bluetooth headphone/microphone support


I am using opensuse 13.2 with kde 4.14. I have a bluetooth headset that I was able to use one this same laptop during skype calls when it was running opensuse 12.3. But since installing 13.2 the mic is not recognized in pulse audio. My searching around has led me to some explanations regarding bluez 5 and pulse. I’ve found suggestions about downgrading bluez to bluez 4.

Mostly, I’ve just been living without the bluetooth headset, instead using an android device when the headset was required, but I thought I would check to see if there is anyone here who has come up with a solution that might get my mic to work on 13.2? Any suggestions would be welcome. Thanks!

  • John

My bluetooth headphones (which does not have a mic) just works with my ultrabook (with openSUSE-13.2 and KDE-4.14) so I have no experience in troubleshooting with GNU/Linux. Between my wife and I we do have a number of Android devices, and we find for some bluetooth with same device works, and for other’s it does not.

You could try the guide here to see if it provides any hints:

I propose that, as it appears newer than the older openSUSE guide:

If you reach the stage where the bluetooth device is paired but you still can not get it to work, then for basic audio checks you could also run the diagnostic script noted below (in a konsole/xterm) as a regular user with PC connected to the internet:


select the SHARE/UPLOAD option , do not update if asked to update, and let the script run to completion and copy the web-address/URL from the konsole/xterm that notes you are to share and post that address here. Just the address.

Good luck.

Thanks so much for the guidance. But here’s where I just get stuck: If you look at the very top of that first link, it says “The most recent version of Bluez does not support the Headset/Handsfree profiles. This means that microphone input will not work…” My headset, which shows up in pavucontrol as PH-BTH3 only offers the profile “High Fidelity Playback (A2DP Sink)”. I really wish I could remember what was offered under opensuse 12.3, but there were two. One was high fidelity playback, and the other was something that included the word “duplex” (if I am not mistaken). The latter was the profile that supported the mic.

In any event, I rummaged through those links and really just can’t get moving in a productive direction. The guidance for installing legacy methods is flagged as outdated, but are based on installing bluez 4. I don’t think I want to do that, but I still don’t see any way to make it work with bluez 5. Maybe it can’t, but I simply cannot find a definitive answer.

My alsa information is here. Thanks again for the help!


As youv’e already mentioned Bluez 5 dropped the required support for your BT Mic. Also explained in the following reference:

First some background: The BlueZ project decided to redesign their client interface. They also
decided to drop support for the old client interface. BlueZ 4 has the old interface and BlueZ 5 has
the new interface. The decision to drop support for the old interface in BlueZ 5 meant that all
applications, including PulseAudio, that used to work with BlueZ 4 didn’t work with BlueZ 5.

The support for BlueZ 5 has been gradually added in various applications, and this is the first
PulseAudio version that supports BlueZ 5. This means that everything is great, right? Not so. The
BlueZ project also decided to drop support for the HSP and HFP profiles, which were the profiles
responsible for handling telephony audio. If you have a headset, its microphone won’t work with BlueZ
5, because the microphone is only supported by the HSP and HFP profiles.

There is support planned for the next PulseAudio release apparently…

So what’s the way forward with getting the HSP and HFP profiles work with BlueZ 5? There is partial support for those in oFono (a telephony daemon), which will hopefully be completed soon, and the next PulseAudio release will then hopefully support HSP/HFP through oFono. This pulls in a telephony stack as a dependency for using your Bluetooth headset, which might be considered overkill. This issue is yet to be resolved with the BlueZ developers.

For now, your only real option is to downgrade to bluez 4 AFAIU.

From what I can see - that confirms the blue tooth device is not detected as an audio device. You on board mic is totally muted - but I assume you know that.

Yes. In my office I have a polycom communicator that I use for calls. That works fine. There is too much noise to use the on-board mic, so I would prefer to use the bluetooth headset when away from office.