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[Q] Xperia Z radio mods (baseband swap.) Knowledge Rollup.

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lhun
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Question [Q] Xperia Z radio mods (baseband swap.) Knowledge Rollup.

Preamble
Hi everyone. As we know, the C6603 (all country versions) can be swapped with the radios from the ZL. This allows you to get LTE on Rogers and Fido in Canada, and I assume would work for other carriers as well in other parts of the world. (this is due either to unlocking frequencies, or unlocking channels on those frequencies.)
The radio HARDWARE is the same. *(?!? is it?) From what I understand the baseband chip in ALL the devices is a:

Qualcomm MDM9215M
which fully supports all the bands we can possibly use. Meaning, this device CAN use UMTS 4 1700/2100 for T-Mobile and Wind and Telus etc etc.

The secret is the amplifier chips. If the c6603 has the amplifier chips physically that the c6602 does we should be able to do the same trick that was done on the nexus 4. A modification of the build.prop may allow for AWS networks to work on our c6603. We can only hope. Partial support to at least use the AWS bands should be possible for the 6603. You would have to do the same thing that was done for the google nexus 4. Essentially,

#!/sbin/sh
echo "telephony.lteOnGsmDevice=1" >> /system/build.prop
echo "ro.telephony.default_network=9" >> /system/build.prop
echo "ro.ril.def.preferred.network=9" >> /system/build.prop

And then flash. Obviously requires a rom cook and root. If any intrepid developers wants to give this a shot, I suggest using the 6606 baseband, as it seems to be both a 6602 and 6603. The 6616 is essentially the same as the T-Mobile phone but with Canadian channels.

Why I care
When the Z first came out, I knew I needed to have it. By a terrific stroke of luck a local had bought an unlocked international Belgum phone off ebay and decided he wanted the S4 instead. He was selling it for hundreds below the MFG price on Kijiji. I immediately bought it. I love the phone, but I can only get 3g, as I am with Telus, and the phone "doesn't support" officially, AWS on Telus. Works with HSPA+ for whatever reason though, on non aws bands.

New knowledge not currently found on the forum
Bell uses AWS on HSPA+ as well as LTE. So does Telus, and Wind. (and Tmobile in the US)
Historically, only the C6602 has the frequencies needed for the other carriers. Bell, in Canada, recently released the C6616.
(LTE compatibility AWS, 700 MHz HSPA/UMTS compatibility 850/1900/1700/1900/2100 MHz GPRS/EDGE compatibility 850/900/1800/1900 MHz)

The question with no answer.
The question is: Can I apply the Baseband file from the Bell C6616 phone to get AWS 1700/2100 hspa/LTE on a C6603?

NEW!
Note: I'm not rooted, nor am I bootloader unlocked. Neat, eh?

Here's what basebands I've tried so far: (c6603 Generic BE, .67, 4.2.2)
c6506 US .434, c6506 US 0.423 - both work perfectly on 4.2.2, no issues. On Telus you can only see Telus, and AT&T, sometimes Rogers.
c6606 - Phone boots, unusable. Random reboots, locks up immeditely after swipe to unlock. Simply flashed baseband back to c6506. - This may be because I was using a 4.1.2 rom. I'm going to re-investigate.
c6616 - Phone boots, slightly usable. Random reboots, even in airplane mode. System.process freezes but eventually unlocks. If you screenlock, you need to reboot. Flashed it back to c6506 (probably due to 4.1.2 again)
ZL c6502 .434 global unbranded - Phone boots. RADIO SHOWS - (!!!) Phone completely usable. OMG I CAN SEE BELL 3g and ROGERS LTE (which is 2600mhz!). Something interesting is going on here, but it's not unlocking any additional bands in reality. The *#*#service#*#* menu shows the same frequencies available - but there's CERTAINLY some modification to the ranges in the bands. For those of you using .434 c6506, switch to c6502 global, you might get better speeds. Woot!
Z c6602 .67 Works. 2g, 3g bands including LTE (on 2600 only I'm sure) available but only on Rogers my home network, Telus, comes up as 3g H+. Cannot see Wind but that might be due to not having a wind Sim at the moment T-Mobile comes up as 2g only. I believe it uses umts 4 for 3g/4g. Essentially the same as c6506.
c6606 0.191 - phone slightly usable. Still has issues with random reboots. Won't go into info or network menu at all. This sounds like mismatched build.prop... this might be possible. Exciting.

MORE MAGIC FOUND. The info menu (*#*#4636#*#*) *#*#info#*#* allows you to swap country mode frequency ranges (including an UNKNOWN range on)!! This greatly impacts the available networks you see when you scan for networks in the phone. With USA selected I do NOT see T-Mobile, for example, when previous I did. Needs more playing.

