Who This Is For
Whether its because your new smartphone has no headphone jack, or you arent ready to give up your old stereo in favor of a great Bluetooth speaker, a Bluetooth audio receiver adds wireless streaming to your existing home stereo or speakers, potentially giving you better audio quality for less money than buying a whole new audio system. If your smartphone, tablet, or computer has Bluetooth, but your stereo or other speaker system doesnt, a good Bluetooth audio receiver lets you stream music wirelessly to your speakers with little loss in sound quality.
Our top pick is for people who have a traditional stereo system, computer speakers, or a soundbarpretty much any speaker system with an auxiliary-input jack that doesnt already have Bluetooth. Our upgrade pick is worth considering if youve invested roughly $500 or more on your stereo system or speakers and want to be sure youre getting the best sound quality out of them, or if you want to be able to stream Bluetooth audio from a longer distance: farther than 90 feet with a straight line of sight, compared with about 40 for our top pick.
How To Add Bluetooth To An Av Receiver
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Tried and true audio/video receivers are just too hard to give up for many who have years worth of memories attached to these devices.
Plus, their quality is incredible, and many were built to last. But, if you want to modernize this piece of technology, adding Bluetooth to the receiver is the way to go.
To add Bluetooth to an AV receiver, get a Bluetooth receiver, an appropriate power source, and RCA connection cables. Then connect the Bluetooth receiver to the R and L audio input channels, connect the Bluetooth and AV receivers to power, and pair the Bluetooth device to a streaming source.
Of course, you might have to finagle with the Bluetooth receiver depending on the type that you buy as some will connect to a USB power source while others can be plugged in with a cord that attaches to the receiver itself.
Either way, it is best to attach the two to the same source of power so as to more easily control the two devices. Lets take a closer look.
Play Wireless Music To Old Stereo Receiver
WRITTEN BY: Sol Harari
Your old home stereo system is in good, working condition. Maybe its one of those hi-fi systems built in the 70s. Maybe youve invested time and money matching your receiver with your speakers and setting it all up, and dont feel like going through the trouble and expense to replace it. Or maybe you have an inexplicable sentimental attachment to your classic equipment.
On the other hand, wireless audio technology has gotten so good that your digital musics often indistinguishable from CD audio quality. The technology is there for you to enjoy, why miss out?
The good news is that youve got many excellent solutions to wirelessly play music through your existing home stereo receiver, no matter how ancient it is. With any option, youll be using a small device thats receiving audio through a wireless protocol. Itll plug right into the back of your home stereo receivers line inputs and play.
Heres an overview of three best ways how to play your music wirelessly over your home stereo receiver, ordered by level of tech skill youll need to set it up:
Want to know more about Bluetooth audio receivers? Heres What to Consider Before Adding Bluetooth to Your Home Stereo Receiver
Your old home stereo system is in good, working condition. Maybe its one of those hi-fi systems built in the 70s.
Or maybe you have an inexplicable sentimental attachment to your classic equipment.
The technology is there for you to enjoy, why miss out?
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My Personal Search For A Bluetooth Receiver
I personally purchased two different Bluetooth receivers.The first Bluetooth receiver I bought was Belkins NFC-enabled SongStream HD Music Receiver .At the time, the Belkin SongStream HD Music Receiver was the only unit on the market that featured optical audio output. Needless to say, I picked it up, and was favorably impressed by what I received. You can read my review of the unit here. Ive moved it between a couple of receivers, and it has served me well, working great with my various devices.
My positive experience with the Belkin unit led me to choose them once more when I picked up another Bluetooth receiver for an even older system. Because this systems A/V receiver only had analog inputs, I went with the simpler Belkin F8Z492TTP Bluetooth Music Receiver .
Some reviews of the Belkin F8Z492TTP Bluetooth Music Receiver panned the receivers range, which was hampered by a metal weight inside of the unit. I pried open the unit and removed this weight, allowing the receiver to shine. It delivered at the time, but there are now more competitive Bluetooth receivers. If youve made it this far, youve already seen my current picks!
The Limitations Of Bluetooth
Home theater builders and surround sound aficionados have only recently started to use Bluetooth for their wireless audio systems. And this is mainly because of the limitations of Bluetooth functionality. Bluetooth was initially intended to wirelessly broadcast a signal between two devices. This technology was originally introduced for connecting media devices with headsets.
To be completely honest, Bluetooth should probably be the last method you use for wirelessly sending audio transmissions. This is even though most modern theater systems support it. However, sometimes we have to make do with the only options we have. So, here are some of Bluetooths more glaring limitations
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Choosing The Best Bluetooth Adapter Model
This is just as important as your stereo receiver and A/V choices, if not more so. The lack of Bluetooth signal strength is one of the most common home theater issues. This is literally like Kryptonite for wireless surround sound system builds. Combat this signal issue by purchasing high-quality Bluetooth adapters.
Dont go cheap with this decision, or the money you spent on your home theater equipment was a waste.
Always make sure you buy an adapter that has Bluetooth 5.0 connectivity or higher. This is because it is critical to the signal strength. If you are looking for a cheaper Bluetooth adapter that works great, I would suggest the Esinkin Bluetooth Wireless Audio Adapter. However, check out these other market-leading Bluetooth adapters that are also ideal for this type of connection.
