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Hope I'm right asking my question here. I'm building myself a boombox with wireless audio transmission.

With as of introduction of the iPhone 4S Apple gadgets (and obviously others) nowdays have Bluetooth V4.0. When I've been looking around for a module that I could use in my boombox to allow wireless audio streaming I've not been able to find any that supports Bluetooth V4.0 or even V3.0. Are there any modules out there available for "regular" consumers. I get that the big audio tech companies have special built modules for their purposes. But where can I get my hands on a module that will allow me to use V4.0 with Apt X and the possibility for line out audio and work with Apple devices (iAP/MFi needed? Not so sure what's needed to be honest).

I hope someone can help me out!

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  • \$\begingroup\$ I've got a Bluetooth module connected to my home stereo (paired with my iPad) - what is about the 3.0/4.0 spec that you need? You don't need MFi...it's just Bluetooth. \$\endgroup\$
    – dext0rb
    Jan 4 '13 at 21:52
  • \$\begingroup\$ @dextorb Which module is that? I figure 3.0/4.0 performs better than the older 2.x spec in many way? Most important for me is audio quality and energy savings. \$\endgroup\$
    – INT
    Jan 4 '13 at 22:19
  • \$\begingroup\$ It's only 2.1 but claims 8 hours of battery life. I have it permanently wired in though. miccus.com/products/blubridge-mini-jack-rx \$\endgroup\$
    – dext0rb
    Jan 4 '13 at 22:22
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Coree Bluetooth v3 and v4 are backwards compatible with bluetooth v2.x devices. BT v3 mostly added an optional hybrid BT/Wifi connection, which many host devices did not support. BT v4 adds support for BLE, Bluetooth Low Energy, which is not compatible with Core Devices. Most Bluetooth hosts that comply with v4 have support for both core and BLE, including the iPhone 4g/5, iPad 2/3, Newer Mac desktops and laptops. BLE is intended for low power, low bandwidth devices, so you would be hard pressed to find a audio bluetooth device using BLE.

The only real important thing you need is a device with the audio profile. A2DP is the standard music profile for bluetooth. Some devices use the regular hands-free profile to work. In short, you just need a regular audio bluetooth device, not a specific v3/v4 device.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ But I thought V4.0 is more efficient than V2.x. Isn't that right? Faster/more reliable bandwidth, better range. Better battery longivity? I'm looking for the best audio performance (thus apt x) for as low energy usage as possible. Must be a reason why Logitech uses V3.0 rather than 2.1? (logitech-en-amr.custhelp.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/33979/…) \$\endgroup\$
    – INT
    Jan 4 '13 at 22:17
  • \$\begingroup\$ Because implementing the small differences in v3 costs nothing. Bluetooth Classic range (Device Class 1/2/3) has not changed. I doubt they are implementing v3 + HS or it would state it. v3 + HS requires a 802.11 wifi hardware. Texas Instruments has a BT controller manual (Tiny paragraph in Section 2.2 on page 9) explaining the significant differences between 2.1, v3 and v4. ti.com/lit/ds/symlink/cc2564.pdf Basically, v3 adds slight power reduction if controlled right, v4 adds LE (Meant for sensors) and AES encryption. That's the significant changes. \$\endgroup\$
    – Passerby
    Jan 4 '13 at 22:36
  • \$\begingroup\$ Gotcha! But is it possible to get apt-X with 2.1? Don't know why, but I got the idea that 4.0 would be tons better. I read that Apple implented it to use together with Airplay since 4.0 can utilize 802.1n (ibtimes.com/…) \$\endgroup\$
    – INT
    Jan 4 '13 at 22:43
  • \$\begingroup\$ @INT, Apple took advantage of Broadcom's multi-technology in a single package device. The article itself notes that the Airplay BT support is for use without needing a wifi connection. You CAN get Apt-x on 2.1, it's just a codec, but it's a licensed codec so that adds to the cost. electronics-eetimes.com/en/… bluegiga.com/WT32_Bluetooth_Audio_Module List of aptx devices slashgear.com/… \$\endgroup\$
    – Passerby
    Jan 4 '13 at 23:01
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Texas Instruments has the CC256x which can do Bluetooth Classic (A2DP and AVRCP which enables control like play, pause, etc). The Stellaris + CC256x platform actually has this as a demo, so it's basically a TI LM3S CortexM3 processor with a CC256x. You can buy the kit and get running and if you want to actually manufacture they have FCC certified modules.

For Apple products, only data requires MFI certification. A2DP is considered audio and so you don't need the authentication chip.

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