bt_128

Plugable USB-BT4LE Bluetooth 4.0 USB Adapter for Windows and Linux PCs

  • “I can’t complain about this guy at all. It works perfectly, it was easy to set up, and it’s very compact. I would say the compactness is the best feature. That, and that it actually works the way it should! Definitely recommend.” – Sam Dowd
  • “This tiny USB bluetooth has huge capabilities. It easily fits into a USB port, then pairs and connects to any bluetooth device. Plugable sends a link by e-mail to the latest driver even before the bluetooth arrives. And the packaging doesn’t require any cutting; it just snaps open. I bought this because I have another Plugable device — a USB 3.0 hub — that also works as advertised. You can’t go wrong with Plugable products.” – WASH

Features

  • Upgrades Bluetooth® support for Windows® XP and later, or Linux PCs and Raspberry Pi
  • Extremely compact USB adapter. Safe to leave in for laptop travel
  • Supports Bluetooth keyboards, mice, headsets, and more (with Microsoft® built-in stack)
  • Supports Bluetooth stereo headsets and more (WIDCOMM® stack only, install required)
  • Specifically works with Microsoft’s new Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy support in Windows 8®
  • Support built-in to Linux kernels 3.0.34 and higher (may have limited functionality vs Windows, some Linux distributions need additional manual configuration)

Description

Plugable’s new Class 2 Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy adapter’s dual mode radio will enable your computer to communicate with other Bluetooth devices with high speed transfer rates of up to 3 Mbps. With a range of up to 10 meters (33 feet) depending on environmental factors. The adaper is compatible with both 32 and 64-bit Windows from XP through Windows 8. And offers market leading Broadcom BCM20702 chipset, while also backwards compatible with classic Bluetooth (1.x and 2.x) devices.

Supported Bluetooth Profiles

A2DP, ATT, AVRCP, GAVDP, GATT, HCRP, HFP, HID, HID over GATT, OPP, PAN, SPP, and more (Note: Some profiles may require installation of included Broadcom Bluetooth or built-in Windows 8 stack)


Windows Driver Installation

We recommend to first make sure no other Bluetooth adapter is installed on your computer, if it is, you will want to disable it in the Device Manager and uninstall any associated software from the “Add or Remove Programs” (XP) / “Programs and Features” (Vista/7/8) in the Control Panel.

Also, check for and remove any old version of the Broadcom drivers. It will show up as “WIDCOMM” in the list of installed programs.

  • Windows XP: Click Here
  • Vista and Windows 7: Click Here
  • Windows 8: Microsoft built-in Bluetooth drivers on Windows 8 cover most common device profiles including stereo audio and low energy. Installing Broadcom drivers manually is not necessary in most cases. For a detailed comparison between supported profiles for the Broadcom driver and built-in Win 8 drivers, see our chart below under FAQ.If you find you do need to install the full Broadcom drivers for Windows 8: Click Here

Linux Driver Installation

Linux kernels after June 2012 or so have support for this adapter. Support has been back ported to kernels back to later point releases of stable kernels 3.0+, specifically 3.0.34, 3.2.20, and all versions of 3.4.The adapter’s USB VID is 0x0a5c (Broadcom) and PID 0x21e8.

FAQ

Q: What does the blue LED light on the adapter indicate?

A: When the adapter is connected to a PC, the blue LED lights up when the PC detects that the adapter is physically connected and powered by the HUB. The light should come on even before drivers are installed. If the light does not come on, try a different port or rebooting the machine.

Q: Will the adapter work on Chrome OS?

A: For Chromebooks such as the Samsung Series 5 550 that doesn’t come with native Bluetooth support, this adapter will help add Bluetooth connectivity. Currently Chrome OS only supports Bluetooth 3.0 profiles for wireless keyboards and mice. This adapter will allow pairing and connection on Chromebooks with keyboard and mouse only.

Q: Can I use this adapter to add Bluetooth functionality to my home theater or automotive  stereo system?

A: No. While many home theater systems have USB ports for expansion, (TVs, surround sound receivers, etc) they are not able to support our Bluetooth adapter as there is no method to install driver software. This is the same for automotive systems (car stereos / receivers).

If your device has optional USB Bluetooth expansion capabilities you *must* purchase the unit from that device manufacturer to ensure compatibility.

Q: What are the differences between the drivers from Windows 8 built-in stack vs. the Broadcom stack?

Here is a comparison between the supported Bluetooth profiles for Windows 8 and Broadcom:

Q: I have another Bluetooth adapter driver previously installed, will that conflict with this adapter?

A: All previously installed Bluetooth drivers should be removed and built-in adapters should be disabled prior to installing the Broadcom driver. Follow the below steps to verify if you have any pre-existing Bluetooth adapters installed:
- Open Device Manager and expand the Bluetooth Radios section:
DisplaySettings

The Plugable Bluetooth adapter will show up as “Broadcom BCM20702 Bluetooth 4.0 USB Device” and “Microsoft Bluetooth Enumerator” is also a required component. Any other Bluetooth adapters listed here should be removed and disabled, e.g. Generic Bluetooth Adapter in the above image.