How We Picked And Tested
The main appeal of a Bluetooth audio receiver is the convenience of playing audio through your existing speakers without having to plug in a cable. This means that pairing and connecting your devices to the receiver should be easy and reliableif connecting your phone to a receiver is too finicky, youll just reach for the simplicity and reliability of a cable. Also, the receivers range should be long enough to cover a typical living areawireless isnt particularly useful if you cant roam with your device.
Ideally, a Bluetooth receiver should sound as good as a direct, wired connectionif wireless audio sounds bad, youll likely put up with the inconvenience of a cable to get better audio. Whether a receiver comes close to this standard depends on the quality of the receivers built-in digital-to-analog converter and other audio circuitry, as well as how the audio is compressed for transmission: Bluetooth doesnt have enough bandwidth to transmit uncompressed CD-quality audio, so Bluetooth devices use one of several codecs to compress audio for transmission, and can vary the bit rate of the compression based on available wireless bandwidth. The receiver decodes the transmitted data for playback on your speakers.
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Best Upgrade For Your Vintage Receiver
Vintage receivers lack some of the features found in the latest products, such as Bluetooth capabilities. Luckily, you can extend the functionality of your vintage receiver with a simple upgrade.
The Audioengine B1 Bluetooth Receiver adds high-quality wireless audio to any home theatre system. Connecting the device to your receiver allows you to stream music and control audio from your phone, tablet, or computer.
Keep reading to find out why a Bluetooth receiver for home stereo systems is the best upgrade for your vintage receiver.
What Is the Audioengine B1?The B1 from Audioengine is a Bluetooth music receiver. It eliminates the need to buy a whole new receiver to enjoy the advantages of Bluetooth.
The Audioengine B1 includes an antenna for receiving audio signals from connected Bluetooth devices. After receiving audio, the device outputs the signal through the stereo RCA or digital optical output.
You can control playback from your phone or tablet, essentially turning your vintage receiver into a modern audio system. With the Audioengine B1, you can stream music from streaming services or play audio files stored on your phone or tablet.
Along with phones and tablets, some computers and laptops include Bluetooth functionality. With the B1 receiver, you can stream audio while watching a TV show or movie on your laptop or computer.
Some of the main advantages include: Uses Bluetooth 5.0 Offers exceptional range Includes a high-quality DAC
Play Music Wirelessly With A Home Bluetooth Adapter
In danger of being trapped under the growing pile of headphones on my desk.
How did I earn the nickname “headphone guy” here at Crutchfield? Through extensive training, research, and good old-fashioned hands-on experience. I’ve spent thousands of hours listening to different models, and thousands more writing about them. My other areas of expertise include voice control, streaming audio and video, and power protection.
My love of headphones started back when I was in elementary school, and my parents gave me a Walkman. I still love the intimate, wonderfully detailed sound you can get from the right headphone setup.
I spent the first eight years of my Crutchfield career in our customer support department. Listening to thousands of customer stories gave me real-world insights into what makes people happy.
- Started at Crutchfield in 2006
- Completed our thorough in-house Advisor training, learning the details of every type of product we sell
- Attends dozens of vendor training events each year
- Travels to industry events like CanJam NYC and the Capital AudioFest
- Interviewed some of the headphone industry’s most accomplished engineers and product designers
Jeff’s passion for headphones and his commitment to hands-on experience exemplify Crutchfield’s mission to exceed our customers’ expectations by providing an abundance of helpful information.
More from Jeff Miller
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Here Are Just A Few Bluetooth Receiver Hacks You Can Use At Your Disposal To Create A Versatile Wireless System:
1. While some of the newer home audio speaker systems have wireless capabilities built-into them, there are still many setups that dont, making streaming wirelessly to them a bit of a challenge.
Many stand-alone Bluetooth music receivers, such as our B1, feature analog line level outputs so you can add it pretty much to any setup you want. This comes in handy if you wanted to dig out the vintage AV receiver and turn it into a wireless setup all youd need is a standard RCA cable to connect to the RCA input of your AV receiver. The B1 Bluetooth Receiver also works with any powered speakers that have line level inputs, so almost anything can be turned into a wireless setup.
2. Many sources dont have streaming capabilities, such as turntables, so wouldnt it be cool to send audio from this source to your favorite pair of powered speakers or AV receiver? The good news is that you can! The B1 works great with third-party Bluetooth transmitters all youd have to do is connect your source to the transmitters input and then pair the transmitter to the B1 Bluetooth Receiver.
This also comes in handy if your computers Bluetooth module is less than stellar and want to use a more substantial transmitter.
Add Bluetooth To A/v Receiver Amplifier Within 3 Minutes
This is a very simple upgrade that you can do to any amplifier that does not have Bluetooth built in. In my case I will be adding Bluetooth to my Home A/V receiver amplifier. It only takes about 3 minutes and is completely removable should you decide to change your setup in the future.
