Mac mini 2018 Bluetooth issues?

jclardy

macrumors 68040
Original poster
Oct 6, 2008
3,444
2,148
I just upgraded to a 2018 Mac mini and everything has been great...except for bluetooth. I first noticed with my Magic Trackpad - it will only consistently work when plugged in via a lightning cable. If I unplug the cable it connects fine, but it will randomly stop tracking and start back up in half a second or so, making it unusable. The same trackpad works fine with my MBP.

I then tried my Sennheiser BT headphones and the audio is choppy with the Mac mini visible line of sight within 3 feet of the headphones. I then tried my AirPods and they won't even stay connected, they just continuously drop then reconnect.

Has anyone experienced any similar issues? Could this have something to do with a USB hub I am using? I'm going to do some more testing and try unplugging things, but this is quite annoying to deal with from a $1800 machine in 2018. This was a completely fresh machine, no backups used when setting it up.
 

gages

macrumors regular
Sep 25, 2016
120
33
Known issue, please search lower down in this forum. Easiest solution is to add a bluetooth dongle and place 2+ ft away from any USB hub.
 

jclardy

macrumors 68040
Original poster
Oct 6, 2008
3,444
2,148
Known issue, please search lower down in this forum. Easiest solution is to add a bluetooth dongle and place 2+ ft away from any USB hub.
Is this the thread you are referring to? https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/mouse-problem-mac-mini.2153393/https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/mouse-problem-mac-mini.2153393/? I didn't initially see it since it doesn't make any mention of bluetooth until you go past the first five posts.

As an update, I unplugged nearly everything and now BT is working fine. The problem is I need these other USB devices connected at the same time - if I had a shielded USB3 extension cable and moved the hub far away from the mini would that have the same effect? Or do I have to move the bluetooth module itself far away?

I have a USB-C -> USB-A hub I am trying out now to see if it has the same issues.
 

gages

macrumors regular
Sep 25, 2016
120
33
Yes, that is the thread. I could not get the internal BT to work well even with hub far away, but my Mini is on a metal shelf, so who knows.
 

Cameron500

macrumors newbie
Mar 3, 2011
19
3
Tulsa
Mine is working fine until the batteries get low. Then it disconnects/reconnects often.
I think this is my issue too. I've tried unplugging all USB devices, updating RAM and still having the issue until i recharged the batteries (1st gen magic keyboard and track pad). No issues so far with juiced up batteries.
 

Originalbitman

macrumors member
Apr 15, 2012
59
29
After I unplugged all my USB stuff then rebooted and reattached the same USB stuff all is fine. Even after a shutdown. My touchpad hadn’t been showing up at all in Bluetooth before this.
 
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F-Train

macrumors 65816
Apr 22, 2015
1,457
1,013
NYC & Newfoundland
Mine is working fine until the batteries get low. Then it disconnects/reconnects often.
My iMac does this when the batteries are around about 5%, by which point I've had several notification warnings.

The Mac mini seems to do it sooner. The other day, my Trackpad started getting a little flakey at about 14%, but by 13% it was fine again.

I'm using Panasonic's Eneloop rechargeable AA batteries anyway, so it doesn't matter.
 
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Cameron500

macrumors newbie
Mar 3, 2011
19
3
Tulsa
I think this is my issue too. I've tried unplugging all USB devices, updating RAM and still having the issue until i recharged the batteries (1st gen magic keyboard and track pad). No issues so far with juiced up batteries.
I was wrong, it's still doing it, disconnecting and connecting sporadically. I did plug in an external hard drive but whatever. It shouldn't happen and i'm sure it wouldn't if I upgraded to a new keyboard and trackpad.
 

Bartjes

macrumors newbie
Nov 28, 2018
28
13
Paris France
I had the same problem with the Magic Mouse and the 2018 Mini with Bluetooth 5. I put my old Bluetooth 4 dongle in a usb 2 port near my desk and had no deconnexions since. Waiting for Bluetooth 5 dongles to come out.
 
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phunigai

Suspended
Nov 12, 2018
193
188
in my experience with the mini, anything metal eats up blueteeth connections, and apple does not make adequate hardware like usb and bluetooth components since 199?. this is a known downfall of buying an apple product. your welcome!
 

roman.stapunov

macrumors newbie
Dec 1, 2018
10
25
Belarus
Hi all, I have bought Mac mini i5/8/256 base model few days ago and got a bluetooth issue when connected my bluetooth headphones MDR-ZX770BT (after that I started to face the issue even without headphones connected, seems I used other port for my T3 SSD before). Everything gets disconnected frequently. So was experimenting and I found out that issue occurs when I plug-in my Samsung T3 to outermost USB-3 port. When I plug it to USB 3 near HDMI or any type-c than everything works fine. Tested it using all devices connected and run VM with Windows on the SSD.
My setup is 2 Asus MX27AQ displays (HDMI (2.0) and type-c->display port), Samsung T3 via USB 3.0 (currently put into type-c), Magic Trackpad 2 and magic keyboard 2 both space grey.

So, my advice is to avoid usage of the outermost USB port or use it for something that doesn't require power and won't have high load.
 
