Using USB on B3

B3 has USB ports at the front and the back.

You can connect these peripherals

  • USB hard disks or memory sticks - for backup or music transfer
  • Wifi dongle - for connection to your Wifi network
  • Bluetooth dongle - for playing music to B3 from your phone
  • Ethernet adaptor - for faster more reliable internet connection
  • USB DAC/Optical - to attach B3 to audio equipment
  • USB Headphone - to listen to B3 with headphones
  • USB Hub / Splitter - to increase the number of USB ports

Use a simple USB splitter like this if you need more USB ports.

Wifi Dongles

B3 is supplied with a Wifi dongle - it's the one marked 802.11n. If you want a replacement or one with an antenna search for "RT5370" and you will find many devices and suppliers. B3 only works with dongles with the Ralink RT5370 chip.

Bluetooth Dongles

B3 is supplied with a Bluetooth dongle. B3 works with CSR4.0 and CSR5.0 dongles. There are some incompatible "clone" CSR4.0 dongles on the market so if you are not sure buy a CSR5.0 dongle. This CSR4.0 from Sabrent works.

USB Optical

A USB Optical adaptor allows you to send music from B3 to an audio amplifier with an optical input. The advantage of optical is that it transfers the music digitally so the amplifier receives an exact copy of the original music. What's more the optical cable electrically isolates the B3 from the amplifier and that eliminates an otherwise hard to fix source of interference.

I like the simplicity of this adaptor from Behringer UCA222 But there are other devices like the Kisdoo that combine DAC and Optical.

USB DACs/Headphone

DACs convert B3's digital music data into an analogue electrical signal for a traditional amplifier or headphones.

There are a wide range of products ranging from a few pounds to many thousands.

If you want a cheap solution and signal quality is not critical then a PC USB DAC like this from Sabrent is good.

You can find a spreadsheet of compatible (and incompatible) DACs on the Brennan forum here.[You need to go to the last post]. The list shows compatibility with B3 as well as older B2 and BB1 models.

This interesting device is just a few dollars and has optical and DAC (but no case or USB lead)