iPhone 4 - iOS 4.3.5: A2DP Audio Dropouts

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by GreatOldOne, Jan 4, 2011.

  1. GreatOldOne, Jan 4, 2011
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2011

    GreatOldOne macrumors member

    Jul 6, 2005
    Herding Nerfs
    Hi all, having searched the forums for answers, I haven't found anything so far that helps - so I'm asking for any other possible solutions here.

    I have a Kenwood DDX-8024BT headunit in my car, which has just had it's BT software updated to the latest code from Kenwood.

    My iPhone 4 is running iOS 4.2.1, and is not jailbroken.

    The headunit and phone have paired OK, and I can make and recieve phone calls via the headunit.

    The issue is when I try and stream audio from the phone to the headunit. Everything starts fine, but then after about 60 seconds or so, there is a momentary loss of audio. Then it comes back, and is ok again for another 60 secs. This continues for as long I'm streaming audio.

    I've tried the following:

    Updating the BT software on the headunit (It did exactly the same on the old version as it now does on the new)
    Deleting the BT profiles on both the phone and the headunit, and repairing them after the S/W update
    Reseting the network settings on the phone
    Rebooting both devices (many times!)

    None of them have had any effect.

    So - is there anything else I can try?


  2. diogenis, Jan 4, 2011
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2011

    diogenis macrumors regular

    Oct 8, 2008
    Try by checking fora like here: http://discussions.apple.com/search.jspa?objID=c201&search=Go&q=a2dp
    Maybe Kenwood has something identical, you have to ask them via email, because both units should work following the A2DP standard

    And finally if that won't help you, Jaybird is selling a better connection protocol for wireless music (APT-X) for the iphone
    If your car stereo supports an auxiliary input, then maybe the http://www.jaybirdstore.com/s.nl/sc.2/category.101/.f can send sound using APT-X, but again you must ask for that, tech support from Jaybird. This one is a more straightforward solution, as it bypasses both Apple and Kenwood.

    hmm Edit2: it appears that the uSport dongle is universal APT-X OUT, and not IN. And since I doubt your Kenwood supports the protocol, you can't do much. But Ask Jaybird anyway...
  3. GreatOldOne thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 6, 2005
    Herding Nerfs
    The headunit is iPhone compatible, and has a 30pin dock connector cable - so I have a workround that allows me to listen to the iPhone in the car without any oddities.

    The reason I want to get the BT working is this:

    Sometimes you want to listen to the iPhone on the spur of the moment, but you've left in your pocket. Fumbling around trying to get it out, and then plugging it in when your driving isn't the cleverest of things to do. :)

    I'd rather not buy any 3rd party adaptors to do the job that the two pieces of hardware are perfectly capable of doing on their own. (and they do - just with this annoying, repeatative drop out / streaming glitch).

    Thanks anyway. :)

    Anybody else got any ideas?
  4. ReallyBigFeet macrumors 68030


    Apr 15, 2010
    Sounds like something may be wrong with the head unit, not the iPhone 4...or perhaps something is interfering with the signal.

    I've got a Mazda CX9 with a factory Nav/Sirius/Stereo headunit that has Bluetooth built in. I paired it to the iPhone 4 and it streams audio flawlessly to the device, no skipping or cutting in and out. I've also got an iPhone dock connector running to the same unit and I usually have an older iPod Touch perma-docked to that via same (it stays in the glove compartment). While the sound from the dock connector is far superior to what I get streaming via A2DP/Bluetooth, I know what you are talking about....there are times when its just easier to stream via Bluetooth than remember to dock the iPhone so its passable that way. A2DP streaming sounds just slightly less clear than if I'd used a headphone cable to the radio's RCA AUX in jack.
  5. diogenis macrumors regular

    Oct 8, 2008
    Obviously there is an absolute need for wireless music transmission.
    Since your unit does give you an option to connect to the iphone then use it even wired. Every other way will mean loss of time and/or ca$h. A2DP protocols and particularly the APT-X are considered very new for the car industry to incorporate into their audio units.

    Check one last thing though: kill all other background apps that maybe still running in the background
  6. GreatOldOne thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 6, 2005
    Herding Nerfs
    I've been out and again deleted the BT profiles on both the phone and the headunit. I've also done a factory reset of the headunit, and done a home button + power off on the phone.

    I've also re-paired them and tried again.

    I thought I'd sorted it out, until I moved the phone. As soon as I shifted the iPhone, I got the same drop out.

    Due to this, I'm assuming that this is due some sort of reception issue. The BT ariels on the headunit are under the Kenwood logo on the front of the unit, and during testing the phone was pretty much right in front of it. As soon as I moved the phone to where it'd be if it where in my pocket, I got a drop out.

    I've also tried taking the bumper of the phone, to no avail.

    Looks like I'm going to have to resign myself to the cabled option.
  7. diogenis macrumors regular

    Oct 8, 2008
    Check your background apps. Kill them all except the ipod music app.

