Audiobus & Bluetooth

I'm using Bluetooth to connect my iPad to an amplifier, but unfortunately when using Audiobus it reverts to using the built-in speaker and the Bluetooth adapter disappears from the Airplay menu list. Any chance of implementing that? Thanks!

Comments

  • 23 Comments sorted by Date Votes
  • I'm tempted to say that we're not going to support Bluetooth because even if we implement it, Bluetooth Audio adds so much latency that it's not usable for musicians anymore.

    Try it with any other music apps and try to play a groove in a synth app... it's almost painful to do it with so much lag.

  • Hi Sebastian,

    Thanks for your reply. However you are totally wrong about the latency using Bluetooth audio. I tried to measure it by recording the metronome in DAW Multitrack, and I couldn't even see any delay when fully zoomed in! You might be confusing with the delay of AirPlay, which is in the order of seconds!

    So I hope you will reconsider!

    Cheers,

    Herwig

  • I've tested it with Logitech Bluetooth speakers and Sennheiser headphones and both times it wasn't usable. I've made a video documenting it:

    If the latency you're experiencing is better, please tell me which device you're using, because I'll have to investigate.

  • After some investigation, it seems to me the delay is caused by the apps. When I try sunrizer for example I get a small but noticeable delay, but when using the molten drum app, the delay is quite large! You should try in your configuration to record the metronome with Multitrack DAW (you can switch it on by tapping the top left corner and then scrolling to the appropriate page with the arrows).

    If the implementation is to blame for the delay, it would be great if Audiobus could have Bluetooth support with virtually no delay! That would mean all Audiobus compatible apps immediately inherit this!

  • I just finished researching this myself because I wanted audiobus on iPad to stream to audiobus on iPhone via bluetooth or wi-fi. What I've found is even at it's best it's still not good enough for the serious musician according to nearly every developer I've asked. It's okay if you just are goofing around at home or need to control from a distance but there are just too many problems for a gig or recording. Bluetooth is pretty old now and I don't think there is a real alternative yet. I may be wrong but for the time being you may just have to hook up to your amp via cord connections. If it's a guitar amp, you can pick up a 20ft 3.5mm cord and a 3.5mm stereo to 1/4" mono converter for under $10.

  • edited January 2013 Vote Up0

    @hvmhvm: While apps may cause some additional latency, the major part of it is not coming from them, but Bluetooth. Also:

    "If the implementation is to blame for the delay, it would be great if Audiobus could have Bluetooth support with virtually no delay! That would mean all Audiobus compatible apps immediately inherit this!"

    This is not how it works. Audiobus would always need to be the end point of the Audio chain, which means you would either have no output app other than Audiobus or have to somehow add it to the end of your already existing output app, which would increase latency even more. The audio stream still has to go through all apps that are part of the connection graph, which means their respective latency is added - you can't magically make it become irrelevant.

    I understand that near-zero latency Bluetooth would be fantastic and I'd like to have it for myself.

    Having said that, you mentioned that Sunrizer was behaving nicely enough for you to consider using it via Bluetooth. Can you make a similar video like the one I made above? It would be very interesting to see what amount of latency is acceptable to you.

  • We've done some more testing and it appears to be impossible to enable recording while using bluetooth speakers. So this is actually not a problem with Audiobus but with the way iOS does not allow any recording apps to work with Bluetooth.

  • Strange, because Multitrack DAW does just that (recording from the built in mic, while using Bluetooth speakers). Anyway, thanks for looking into it!

  • edited January 2013 Vote Up0

    That combination may work for you. But when I try this, using my Bluetooth headset (mic & phones), I get a terrible latency. Perhaps an audio out BT device, with audio in supplied internally from the iOS device will work better.

    However, I am typing this with the key clicks turned on, my BT headset connected and the clicks are way behind me hitting the keys.

    To be fair that may be just this BT device. But my guess, is even if that's so, with another BT device, it may be better, but there will still be a latency, that will get in the way for timing purposes eventually, even if not perceptual by naked eyes and ears.

    Even if your not picking it up using your measuring tools, it's there. And it will show it's ugly head at some point in your process. Maybe not now. Maybe not tomorrow. But soon, and for the rest of your life (my apologies to "Casablanca")

    Guaranteed. It's the nature of the BT beast.

    And for some reason, it only works (i.e. having the Bluetooth connect to Multitrack DAW. All else is fine, with the open BT connection), if I have Loopy open also. If I close Loopy, the BT connection drops, until I open it up again. Don't know why this is.

    BT is less than great under ideal conditions, and iOS 6 seems to have made BT far less than ideal, even for the normal things it's used for (among many other iOS 6 issues; don't get me started here).

    It is not a solution for making music (at least not yet), and even if it seems to be working for you, you can bet that will likely not be consistent and it should not be relied on.

