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Voyager Pro UC/Voyager Legend UC Troubleshooting: Bluetooth Interference with USB 3.0

Question

When I connect my Voyager Pro UC/Voyager Legend USB adapter (BT300) to the USB port next to my USB 3.0 portable hard drive, my headset stops working. When I connect to other ports it is OK. What is the problem?

Answer

USB 3.0 devices can produce signals that interfere with Bluetooth headsets. The problem is documented in a whitepaper available from USB.org at http://www.usb.org/developers/whitepapers/327216.pdf. The interference can cause corrupted audio, reduced range, intermittent operation or compete loss of function.

The interference risk is well understood and many suppliers of USB 3.0 products have implemented designs to minimize interference effects. Plantronics has tested our headsets in conjunction with commercially available USB 3.0 devices and verified that there were no adverse effects from the USB 3.0 signals.

Nevertheless, product designs can vary widely. Both the USB 3.0 devices and the connecting cables must be correctly designed to avoid interference problems. There likely are products available in the marketplace that will cause interference with Plantronics headsets.

Here are some things to try if you experience problems when using a Plantronics Bluetooth headset on a USB 3.0 equipped computer:

  1. Disconnect the USB 3.0 device from the computer. Did the problem stop?
  2. Move the Plantronics USB Bluetooth adapter to a different port away from the USB 3.0 connection.
  3. Use a USB extension cable to move the Plantronics USB Bluetooth adapter away from the USB 3.0 port and device.
  4. Try a different USB 3.0 cable. This is especially important if you have been using a different cable from the one supplied with the device. More expensive cables may have better shielding and may perform better.