SOLVED Terrible Headphone Sound Quality Through USB Bluetooth Dongle


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Not being able to get my Asus WF/BT Adapter to work properly on my Win 10 rev. 21H1 custom built tower PC, I installed a Cable Matters Bluetooth 4.0 USB adapter. I got it set-up showing Bluetooth in the Action Centre and paired my JBL Tone wireless headphones with no problem. However, the sound quality it absolutely terrible, as if the sound is stuttering or there is a bad connection. I ordered the Cable Matters dongle as it was number two in a list of the best dongles for BT headphones. I downloaded the latest (2019) Realtek sound drivers and and they are all shown as installed and working in all the Realtek listings in Device Mgr.

At the same time, the stereo speakers plugged into the audio port play the same music beautifully when turned on. The dongle is Bluetooth 4.0 and the headphones are Bluetooth 4.1. Does anyone have an idea of why the sound quality is so poor. Thanks so much.
 
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Trouble

Noob Whisperer
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as if the sound is stuttering or there is a bad connection
When that happens to mine, it is usually either because the charge is low on my Budz
OR
I've either exceeded the proximity arc or something like a door has broken that arc.

Otherwise, right click the speaker icon in system tray (notification area) and choose "Sounds"
Select your BT Headphones there and click properties.
Examine all the tabs and confirm everything looks proper, especially the Advanced tab and the Quality drop down, make sure you are using the highest available choice / option.

Capture.JPG
 
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Thanks for the suggestions, Trouble. I tried everything. The "2 channel, 16 bit, box is greyed-out, but when troubleshooting or playing any sound it is exactly the same distortion. I couldn't find the Quality drop down anywhere. I also switched the dongle between USB ports on the computer and even to a USB junction box, and it is exactly the same problem. Do you think there could be a conflict between the drivers of this particular dongle and Win 10? or even that I got a bad dongle?
 

Trouble

Noob Whisperer
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Do you think there could be a conflict between the drivers of this particular dongle and Win 10?
I wouldn't think so. You might use device manager to disable that ASUS/Intel one that doesn't work anyway.
Just as an experiment.
or even that I got a bad dongle?
I'd say.... more likely.
That's why I recommended the

Which I own and have tested and am using on Windows 11.
AND
It's 5.0 which I believe (probably just in my mind) that it has a bit more umph (read stronger).

I don't suppose you have access to another computer just as a test.

I assume we know the JBL Tone wireless headphones to be functioning properly and fully charged.

Out of curiosity... have you experimented with the distance between the headphones and the dongle.
One would assume and my experience is that quality would decrease as distance increases, but...
There just might be some sweet spot between to close and too far (read pure speculation).
 
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I actually did something which causes the dongle to not connect now. So, tomorrow, I'll uninstall everything and do a clean reinstall.
Then I can start trying some of your suggestions. Thanks for you advice and I'll keep the thread posted as to what happens. All the best.
 
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After doing a complete uninstall/reinstall with the latest drivers, and disabling the non-functioning Asus Wi-Fi/Bluetooth controller, now there is no sound at all, though the headphones are shone as paired and Bluetooth "On". I now also get a message that my 9 yr. old PC doesn't support Miracast so it cannot receive wireless signals. I am going to close this thread now as I have to get a new computer soon, to be Win 11 compliant and I can hook-up some wired headphones if I really want them. Thanks for all your help.
 
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