of America about the hands free system in your 2011 Impreza Outback Sport.

On page 5-48 of your owner's manual we acknowledge that your voice may be difficult to be heard when driving on a rough road, at a high speed or with a window open. Some tips that may help the sound quality would be to adjust the ventilator so the air does not blow toward the microphone and also make sure the cell phone is not too close to the microphone.

Again, we do appreciate that you took the time to bring this concern to our attention. Your comments will be noted in our Customer/Dealer Services database. We use such information to continually track and review the performance of our products, always with the intentions of improving upon them. We will also forward your comments to our Product Planning Department for their review and future consideration. In the past, input from our owners has been helpful in initiating changes to our newer models.

Sincerely,

xxxxxxx xxxxxxx

Customer Dealer Services
Subaru of America, Inc.
I wouldn't mind paying $50 (USD) or so for a fix to the problem.
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Old 03-22-2011, 05:01 PM   #68
schweezly
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Originally Posted by CarTuned View Post
I normally don't receive many calls myself, but when I do, I don't answer them because I know the road noise is going to make the conversation unbearable and frustating. So, although it's not a HUGE deal, it is still an issue. I mean, are we supposed to just accept the fact that talking while driving is not possible cause of the "wind tunnel" noise we will experience? Or should Subaru be held accountable for selling a BT device that will only properly work when the car is not in motion? C'mon! It's like a cell phone company selling a phone that is 4G, but only if you're not moving. Otherwise, your data will have interference and may become unintelligible.
My BT ear piece was just as bad, if not worse. Saying the conversation is unbearable is blowing it out of proportion...unless you're trying to talk on the highway with the windows down
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Old 03-24-2011, 10:09 AM   #69
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Originally Posted by schweezly View Post
My BT ear piece was just as bad, if not worse. Saying the conversation is unbearable is blowing it out of proportion...unless you're trying to talk on the highway with the windows down
Well, perhaps unbearable isn't the best word to describe it. How about frustrating? But yes, I was driving on a highway but the windows weren't down. And I get the same complaint as most people here do. It's always a "tunnel or wind" description when I am talking. So, nevertheless, all the noise/interference is not user error, or phone placement. It's undoubtedly the quality of the mic and/or hardware Subaru used for the BT system.
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Old 03-24-2011, 10:50 AM   #70
schweezly
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Originally Posted by CarTuned View Post
Well, perhaps unbearable isn't the best word to describe it. How about frustrating? But yes, I was driving on a highway but the windows weren't down. And I get the same complaint as most people here do. It's always a "tunnel or wind" description when I am talking. So, nevertheless, all the noise/interference is not user error, or phone placement. It's undoubtedly the quality of the mic and/or hardware Subaru used for the BT system.
Yea, i know what you're saying. I get it too but generally people just assume im in the car. My ear piece had the same effect. Guess im just playing devils advocate here.
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Old 03-26-2011, 06:00 AM   #71
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My friends used to complain about having a hard time hearing me over the bluetooth when I was using my LG Dare on VZW. After upgrading my phone to a Sharp Kin TwoM, they say they can hear me much better...
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Old 10-31-2011, 09:32 PM   #72
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Default Male bovine defecation ..

Yeah, I've got a 2011 STi Limited and the BT is pretty much unusable and I've got an iPhone 4. My father refuses to even talk to me when I'm driving because he can't hear me. I can turn the gain down, but then I have to yell for anyone to hear me. Lame.

As an experiment I borrowed my wife's Jabra Cruiser ($25 + $5 shipping) and called my father. He thought I was calling from my house, when in reality I was doing 65 MPH on the highway.

It's absolutely ridiculous that I spent all of that money on a car and the BT is outclassed by a $25 device that clips to the visor. To be honest, it's a giant steaming pile of male bovine defecation.

SoA, for the love of everything boxer and turbocharged, please, please, please issue a TSB.
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Old 11-01-2011, 09:28 PM   #73
Frank A
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fwiw, I have an HTC Incredible and it sounds like crap. But I think the call quality on this phone is substandard anyway, and it also sounded like crap with an Aliph Jawbone which I gave up on. I do have the same experience as others that the people on the other end have reported that the sound is much better when I am stopped versus when I'm going 80 mph. When I go through the Baltimore tunnel, conversation is impossible due to the significantly increased road noise. I have another el cheapo phone I'll test and report back.

One idea is for Subaru to do some active noise cancellation. They could have the microphone record the ambient sound levels in the car over a range of speeds when the driver tells it to, then it could subtract those noises out during normal calls, indexed to the speed of the car. I bet it would make the talking choppy and wouldn't work, but just maybe...
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Old 11-02-2011, 04:51 AM   #74
Regulator84
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I don't often receive many complaints on the BT quality from people I am talking to.

However, the BT command system itself doesn't understand a single thing I say except for "Dial by Number," haha.

Once it asks me to say the number it doesn't matter how fast, how slow, over-enunciated, or loud I say the number, it will come up with something off the wall, or just come back with "Pardon?"

Literally, if I say 555-238-9410 if it understands me at all it will say "3102, is this correct?" or something as equally ridiculous.

I've relegated myself to dialing manually through the phone and letting the BT pick up the call.
The sound quality of the BT 'robot lady' is horrendous as well. When she gives commands or asks questions it sounds like I am on a very low reception phone call with her, not just listening to a computer play a message.

Pretty annoying, especially coming from a BT system in my former 2010 Mazdaspeed3 which was wonderful.
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Old 11-02-2011, 12:11 PM   #75
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For those that suggested changing the gain, I can report that I found mine was set to 3 on a scale of 1 to 5, and by lowering it to 1 I was able to reduce the background noise without having to yell. I do need to raise my voice, but it's still a bit shy of a yell. Not ideal, but tolerable for talking to my wife or if I really need to answer an incoming call.

I hope to try my crap phone yet today.
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