    On the other hand, when I am doing space or ambient music on my iPad, drowned in delay and reverb, and having all sorts of fun, with no set tempo, I think nothing of using Airplay, into ATV, into my monitors. And that latency makes BT look like a wired connection! But since I generally don't care about timing there (or the timing can be seconds apart), it works for me.

    In fact, I am going to do a gig next month, using my iPad, M-Audi Keystation 88 ES, my Apple TV, my monitors, a projector, and a screen.

    Mirroring iPad=Music & light show! And with AudioBus, it's a breeze to do all kinds of cool things live:
    Tastes great; less filling!

    Warning: Don't try this at home or on the road, kids, if you need to keep up with a beat!

  • Make it an option... Let the punters decide for themselves whether they want to use BT or not.... How hard is it to just allow the app to output via BT instead of shutting down wireless audio streaming when the app is open... Those that don't like it, don't use it. Easy. Those that do, can... Well, not yet they can't!!! Which is a shortcoming in the app...

    I use a blackberry BT audio gate, its a usb powered only (no battery) dedicated BT receiver and its not too laggy... In fact, i can barely notice the difference between it and being wired to the ipad through the headphone socket... Without BT, audiobus is close to useless for my wireless ipad audio purposes...

    Very disappointing.

    SA

  • @SlightAversion I would think because Audiobus' purpose is to route audio between apps. I'm not sure what future plans the dev's have for Audiobus, but I would be more concerned with making sure that the app is doing it's intended function as best as possible before worrying about output options that serve the needs of a small fraction of users.

    I'm not trying to diminish your needs, just trying to put it in perspective is all. Even if a majority of users were clamoring for BT support, I would think that it would take a low priority as it was never a stated feature.

  • BT output would be very useful for playback purposes. I have a bose soundlink II that I use for listening/monitoring. definitely don't use it for producing though.

  • What uglykidmoe said.

  • Sebastian - try using a QED Bluetooth Puck. This plugs into the aux on any decent amplifier. I run Sunrizer, Animoog and Bassline through this with no problems. It was a bit of a disappointment to download Audiobus only to find out I can't practice without cabling.

  • Bluetooth Latency tends to be predictable - and you can learn the delays using djay for example - airplay is all over the show unless you tightrope using the mirror option which then is similar to bluetooth latency which is a far smaller gap than airplay 'audio' - i see no reason why a monitoring system for reference (a sideline audio pipe/bus) could not be created for previewing purposes and then used in djay or any app when you want to 'hear first' before playing. Can AudioBus not create a multi channel output for all these apps and then give us a sideline preview option?

  • by that i mean routable to bluetooth headphones for example while still sending the main audio stream on to the destination e.g. : headphones out on an iPad

  • The problem with Bluetooth Audio is that it simply does not work with apps that can record from the microphone. iOS does not allow it.

  • @Sebastian: I think it does work with recording apps, but only with two-way BT devices (both mic and speaker).

  • I thought the same as Jonatan, but I thought it wouldn't allow both directions at the same time. I tried using a BT transceiver with some apps to test it with, although I don't recall which apps.

  • edited October 2013 Vote Up0

    There was some discussion around bluetooth, NS and AB on the NS forum http://forums.blipinteractive.co.uk/node/3718

    tl:dr; Matt found the same as @j_liljedahl:

    apps which record can't send audio out over half-duplex Bluetooth audio devices. I'm 99% sure the other apps you mention don't record?

  • Latency or not, Bluetooth headphones offer a lot of convenience and I for one would love the option. I like to program my music rather than playing it, so the delay is no problem for me. I am in fact, going to have to go out and buy a new set of headphones (I just replaced my wired set with a Bluetooth set costing 100 bucks) only because the Bluetooth doesn't work with audiobus. Wish you'd already implemented it :p

    I use them with beatmaker 2 with synths running in the background no problem. Please consider! Cheers.

  • I also use Beatmaker 2 which is a recording app and it worked with BT JBL Speaker. Since this is the endpoint/ output for me in Audiobus I'd be laughing if Audiobus had the option. Just tried Grain Science and Mitosyth which are synths with recording options and they don't work but sunrizer does. So, doesn't this mean I could use Beatmaker 2 with Audiobus on BT so long as no apps in Audiobus chain with recording (specifically the built in mic, I think) options were used? If Audiobus had the option of course. The lag would be fine for listening and programming purposes. Less so for performing etc. be nice to have if it is, indeed, actually possible. Ta

  • Is bluetooth out going to be supported?

    I think Sebastian fell into the typical developer trap of expecting everyone who uses his software to use it like him. Yes, we know latency over bluetooth sucks, but audiobus is not just for music recording. I want to route my Macbook sound via my ipad and iphone. Three seconds latency is no problem.

    On top of that, the bluetooth transmitter has greater range from the iPad.

Sign In or Register to comment.