Note: Windows 8 also displays connected Bluetooth devices in this list. Only Bluetooth adapters need to be removed.

To remove a Bluetooth adapter:
- Right click on the adapter on this list>Properties>Driver tab, click Uninstall. Check the box for “Delete the driver software for this device”
- Right click on the adapter and select Disable
- Open Programs and Features, uninstall any Bluetooth programs listed prior to installing Broadcom drivers for the Plugable adapter

Q: My Bluetooth headset is paired but I don’t get any sound?

A: First verify that the audio services are connected:
1. Right click on the Bluetooth icon in the lower right system tray, select Show Bluetooth Devices.
2. Right click on the headphone and select Control
3. Make sure that the headset is powered on and click Connect under Headset Operations
Headset

Next, verify that the headset is set as the default audio output:
1. Open the Sound Control Panel (type in Sound in the Start>Search field)
sound

2. Select the Bluetooth headset and click Set Default, and OK
Note: To use Win XP or Win 7 with stereo headset, the Broadcom driver software must be installed first.

Q: I’m getting error message “Could not start Microsoft Bluetooth Stack” during installation of the Broadcom driver

A: 1. If you have any anti-virus programs running, disable it prior to installing the Broadcom driver.
2. -Type in services.msc in Start>Search to open list of services
-From the list of items, double click Bluetooth Support Service.
Service

3. Change the startup type to Automatic and click Start button to start service (Check for the dependencies of this service and make sure these are also set to automatic)
4. Click Apply and then click ok.
After the above, try connecting the Bluetooth adapter again and go through driver installation

Q: I seem to have to re-connect my Bluetooth headset each time the computer comes back from sleep, is there anyway that I can keep the headset connected through computer sleep?

A: 1. Open Start>Device Manager, expand Bluetooth Radio section
2. Right click on “Broadcom BCM20702 Bluetooth 4.0 USB Device” , Properties
3. Go to the Power Management tab, and *uncheck* “Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power”
stayconnected

Note: This will keep all Bluetooth devices connected until the device itself goes into sleep/standby mode

Q: I’m trying to connect to my phone or tablet, but I can’t see it.

A: Usually this happens because neither the computer or the phone/tablet are making themselves visible to the other device. A device that wants to be seen by other devices broadcasts a special radio signal that makes it visible to any other Bluetooth device nearby. This is called being “discoverable” or “visible.” This mode is usually turned off by default on computers and phone/tablets for security reasons. Instead, they act as a host device and search for other devices like keyboards or headsets that broadcast their presence.

To solve this problem, you need to make either the phone/tablet or the computer temporarily discoverable. Make one device discoverable and search for it on the other one.

Below are instructions for some common devices. For devices not listed here, see the user guide or instruction manual for that device, or search for “make <device name> discoverable in bluetooth” on the web.

iOS (iPhone, iPad)
Your iOS device will become discoverable when you go to Settings > General > Bluetooth. It will remain discoverable as long as you stay on the Bluetooth menu page.

Android Versions 2.2 and 2.3 (Froyo and Gingerbread)
Open Settings. Press Wireless & Networks. Press Bluetooth settings. If Bluetooth is not already on, touch it to turn it on. Touch Discoverable. Your phone/tablet will stay discoverable for 120 seconds.

Android Versions 4.0, 4.1, 4.2 (Ice Cream Sandwich, Jelly Bean)
Open Settings. Slide the Bluetooth switch to the On position. Touch Bluetooth. At the top will be the name of your device and the words “Not visible to other Bluetooth devices.” Touch this to change it to “Visible to all nearby Bluetooth devices.” Touch it again after pairing with your computer to turn it off again.

Windows 8
Press Windows Key + D to go to the Desktop. Click Bluetooth in the System Tray. Select Open Settings. Place a check next to “Allow Bluetooth devices to find this computer.” Be sure to turn this off after pairing is successful.

Windows 7
Click Bluetooth in the System Tray. Select Open Settings. Place a check next to “Allow Bluetooth devices to find this computer.” Be sure to turn this off after pairing is successful.

Windows XP
Right-click Bluetooth in the System Tray. Select Bluetooth Configuration. Click the Accessibility tab. Place a check next to “Let other Bluetooth devices discover this computer.” Be sure to turn this off after pairing is successful.

Q: I downloaded the driver software, but it won’t install on my Windows computer.

A: This happens with some Windows configurations. For Windows XP, Windows Vista, and Windows 7, try installing the drivers directly from the CD-ROM that came with your adapter. For Windows 8, you can use the drivers that are already on your computer.

Where to buy

Plugable USB Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy Micro Adapter (Windows 8, 7, XP, Linux Compatible; Classic Bluetooth and Stere... Product Details
$12.95

USB Hubs, Bluetooth, Docking Station, SATA, Display Adapter

Powered by TROTTYZONE.