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Breathe New Life into Older Electronic Devices

Category: Hardware Published on Tuesday, 22 September 2015

It's time to dust off those old, pre-Bluetooth electronics and introduce them to the 21st Century. Often ignored and relegated to closets and back rooms, these older devices can, once again, play an essential role in your video/surround sound lifestyle.

Avantronics has developed  adapters under the Avantree brand name that will convert those antiques from the 1990s into streaming audio components that will work with any Bluetooth enabled device.


The Roxa Bluetooth 4.0 Music Receiver ($39.99) and the Saturn Pro Low Latency Bluetooth Transmitter and Receiver 2-in-1 ($49.99) are designed to convert older speakers, TVs and receivers into Bluetooth compatible devices that can receive or transmit streaming audio using newer components.

We used the Roxa with an old Yamaha receiver and were able to stream music from our smartphone through the system in a matter of minutes.

The setup process was fairly simple:

  • We plugged the Roxa into a wall outlet
  • Connected it to the headphone jack on the receiver using an audio cable
  • Paired it with our smartphone

That was it.

We did discover, though, that we needed to be within 10 feet of the Roxa to avoid cutouts and loss of signal and we weren't able to stream music to the receiver from another room without frequent cutouts. This, unfortunately, is fairly common with Bluetooth devices.

On the plus side, we discovered that we were able to connect to more than one device at the same time - - - say, a smartphone and a tablet - - - and a USB port on the Roxa allowed us to stream music while charging our devices.

The Saturn Pro is a bit more sophisticated, but just as easy to set up.

We used ours to transmit our vast library of music stored on an old Yamaha MusicCast audio server to a set of Bluetooth-enabled portable speakers. All we had to do was attach a cable to the MusicCast's headphone port or a set of RCA cables to the device's audio output ports and set the Saturn Pro to "transmit." Pairing the Saturn Pro with our speakers was a lot easier than we thought it would be, requiring a minimum of effort from us.

Again, we discovered that the Saturn Pro worked best when the speakers were within 10 feet of the transmitter and in the same room.

We were also able to use the Saturn Pro as a Bluetooth receiver, similar to the Roxa, by setting it to "receive."

Both of these devices can work with anything that receives or transmits Bluetooth signals, including headphones, smartphones, tablets and speakers. Also, both feature Aptx, which, according to Wikipedia, is "the real-time streaming of high quality stereo audio over the Bluetooth A2DP connection/pairing between a 'source' device (such as a smartphone, tablet or laptop) and a 'sink' accessory (namely a Bluetooth stereo speaker, headset or headphones)."

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