    It can't be reception the problem. I have seen some complaints in the apple forum regarding BT dropouts due to renegotiating BT connection. In your case, period of 60s indicate such a failure.
  8. pastro macrumors newbie

    Apr 1, 2011
    I have essentially the same problem.
    Iphone 4 connected to a kenwood dnx8120

    Skips a lot.
    To get it skip free I have to disconnect the bluetooth on the phone and then reconnect. This fixes the problem.
    The iphone 3 did not have this problem. Taking the sim card out of the Iphone 4 also fixes the problem.

    I went around and around with kenwood - they say talk to Apple. I have a second car with a different bluetooth audio solution. Never skips.

    The bluetooth in my receiver is made by Parrot. Other people using Parrot are complaining about skipping too.
  9. Fernandez21 macrumors 601


    Jun 16, 2010
    It could also be the bt in the iPhone, I was having a similar problem and at first I thought it was the bt unit, but then I paired up another phone I had and didn't have any problems. I had the iPhone replaced and the new one works flawlessly again.
  10. GreatOldOne thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 6, 2005
    Herding Nerfs
    Update - Phone now on 4.3.3, and the Headunit has been upgraded to the latest firmware (again) and it's still happening. I kill all the background apps as suggested (bar the iPod) and I still get the dropouts.

    I have successfully paired the phone with other headunits in other cars, and streaming works flawlessly with them - so there's nothing wrong with the phone.

    If the dropouts are caused by a renegotiation of the BT connection, why is that happening? Can I stop it?

    All things at the moment point to a fault in the HU - but it's out of warranty now. Bah! :(
  11. GreatOldOne thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 6, 2005
    Herding Nerfs
    A further update - I've tried the headunit with several different phones now (My wife's iP4, my friend's 3GS and my mother's HTC Wildfire) and they all exhibit the same dropouts.

    Due to this, I've contacted Kenwood, who believe that there is a hardware fault in the unit. When I challenged them on the fact that if it was a h/w fault it had been there since day one, and had only come to light after multiple firmware upgrades had failed to solve the issue, they agreed to do a warranty repair - even though it was out of warranty.

    So I now have a big hole in my dashboard, and the unit is off to the car stereo hospital. Fingers crossed that it works as advertised when it gets back. :)
  12. Merkie macrumors 68020

    Oct 23, 2008
    My iPhone running iOS 4.2.1 works perfectly with my Sony head unit. The Kenwood head unit must be the problem
  13. GreatOldOne thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 6, 2005
    Herding Nerfs
    The head unit is back from the Kenwood repair shop - after having it's bluetooth module replaced.

    The engineer rang me whilst he was bench testing the head unit, to tell me that he couldn't replicate the fault. I replied that regardless of wether he could replicate the fault, I could, with 4 different phones and Kenwood had authorised the repair.

    So he went ahead and replace the BT module.

    Well, regardless of wether or not it was a hardware problem, it now streams perfectly - the software versions on the head unit and the iPhone remain the same, so I believe it was dodgy hardware.

    If you're having a problem with streaming, get the hardware checked out.
  14. GreatOldOne thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 6, 2005
    Herding Nerfs
    I don't bloody well believe it! The damn issue is back. Not happy. :(

    If it's not the car head unit (which it can't be - the BT module has been swapped out), and it's not the phone (which it isn't, as it works on other A2DP equipped car stereos), I'm at a loss as to what to do next to try and rectify the issue.

    Has anyone got an iPhone 4 to stream flawlessly with an DDX8024BT?
  15. The LPT macrumors regular

    Mar 8, 2010
    If you are willing to jailbreak your phone you could try downloading "bluetooth service manager". It will disable certain bluetooth modes.

    Ever since 4.3.x I was having issues with my bluetooth connection to my car stereo. It would occasionally disconnect after I dial a phone number. It would never happen on 4.2.1.

    So I used bluetooth service manager and disabled the "HID","REMOTE", "GAMING" modes leaving "A2DP" and "HANDSFREE"

    It's not the exact same problem that you have but my solution might help.
  16. GreatOldOne thread starter macrumors member

    Jul 6, 2005
    Herding Nerfs
    I have not tried jailbrreaking, mainly due to the fact that I like not having to jump through hoops everytime there's an OS update...

    but I am now on iOS5 - and it still does it. :mad:

    Hmmm. I'm at a loss that a £700 headunit can't do what a £70 dongle on my bike intercom and a cheap headunit in my wife's car can do. :rolleyes:

    Maybe it's time to ditch the Kenwood.
  17. Todthebod macrumors member

    Jul 21, 2007
    I went through this when I bought the Alpine head unit that was iphone only. One of the IOS updates had a bug when music was sent through the data port. Music did the same exact thing you're talking about but not BT of course but same scenario. It wasn't Alpine's fault but I had to wait a month before Apple sent a bug fix out.
  18. pastro macrumors newbie

    Apr 1, 2011
    I've gone round and round with Kenwood. Kenwood doesn't support the iphone 4 and I doubt they will. The Bluetooth is made by Parrot and appears to be buggy with the Iphone 4 and above. (It wasn't perfect with the 3 but it was much better). I have periodically written Kenwood and the stock answer to me now is that they don't support the 4 on my unit. Frustrating..

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