I value hearing a lot, in fact more than anything, that's why I have never listened to music above 50/60% of total volume while all others keep cranking the volume up. That's completely irrelevant for earpiece volume though, however loud the earpiece goes I don't think there is any possible way to damage your hearings from a person's voice!! Maybe if a cat starts to sing on the other end you might have problem, but it's impossible with normal human beings! Having a loud earpiece is always good. What you said is applicable for music listening via IEM. Motorola's earpiece volume is brilliant, that's why I mentioned it as brilliant.
Anyway, thanks for the input. Nice to know that you don't find the S5 inferior to S4, and that there are some mods as well. However I think those mods will distort the earpiece sound to some extent, still they are available, and that's a good news.
Speakerphone is a thing I have never used for ringtone or listening to music, it's only for phone calls and that was the point of my query. I hate those persons who use the speakerphone on streets too. Pocketnow's review mentioned that on noisy streets you won't be able to hear the caller if you turn the speakerphone on, and the caller won't be able to hear you as well, and that scared me, still kinda does.
Seems like I might not have any serious problems regarding phone calls if I get the S5.
Originally Posted by fffft
4 db is not a lot. 3 db is the smallest change that most people can detect. For comparison, if you were to stand 4 feet away from a person that you are talking to instead of 2 feet, that would probably be a 6 db difference. It's not a linear scale and you need a ten fold reduction in power to perceive a 50% decrease in volume (10 db).
The earpiece volume on the S5 is not at all low by any reasonable standard. And even if you disageed, there are readily available mods to increase the volume. Motorola is known for ear splitting volume levels, something difficult to characterize as "brilliant" if you value your hearing at all. Excessive loudness is known to cause permanent hearing damage.
I've used the S4 and S5 and don't find the S5 inferior in any sense. Noisy streets are a challenge with any phone and a better solution is to use a noise isolating and canceling headset. Speaker phones - all speaker phones for time immemorial have been notably bad experiences. No different here.
In short, the voice quality and loudness are good, the external speaker tinny and it remains a mystery why some brilliant folk insist on annoying everyone around them by using the speaker phone mode while walking down the sidewalk.