Talk:Bluetooth Passthrough

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Adding this as guide on the main website / BT Adapters compatibility list?

Well, firstly we should add this as guide on the main website ASAP as I noticed some threads about the passthrough mode popping in the forums, and most already are answered here. I'm not sure but I think MayImilae has the great powers needed to do that! And secondly, I think we should also have a list of compatible BT Adapters somewhere (and given the nature of the wiki, it's the perfect place). However, I think we should go slow with this and think of all details very carefully to avoid headaches in future since the first thing that comes to my mind is a "rating" for the BT Adapters, and, well, we already have enough issues with the current rating system from the game lists. Maybe using a more simple, 3 step, approach? Like 0 for unknown, 1 for not working at all, 2 for working with issues (e.g. works but doesn't remember paired controllers, has trouble connecting multiple wiimotes, works fine but randomly stops working, etc) and 3 for perfect (e.g. the Wii BT Module -- no issues). What do you guys think? Please point any flaws or things to take in consideration when designing this - mbc07 (talk) 22:21, 6 October 2016 (CEST)

For the list of compatible adapters, I agree that the wiki is a good place for it. IMO, it may be better to have a compatibility table with specific test points (detected and boots, reliability, pairing, whether 4 Wiimotes can be handled, range). The issue with a 3 star system is that probably only the Wii BT module will get a perfect score, and all others will be either 0, 1 or 2. Also, while 2-star adapters all have at least one issue (of course), some of them are much larger problems, such as randomly stopping working or not being able to remember Wiimotes pairings, whereas not being able to or simply struggling a little bit to connect 4 Wiimotes is not as important. --Léo (leoetlino) (talk) 00:37, 7 October 2016 (CEST)

Regarding the "Perfect" compatibility, I really hope there's more adapters on that rating (if at the end we adopt that), as the link key backup/restore you implemented greatly helps with that. For example, the only issue the internal Atheros AR3012 I have is that it stops working after some HCI resets (e.g. ES_Launch events or booting another game) if they occur while there are wiimotes connected, otherwise it would be another "Perfect" adapter. TL;DR there's probably more adapters which works fine, maybe we even find a compatible model to recommend at the Recommended Accessories page, like we did at the time Toshiba BT Stack was the only option to connect -TR Wiimotes... - mbc07 (talk) 02:43, 7 October 2016 (CEST)

After thinking about this a bit more, maybe a 3 star rating system would be enough. 0 for untested adapters, 1 for broken (either not detected, or with major issues), 2 for working with small issues (difficulty connecting 4 Wiimotes) and 3 for perfect adapters. (By the way, now that Dolphin can shut down games gracefully, Wiimote connections should be terminated properly before a HCI reset, so hopefully it should work better.) --Léo (leoetlino) (talk) 19:12, 7 October 2016 (CEST)

Compatibility list

What exactly is revision column? Dolphin revision (e.g. 5.0-1024) or hardware revision? I'm assuming it's hardware revision and, is it really needed? It doesn't seem to change behavior, and some vendors actually wrong uses the revision field to differentiate different manufacturers (for example, the Atheros AR5B22 has models from Samsung, Dell, Killer Networks and all of them share exactly the same hardware design and FCC certification, even the drivers can be swapped between them, the only difference being the hardware revision field)... - mbc07 (talk) 20:41, 11 October 2016 (CEST)

It's the hardware revision reported by the adapter. It's needed as an additional identifier (since the VID/PID can be the same pretty often). --Léo (leoetlino) (talk) 21:02, 11 October 2016 (CEST)
Um, why is it needed though? Just so we can have excess rows in this table? If they are hardware identical shouldn't they have identical other details (outside of perhaps range, due to different packaging). Though, now that I look at this in more detail, this seems like a big problem. For instance we have 7 rows of "0A12/0001" all with wildly different results indicated; worse even when all three IDs match (0A5C/21E8/0112, 0A12/0001/8891) there still seem to be differences reported. Do these id's provide no clarity about things, or should it be presumed to just be inconsistent reporting? Kolano (talk) 04:49, 23 January 2017 (CET)

Also, what exactly is a perfect range? 15m? 20m? Maybe we should document that after the table, same for HCI Reset which I used in one of the entries - mbc07 (talk) 20:48, 11 October 2016 (CEST)

This was a test result by JMC47; it probably means "range is nearly/about as good as with a real Wii". --Léo (leoetlino) (talk) 21:02, 11 October 2016 (CEST)

Simplifying the result table

I've noticed that the audio quality and range can be hard to judge, and that there have been loads of different values in these two columns. What do you think of simplifying this, by having "Good" for the Wii Bluetooth module (which is the reference) and anything that's good enough to be indistinguishable from console? And same for range.

