Solved Is it possible to unify Windows / Bluetooth speaker volume controls like a phone?

hsehestedt

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When I link a phone to a Bluetooth speaker, the volume control on the phone and the volume control buttons on the physical speaker appear to be linked or unified (those are the best terms I can think of). What I mean by this is that if I adjust the volume up or down from the physical speaker, the volume control on the phone also goes up or down in sync with the physical speaker volume. In other words, those volume controls are linked or unified.

However, in Windows 10 and 11 the behavior is very different. There are effectively two separate volume controls. If I adjust the volume on the physical speaker, it has no effect on the volume control in Windows. Likewise, if I adjust the volume control in Windows, it doesn't affect the volume control on the speaker.

Let me clarify this a little because the above statement might be a bit hard to understand without more clarification.

Let' say that on the physical speaker, I set the volume to 25%. This acts like a limiter. If I now adjust the volume within Windows, the volume on the speaker will change, but it maxes out at 25%. In other words, if I crank the Windows volume to 100%, the speaker is still limited to 25%.

To get the full range of volume I first need to set the volume on the physical speaker to 100%. Only then can I control the volume fully from Windows.

The same holds true the other way around: If I were to set the Windows volume control to 25%, then adjusting the volume controls on the physical speaker maxes out at 25%.

This behavior is especially annoying when the computer and speaker are some distance apart because you must get up to do a volume control dance with the device on the other side of the house.

Is anyone aware of a setting that can make Windows behave more like a phone in this regard?

NOTE: There is a registry entry called "DisableAbsoluteVolume" that addresses issues with low volume or inability to control the volume at all from Windows. I am already aware of that setting, but that does affect the behavior I have described.

TEST SCENARIO: Note that I have tried this with a minimum of four different speakers and three different computers with different Bluetooth versions including Bluetooth 5 on both PC and speakers. The results are the same every time.
 

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Winuser

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I think that would depend on the hardware. I used to have two different JVC radios and they worked differently when I linked my phone to them. One would change the volume on the radio and phone. The other worked independently from each other.
 

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The-Hive

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I would guess not, as windows allows for a single connection and is the host
 

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hsehestedt

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Okay, I figured it out. There is a registry setting called "DisableAbsoluteVolue". I was aware of this setting, but for a different purpose. It turns out that it also affects the sync of the volume controls on Windows and the physical device.

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Control\Bluetooth\Audio\AVRCP\CT
Value: "DisableAbsoluteVolume", dword, set to 0
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 21H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Home Built
    CPU
    Intel i7-11700K
    Motherboard
    ASUS Prime Z590-A
    Memory
    128GB Crucial Ballistix 3200MHz DRAM
    Graphics Card(s)
    No GPU - CPU graphics only (for now)
    Sound Card
    Realtek (on motherboard)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    HP Envy 32
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1440
    Hard Drives
    1 x 1TB NVMe Gen 4 x 4 SSD
    1 x 2TB NVMe Gen 3 x 4 SSD
    2 x 512GB 2.5" SSDs
    2 x 8TB HD
    PSU
    Corsair HX850i
    Case
    Corsair iCue 5000X RGB
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-D15 chromax.black cooler + 10 case fans
    Keyboard
    CODE backlit mechanical keyboard
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master 3
    Internet Speed
    300Mb down / 20Mb up
    Browser
    Chromium Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    Additional options installed:
    WiFi 6E PCIe adapter
    ASUS ThunderboltEX 4 PCIe adapter
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 21H2
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP Spectre x360 15-BL012DX
    CPU
    Intel i7-7500U
    Memory
    32GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Dual Intel HD 620 and Nvidia GeForce 940MX
    Sound Card
    Built-in Realtek HD Audio
    Monitor(s) Displays
    4k 15-inch
    Screen Resolution
    4k (3840 x 2160)
    Hard Drives
    1TB Seagate FireCuda 510 NVMe SSD
    Internet Speed
    300Mb down / 20Mb up
    Browser
    Chromium Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    RAM Upgraded from 16GB to 32GB WiFi Upgraded from WiFi 5 to WiFi 6 SSD upgraded from 512GB NVMe SSD to 1TB Seagate FireCuda 510 NVMe SSD
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