Smartphones > Motorola Edge 30 Pro > Audio Test Results
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Motorola Edge 30 Pro Audio test

We put the Motorola Edge 30 Pro through our rigorous DXOMARK Audio test suite to measure its performance both at recording sound using its built-in microphones, and at playing audio back through its speakers.
In this review, we will break down how it fared in a variety of tests and several common use cases.

Overview


Key audio specifications include:

  • Stereo speakers: Top front, bottom side
  • Type-C port
  • Dolby Atmos; Qualcomm Snapdragon Sound

Motorola Edge 30 Pro
66
audio
66

89

73

81

56

88

67

85

89

113


54

91

66

81

61

78

48

99

45

97

26

60

Playback

Pros

  • Correct Timbre performance at soft and nominal volumes
  • Correct Attack regardless of volume
  • Good Punch at soft and nominal volumes

Cons

  • Aggressive tonal balance at maximum volume
  • Significant lack of low-end and high-end extension in tonal balance

Recording

Pros

  • Satisfying recording loudness

Cons

  • Limited tonal balance that is focused on high mid-range.
  • Poorly tuned noise reduction

Motorola’s latest version of its flagship Edge line, the 30 Pro, boasts what in 2022 constitute the standard specs for top-of-the-line smartphones. The Snapdragon 8 Gen 1 chipset, 6.7″ HDR10+ display,  and a 4800mAh fast-charging battery. This Motorola device even comes with a display that has a beyond-standard refresh rate: 144Hz. In terms of audio, its two speakers have Dolby Atmos tuning and Qualcomm Snapdragon Sound. It earned a global score of 66 in our audio testing, which aligns it with the score of the Motorola Edge+, the brand’s 2020 flagship. That puts it in average- to below-average territory for premium smartphones in our database. The 30 Pro’s score would have been better if it had not been dragged down by its poor performance as a recording device. Its noise-reduction is not well-engineered and the tonal balance of its recordings is generally off kilter. As a playback device, it faired much better, especially when listening to content at soft or nominal volumes. Let’s take a closer listen.

Test summary

About DXOMARK Audio tests: For scoring and analysis in our smartphone audio reviews, DXOMARK engineers perform a variety of objective tests and undertake more than 20 hours of perceptual evaluation under controlled lab conditions.
(For more details about our Playback protocol, click here; for more details about our Recording protocol, click here.)

The following section gathers key elements of our exhaustive tests and analyses performed in DXOMARK laboratories. Detailed performance evaluations under the form of reports are available upon request. Do not hesitate to contact us.

Playback

70

Motorola Edge 30 Pro

86

Black Shark 5 Pro
How Audio Playback score is composed

DXOMARK engineers test playback through the smartphone speakers, whose performance is evaluated in our labs and in real-life conditions, using default apps and settings.

As a playback device, the Motorola Edge 30 Pro earned a 70, matching scores with such smartphones as the Samsung Galaxy S21 (Exynos and Snapdragon versions) and the OnePlus 9 Pro.  A respectable score in good company. In the timbre attribute, the tonal balance is correct in general, with an orientation toward the midrange that doesn’t sound canny at nominal volume. Treble is sufficient, although more high-end would help produce a more brilliant sound. Midrange is clean and fairly pleasant to the ear, especially in landscape orientation. Held in portrait, the device produces a slightly hollow sound.   Compared with the Edge 20 Pro, the bass is improved, but more bass and low end is needed. At soft volumes, balance is quite good, except when playing games, when the timbre becomes muffled and lacks clarity. At high volume, tonal balance becomes aggressive because of the unpleasant, prominent high midrange. Dynamics was a bright spot for the Edge 30 Pro. Attack is quite precise and sharp at all volumes. Bass precision is correct despite the lack of low end. The envelope is realistic. Punch is adequate until you get to maximum volume, where it is crushed by the prominent high midrange. Unlike its predecessor the Edge 20 Pro, the 30 Pro is a stereo device, giving it the chance to function well in the spatial attribute. Localizability is correct but not as good as such Motorola phones as the Edge+. Lack of clarity in the upper spectrum can make it difficult to pinpoint sound sources precisely. Wideness is decent, but the stereo image doesn’t flip accordingly when listening in inverted landscape position for both music and movies. Good stereo balance overall, but some central contents are slightly offset to the right (bottom speaker) of the device. Good distance rendition thanks to warm and realistic midrange. The maximum volume is good, and the first volume step is properly tuned — you can clearly hear dynamic contents like classical music. No artifacts were observed at nominal volume. At maximum volume there is some very slight compression. Clipping was noticed on short transients like kick drums. 

Listen to the tested smartphone’s playback performance in this comparison with some of its competitors:

Motorola Edge 30 Pro
OnePlus 10 Pro
Samsung Galaxy A52 5G
Here is how the Motorola Edge 30 pro performs in playback use cases compared to its competitors:
Playback use-cases scores


Timbre

66

Motorola Edge 30 Pro

89

Black Shark 5 Pro

The Timbre score represents how well a phone reproduces sound across the audible tonal range and takes into account bass, midrange, treble, tonal balance, and volume dependency. It is the most important attribute for playback.

Music playback frequency response


Dynamics

73

Motorola Edge 30 Pro

81

Black Shark 5 Pro

The Dynamics score measures the accuracy of changes in the energy level of sound sources, for example how precisely a bass note is reproduced or the impact sound from drums.


