Bluetooth Headset and Lenovo T-61 on Debian 7.0

Levi Pearson levipearson at
Thu Sep 19 08:07:56 MDT 2013

On Wed, Sep 18, 2013 at 12:09 PM, Charles Curley
<charlescurley at> wrote:
> I have a Lenovo T-61 running Debian 7.0 (Wheezy). It runs Alsa rather
> than PulseAudio. I just bought a Bose AE2w headset, which operates by
> Bluetooth, including the A2DP profile.
> The Lenovo has a bluetooth adapter, a Broadcomm BCM2045B (BDC-2).
> Bluez is version 4.99-2.
> I am new to bluetooth.

Bluez doesn't require anything special of a bluetooth adapter in order
to do the A2DP profile. It handles the codecs in software, and
otherwise it just uses the base bluetooth protocols that all adapters
support. You shouldn't have a problem here, possibly aside from
configuration issues.

> If I understand the Blueman Device Manager 1.22 and the LEDs on the
> headset correctly, the two paired. The "headset service" also
> connected. I see data going by in the Manager, at about "16 B/s".
> However I get no sound on the headset. I do have sound on the Lenovo's
> speakers as usual.

The headset service is not used for A2DP, it's for the lower-quality
audio used for phone calls. It uses a completely different route
through the bluetooth stack.  You'd want to use it if you want to
accept calls while using your headset.

> I called Bose' technical support. I was told that the profile support
> must also be supported by the hardware of the laptop. Broadcomm's web
> site does not indicate hardware support for any profiles.
> Suggestions?

Bluez and PulseAudio are connected at the hip these days.  I'm
guessing the configuration you need is going to be in PulseAudio.
Make sure the bluetooth A2DP profile is enabled in bluez and that it's
creating PulseAudio routes that you can route your sound to in the
PulseAudio control panel. Most of this can be done via command line or
DBUS scripting interfaces as well, but that's a bit more involved and
not particularly well documented.

I'm actually using bluez as an A2DP sink, which is a bit more
involved, but I did play with setting up a headset earlier.  I've got
a bluetooth headset I can play with a bit later when I get off a
conference call and get into my office if you still have issues.


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