Best Bluetooth adapters for PCs

Get Bluetooth on any PC.

Image by Hideez via Amazon

Over the years, accessories have become more reliant on wireless technology, and Bluetooth has become a standard connection method. But not every device has the ability to connect to Bluetooth accessories. Users without Bluetooth-capable devices can use a Bluetooth adapter to make their device Bluetooth-ready. 

Now comes the hard part, picking out a solid Bluetooth adapter. Because of the wide range of different Bluetooth devices, finding a quality Bluetooth adapter can be difficult. Size, transfer speed, range, and additional features are all things consumers need to be on the lookout for when purchasing a Bluetooth adapter. This guide features the best Bluetooth adapters and explains what makes them great. 

Best overall Bluetooth adapter

ASUS USB-BT500

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The Asus USB-BT500 is a compact Bluetooth adapter powered by Bluetooth 5.0. This connection type is among the latest versions of Bluetooth technology, bringing several improvements and innovations. For example, Bluetooth 5.0 offers dual audio, extensive range, and fast data transfer. 

Bluetooth 5.0 has a range of 800 feet and a transfer rate of up to 2Mbps. This bump in range and speed gives the Asus USB-BT500 four times the range and twice the speed of Bluetooth 4.0 devices. Additionally, dual audio allows users to connect two audio devices to stream multiple audio channels simultaneously. 

In terms of presentation, Asus’ BT500 is compact at .28 by .69 inches, keeping it from sticking out of a PC or laptop. Its small size makes the BT500 perfect for traveling, allowing users to easily slip their device into a bag without a Bluetooth dongle getting in the way. 

Unfortunately, not all devices support Bluetooth 5.0 technology. The Asus USB-BT500 is backward compatible and can function as an earlier iteration of Bluetooth, though. This backward compatibility means if a computer only supports Bluetooth 3.0, connecting a Bluetooth 5.0 will only give the benefits of Bluetooth 3.0, making the BT500 more suited for newer devices.

Best Bluetooth adapter for Linux

Plugable USB Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy Micro Adapter

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The Plugable USB Bluetooth 4.0 Low Energy Micro Adapter is compatible with both Windows and Linux with some drawbacks. Unlike the BT500, this Bluetooth device is powered by Bluetooth 4.0. Although Bluetooth 4.0 was superseded by 5.0, it still provides acceptable performance. It has a range of 32 feet and a max data rate of 3Mbps. Additionally, it’s not as small as the Asus BT500 at .75 by .25 inches. 

However, Bluetooth 4.0 does come equipped with crucial Bluetooth Low Energy technology. Bluetooth Low Energy technology reduces the device’s power consumption. This tech allows portable devices to stay charged longer. In terms of compatibility, the Plugable USB Bluetooth 4.0 will work with Windows and open-source Linux projects, including the BlueZ, Linux Kernel, and Pulseaudio. Unfortunately, this adapter won’t work with Macs, car stereos, or TVs. 

Best Bluetooth adapter for Mac

Hideez USB Bluetooth 4.0 Micro Adapter 

Image by Hideez via Amazon

The Hideez USB Bluetooth 4.0 Micro Adapter is a tiny Bluetooth adapter at 0.9 inches wide, 0.5 inches long, 0.2 inches thick, and powered by Bluetooth 4.0. This adapter makes some improvements to the standard Bluetooth 4.0. The Hideez USB Bluetooth has a transmission distance of 65 feet, which is up from the standard 32 feet. It also has dual-mode wireless transfer letting users send files, music, and videos to their PC using a smartphone via Enhanced Data rate. Enhanced Data rate allows users to transfer files at around 3Mbps. 

Most importantly, the Hideez USB Bluetooth is the most compatible device on this list. It’s compatible with smartphones, mice, keyboards, tablets, and most importantly, Mac. This is a great device for users that plan on using this adapter to connect to a wide array of devices.

Best long-range Bluetooth adapter

ZEXMTE’s Long Range USB Bluetooth

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Zexmte’s Long Range USB Bluetooth is a large Bluetooth adapter featuring Bluetooth 5.0 technology. Instead of minimally protruding from a PC, this sizable Bluetooth device is 3.94 by .39 inches wide with an extending antenna.

Because it’s a Bluetooth 5.0 device, users can expect all of the exceptional features that come with the connection type, including a 2.4GHz frequency band and a transfer speed of 3Mbps. Additionally, it features all the staple Bluetooth 4.0 innovations, such as Enhanced Data rate and reduced power consumption. Uniquely, it also features LED indicators, allowing users to check the status of the adapter quickly.

What makes this adapter stand out is its impressive range. It supports a transmission range of about 328 feet. This range makes it great for people that move around a large space while connected with a Bluetooth device. Keep in mind walls and other solid objects can reduce the transmission distance. Unfortunately, the Zexmte long-range USB Bluetooth doesn’t support Mac OS, Linux, or accessories based on 2.4GHz wireless. 

Best budget Bluetooth adapter

ZEXMTE’s Bluetooth USB Adapter 

Image by Zexmte via Amazon

Zexmte’s Bluetooth USB adapter is a budget Bluetooth adapter that’s .5 inches long with a height of .8 inches. It’s a Bluetooth 4.0 device meaning it supports both Enhanced Data Rate and Bluetooth Low Energy. This gives it a speed of 3Mbps and a transmission distance of 32 feet. Additionally, it supports Object Push, LAN, bidirectional file transfer, and serial port. Object Push allows users to share photos, videos, and files between mobile devices, while bidirectional file transfer allows PCs and laptops to transfer files. With Zextme’s Bluetooth USB Adapter, there’s no need to install drivers with this device; you just need to plug it in, and it’s ready to go.

Because Bluetooth devices are backward compatible, Zextme’s Bluetooth USB Adapter will work with older versions of Bluetooth. The Zexmte Bluetooth USB adapter is a cheap option for connecting old devices. Unfortunately, It’s only compatible with Windows.

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