Connection Failure on Mac Mini - Bike - Stages SB20 - Feb 2024

I have been having multiple short drop outs on Zwift for the last month or so - typically just a few seconds and back at it, enough that I have just let it go - this AM (Feb 8th) though full drop outs and neve came back. My trouble shooting 1) restarted my bike (2 times), 2) Checked my bikes APP it connected and showed watts and cadence, 3) checked pairing page in ZWIFT it showed connected and when I would leave that screen I would have watts and cadence for about 5 seconds then full drop again. 4) restarted Zwift and my computer, reconnected everything worked fine for about 6 miles then full drop again. (computer Mac Mini, Bike Stages SB20…) Have not pulled Zwiftalizer yet - had to go to work…

Hi @Chris_Holstein_Pacti, Good job performing the basic troubleshooting. Are you connecting via ANT+ or Bluetooth?

The usual cause for BLE dropouts is wireless signal interference. Check out this article​ for tips on how to prevent this from occurring.

@Martha_C Thank you - some additional info - Yes connected via BlueTooth. Ran Zwiftalizer on 3 rides with drop outs. It shows zero BT Disconnects, what I see is 78 Bluetooth FTMS Message Resends and 28 Bluetooth Trainer resets - right at the time of the full drop out (when I had to fully leave the ride).

I also reset my router - and made sure all firmware was up to date. I went back over the last few rides when this has happened - all show the same pattern - Zero Disconects (this aligns with when I go to the pairing page it shows as “connected” and all of them show the same FTMS and reset issues - right at full drop.

Check out the video linked over in this discussion for more tips on dropouts

Paul I watched that the other day, I have been using this set up for over 3 years with never an issue - and most of his suggestions are for PC’s and laptops nothing addressing the MAC Mini - yes the cord and BT dongle is a valid suggestion but I would have expected to have had this issue WAY prior to now. I am curios though with the ZWIFT Play controllers if they are causing issues…

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I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Play controllers caused some strange behavior. Definitely try without and see if it’s stable.

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@Martha_C I wanted to follow up on this in case another Stages Bike Owner has this issue.

First I never had this issue before, in the 2+ years on this bike and set up - but I did add the play controllers (which added 2 more signals to deal with) and have had some small issues every since. I found the below when digging through the Stages support pages:

Bluetooth power meter connection

Pair the power meter to StagesBike via Bluetooth in places where there may be numerous wireless signals, or if power drops out in connected apps. The power meter can connect to one additional Bluetooth connection while paired to the bike via Bluetooth.

To enable Bluetooth power meter connection, go to the Power Meters page of the Stages Bike Manager in the Stages Cycling app and toggle Pair with Bluetooth on or off.

I did this, and the new Play Controller update - have done about 5 rides since and one ride was for 5 hours - zero drop outs of the bike. The Play controllers still will drop out occasionally but seemed to connect back faster. As long as the bike remains functional during the rides the play drop outs are manageable.