Iogear GBU521 Bluetooth Don. - Not Headphone Compatible on Windows 10?


  1. Posts : 8
    Windows 10
       #1

    Iogear GBU521 Bluetooth Don. - Not Headphone Compatible on Windows 10?


    Windows 10 version 1903


    Short story: Our Iogear GBU521 Bluetooth Dongle was used on a different PC running Windows 7 to connect headphones with good-quality sound. Now, on a Dell Inspiron 580 with Windows 10, we can't get the headphones to work with the same quality anymore.

    Depth: All Windows drivers are downloadable on this page of Iogear's website: Product Drivers, Firmware & Software - IOGEAR
    However, it appears as though the Windows 8/8.1/10 driver is really designed for 8 and 8.1 and not 10. That I conclude because the file name, "GBU521_GBU421_Win8_Win8.1_BT_v12.0.0.9980.zip", does not mention Windows 10, thus suggesting my bluetooth audio problems to be originating from a driver compatibility issue.

    I've fiddled my life away with the following:
    • WinKey+R / "control panel" / Devices and Printer / (Insert Headphone Name) Properties / Services
    • Start / Settings / Devices / Audio
    • Start / Settings / System / Sound / Output / Troubleshoot
    • Settings within the Iogear bluetooth devices program, which comes with the driver on the aforementioned driver page.

    And have gone through many settings that branch off this list, restarting the computer after each change made. Sometimes it connect with good sound quality, but does not retain this quality after breaking the bluetooth connection (turning the headphones off, restarting PC).

    Quick side note: I have a new Microsoft Bluetooth 3600 Mouse connected to this dongle that works completely fine, unlike the headphones.

    A solution requires the following results, which goes along the lines of how the bluetooth headphones were connected to this same Iogear dongle on the different PC that had Windows 7:
    • The bluetooth headphones play with decent quality
    • The volume retains it's setting whenever the bluetooth connection is broken by a PC restart, or powering off/on the headphones (I've encountered configurations where the headphones always resets to maximum volume).
    • The bluetooth mouse works fine. This shouldn't be much of a concern at all.

    If we find no solutions, I will simply buy a dongle that works with Windows 10.

    I can provide screenshots if needed.
    Thank-you.
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails Iogear GBU521 Bluetooth Don. - Not Headphone Compatible on Windows 10?-iogear-bluetooth-4.0-usb-micro-adapter-gbu521-.jpg  
      My Computer


  2. Posts : 5,899
    Win 11 Pro (x64) 22H2
       #2

    In keeping things simple, it not about compatibility per se, but rather the Bluetooth version support.

    How old is that dongle? Does it support the latest Bluetooth versions - Currently 5.2. Point is you may need to update the dongle itself for Windows 10 Support.

    BTW I have the same dongle: IOGEAR Bluetooth 4.0 USB Micro Adapter, GBU521. I bought mine in 2013.

    Anyway I just plugged mine into my Windows 10 x64 (1909 build) and told Windows to find it's drivers. The driver installed was greater than that shown on the Iogear page - Windows installed 12.0.1.750. IOGEAR's site has 12.0.0.9980

    Iogear GBU521 Bluetooth Don. - Not Headphone Compatible on Windows 10?-gbu521-bt-dongle.png

    Irregardless, the dongle still does not work....

    Iogear GBU521 Bluetooth Don. - Not Headphone Compatible on Windows 10?-gbu521-bt-dongle-issue.png

    Anyway the only reason I plugged in the dongle was to see what's what as I don't need it since my board has BT (5.0) built-in. Thus no need for dongles.
      My Computers


  3. Posts : 8
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #3

    sygnus21, you're a hero! You had the final step in the equation!

    SOLUTION:
    1. Wipe all bluetooth settings and drivers, unplug and re-plug the Iogear dongle, achieving a blank slate
    2. Install the appropriate Windows 10 driver from Product Drivers, Firmware & Software - IOGEAR
    3. Open Start, type "Device Manager" and open the first result
    4. Under Bluetooth, right-click "Broadcom BCM20702 Bluetooth 4.0 USB Device" and left-click "Update Driver"
    5. Select the automatic option in the new window.

    Finish updating that driver, and you're good to go!

    Apparently, one must have Iogear's GBU521 driver installed first before asking Windows 10 to update it. Quite a complex process if you ask me, certainly not plug-and-play at all!

    My bluetooth devices are now working fine and dandy!
      My Computer


  4. Posts : 5,899
    Win 11 Pro (x64) 22H2
       #4

    ivangoabby said:
    sygnus21, you're a hero! You had the final step in the equation!

    Apparently, one must have Iogear's GBU521 driver installed first before asking Windows 10 to update it. Quite a complex process if you ask me, certainly not plug-and-play at all!
    Thanks. Glad I was able to help, but as I said, all I did was plug in the dongle. I never installed any driver prior to asking Windows to find them. I just plugged in the dongle and told Windows to search for drivers online. That's it.

    Anyway, glad you got your issue solved.

    Peace
      My Computers


  5. Posts : 8
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter
       #5

    ivangoabby said:
    My bluetooth devices are now working fine and dandy!
    Not entirely true it seems, unfortunately.

    A couple issues have arisen since the "solution" was found two days ago:
    • Every day or so, the headphone sound quality will plummet, but a simple computer restart restores the good quality.
    • More alarmingly, the bluetooth dongle driver is causing the computer to crash very, very often. Before making this reply, it BSoD'd twice as I tried to use the headphones, and once again while typing this.


    At the end of the day, the Iogear GBU521 Bluetooth Dongle is not entirely compatible with my Windows 10 desktop, and from reading other reviews on the internet, it has a very poor reputation with Windows 10 users.
      My Computer


  6. Posts : 5,899
    Win 11 Pro (x64) 22H2
       #6

    How do you know the headphone themselves aren't the issue??? Especially if the dongle is installed and working according to Device Manager.

    And BTW you never mentioned what headphones?

    You've also ignored the question of how old that dongle was.

    Perhaps there are other things at play here?
      My Computers


 

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