Quote:
Here's what I found out:
Quote:
Originally Posted by ahassouna View Post
carefull not to brick your phone
No worries, I really know what I'm doing here. I'm doing a baseband only flash.

Looking into flashtool, the recognition=C6602,C6603,C6606,C6616,L36h,yuga keys exist. Meaning, flashtool SHOULD see the c6616 in the list, but yes, it doesn't. (?!?!)

I recently grabbed C6506_10.3.1.A.2.67_Generic US, and it works flawlessly as thje previous c6506 basebands on 6603's did. On Fido, it'll give me LTE, obviously, but that's due to 2600 I'm sure. but only gives me 3g (hspa+) with Telus. (non aws).

According to the service menu, The phone only supports the following, even with the 6506 baseband flashed (screenshot is from my phone just now):



note: LTE_BC1,LTE_BC3,LTE_BC5,LTE_BC7,LTE_BC8,LTE_BC20, which is:

1 Up: 1920 - 1980 Down: 2110 - 2170
3 Up: 1710 - 1785 Down: 1805 - 1880
5 Up: 824 - 849 Down: 869 - 894
7 Up: 2500 - 2570 Down: 2620 - 2690
8 Up: 880 - 915 Down: 925 - 960
20 Up: 832 - 862 Down: 791 - 821

AND YET, the T-Mobile C6506 is supposed to support:

2G Network GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
3G Network HSDPA 850 / 900 / 1700 / 1900 / 2100
4G Network LTE 700 / 850 / 1700 / 1900 / 2100

Okay. So if that is the case... HOW IN THE HECK are some of you people getting LTE on Bell?

Bell's (and Rogers/Fido, Telus/Koodo) LTE network uses Band 4 Advanced Wireless Services (AWS 1700/2100 MHz: actually 1710–1755/2110–2155) in most coverage areas and Band 7 (2600 MHz) in a few areas.

Wind's and Telus's is 1700/2100 (AWS1) only. THE ONLY WAY I can see this working is because bell/rogers has UMTS 2600 in the GTA. HOWEVER: Why weren't we getting LTE (data only) in the first place on the 6603? It supported LTE 2600 from the start. It's a very good question, and one that could be because of the sub channel bands used for LTE on HSPA+. What's interesting, is that since this phone supports Band 3 and Band 1, you can SEE the LTE/HSPA+ AWS1 network, but it doesn't stay connected (Because you can't split negotiation bands... UNLESS, you could limit one antenna to one and one to the other (not sure it's possible)).

That's seems to be the ONLY reason it works on Bell/Rogers in some cases with the 6506 2600mhz baseband. You're not getting true AWS with that flash (which can be for hspa+ or LTE). Also, the c6616 appears to be a more complete radio that would literally work on every single network in Canada and the USA, being the "ultimate LTE" Xperia Z. The c6602 Internal Storefront phone is the closest original thing, to that I would imagine.

Oh, I forgot to mention, I did try the T-Mobile 6606 baseband on the phone. It causes a soft lock after booting sadly (which does get into the OS, but it locks up and goes black once it's there.), and you have to flash back to either 6506 radio or stock to get it to stay stable.

So no, I do not believe this phone can be "told" to use AWS, regardless of what baseband file you stick in it. Now I'm not so sure. The same thing that was done on the Nexus 4 should work here.
I'm not sure it will work at all, apologies if this has been explored. The phone only supports limited UMTS bands. In particular, it would need to say UMTS 4, 9 or 10 in that list, I think.



Originally Posted by kingvortex View Post
The C6602 does not have an LTE capable radio. I'm not sure where you heard that it does, but that information is incorrect. There is no way for you to use LTE on your device, no matter which baseband you may flash.

Sent from my C6603 using Tapatalk
This is correct, sort-of. It turns out that the radio hardware chips themselves are actually the same, but the unit is missing the physical amplifiers for the frequencies you would unlock, making them impossible to use. It's the c6603 radio hardware that has euro LTE. However, the 6602 is supposed to support AWS in some fashions. If you flash the baseband from the bell Z, you may be able to use AWS 4, because it's not just the frequencies that you make available, it's the CHANNEL SET.

In summary a "baseband" is three things
1) radio driver
2) frequency range list
3) channel range list

In theory (logically), the baseband from the "unbranded sony store" phones of each hardware model variant should have all the carrier frequencies of the local area.

So, if you're from Germany, flashing a the Sony "carrier unbranded" baseband from the local model variant should allow you to be all all carriers in that region because it would be in Sony's best interest to sell an unlocked phone in that region in that way.

