Spark Bluetooth audio woes (iOS & Fire HD 8)



  • So I have an iPhone 7 and a new Fire HD 8" with the Spark app installed. Both worked fine when I finally got my amp a couple of weeks ago (actually had installed the app on an older Fire HD 8" and it worked fine there as well). The bluetooth audio no longer works from either device (I sold the older Fire HD 8" so I don't know if it still worked with that one but it seems unlikely). I updated the firmware to 1.2.3.37, not sure if that caused the problem or if it just was coincidence. Now from either device (not simultaneously but in turn) it will show as being connected to the Spark 40 Audio and act like it's playing (the video or audio will advance as if it was playing) but there's nothing coming out of the Spark, with or without headphones. The music volume knob does nothing on the spark, and the device bluetooth audio is turned up to maximum. Both devices act exactly the same, connected to spark audio 40, outputting to spark audio 40, nothing coming out of the amp speaker (or heaphones if connected). The instrument input is fine and if I plug into the 3.5mm jack in the back of the amp it's fine--I just don't want to because the bluetooth audio should work. The bluetooth LE works fine for control of the amp on either device, it's just the audio that does nothing.

    I have reset the Spark to factory settings, have reset the network settings on the Fire tablet (not the iPhone--I don't want to do that unless I have to because that has dozens of stored Wifi passwords that I'd rather not lose for this stupid problem especially since I don't think it would help since it didn't help with the other device). I have hard rebooted all 3 devices, problem persists.

    Anybody else having this problem? It worked fine for the first week at least.



  • @jcstrain Do you have the USB cable connected to a computer or anything left continuously plugged into the Aux-In port? Either one will disable bluetooth audio.

    If it's the USB connection, maybe this is a behavioral change in firmware 1.2.3.37? Or did you only start using the USB cable for the firmware update, and left in plugged-in? I only received my amp last Wed, and it already had 1.2.3.37 on it from the beginning, so I can't really speak on prior firmware versions.

    Interestingly, the small info sheet that came with the amp does point-out that if you plug something into the Aux-In port, both bluetooth and USB audio are disabled. However, they don't mention anything similar when using the USB port, which makes me wonder if the behavior didn't exist at the time of print. But using USB does disable bluetooth audio (not sure about the Aux-In port), at least with the 1.2.3.37 firmware.



  • @blueingreen said in Spark Bluetooth audio woes (iOS & Fire HD 8):

    @jcstrain Do you have the USB cable connected to a computer or anything left continuously plugged into the Aux-In port? Either one will disable bluetooth audio.

    If it's the USB connection, maybe this is a behavioral change in firmware 1.2.3.37? Or did you only start using the USB cable for the firmware update, and left in plugged-in? I only received my amp last Wed, and it already had 1.2.3.37 on it from the beginning, so I can't really speak on prior firmware versions.

    Interestingly, the small info sheet that came with the amp does point-out that if you plug something into the Aux-In port, both bluetooth and USB audio are disabled. However, they don't mention anything similar when using the USB port, which makes me wonder if the behavior didn't exist at the time of print. But using USB does disable bluetooth audio (not sure about the Aux-In port), at least with the 1.2.3.37 firmware.

    That was it--the USB was connected. It probably wasn't when I first got the amp--I have a Katana 50 which I kept plugged in but I probably switched it to the Spark when I did the firmware update and then just left it plugged in. That's kind of annoying since if I wanted to record anything using the Spark as a digital interface I'd have to plug it in, but I have a Presonus box for that anyway so likely won't want to do it.

    Thanks!



  • @jcstrain Yeah, and it also occurred to me that it could unknowingly affect people who are plugging-in the USB to their computer simply as mitigation for the AC power hum issue.

    I'm also coming from a BOSS setup, although believe it or not, I'm actually "upsizing" to the Spark. I live in an apt building with thin walls, so 99% of my playing is headphones. My home physical setup had largely been just a BOSS GT-1 with occasional pedals in front, and Beyerdynamic headphones plugged-in the back. If I wanted to play without headphones, I plug a Katana Mini into the back of the GT-1! But I do like the BOSS/COSM ecosystem -- it's very well engineered.

    Although the last couple years, I've largely shifted toward a computer/software-based setup with a PreSonus Audiobox USB96 and entry-level PreSonus monitors, using BIAS FX2 & Scuffham's S-GEAR (which I think is on a completely different level than everyone else).

    Another coincidence -- your post initially attracted my attention because I just ordered a new Fire HD 8 the day before, which is supposed to arrive on Sunday. So, we seem to be coming to the same conclusions on a lot of equipment!