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Switcher Hangout The place for switchers to discuss their new machines, and how to work with OS X. General support can be had here for newbie stuff, like "How do I restart my new iMac?" :)

Bluetooth - messing with my head?


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vaughan80

 
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Oooookay. This is really strange. Completely true. I am posting this on here because I want to know if anyone else has this problem?

Got a wireless mighty mouse and keyboard. When I connect them via bluetooth, or even connect my Nokia phone via bluetooth I get a really wierd feeling in my head. Shortly followed by a killer headache. It goes away when i turn it off after about 30 minutes.

I have been using it about a week and at first, just thought it was a coincidence. But it happens EVERY time. I have been testing it by plugging my old wired keyboard and mouse back in, and i'm fine.

I'm looking at selling my keyboard and mouse on ebay now, has anyone else experienced this? Should I contact apple, it's kinda freaking me out a bit.
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dalison

 
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Wow - never heard that one before. Do you have any major dental work (fillings, braces, etc)? Perhaps a metal plate in your skull?

Have you ever experienced the feeling with anything else? Microwaves perhaps?

I wouldn't bother Apple with that one. You should see a doctor. If you have a sensitivity to radio waves it's likely something you will want to get checked out.

--David
My blog about my move from Windows to Mac: www.davidalison.com
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I would have someone else randomly hook-up the Bluetooth devices while you are near but without your knowledge of it... you would then tell when/if you get the "strange feeling" and know if it is truly the bluetooth connection or just your mind playing tricks on you.

just my $0.02
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Brown Study

 
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Edit: Too slow to post again. But FWIW:

Before you sell anything, you could try an experiment.

Leave the room and have someone else connect (or not connect — you won't know which) the Bluetooth stuff. Do not check to see whether Bluetooth is on or off (cover anything or everything that would give it away — does the mouse have a Bluetooth LED, for example), and remain in close proximity to the computer (but not using it) for however long it usually takes for the headache to start.

Do this at least three times, ideally more, if you have the time and inclination. The more often you do the test, the more accurate the experiment would be. Keep track of each result.

In the end, if the headaches and Bluetooth don't correlate, you'll know it isn't Bluetooth. If they do, you'll have the ammo to shoot down any lame tinfoil-hat jokes.

The headaches don't necessarily mean your brain is a Bluetooth peripheral. The connections might be causing a very high-pitched sound, for instance, that you may not be aware of, but with an all-too-apparent result. Or something else may be going on (like tooth fillings and rock formations picking up radio broadcasts — I should check Snopes about those).

Do you have particularly acute hearing?

The experiment might reveal results that should be publicized, but that would mean doing the test a lot more than three times.
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vaughan80

 
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I know this sounds nuts. Thanks for not jumping on me for being a freak or a hoaxer or anything. I am honestly telling the truth here. Believe me, I am THE biggest sceptic when it comes to stuff like this.

No major dental work (one filling, not bad for a brit!) No surgery, metal plates etc... Microwaves, I am fine with. For the record I have NEVER experienced anything quite like this before. I use my mobile / cell phone to text every day and to make calls, about 10 - 20 times a week. I am fine with that. Hearing - not sure if it's acute. I guess it's average.
I also have a wireless network in the house, no ill effects.

This has got me thinking. About five years ago I did have a Siemens mobile phone. After about 20 mins of use on a call I'd get a pain in my ear and develop headaches, initially I put it down to coincidence, then after a few weeks got a bit freaked out (I think there was also a study on brain tumors at the time) because it was happening with regularity. I sold the phone, thankfully. Maybe it's kinda related - possibly high pitched sounds (or I am a freak).

I am typing this on my wireless bluetooth keyboard, so far - OK, but I have just turned my mac on. I'm going to test this out over the next few days just as Brown Study suggested and get back to you all.
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An added thought that might complicate matters: Maybe the Bluetooth equipment must be operating to produce the ill effects. If they are idle, the signal may be too low or non-existent.

Someone else may have to "work" at the computer while you're sitting nearby with your back to it.

Buy a couple of decent ear plugs. They might give you the answer immediately. Headphones might allow a very high frequency to leak through.
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dalison

 
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Found this interesting article in the Washington Post - perhaps someone near you has one of these?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...l?hpid=topnews

--David
My blog about my move from Windows to Mac: www.davidalison.com
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vaughan80

 
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Some stores in England are using these to stop kids hanging around outside (it works, but apparently a big problem with human rights). I am 27, apparently these devices only work on ears of people upto the age of around 18. I have never had a problem with hearing them when going into shops and my problem only starts when I turn bluetooth on.

Food for thought though, i'll get back to you. At work at the moment.
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vaughan80

 
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OK, I did some tests. The results, to be honest - are interesting, but not solid evidence of anything.

I got my girlfriend to use my mac when I was in the same room (office area, I went on her PC - ARGH!!). I got a headache after about 40 minutes. After an hour she told me that she put the bluetooth on after about 20 minutes of use.

A day later we decided to transfer some photographs to each others phones via bluetooth. No ill effects.

Last night I was round a friends house, he showed me a video he has made on his macbook, his bluetooth was on - no ill effects.

I think, to be honest - either my mac's bluetooth is either purely psychological or, possibly faulty, emitting a high pitched noise, or transmitting at a higher frequency than normal.
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Brown Study

 
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I don't know much actually, I don't know anything about decibel meters and whether any could be adjusted or are made with the ability to measure sound beyond normal hearing. If so, a meter might provide a solid answer.

Decibel meters

You might be able to obtain one for a few measurements without having to purchase it.
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vaughan80

 
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Cool, thanks ill give it a try.
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