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jdubyaelliott

macrumors newbie
Dec 7, 2018
1
1
I have been experiencing the intermittent disconnection of my Magic Trackpad as well as my Magic Mouse on my 2018 Mac Mini (3.6Ghz 256GB) since day 1 before I had anything plugged into the USB ports. I haven't noticed it with the keyboard nearly as much, but it has happed a couple of times. With the trackpad or mouse, it happens up to 10 times during an 8 hour workday, so it's super frustrating. I have tried restarting of course, but I have not tried turning off bluetooth and back on since that's my only keyboard...
 
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iZac

macrumors 68020
Apr 28, 2003
2,043
1,128
Shanghai
My Magic Mouse also gets really choppy when I’m using a USB stick on the outer port.

It’s a pretty basic thing for them to get wrong and I’d hope there’s some way they can mitigate this with a software fix, but who knows. Otherwise it’s a fab little machine.
 

lyleberman

macrumors member
Jul 8, 2007
77
42
Annapolis, MD
I have the same problem but unable to identify the cause of the interference. I even swapped out the magic trackpad but that didn't help. Frustrating problem.
 

DomKud

macrumors member
Nov 19, 2018
58
18
Apparently, others on this forum thought I was posting fake news about my mini problems. I clearly see so many others experiencing the same problems I had. This too was the most frustrating thing for me. My mouse would be so jumpy sometimes. I just ended up returning the mini and hopefully in 2019 they will fix the hardware. My guess is, its hardware related.
[doublepost=1545079056][/doublepost]
lol you guys I just wanted to get out and buy the new mini but it seems it's riddled with issues
Same reason I returned mine. I too was on the fence of ordering one when I read all the issues on here. I returned mine 2 days ago and I will wait until 2019 to see if these issues are rectified. My mini had the same Bluetooth problem. The mouse would be so jumpy and not smooth. It was no where as smooth as my 2014 mini. I will wait until 2019 to see if they fix these issues.
 
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Momof9

macrumors 6502
Aug 22, 2018
291
77
Mine is a bit better since I added a USB hub. Tomorrow I will try switching USB ports.

So when I have my external HDD CUSB) is when I have issues with my wireless mouse & bluetooth keyboard. For 2 days, before adding - USB hub, I had to plug in a keyboard to type in password.
 

Igor_k

macrumors newbie
Dec 18, 2018
1
1
I had the same bluetooth issue and it looks like it is a typical USB power issue. I moved my USB3 hub from a USB 3 port to a USB Type C port (with an adapter) and it solves the problem. Now bluetooth connection is stable.
 
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golfpan

macrumors newbie
Dec 18, 2018
9
7
Similar experience with internal bluetooth, bluetooth adapter on a USB-A hub from Anker in both USB-A ports, and even with a Logitech Unifying adapter in both USB-A ports and in the USB-A hub.

I am very happy to report that a new hub from Anker that plugs into the USB-C ports (and then gives me USB-A ports on the other end), with either a bluetooth or Logitech Unifying adapter now works normally. It looks like the best way to deal with these machines is don't have anything that transmits connected to the USB-A ports on the back of the machine in any way.

So, for what it's worth, that's my advice, get a hub that plugs into USB-C, like Igor_K suggests above.

Clearly there's a lot of EMI flying about this machine, and Apple's aware of it, after all, we've never seen a shielding cage for DRAM in a Mac mini before. Guess we just sort of have to figure out the quirks and work around them. Other than this experience on this interference issue though, I love this machine.

i5, 32GB/500GB model with a Vega 56 in a Razer Core X (replaced the power supply in the Razer Core X for a quiet Corsair one). Good stuff.
 

gages

macrumors regular
Sep 25, 2016
120
33
My Mini is under my desk on a metal shelf. Even with no USB-A devices or hubs plugged in, the Bluetooth performance is not usable, so I had to go with a Broadcom dongle. I have filevault (required for work) enabled on my machine, which means on reboot, my bluetooth devices don't work so I have to plug in a usb kbd to enter my pwd.

Luckily I don't have to reboot that often, but the out of the box Bluetooth performance really needs to be addressed by Apple.
 

haruki

macrumors newbie
Mar 20, 2011
20
0
My 2018 Mac Mini too has BT connectivity issues out of the box. Applecare made me go through all the software check steps - reset SMC, D startup, delete p-list, test user, malware test etc - to nought. Was told to set up a hardware check with Apple store as a last resort.

However I'm waiting on a couple of USB-C to USB-A adapters to arrive and will test leaving USB-A ports empty first. Very disappointing Apple but of course, they don't care much for Macs anymore.
 

bax2003

macrumors 6502a
Dec 25, 2011
903
139
Serbia
Had an issue. The reason is that my Mini is in closed rack, so issue is expected (worked fine on a classic wooden table).

Issue solved with USB Hub, which I need anyway and a CSR8510 Bluetooth Micro Transmitter And Receiver.

Screen Shot 2018-12-22 at 12.06.38.png Screen Shot 2018-12-22 at 12.08.52.png
 
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DilemmaDude

macrumors newbie
Oct 25, 2017
9
3
Same here. My magic trackpad 2 regularly loses connection or stutters a bit. The odd thing is, using a wireless headphone seems to work without issues (so far), so I’m currently doing some troubleshooting but I’m honestly considering going back to my old nMP and send this one back to Apple.
 
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