Spatial

56

Motorola Edge 30 Pro

88

Black Shark 5 Pro

The sub-attributes for spatial tests include pinpointing a specific sound's location, its positional balance, distance, and wideness.


Volume

67

Motorola Edge 30 Pro

85

Black Shark 5 Pro

The Volume score represents the overall loudness of a smartphone and how smoothly volume increases and decreases based on user input.

Here are a few sound pressure levels (SPL) measured when playing our sample recordings of hip-hop and classical music at maximum volume:
Hip-Hop Classical
Motorola Edge 30 Pro 76 dBA 67 dBA
OnePlus 10 Pro 73.9 dBA 70.8 dBA
Samsung Galaxy S22 (Exynos) 73.8 dBA 68.7 dBA
The following graph shows the gradual changes in volume going from minimum to maximum. We expect these changes to be consistent across the range, so that all volume steps correspond to users’ expectations:
Music volume consistency


Artifacts

89

Motorola Edge 30 Pro

113

POCO F4 GT

The Artifacts score measures the extent to which the sound is affected by various types of distortion. The higher the score, the less the disturbances in the sound are noticeable. Distortion can occur because of sound processing in the device and because of the quality of the speakers.


Recording

52

Motorola Edge 30 Pro

86

Black Shark 5 Pro
How Audio Playback score is composed

DXOMARK engineers test recording by evaluating the recorded files on reference audio equipment. Those recordings are done in our labs and in real-life conditions, using default apps and settings.

 

As a recording device, the Motorola Edge 30 Pro scored 52 points, close to the bottom of the table in our Ultra-Premium database. Overall and across most attributes, the device produces better recordings in quiet environments using the memo recording application. Used in urban environments, video recordings lack high-end extension, treble is small and sibilant, and the midrange is full of resonances and can sound boxy and nasal. The level of background noise seems to have a big effect on the quality of midrange. The memo app produces a better high-end extension, even though treble still sounds small and tends to be slightly sibilant.  The signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) performance depends on how the device is being used. It works fairly well with the memo app, and also fairly well when shooting video in quiet environments, such as at home.  In urban settings, SNR reduces the background but at the cost of the quality of the resulting audio, which is impaired by phasing issues. In terms of dynamics, recordings made with the memo app are slightly better than when made when shooting video. Those recordings have a very average envelope, generally lacking sharpness, largely because of the recordings’ poor tonal balance. Localizability in recordings is very limited in every use case, regardless of the app being used. The wideness of the recordings is very narrow. Distance is average, and even slightly too distant sounding when the background level rises. The level of volume captured in of the Edge 30 Pro recordings is average. In terms of artifacts, the first to be noted and the worst is the result of the poorly tuned noise reduction. When recording memos in louder environments, voice content becomes almost robotic sounding because of that ill-tuned noise reduction. As for background, tonal balance is unnatural, and the more it is affected by the noise reduction, the more robust the artifacts produced, making it sound phasy and inconsistent. 

Here is how the Motorola Edge 30 pro performs in recording use cases compared to its competitors:

Recording use-cases scores


Timbre

54

Motorola Edge 30 Pro

91

Honor Magic3 Pro+

The Timbre score represents how well a phone captures sounds across the audible tonal range and takes into account bass, midrange, treble, and tonal balance. It is the most important attribute for recording.

Life video frequency response


Dynamics

66

Motorola Edge 30 Pro

81

Black Shark 5 Pro

The Dynamics score measures the accuracy of changes in the energy level of sound sources, for example how precisely a voice's plosives (the p's, t's and k's, for example) are reproduced. The score also considers the Sound-to-Noise Ratio (SNR), for example how loud the main voice is compared to the background noise.


Spatial

61

Motorola Edge 30 Pro

78

Black Shark 4S Pro

The sub-attributes for spatial tests include pinpointing a specific sound's location, its positional balance, distance, and wideness on the recorded audio files.


Volume

48

Motorola Edge 30 Pro

99

Black Shark 5 Pro

The Volume score represents how loud audio is normalized on the recorded files and the how the device handles loud environments, such as electronic concerts, when recording.

Here are the sound levels recorded in the audio and video files, measured in LUFS (Loudness Unit Full Scale); as a reference, we expect loudness levels to be above -24 LUFS for recorded content:
Meeting Life Video Selfie Video Memo
Motorola Edge 30 Pro -28.3 LUFS -27.8 LUFS -25.9 LUFS -25.5 LUFS
OnePlus 10 Pro -20.7 LUFS -17.8 LUFS -16.6 LUFS -15.7 LUFS
Samsung Galaxy S22 (Exynos) -28.9 LUFS -21.4 LUFS -21.2 LUFS -24.2 LUFS


Artifacts

45

Motorola Edge 30 Pro

97

Black Shark 5 Pro

The Artifacts score measures the extent to which the recorded sounds are affected by various types of distortions. The higher the score, the less the disturbances in the sound are noticeable. Distortions can occur because of sound processing in the device and the quality of the microphones, as well as user handling, such as how the phone is held.

Listen for artifacts in this extract, which has been recorded in a busy home environment:


Background

26

Motorola Edge 30 Pro

60

Black Shark 5 Pro

Background evaluates how natural the various sounds around a voice blend into the video recording file. For example, when recording a speech at an event, the background should not interfere with the main voice, yet it should provide some context of the surroundings.

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