Bluetooth audio A2DP mode stopped working after 21.10 update

gr flag

After updating to Ubuntu 21.10 that includes pulseaudio 15, my bluetooth headphone could not be set to A2DP anymore. When on this setting, no sound comes out. It is still working with HFP and HSP, but with low quality of course. It was working with A2DP before.

I followed the instruction from the post below that were for 16.04, but when I did that the headphone could not connect with bluetooth anymore: After updating to 16.04, bluetooth audio A2DP mode stopped working

I also followed these instruction but without improvement: Bluetooth Headphones refuse to use A2DP High Quality

Additionally, when the Bluetooth headset receive sound, my Bluetooth mouse is sluggish (has reaction delay). I describe the problem here: Buetooth mouse sluggish when bluetooth headset on

This happens both on Wayland and Xorg sessions.

gr flag

Solution: Open sound setting and put the headset on A2DP. Then open pavucontrol and mute/unmute the headset.

And voila it works as it should. I don't know why it was automatically muted in pavucontrol though, and only for A2DP.

cn flag

For reference, if @PABlanche's solution does not works for you, you might want to try the following (which did work in my case, on a rather dirty Kubuntu install) :

  1. Purge everything related to bluetooth : sudo apt purge pulseaudio-module-bluetooth bluetooth "bluez-*" bluez

  2. Delete /var/lib/blueman and /var/lib/bluetooth

  3. Reinstall : sudo apt install blueman bluez pulseaudio-module-bluetooth --install-suggests

  4. Re-pair your devices

Et voilà ! You should be able to switch to A2DP in pavucontrol or in your DE's sound settings if it does not automatically selects it.

Source :

Basically, a previous version of bluez created /var/lib/bluetooth/ incorrectly. The bluez version shipped in 21.10 is 5.60 and should create the directory properly. However, if you already have the directory (ie. from a previous pairing), then you will need to delete it first: sudo rm -fr /var/lib/bluetooth/ After removing this directory, I was able to pair with my headphones and use the A2DP Sink (which is so much better than HFP).

Hope it did help !

gan avatar
it flag
This worked perfectly. Thanks!!
Gus avatar
id flag
This works on Kubuntu, but you have to replace `blueman` with `bluemoon`, and make sure to reinstall `bluez-cups`. Also, for some reason I'm having to do this every few days/weeks... it's like some updates undo the workaround.
fixxxer avatar
bf flag
Worked, super helpful!
Johni Douglas Marangon avatar
nz flag
It worked fine for me on Xubuntu.

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