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Watch: iPhone XS Max versus Samsung Galaxy Note 9 in audio test

When pitting the iPhone XS Max against Samsung's Galaxy Note 9 in a gaming death match last week, we noticed audio reproduction was noticeably better on Apple's device. We take a closer listen in this video.

iPhone vs Galaxy Audio



In introducing iPhone XS last month, Apple said it reworked the smartphone's speaker system to boost stereo separation. Exactly how the company went about achieving that goal is unclear, but the results are readily apparent.



This test compares the iPhone XS Max with Samsung's Galaxy Note 9. We positioned a boom microphone a good distance away from both phones and evaluated raw unedited audio to determine how the two handsets differ.

Dolby Atmos is active on the Note 9, while the XS Max has no additional effects applied.

iPhone vs Galaxy Audio



Playing our favorite song, we noticed the iPhone XS Max is markedly louder, and the highs are brighter. Not only that, but the bass is a lot punchier.

Listening closer, the iPhone XS Max presents a wider soundstage with more separation between the notes, whereas the Note 9 sounds a bit flat.

iPhone vs Galaxy Audio



Moving onto the second part of the test, Fortnite gameplay, both phones were set to maximum volume. Again, the iPhone XS Max sound output blows the Galaxy Note 9 away, making for a much better gaming experience.

Deals on the iPhone XS Max and Galaxy Note 9



If you haven't already ordered Apple's iPhone XS Max, wireless carriers are incentivizing the purchase. Want to get your hands on a new device asap? eBay sellers are also shipping units now.

Carrier deals:

  • AT&T Wireless: Buy one iPhone XS or iPhone XS Max, get a second $700 off when you add a line.
  • Verizon Wireless: Get up to $300 off with an eligible trade.
  • Sprint: Get the 64GB iPhone XS for $0 per month with eligible trade-in and Sprint Flex lease.
  • T-Mobile: Save up to $300 on the iPhone XS with an eligible iPhone trade.


Those interested in purchasing the Samsung Galaxy Note 9 can take advantage of no tax collected outside New York and New Jersey* when purchasing from B&H, plus a free Samsung Fast Charge Qi Wireless Charging Stand valued at $44.99.