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  1.    #1  
    I think my Treo is broken again, but before I give Palm another $25 to swap it, I thought I'd ask about it here. Has anyone else encountered this?

    I use my Sony stereo earbuds with my Treo via an adapter from Radio Shack. This has been working well for me for months, but suddenly today I'm getting a very strange result. Whenever I play music through the headphones, I get a weird blend of the two channels that literally cancels out all the vocals and puts an echo of some sort on the remaining instruments. It is as if the Treo is reversing the polarity of one channel, then sending the sum of the two channels into both sides of the headset. The effect is very strange, and thoroughly unlistenable.

    It produces the same result whether I use RealPlayer or PocketTunes, and it continues even after I do a cold boot of the phone (removing and replacing the battery). However, if I unplug the headphones, the sound coming from the Treo's tinny little speaker sounds fine - the vocals are exactly as they should be. And if I plug in the cheap little headset that came with the phone, that sounds fine too. (Well, as much as it's capable anyway. <g>)

    So the problem only exists with stereo headphones, not mono headphones, and not the mono built-in speaker. Has anyone else encountered anything like this? Or better still, found a way to fix it?
  2.    #2  
    Quote Originally Posted by Gilliland
    I think my Treo is broken again.... Has anyone else encountered this?

    I use my Sony stereo earbuds with my Treo via an adapter from Radio Shack. This has been working well for me for months, but suddenly today I'm getting a very strange result. Whenever I play music through the headphones, I get a weird blend of the two channels that literally cancels out all the vocals and puts an echo of some sort on the remaining instruments. It is as if the Treo is reversing the polarity of one channel, then sending the sum of the two channels into both sides of the headset. The effect is very strange, and thoroughly unlistenable.

    ....the problem only exists with stereo headphones, not mono headphones, and not the mono built-in speaker. Has anyone else encountered anything like this? Or better still, found a way to fix it?
    Bump. Has no one else encountered anything like this?
  3. #3  
    You have a bad ground connection somewhere. If you haven't yet, try different headphones and adapter.

    Tom
  4. jacobh's Avatar
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    #4  
    Sounds to me like you're getting a connection that is polarity reversed in one channel and sumed to mono. I'd get the real adapter from the palm one store. I think the radio shack one doesn't work like it's supposed to. Even the guy at Radio Shack that I talked to said that it wasn't the real deal, and that I'd be better off getting the real thing. He said some people had made the Radio Shack adapter work before, by plugging it in half way, but it's still not what it's supposed to be. Get the real thing from the PalmOne store, or the Treo Central store here.

    Cheers,
    Jacob H.
  5.    #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by VetPsychWars
    You have a bad ground connection somewhere. If you haven't yet, try different headphones and adapter.
    I think you may be right. Unfortunately, though, I've tried more than one adapter and several pairs of headphones. I'm afraid that the bad connection is inside the Treo.
  6.    #6  
    Quote Originally Posted by jacobh
    Sounds to me like you're getting a connection that is polarity reversed in one channel and sumed to mono. I'd get the real adapter from the palm one store. I think the radio shack one doesn't work like it's supposed to. Even the guy at Radio Shack that I talked to said that it wasn't the real deal, and that I'd be better off getting the real thing. He said some people had made the Radio Shack adapter work before, by plugging it in half way, but it's still not what it's supposed to be. Get the real thing from the PalmOne store, or the Treo Central store here.
    I've had perfect results with the Radio Shack adapter - until now. I don't think that's the problem. I'm not sure what you mean by "plugging it in half way" - the adapter fits properly and goes completely into the socket. Perhaps you didn't select the right one from their product line.

    If I could find a genuine Palm adapter in a local store, I'd be glad to try it, but I haven't seen one anywhere.

    I can't think of a mechanism that would allow the adapter to cause this kind of problem - can you? It certainly seems to be mechanically and electrically equivalent to the "official" adapter.

    And as for the clerks at Radio Shack, I'm not sure I put as much stock in their knowledge as you seem to. <g>

    I guess I was hoping that there was a software setting hidden somewhere inside the Treo that could affect this. Apparently not - looks like it's going to cost me another $25 to do the exchange.

    Thanks.
  7.    #7  
    I figured the best way to determine whether or not my phone was really broken was to try another phone. So I went into the Cingular store today and tried their T650 Display model. I put my own SD card into the phone, plugged in my headphones and adapter, and found that their phone played my music just fine.

    So I called PalmOne support and arranged to exchange my Treo for a new one under warranty. This is the second one that I've had to exchange, and the second time I've had to pay a "shipping and handling" charge. These devices sure are turning out to be fragile.

    So now I'll have to Hotsync everything over to the new phone, and then set up all the stuff that the Hotsync misses (DUN support, Bluetooth pairing data, etc.). They assured me that the new phone would have the latest software, but that didn't turn out to be the case last time so I don't really believe them.

    Anyway, it's quite clear that the Radio Shack adapter is not the problem - it works fine.
  8. #8  
    I've heard of at least one story of someone breaking their Palm with the Radio Shack plug because it's large and hard to plug in, so it sounds like it's likely what they did.

    I think the post I read here, they sat down in their car with it plugged in and it snapped inside. Ouch.
  9.    #9  
    It is about the same size as the official Palm adapter - the only difference is that the Palm adapter is a right angle adapter. I would think that the angle adapter might be less awkward to use, so I suppose it might turn out to be a safer choice under some circumstances.

    The best approach would probably be to use a stereo headset that came with the right plug for the Treo, but I've not been able to find one that gives decent audio. I tried the $30 Seidio headphones that Treo Central sells and had to return them - they had no bass response whatsoever.
  10. #10  
    The official Treo hybrid headset is pretty good, after you break them in for a few days.

    I think the best adapter has a plug and a socket and a piece of wire in between.

    Tom
  11. #11  
    What about the 2-in-1 headsets that TreoCentral sells that lets you plug in your choice of headphones? That way you can plug in your expensive headphones in, and maybe hear a caller in the car
  12.    #12  
    Yeah, I've considered that. I don't really want to use "expensive" headphones - the Sony earbuds that I'm content with only cost about $12. So it's pretty hard to justify spending $30 on the adapter for a $12 pair of headphones! <g>

    However, I did order a pair of the "Backphone" headphones from TreoCentral today. I'm hoping that I'll like the sound quality better than their earbuds, and of course no adapter is needed. If I'm not happy with the sound quality, then perhaps I'll exchange these for the adapter that you suggest.

    I hope that I'm happy with them, though, as $40 seems like a lot to me for a pair of casual headphones.
  13.    #13  
    My replacement 650 arrived today - at least Palm managed to get it to me quickly. The stereo output is working correctly on this one - all my music sounds normal again.

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