Also, while the table is very detailed, I fear that it may become harder to read and compare adapters as more results get added. Could we add some sort of rating system as the last column, as some sort of summary? As discussed previously, it'd be star based. 0 for untested adapters; 1 for non-working adapters or broken pairing; 2 for anything that's near perfect but has some flaws; and 3 for everything that's as good as or better than the reference adapter. --Léo (leoetlino) (talk) 00:05, 26 October 2016 (CEST)

LGTM. However I would like to hear the thoughts from the other wiki admins as well (Kolano, MayImilae) since we already had some troubles with rating systems like that before. They're apparently busy and barely visits the wiki nowadays, but PMing them in the forums is probably enough to summon them to the discussion - mbc07 (talk) 07:06, 26 October 2016 (CEST)
I'm curious about the range for the Bluetooth adapters, are some exceeded than Wii is capable of, or will be always equal possibly because of the limitations coming from Wii Remote itself? Lucario (talk) 01:29, 28 October 2016 (CEST)

I highly disagree with removing "audio" quality from the table as it's the most noticeable difference between adapters. Even on ones with "good" audio listed, it's more or less "I can hear recognizable audio" and even the best non-Wii adapter pales in comparison to the real Wii adapter. It's just not close.

Another thing I wanted to note is that I almost want to put the real Wii adapter in a class of its own. In terms of "Compatibility" if we were to compare to games, Wii Bluetooth is a "5 star" compatibility, whereas I'd rate everything else as 3 or lower (though, the old Azio comes closest.) Just some thoughts on it. The thing most users will complain about is audio though, as it's the most noticeable thing; range is also tied into audio + input lag... so it's complicated to remove any of them. I'm happy with the chart's detail, but, it needs some work. I just don't know how. JMC4789 (talk) 13:11, 28 October 2016 (CEST)

I didn't suggest removing audio quality from the table, but putting "good" for anything that sounds the same as with the Wii BT module. Since there's still a difference, maybe we should change that back to "Perfect" or "Very good" for the Wii adapter? And yes, it's not easy to improve the chart's readability while keeping enough detail... Léo (leoetlino) (talk) 15:37, 28 October 2016 (CEST)
I figured that audio is important, but I wish you could answer my question above! This is something I want to see:
Adapter VID PID Revision Works Stable Pairing Good audio
Range vs. Wii
(1x Wii Remote)
Maximum # of Wii Remotes
(with good audio sustained)
PCI-e Bluetooth  ?  ?  ? Yes  ?  ? Exceeded 4
Class 1 Bluetooth  ?  ?  ? Yes  ?  ? Good 4
Class 2 Bluetooth  ?  ?  ? Yes  ?  ? Worse 2
Crappy Bluetooth  ?  ?  ? Yes  ?  ? Bad audio Bad audio

This will only make sense if there are some Bluetooth adapters that are exceeded than Wii is capable of, and that limitations are not coming from Wii Remote itself. The last column can be seen as rating system. Lucario (talk) 17:13, 28 October 2016 (CEST)

Whoops, I missed that. Well, we're already struggling to find adapters that work just as well as the Wii BT adapter, so honestly I don't think we are going to see adapters that are better than it. And if it does happen, I don't see why the Wii Remote would be a limit. Léo (leoetlino) (talk) 18:01, 28 October 2016 (CEST)
Alright, I'm not expert with Wii Remote + Bluetooth stuff so I didn't know that Wii's Bluetooth module is already best. IDK if "Range" column will be necessary at all if the "Audio" column receives a revamp. Lucario (talk) 02:38, 29 October 2016 (CEST)

Okay, my two cents:

  • I don't think we need to make the Wii Bluetooth Module stand out more than the others. Yes, it is our reference adapter and I agree we should "rate" other adapters based on it, but having it as the absolute best and the only "perfect" adapter is kinda wrong. For example, the AR3012 I have produces indistinguishable audio compared to a real Wii, even when far away from the console (my Wii died a long time ago but I could do a side-to-side comparison with the console from my cousin) and I dare to say its range is higher than on a real console, just can't assure it works that good with more than two Wiimotes because I only own two. From the forum posts, the BCM20702A0 also seems to surpass the Wii Bluetooth Module. In other words, I would switch back to "Perfect" for range and audio on the Wii Bluetooth Module and tag whatever adapter meets or surpasses it as Perfect too, it's just a matter of finding good adapters (and I think we will, just a matter of time), as most that were tested until now were mediocre at best.
  • About the table proposed by Lucario: I disagree we should remove range and regarding the audio column, your mockup actually makes things more complicated than simple. Given that, maybe we should establish an "official" testing procedure and instruct our users to rate their adapters based on the results from that testing?
  • About table readability: Personally I find the current one good enough. The readability is also OK, but making more clear what the values of exact column means would help

