Bluetooth Audio Cutting Out then Delayed

Running Ubuntu 18.04. I have a bluetooth headset connecting to my computer over a USB bluetooth dongle. Occasionally the audio will cut out or sputter, and then when it returns it is delayed by a little bit, usually around a quarter to half second or more. It’s pretty frustrating as when I am trying to play games audio feedback is very important. I would appreciate any help I can get on this issue. I can provide extra information if need be.

Admittedly I’m still running 16.04 for at least a few more weeks, so I don’t know if there are any regressions in 18.04, but assuming that isn’t the case then it should be straightforward to diagnose. Any time I go out of range I get that, and when I get back in range the sound is lagging. It’s possibly a hardware/wireless issue.

Is your USB bluetooth dongle plugged in to or near a USB 3.X socket? There is a known problem where 2.4 GHZ interference is emitted from these which can drastically affect wifi, Bluetooth, or other 2.4 GHZ signals. In my case I just used a short extension to get the dongle away from the other ports and on top of my screen so nothing is blocking it.

Since it is 2.4 GHZ, I robbed an antenna from an old router and attached it in place of the PCB antenna and now I can go in my garage ~30 feet and two walls away without losing the signal. If you have the skills and stuff laying around to do it then it is a quick and easy way to increase your Bluetooth range.

If you don’t have an extension, then try using it with a front USB 2.0 port. If there is also a USB 3.X port in front within a few inches then try unplugging it from the motherboard just to test if interference is the issue. I’ve also seen a blog where a guy wrapped foil over his ports to shield out the interference while testing a 2.4 GHZ wifi adapter which yielded good results. If you try any of this out and still have poor results then it could be interference from other 2.4 GHZ devices or much less likely a software issue. Good luck!

Need to disable any kind of power saving features. Not sure how todo it on ubuntu though

I’m sat less than 3 feet from the dongle, it’s in a USB 3.0 port and it has direct line of sight to the headset. Furthermore, the problem doesn’t even always occur when I move away into a different room. It does have a range, but as long as I am within range it’s fine most of the time. This problem never occurred when I was running Windows.