Author Topic: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound  (Read 1373 times)

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Offline fox

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microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« on: November 17, 2020, 04:35:34 pm »
I picked up a Jabra 15 bluetooth headset, mostly to provide sound output for Zoom (and Jitsi) calls. I have an internal microphone on my iMac, but no Linux distro appears to work with either the internal speakers or the internal microphone of this computer. The computer sees both the Jabra earphone and the mic. The earphone part works OK, but the microphone sound is horrible - mangled and off pitch. I can't seem to fix it, and I came up with no solutions from internet searches. The searches suggest that the problem lies with pulse-audio sound handling and that it's a problem across distros. I'm just wondering if any of you are running any brand of bluetooth headset on Linux and getting both parts to work OK.
Ubuntu 21.04 on 2019 5k iMac
Ubuntu 20.04 and 18.04 on Dell XPS 13 2 in 1

Offline Jason

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Re: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« Reply #1 on: November 17, 2020, 09:58:43 pm »
I have used a Bluetooth headset on Linux Lite but it's not the kind with a microphone. Headphones only. But it worked fine although it doesn't seem to go very far, sadly and if there's anything in the way it really cuts in and out.

My video chats use the external webcam as video and microphone and I have a cheap pair of wired headphones for sound. You should have come on tonight and see if was any different on Jitsi. We miss you, man. :) :) :)
"With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world." - Max Ehrmann, Desiderata

Offline ssfc72

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Re: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« Reply #2 on: November 18, 2020, 04:00:31 am »
Yes, I also have a set of inexpensive Bluetooth earbuds, but I don't think they have a microphone with them.
I will look in the dollar store tomorrow and see if they have a cheap bluetooth headset.  The Lindsay dollar store has quite a variety of bluetooth headphones.
Mint 19.1 on a Dell 14" Inspiron notebook, HP Pavilion X360, 11" k120ca notebook (Linux Lubuntu), Dell 13" XPS notebook computer (MX Linux)
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Offline fox

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Re: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« Reply #3 on: November 18, 2020, 08:26:06 am »
Thanks, guys. My bluetooth earbuds work well; the issue has been the microphone only, even in the Jabra headset I bought. I tested that headset on the Mac OS and everything works there, including the mic. I have tried two other devices with different connections. One was a Logitech H111 headset with microphone. This one plugs into the headphone jack port. When plugged into it, nothing works. When plugged into the usb dongle with jack ports, the headphones work but not the mic. The other was a Logitech H390, which plugs into the usb port. It worked well, including the mic, but I really don't need a full blown over the ear headphone; just a mic. So I took it back, hoping I could find something less imposing and less expensive that would give me a working mic. I also tried a Sony XRS-XB01 extra bass portable bluetooth speaker, which I bought for my wife. It works fine.

My conclusions so far: usb devices work; bluetooth speakers (or the speakers in headsets) work; devices that plug into the headphone port work only if plugged into a usb dongle and then only the speakers. A tiny in-ear bluetooth headset with mic like the Jabra would be perfect if I can get the sound to work - lightweight and portable. It's so close because the mic does work; just poorly. If any of you know of a similar device that works with Linux, do let me know. The only other alternative I am considering is to buy an inexpensive usb mic for use in videoconferencing, but I really prefer the light wireless headset option.

Of course I can just do my videoconferencing on the Mac OS, and that's what I'm doing now. But this feels like a surrender.
Ubuntu 21.04 on 2019 5k iMac
Ubuntu 20.04 and 18.04 on Dell XPS 13 2 in 1

Offline Jason

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Re: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« Reply #4 on: November 18, 2020, 09:36:09 am »
If I see one that seems to work, I'll let you know. I could definitely use one so I'll look around. The laptop I bought from you has Bluetooth although my main (unworking) desktop doesn't. But I'm not sure I'd need a microphone since the only time I need to use one is in video chats and the camera handles that already. Although it does appear to be too sensitive.

Also, I noticed that you said this, "devices that plug into the headphone port work only if plugged into a usb dongle and then only the speakers." It might not be helpful but check if the jack has 2 black bands on the jack or 1. The first is designed for phones/tablets. It won't work properly when plugged into a PC jack which might be the behaviour you're getting. The kind for a PC that plugs into jacks should have two ends, one for the microphone, the other for the mic, AFAIK.
"With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world." - Max Ehrmann, Desiderata

Offline fox

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Re: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« Reply #5 on: November 18, 2020, 10:06:13 am »
The plug on the Logitech H111 has three black bands, and there is only one plug. So maybe the problem is that it isn't meant for a PC. I did read some stuff on the internet about the need for a splitter. But I can tell you that it worked fine on the Mac side when plugged into the headphone jack directly; i.e. I didn't even have to plug it into the usb dongle.
« Last Edit: November 18, 2020, 12:06:47 pm by fox »
Ubuntu 21.04 on 2019 5k iMac
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Offline Jason

