One of the features that defined the HTC One family was BoomSound. Introduced on the HTC One M7, BoomSound remained one of the strongest features of HTC handsets, offering the best external speakers, bar none, for three generations of phones.
With the HTC 10, those iconic BoomSound speakers are gone, leading to a face that's markedly different to the past three flagships. But all is not lost, because BoomSound has evolved into something new, called BoomSound Hi-Fi edition and it's still very much the BoomSound you know and love.
First of all, HTC has changed the arrangement of how the external speakers are handled. There's a speaker on the bottom and the ear speaker. That base speaker, appropriately handles bass and the ear speaker is set-up as a tweeter.
The idea here is to retain that fidelity that BoomSound offered before. Each speaker has its own amplifier, aiming to give clarity to each channel, that's often lost in smartphones with a single external speaker. It's loud, it's clear, and it still has that BoomSound thrill from what we've heard so far listening to music and some video content.
It might change the character of BoomSound slightly however. Previously it was really good for stereo separation in video and games, but that might not be the strongest aspect to BoomSound's skills. However, we've listened briefly to music at high volume and found it stay distortion free, which is definitely better than many rivals.
But moving deeper, BoomSound Hi-Fi edition is about giving you the best sound quality through your headphones. The HTC 10 is Hi-Res certified, supporting your higher-definition audio that Sony has been known for championing through its Xperia handsets.
In the HTC 10 it has been designed as an end-to-end solution, with professionally tuned audio circuitry. It will capture 24-bit audio, it will upscale to 24-bit, with a high-quality DAC, as well as featuring a more powerful headphone amp, that will drive higher-quality, more demanding, headphones.
However, the greatest part of this new BoomSound Hi-Fi edition handset may be the headphones that come in the box. Where many manufacturers give you headphones that are average, HTC is bundling a Hi-Res certified in-ear headset in the box.
To make sure you have the best setup for your headphones, there's also a Personal Audio Profile feature. This will let you tune the audio output to your ears, so you're getting the best out of your connected headphones. It's a feature that's also offered by Samsung on its Galaxy handsets, and it's well worth doing.
So the message is this: BoomSound as you know it is gone, but the idea of BoomSound hasn't been abandoned, and the HTC 10 packs an audio punch. We'll be reviewing the new HTC 10 very soon, so check back for the full results of HTC's BoomSound shakedown.