Bluetooth headphones stuttering

Bluetooth has been around for over three decades now. The technology is our first choice to transfer small files and get wireless devices connected with each other over a short-range. Even though new generations of Bluetooth protocol are developed every few years, there are some issues that users keep facing no matter how much money they spend on their hardware.

One such issue is related to the stuttering in Bluetooth headphones. Not to confuse this with a minor delay of 5-10 ms that happens with all Bluetooth devices. A lag of few milliseconds is common with even the devices running the latest revision of Bluetooth protocol. 

When stuttering occurs, the audio feels very choppy. Things are a lot worse than just delayed audio. This is not normal and needs to be fixed. So here is an article that will explain what you should do to fix stuttering with Bluetooth headphones.

Bluetooth headphones stuttering Windows 10

Let’s start with Windows 10 first. The solutions in this section apply to Windows 10 users. Follow each step very carefully.

Solution 1: Allow exclusive control

Step 1: Open the control panel. It’s your choice if you want to open it from the start menu or from somewhere else.

Step 2: In the control panel, open the ‘Devices and Printers’ setting.

Step 3: A new settings window will open up. You will see all the wireless devices connected to your PC.

Step 4: Find the headphone that is stuttering and right-click on it.

Step 5: Open its sound settings.

Make sure that the Bluetooth headphone is connected and highlighted.

Step 6: Then, click on the Properties button.

Step 7: In the next window that pops up, open the Advanced tab.

Step 8: In the advanced tab, ensure that the following options are checked.

  • Allow applications to take exclusive control of this device
  • Give exclusive mode applications priority

Step 9: By default, these two settings should be checked. If not, turn them on now.

Solution 2: Disable handsfree telephony

Step 1: Return to the Devices and Printers tab in the Control Panel.

Step 2: Now, again, right-click on the headphone that is stuttering and select properties this time.

Step 3: In the Properties window, open the Services tab.

Step 4: Turn off the ‘Handsfree Telephony’ service from the Bluetooth services section.

Bluetooth headphones stuttering Mac

If you are an Apple user facing a stuttering issue on your device, we got you covered. In this section, we shall explain some solutions that fix the stuttering issue on the Mac OS.

Solution 1: Reset the Bluetooth module

The first thing that you should try if you are facing any connectivity issues related to Bluetooth is to reset the Bluetooth module from the Mac Os. Here is how you can do that:

Step 1: From the home screen, press the shift button and click on the Bluetooth icon.

Step 2: This will open up a menu where you have to click on the ‘Debug’ button.

Step 3: Finally, press the ‘Reset the Bluetooth module’ button.

This will turn off the Bluetooth on your Mac, and all your peripherals will be disconnected. This clears some common glitches related to Bluetooth in the Apple device. Once the module reset completes, Bluetooth will be turned on, and your devices will be reconnected.

Solution 2: Turn off the Handoff feature

Handoff is a feature present on devices running MacOS 10 or newer and iPhones supporting Bluetooth Low Energy that lets users leave their work from one device and resume it on the other. The feature is extremely convenient, and a lot of users owning multiple Apple devices often make use of it.

Since the feature works on Bluetooth, too, it can interfere with the functioning of Bluetooth headphones. Let’s see if turning it off fixes the stuttering issue on our Mac PC.

Step 1: Click on the Apple menu.

Step 2: Navigate to System Preferences.

Step 3: Under the General tab, locate the “Allow handoff between this device and other devices connected to iCloud”.

Step 4: Turn the setting off.

Bluetooth headphones stuttering Android

Coming to mobile devices now, let’s talk about the things that you can do when stuttering occurs on your Android tablet or smartphone.

Solution 1: Unpair and Pair your Bluetooth headphone

Step 1: Go to the Settings of your Android phone.

Step 2: In the Settings application, find the Connected devices or Bluetooth tab. The name of the setting under which you will find Bluetooth device depending on which custom skin of Android you are using.

Step 3: From the Bluetooth settings, disconnect your Bluetooth headphones and forget them.

Step 4: Finally, reconnect them to your device and see if that fixes the stuttering.

Solution 2: Turn ON adaptive bitrate

To turn on the adaptive bitrate setting, you will have to access the developer mode. This is a feature in Android that lets users gain slightly elevated privileges to the operating system. Here is how you can enable it and turn on adaptive bitrate (Those of you who have developer mode enabled already, skip to step 5):

Step 1: Open the Settings app again.

Step 2: Scroll down to the ‘About phone’ section and tap on it.

Step 3: Find ‘Build number’ and tap on it 5-6 times until you see the message: ‘You are now a developer’.

Step 4: Return to the previous screen and open system settings now.

Step 5: You will find the newly added ‘Developer settings’ here. Open it.

Step 6: Find the ‘Bluetooth Audio LDAC Codec: Playback Quality’ setting and set it to ‘Adaptive bitrate’.

See if there is any improvement.

Step 7: You can also try switching the Audio codec from the Developer settings, but that is not recommended till there is no other option left.

So that’s all about what you need to do to fix Bluetooth headphones stuttering issue on all the major operating systems. We hope you managed to solve your problem after reading this guide. It’s time to relax and enjoy listening to your favorite music.

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