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Re: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« Reply #6 on: November 18, 2020, 02:35:09 pm »
Apple tries to be simple for everyone so it's possible they just make the same connection socket for their Macs, phones and tablets. I think you can use a single band connector in a 2-band socket, but you'll only get the audio out part which is why I thought maybe that's what the problem is, at least for the wired one.
« Last Edit: November 18, 2020, 02:40:23 pm by Jason Wallwork »
"With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world." - Max Ehrmann, Desiderata

Offline ssfc72

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Re: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« Reply #7 on: November 18, 2020, 04:48:56 pm »
Ok, I picked up a wireless Bluetooth earbud headset at the Dollar store for $6.
Works well on my MXLinux distro on my Dell XPS 13 notebook computer.  I installed a sound recorder program on the computer, to check the mic operation and it works fine.  The sound is very good.
Mint 19.1 on a Dell 14" Inspiron notebook, HP Pavilion X360, 11" k120ca notebook (Linux Lubuntu), Dell 13" XPS notebook computer (MX Linux)
Cellphone Samsung A50, PCMobile pay as you go

Offline fox

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Re: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« Reply #8 on: November 18, 2020, 08:27:43 pm »
Spill the beans! What is the name of the set? What sound recording program did you use to test it?

Can you post a picture? Does it have a mic that sticks out on a stalk, or is it embedded in the earbud?
« Last Edit: November 18, 2020, 08:43:13 pm by fox »
Ubuntu 21.04 on 2019 5k iMac
Ubuntu 20.04 and 18.04 on Dell XPS 13 2 in 1

Offline ssfc72

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Re: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« Reply #9 on: November 19, 2020, 06:38:36 am »
Photos are attached.
It is an "Escape" Brand and the mic is built into the control bar on the earpiece cord.  They fit nice and comfortable, in my ears.
On my MXLinux Distro, I went into Synaptic and installed the program  "Sound Recorder" ver 3.28.2  ( it is shown as gnome-sound-recorder, in Synaptic)
This item was at the very large "My Dollar Store with More" at the Lindsay Square Mall on Kent street. 
« Last Edit: November 19, 2020, 06:57:26 am by ssfc72 »
Mint 19.1 on a Dell 14" Inspiron notebook, HP Pavilion X360, 11" k120ca notebook (Linux Lubuntu), Dell 13" XPS notebook computer (MX Linux)
Cellphone Samsung A50, PCMobile pay as you go

Offline fox

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Re: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« Reply #10 on: November 19, 2020, 07:22:06 am »
Thanks; I'll look for it at one of our Dollar stores. Have you tried it on Jitsi yet? I'm asking because I wonder if it's possible for the mic to work when recording, but not during a live video conference.
Ubuntu 21.04 on 2019 5k iMac
Ubuntu 20.04 and 18.04 on Dell XPS 13 2 in 1

Offline ssfc72

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Re: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« Reply #11 on: November 19, 2020, 09:32:19 am »
I will try to set up a Jitsi video chat test, sometime today.
Mint 19.1 on a Dell 14" Inspiron notebook, HP Pavilion X360, 11" k120ca notebook (Linux Lubuntu), Dell 13" XPS notebook computer (MX Linux)
Cellphone Samsung A50, PCMobile pay as you go

Offline ssfc72

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Re: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« Reply #12 on: November 19, 2020, 04:13:03 pm »
So I set up 2 of my notebook computers for a Jitsi video chat test and the bluetooth earbuds headset mic appears to work fine under MXLinux.
I don't think the built in mic on the notebook was operational because the bluetooth id of the headset was showing as the connected device for sound.
Mint 19.1 on a Dell 14" Inspiron notebook, HP Pavilion X360, 11" k120ca notebook (Linux Lubuntu), Dell 13" XPS notebook computer (MX Linux)
Cellphone Samsung A50, PCMobile pay as you go

Offline fox

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Re: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« Reply #13 on: November 19, 2020, 05:06:50 pm »
Interesting, thanks. Now I need to know what store you got this in. We don't have anything called a "Dollar Store" in Peterborough. We have Dollarama and a few others. I looked this up in Lindsay, and you have a few but none called "Dollar Store". Might it be "Your Dollar Store with More" in the Lindsay Square Mall?
Ubuntu 21.04 on 2019 5k iMac
Ubuntu 20.04 and 18.04 on Dell XPS 13 2 in 1

Offline ssfc72

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Re: microphone on bluetooth headset gives mangled sound
« Reply #14 on: November 19, 2020, 06:27:08 pm »
Yes, that is correct, dollar store with more, see my Reply #9 .
Mint 19.1 on a Dell 14" Inspiron notebook, HP Pavilion X360, 11" k120ca notebook (Linux Lubuntu), Dell 13" XPS notebook computer (MX Linux)
Cellphone Samsung A50, PCMobile pay as you go