Also Check: Sony 2.0 Ch Stereo Receiver With Bluetooth
Wired Alternative: 35mm Auxiliary Cable
Maybe you’re not totally worried about having truly wireless audio in your car. That’s definitely understandable. Sometimes, simply plugging in a cable is easier to manage.
If you fall into this category, the cheapest and most direct alternative is a 3.5mm auxiliary cable. Effectively, it’s a cable with a male 3.5mm plug on both ends. One end plugs into the headphone jack on your smartphone and the other end is plugged into the auxiliary in on the car. Any audio you play from the phone will then play through the stereo.
The biggest disadvantage to this is that if you receive a call while the phone is plugged into the car stereo, the audio will play through the car’s speakers, but the audio input will still be the phone’s microphone. This means you must hold the phone near your mouth or remove the cable and enable speakerphone — neither of which are totally hands-free, making it unsafe and even illegal in some states.
Adding Fm To Vintage Am Radio
Here’s the story of one AM tube radio’s journey to FM.
Back in the late 50s, most stations broadcasted on AM only. FM did not become prevalent in broadcasting until well into the 70s. True, FM was first demonstrated in 1936. Armstrong broadcasted via FM as early as the 40s. By the end of the 70s, approximately half the listeners in the US were listening to FM stations.
Vacuum tube radios were primarily AM only receivers through the 60s. There were some manufacturers throughout this period which made FM and dual AM and FM receivers but it was less common.
FM is a different electronic design than AM. While the amplification stage is pretty much the same, FM demodulates incoming signals by frequency while AM demodulates by amplitude. The electronic circuit design to perform one versus the other is different.
In other words, you cannot modify an AM radio to receive FM by just swapping out a few parts. You need to re-engineer the electronic circuit. It would be more time consuming to do this than it would be to replace the chassis altogether. Replacing the chassis has its downsides associated with it, and not just all about the electronics.
Like, where will you mount the switch to go from AM to FM? Are you going to drill a hole in front? Where are you going to find a matching knob?
What about the tuning dial? Are you going to re-print the scale so it has AM and FM frequency readouts? How’s that going to look?
So, you find a knob that matches.
Sounds like a lot of work.
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Oscillator Connections For The Transmitter
- Pin 1 is not connected to anything. This is the 90 degree corner . There will probably also be a dot or some other type of marking on that corner.
- Pin 7 gets the ground lead from the transmitter power source. In my case it is the ground from a 5 V AC to DC power supply. But you could also use 4-AA batteries .
- Pin 8 goes to the antenna. To get started I just hooked a 10″ piece of wire to this pin. You can add a longer wire later if necessary.
- Pin 14 connects to one of the wires on the high side of the transformerthe other lead on the transformer connects to the positive 5 V of the power supply.
Khz/24 Bit Sample Rate
Product ID: BT52A
- WIRELESS BLUETOOTH 5.0 AUDIO RECEIVER: Wirelessly stream music files from Bluetooth enabled devices to audio system Analog 2ch 3.5mm jack or Digital optical Toslink outputs for stereos/speakers Upgraded version of our popular receiver BT2A
- HIGH QUALITY AUDIO: This receiver uses the HiFi grade Wolfson WM8524 Digital to Analog Converter to deliver rich & high quality sound to take advantage of high resolution/lossless audio files
- BLUETOOTH 5.0: BT 5.0 offers high quality audio over increased distances & higher bandwidth Transmission range is affected by walls or other obstructions Receiver only, not a transmitter
- EASY CONNECTIVITY: Pair to a laptop PC or use NFC for easy pairing up to 8 devices by tapping your phones/tablets Connect to amplifier through Digital optical Toslink or analog RCA
- TECH SPECS: Supports 24-bit sample rate & 576Kbits bitrate at -80dB & signal to noise ration at 129dB aptX®/aptX HD/aptX Low Latency & SBC codecs Power from a 5V/1A USB source
In stock:US: 1452 | CA: 112More information
Turn your home stereo, or any audio output into a Bluetooth-compatible media gateway with this Bluetooth 5.0 audio receiver that features a HiFi grade Wolfson WM8524 Digital to Analog Converter , and provides rich and high-quality sound.
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Comsol Bluetooth Receiver For Car Or Home Stereo
- It can be connected to your car stereo via the inbuilt 3.5 mm audio cable.
- It also includes an RCA adaptor cable to connect to your home stereo system.
- It comes with an inbuilt rechargeable battery which provides up to 10 hours of music playback on a single charge.
- The USB cable is included so you can start using it right away.
- The inbuilt LED light indicates pairing, connectivity and battery status.
- It utilises Bluetooth version 2.1 for wireless connectivity.
Maximise Your Power Supply
There are varying lengths to which you can stretch in the pursuit of better powering your system. The simplest is merely to ensure the mains plugs youre using are clean and all the components are connected as close together as possible. This means not plugging your preamp in on one side of the room and your power amp on the other. This improves system grounding and so helps sound quality.
You could go even further and give your hi-fi a dedicated feed from your fuse box . This will bypass everything else plugged into the mains that’ll be adding noise to the signal from your TV to the fridge. Again, it probably isnt a length worth going to for your Denon M-41DAB microsystem, but there are greater gains to be made the higher up the food chain you go.
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