Article ID : 00199243 / Last Modified : 29/05/2018

How to connect a Bluetooth device to a laptop / desktop

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Step 1: Put the device you want to connect into pairing mode

The first important step is to make the device you want to connect to your laptop or desktop discoverable. You do this by initiating pairing mode. The way to do this varies, depending on the device you want to use (headphones, speakers, smartphone, etc.). Check the manual of your product for more information on pairing mode.

  • For Bluetooth speakers or headphones, there will be a pairing button available that you will need to press and hold for several seconds to activate pairing mode on Bluetooth speakers or headphones.
     
  • If it’s the very first time you are using your speakers or headphones, it’s highly likely that they will automatically go into pairing mode when you turn them on.
     
  • However, remember that the second and consecutive times you pair a device, pairing mode might differ with the first time you’ve paired it with a device when you unboxed it:
    E.g. The MDR-1000X immediately goes into pairing mode when using it for the first time; the second time you want to pair these headphones you will have to press and hold the pairing mode button for 7 seconds.
     
  • Ensure your device is not already connected to a previous device: Bluetooth devices often automatically connect with previously paired devices when they are nearby and Bluetooth is enabled.
     

Step 2: Enable Bluetooth on your laptop/desktop

Windows 10 & 8

  1. Go to [Settings]
  2. Click on [Devices]
  3. Click the [Bluetooth] tab and ensure Bluetooth is set to [ON]
  4. Otherwise, select [More Bluetooth options] / [Advanced Bluetooth settings] underneath Related Settings
  5. This will open the Bluetooth settings window. In the first tab [Options] you will see a [Discovery] section with the [Allow Bluetooth devices to find this PC] option
  6. Check the option, and don’t forget to click the [Apply] button at the bottom

Windows 10 & 8 Bluetooth enabling

Windows 7

  1. Go to [Control Panel]
  2. Use the search function to search for [Bluetooth]
  3. Click on [Change Bluetooth settings] and ensure the necessary settings are enabled:
    1. Allow Bluetooth devices to find this computer
    2. Allow Bluetooth devices to connect to this computer
    3. Alert me when a new Bluetooth device wants to connect
  4. Don't forget to press [Apply]

Windows 7 Bluetooth enabling

 

iOS / Mac

  1. On your Mac, choose Apple menu > System Preferences, then click Bluetooth.
    Your Mac is now discoverable.
  2. Alternatively, go the top menu bar and click on the Bluetooth icon if it is available
    Ensure Bluetooth is enabled.

iOS MAC Bluetooth enabling

iOS Bluetooth enabling menu


 

Step 3: Pairing and setting up your device

Windows 10 & 8

  1. Click the [Start] button and select [Settings]
  2. Select [Devices]
    Windows 10 Bluetooth pairing 1

     
  3. Click the [Bluetooth] tab, and then click the [Bluetooth] button to turn on the BLUETOOTH function.

    Windows 10 Bluetooth pairing 2
     
  4. Select your device and click [Pair]
  5. Check your sound settings to make sure that sound is played via the correct output. 

 

Windows 7

  1. Click [Start]
  2. Go to [Control Panel]
  3. Select [Devices and Printers] (sometimes located under [Hardware and Sound] )
  4. Under [Devices and Printers], click [Add a device]
  5. Make sure the Bluetooth headset has been set to "Pairing Mode"
  6. In the list, locate the device you want to connect (there might be many other devices around you, eager to connect).

    In the following example, we are connecting the WH-H900 headphones, after putting them in pairing mode by pressing the ON button for 7 seconds.

    Windows 7 Bluetooth pairing 1

     
  7. In the [Add a device] window, select the Bluetooth headset and you will see a [Connecting to device] notification

    Windows 7 bluetooth pairing 2
     
  8. At this point, your computer might automatically install the required drivers, and this will prompt a notification near the taskbar area. Depending on your headphone or speaker model, you might have to enter the pairing code. The default code is 0000.

  9. Once the device is added you will see the following screen:

    Windows 7 Bluetooth pairing 3
     

  10. When you click on the [Devices and Printers] button, it will take you to an overview of the devices connected to your laptop/desktop. If you double-click your device, you will see the following options screen:

    Windows 7 pairing 4

  11. If your headphones are equipped with a microphone, you will have the option to choose the operations you want to use your headphones for:

    1. Listen to music

    2. Forward VoIP Calls to Handsfree

      Note that the second option will reduce your sound quality compared to the first option because it takes preference on signal strength over sound quality.

  12. Finally, right-click on the sound icon in the taskbar to select [Playback devices] and make sure your headphones are selected as the Default Playback Device

    Windows 7 pairing bluetooth playback devices menu

    Windows 7 Bluetooth pairing playback devices

 

iOS / Mac

  1. If you have successfully put your speakers or headphones into pairing mode, they should appear in the Bluetooth list. If you do not immediately see them, make sure to scroll down to see if they’re not hidden further in the menu.

    In the following example, we have paired both the MDR-1000X and the MDR-ZX330BT
     
  2. Select your device in the list and click the [Pair] button

    iOS Mac Bluetooth pairing step 1
     
  3. You can connect multiple devices (but not necessarily play them at the same time, you will have to select the output source) 

    Bluetooth pairing Mac iOS step 2
     

  4. Don’t forget to check your sound settings in system preferences to enable the correct output:

    Bluetooth pairing Mac Ios step 3

 

Additional troubleshooting tips

Turn Bluetooth OFF and ON again

Try switching Bluetooth OFF and ON again if you are certain your device is in pairing mode but is not showing in your device list on your computer.


Remember to turn OFF Airplane mode (Windows 10)

  1. Go to [Start]
  2. Select [Settings]
  3. Go to [Network & Internet]
  4. Change the option [Airplane Mode] to [OFF]


Check your Bluetooth drivers

  1. Click [Start] and search for [Device Manager] (This will prompt the window on the screenshot below to pop up)
  2. Look for all Bluetooth listings by opening the [Network Adapters category] and/or the [Bluetooth Radios category] (if available).
  3. Check if the driver has no yellow exclamation mark or down arrow sign
    1. Exclamation mark: update or reinstall your computer’s Bluetooth drivers
    2. Down arrow: Bluetooth is disabled: right click and enable to activate Bluetooth

Bluetooth network adapter screenshot