It gets dicey when you bring a phone from another country as I did, into a country that uses different radio frequencies and channels for the same wireless protocol types. It's complicated and has to do with the radio telecom standards differing in every country. True "World Phones" are really uncommon but we're getting more standardized every year.

I still own my Z but I also have a Z1. The Z1 is a LOT more compatible (every carrier in my area) because it's designed to work with local frequency sets. All I had to do on it was flash the Sony official firmware and baseband, and I could get LTE on every carrier.
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wright_ac
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lhun View Post
Preamble
Hi everyone. As we know, the C6603 (all country versions) can be swapped with the radios from the ZL. This allows you to get LTE on Rogers and Fido in Canada, and I assume would work for other carriers as well in other parts of the world. (this is due either to unlocking frequencies, or unlocking channels on those frequencies.)
The radio HARDWARE is the same.

Why I care
When the Z first came out, I knew I needed to have it. By a terrific stroke of luck a local had bought an unlocked international Belgum phone off ebay and decided he wanted the S4 instead. He was selling it for hundreds below the MFG price on Kijiji. I immediately bought it. I love the phone, but I can only get 3g, as I am with Telus, and the phone "doesn't support" officially, AWS on Telus. Works with HSPA+ for whatever reason though.

New knowledge not currently found on the forum
Bell uses AWS on HSPA+ as well as LTE. So does Telus, and Wind. (and Tmobile in the US)
Historically, only the C6602 has the frequencies needed for the other carriers. Bell, in Canada, recently released the C6616.
(LTE compatibility AWS, 700 MHz HSPA/UMTS compatibility 850/1900/1700/1900/2100 MHz GPRS/EDGE compatibility 850/900/1800/1900 MHz)

The question with no answer.
The question is: Can I apply the Baseband file from the Bell C6616 phone to get AWS 1700/2100 hspa/LTE on a C6603?
Only way to find out is to flash the baseband and see what happens, if not you can always flash back to stock C6603 baseband.
 
lhun
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wright_ac View Post
Only way to find out is to flash the baseband and see what happens, if not you can always flash back to stock C6603 baseband.
Fair enough. I didn't know I was wondering into uncharted territory.

Does anyone have a FTF of the bell stock firmware?
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lhun
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lhun View Post
Fair enough. I didn't know I was wondering into uncharted territory.

Does anyone have a FTF of the bell stock firmware?

so I have the FTF of the C6616. Flashtool completely ignores it as if it doesn't exist. What gives?
 
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Originally Posted by lhun View Post
so I have the FTF of the C6616. Flashtool completely ignores it as if it doesn't exist. What gives?
carefull not to brick your phone
 
lhun
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(Last edited by lhun; 1st December 2013 at 02:31 AM.) Reason: added some notes on 6606.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ahassouna View Post
carefull not to brick your phone
No worries, I really know what I'm doing here. I'm doing a baseband only flash.

Looking into flashtool, the recognition=C6602,C6603,C6606,C6616,L36h,yuga keys exist. Meaning, flashtool SHOULD see the c6616 in the list, but yes, it doesn't. (?!?!)

I recently grabbed C6506_10.3.1.A.2.67_Generic US, and it works flawlessly as thje previous c6506 basebands on 6603's did. On Fido, it'll give me LTE, obviously, but that's due to 2600 I'm sure. but only gives me 3g (hspa+) with Telus. (non aws).

According to the service menu, The phone only supports the following, even with the 6506 baseband flashed (screenshot is from my phone just now):



note: LTE_BC1,LTE_BC3,LTE_BC5,LTE_BC7,LTE_BC8,LTE_BC20, which is:

1 Up: 1920 - 1980 Down: 2110 - 2170
3 Up: 1710 - 1785 Down: 1805 - 1880
5 Up: 824 - 849 Down: 869 - 894
7 Up: 2500 - 2570 Down: 2620 - 2690
8 Up: 880 - 915 Down: 925 - 960
20 Up: 832 - 862 Down: 791 - 821

AND YET, the T-Mobile C6506 is supposed to support:

2G Network GSM 850 / 900 / 1800 / 1900
3G Network HSDPA 850 / 900 / 1700 / 1900 / 2100
4G Network LTE 700 / 850 / 1700 / 1900 / 2100

Okay. So if that is the case... HOW IN THE HECK are some of you people getting LTE on Bell?

Bell's (and Rogers/Fido, Telus/Koodo) LTE network uses Band 4 Advanced Wireless Services (AWS 1700/2100 MHz: actually 1710–1755/2110–2155) in most coverage areas and Band 7 (2600 MHz) in a few areas.