- mbc07 (talk) 03:07, 29 October 2016 (CEST)

The measurement of "Range" + "Audio" + maximum # of Wii Remotes (4 or use "+" sign if owned less than 4) at the same time will give nice, consistent result of each Bluetooth modules from different users. That's why I thought of removing "Range" column and merge them into "Audio" column somehow, hence "Audio" column to receive a revamp. Is it correct that audio data requires good bandwidth than other controller data? I was thinking "Audio" would be good determination on the quality of the Bluetooth modules for Wii Remotes. Can we use relative terms like "exceeded", "good", and "worse" than some ambiguous length terms for range measurement and use Wii as reference? I want the table to basically list which Bluetooth adapters are better or worse than Wii. Lucario (talk) 22:45, 29 October 2016 (CEST)

Almost forgot, PLEASE MAINTAIN THE TABLE SORTED ALPHABETICALLY! Thanks, from your wiki neighbor - mbc07 (talk) 03:09, 29 October 2016 (CEST)

Amazon Links

Didn't we have special formatting for Amazon links so Dolphin would get some percentage of proceeds from sales? I've forgotten the details, but that may need to be applied to the links here. Kolano (talk) 04:32, 23 January 2017 (CET)

All the formatting that is required is an amazon link with the referral component. Here are the amazon referral link instructions, and you can get the IDs from just clicking on a URL in the recommended accessories. If you don't want to go over there, here's one! So I assume the idea is just to make it so anyone can search for any adaptor listed here and buy it from amazon through our code? (edit: super weird seeing my old username here. I need to bug Matt_P some more. :( ) - MayImilae (talk) 06:01, 23 January 2017 (CET)
Trimmed/updated amazon links, not really clear I've handled the referrer program properly though. Kolano (talk) 06:16, 9 February 2017 (CET)

Windows vs Linux?

So mbc07 seems to have discovered differences in the way some adapters works between Windows and Linux. Is there some good explanation of such? I thought part of the point of passthrough was to avoid issues caused by things like Windows driver layers and access BT hardware more directly, which I would have expected to cause adapters to work fairly similarly between OSes. Kolano (talk) 05:58, 9 February 2017 (CET)

Not sure. The Wii emulated software takes over once it starts and manages the adapter using its own (emulated) Bluetooth stack… Léo (leoetlino) (talk) 12:34, 9 February 2017 (CET)
I'll test more, my guess is that the way Linux and Windows does things before starting and after stopping a game might cause the different behavior... - mbc07 (talk) 17:46, 9 February 2017 (CET)
Okay, after some hours of testing I can say there's definitely something different occurring between the start and the stop emulation when comparing Windows vs Linux, and that affects the adapter results (at least the ones I have). With the Atheros AR3012 on Windows, it'll stop working if I boot a game then stop emulation and boot another game (the known HCI reset issue on this adapter), but if I boot a game and keep triggering HCI reset events within the game (resetting the game, reordering the Wiimotes, going to Wii Menu then booting the game from the disc channel again), the adapter never stops working. Also, after the merge of USB Passthrough PR, it'll remember the pairing only of the first Wiimote, even through Dolphin still correctly saves the link keys of the other Wiimotes on Dolphin.ini (before the USB Passthrough PR it would either remember all pairings or simply not boot because the adapter stopped responding). Using the same AR3012 adapter on Ubuntu 16.10, it never stops working after HCI resets (even stopping emulation then booting another game works) and it always remember the pairings of all Wiimotes, basically matching the behavior of the real Wii BT Module, but only on Linux. Regarding the ISSC EDR Bluetooth adapter, I noticed it never stops working randomly on Linux (like it does on Windows) but it still have trouble connecting multiple Wiimotes, (just like on Windows). That and the numerous issues leoetlino faced with Windows when implementing USB Passthrough makes me assume it's yet another OS specific issue causing trouble, it's probably wise to start thinking of how we might inform those OS specific issues on the table... - mbc07 (talk) 21:18, 13 February 2017 (CET)