We know he was in his quarters at the time the ship struck the iceberg. If he'd been awake, would he have heard Fleet ringing the three 'gongs' via the bell in the crow's nest? We know others did, like Quartermaster Olliver who was between the compass platform and the bridge.
On a clear, quiet night, with no double glazing, the three bells were surely audible in Smith's cabin?
2nd officer Lightoller was on duty until 10pm and he told the Inquiry what the Captain had said to him - He said - "If it becomes at all doubtful let me know at once; I will be just inside." He was referring to the Captain's navigational chart room.
Quartermaster Hichens told the US Inquiry -
"I heard the telegraph ring, sir. The skipper came rushing out of his room, and asked, "What is that?" Mr. Murdoch said, "An iceberg." He said, "Close the emergency doors."
Note that he heard Captain Smith say "What is
that?" which means the vibration was still taking place when he rushed out. This tells us he immediately reacted to the collision and was "just inside" and rushed out of the navigating room and continued to feel the collision taking place.
4th officer Boxhall heard the bell ring and just a matter of 10 seconds later he felt the collision. He said the captain arrived on the bridge at the same time as him. I believe this tells us that the emergency orders between the bell ringing and the collision must have taken place within 10 seconds.
Here is Boxhall's location. He said he heard the bell ring when he was just outside the officer's door and he proceeded to the bridge. He then felt the collision as he was passing the captain's sitting room.
This would mean the order 'hard a-starboard' and the telephone ringing, and the reversing of the engines, and the hard 2 point turn are all fictional for the benefit of showing that they did everything possible to avoid the collision, when in reality they had no chance whatever to do anything to avoid the iceberg once the bell rang. Boxhall did not even have time enough to walk to the bridge. I believe Captain Smith did not rush out until he heard the telegraph ring 'Stop' and felt the collision occur at the same time. This startled him and he immediatly opened the door of the navigation room and asked Murdoch "What is that?" I believe nothing else took place immediately prior to that, because Captain Smith's absense (despite being so close) shows that there was nothing unusual happening on the bridge until Murdoch rushed over to the telegraph and rang 'Stop engines'.
Quartermaster spoke to reporters before he testified at the Inquiry. His original account here matches very closely to his official testimony, however in his first account he does not mention any helm orders at all. The crash simply took place and the skipper rushed out. This matches Boxhall's short walk towards the bridge.
Hichen's first account.
Since he was the helmsman at the time of the collision, it is bizarre that he failed to mention any helm orders before the collision to that reporter. Frankly it should have been the most important thing he would remember, and yet he does not mention any helm orders. A rapid hard turn would cause the ship to heel over but there are no accounts from any of the survivors who felt the ship heel over before the collision. 4th officer Boxhall said the collision did not break his step as he approached the bridge. He certainly would have felt the hard turn and this would have caused him to stumble as he approached the bridge, yet he felt nothing. Hichen's appeared to read out a pre-written statement at the Inquiry. We don't know why he did this, and who wrote it. He testified that the other Quartermaster (Olliver) was standing next to him when the alleged order 'hard a-starboard' was given, but Quartermaster Olliver testified that he did not hear that order and that he wasn't even on the bridge before the collision. You can easily tell that there is something fishy about the official story of the collision.
Two ships that were in and around the vicinity were the Californian and the Parisian. The wireless operator on the Parisian said their lookouts kept ringing the bell and making mistakes because the stars were very bright on the horizon. The Captain of the Californian had the same trouble. He said - "I was sometimes mistaking the stars low down on the horizon for steamer’s lights."
We can only guess that the Titanic's lookouts did the same and they were too ashamed to admit to their mistakes. Much like the boy who cried wolf, the Titanic's officers may have heard the bell ring and treated it as another false report and did not take it seriously. Then again, the ringing of the bell does not represent danger. It simply means there is something there. The officers would then train their binoculars on the object and identify what it is. There were reports of a dense haze directly ahead of the ship. This would make their job much more difficult. It is unknown if the haze or the possible false reports had played a major role in the disaster.
The surviving officers did not want to show any signs of negligence. Perhaps they were under orders, or they wanted to be loyal to the company, but this was possibly their top priority at the Inquiry i.e. protect the company at all costs. The last thing the company needed was to be found guilty of negligence, no matter how small. e.g. The steam ship Mesaba sent a very important ice warning to the Titanic. Their operator confirmed that the Titanic did receive the warning, yet 2nd officer Lightoller denied all knowlege of the ice warning and he stated that the Titanic's wireless operator had accidentally put the ice warning under a paper weight and forgot about it. The Titanic story sounds very much like 'pass the parcel' when it came to blaming someone. I believe the famous term 'Every Man for Himself' had one meaning on the doomed ship, and another meaning during the official Inquiry.