Wind's and Telus's is 1700/2100 (AWS1) only. THE ONLY WAY I can see this working is because bell/rogers has UMTS 2600 in the GTA. HOWEVER: Why weren't we getting LTE (data only) in the first place on the 6603? It supported LTE 2600 from the start. It's a very good question, and one that could be because of the sub channel bands used for LTE on HSPA+. What's interesting, is that since this phone supports Band 3 and Band 1, you can SEE the LTE/HSPA+ AWS1 network, but it doesn't stay connected (Because you can't split negotiation bands... UNLESS, you could limit one antenna to one and one to the other (not sure it's possible)).

That's seems to be the ONLY reason it works on Bell/Rogers in some cases with the 6506 2600mhz baseband. You're not getting true AWS with that flash (which can be for hspa+ or LTE). Also, the c6616 appears to be a more complete radio that would literally work on every single network in Canada and the USA, being the "ultimate LTE" Xperia Z. The c6602 Internal Storefront phone is the closest original thing, to that I would imagine.

Oh, I forgot to mention, I did try the T-Mobile 6606 baseband on the phone. It causes a soft lock after booting sadly (which does get into the OS, but it locks up and goes black once it's there.), and you have to flash back to either 6506 radio or stock to get it to stay stable.

So no, I do not believe this phone can be "told" to use AWS, regardless of what baseband file you stick in it.
 
lhun
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Unless of course, someone can provide a baseband that "unlocks" UMTS 4, 9 or 10... And, that the radio is physically capable of doing it.
 
eryen
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(Last edited by eryen; 1st December 2013 at 09:55 PM.)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lhun View Post
Preamble
Hi everyone. As we know, the C6603 (all country versions) can be swapped with the radios from the ZL. This allows you to get LTE on Rogers and Fido in Canada, and I assume would work for other carriers as well in other parts of the world. (this is due either to unlocking frequencies, or unlocking channels on those frequencies.)
The radio HARDWARE is the same.

Why I care
When the Z first came out, I knew I needed to have it. By a terrific stroke of luck a local had bought an unlocked international Belgum phone off ebay and decided he wanted the S4 instead. He was selling it for hundreds below the MFG price on Kijiji. I immediately bought it. I love the phone, but I can only get 3g, as I am with Telus, and the phone "doesn't support" officially, AWS on Telus. Works with HSPA+ for whatever reason though.

New knowledge not currently found on the forum
Bell uses AWS on HSPA+ as well as LTE. So does Telus, and Wind. (and Tmobile in the US)
Historically, only the C6602 has the frequencies needed for the other carriers. Bell, in Canada, recently released the C6616.
(LTE compatibility AWS, 700 MHz HSPA/UMTS compatibility 850/1900/1700/1900/2100 MHz GPRS/EDGE compatibility 850/900/1800/1900 MHz)

The question with no answer.
The question is: Can I apply the Baseband file from the Bell C6616 phone to get AWS 1700/2100 hspa/LTE on a C6603?



Has anyone tried the 6602 baseband only on the 6603? My goal is to get AWS frequencies. I don't care about LTE.

I'm not sure it will work at all, apologies if this has been explored. The phone only supports limited UMTS bands. In particular, it would need to say UMTS 4, 9 or 10 in that list, I think.



As i see from different firmwares, some overlay applications might deny to use some of capability of phone.

In over my firmware testing experience, some off firmwares prevent to use single 3g, and some of them prevent to use mixed network.
You must sure you have totally generic firmware. Try to delete all overlay apks, those might restrict you to configure network coverage.


PS:
I'am going to flash C6606 fw 10.3.1.E.0.191 to my 6603 afew later.
 
lhun
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eryen View Post


As i see from different firmwares, some overlay applications might deny to use some of capability of phone.

In over my firmware testing experience, some off firmwares prevent to use single 3g, and some of them prevent to use mixed network.
You must sure you have totally generic firmware. Try to delete all overlay apks, those might restrict you to configure network coverage.


PS:
I'am going to flash C6606 fw 10.3.1.E.0.191 to my 6603 afew later.
Hi Eryen, thanks for replying!

If you read through my post, I tried that and it did not work. Gets to the OS and locks up. However, we're just swapping signed basebands. We need to figure out which radio hardware they're using to see what it's capable of, and perhaps, we can start making custom unlocked drivers.
 
lhun
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eryen View Post


As i see from different firmwares, some overlay applications might deny to use some of capability of phone.

In over my firmware testing experience, some off firmwares prevent to use single 3g, and some of them prevent to use mixed network.
You must sure you have totally generic firmware. Try to delete all overlay apks, those might restrict you to configure network coverage.


PS:
I'am going to flash C6606 fw 10.3.1.E.0.191 to my 6603 afew later.
Hey, that's a pretty amazing thought. I might try that, would of course require root, I would imagine.

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bell, c6603, c6616, telus, wind
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