headphones

How can I connect my turntable to my Bluetooth headphones?

Episode 1349

Billy from Oxnard, CA
Powerbeats3 Wireless Earphones

Billy is getting Beats Bluetooth headphones for Christmas. What peripheral can he connect to his vinyl record player in order to use them? Leo says most modern amps have Bluetooth support built-in. If his existing receiver doesn't, there are plenty of third party Bluetooth transmitters that will do it. Amazon is filled with them for around $15. He should be warned that the audio quality won't be all that great, though. Bluetooth audio simply isn't all that great, no matter how good the headphones are, because the dynamic range of the music is highly compressed to make the bandwidth.

Why are the AirPods so hard to get?

Episode 1349

Carlton from Hendersonville, NC
Apple AirPods

Why did Apple delay the Airpods? Leo said that there's a limited supply to go out before Christmas and the rest will get their's next month. The main issue is that manufacturing them at scale has proven to be more of a challenge. They are technically complex. The same happened to the Apple Pencil -- they sold out quickly and people had to wait because supplies were limited. With any luck, Apple could send them sooner, rather than later.

What headphones are good for kids?

Episode 1349

Jay from Chicago, IL
Ety Kids

Jay has an old pair of Bose headphones and they make his ears really hot. How can he avoid that? Leo says that in-ear monitors are better because they do the right kind of isolation without that overheating. They can also impact the hearing of a young person, though, so he would advise not using them very often. The best are Etymotics. They are flanged, so they go deep in your ears.

How can I use my old headphones with the iPhone 7?

Episode 1336

Shar from Los Angeles, CA
Apple iPhone 7 and AirPods

Shar wants a new iPhone but what about her headphones? Leo says that the new headphones will have a lightning connection to plug into the phone, and there will be an adapter for older headphones. Unfortunately, it's not possible to listen and charge at the same time without an additional adapter. Not having a headphone jack is less of a big deal than Shar may think, though. Of course, the way around this is to use Bluetooth headphones.

How can I prevent wireless audio latency issues on iPhone 7?

Episode 1324

Josh from Wichita Falls, TX
Belkin Lightning splitter

Josh wants to be able to still watch videos on his iPhone 7 while charging, but he's had latency issues with wireless audio in the past. What can he do to be able to still listen to audio and charge his phone at the same time without the latency problems? One solution is to get the $40 Belkin dongle, which plugs into the Lightning port and has a port for charging and headphones simultaneously. The audio that comes out of the Lightning port is still analog audio, which is the same as the old headphone jack.

Why does my phone drop in volume when I plug it into my stereo?

Mark from Sandy, OR

Episode 1301

Mark is having issues with his mobile phone because it keeps turning down 75% of volume when he plugs it into his aux jack on his stereo. Leo says that there's a feature that will limit the volume when headphones are plugged in and the phone thinks he's listening on headphones. That's what's going on here. He may be able to disable that feature in his phone settings.

How can I hear myself in my headphones while using a USB mic?

Episode 1248

Mike from Portland, ME
Audio-Technica ATR2100-USB Cardioid Dynamic Microphone

Mike is a guest on a few podcasts, and he usually uses his Audio-Technica ATR2100-USB microphone. He also plugs in headphones to his sound card. But he can't hear himself as he talks into the microphone. Leo suggests plugging his headphones into the mic itself. Leo says the reason the sound from the mic is disabled when he plugs into the sound card is because there's a slight delay, which can be very distracting. If he plugs into the mic directly, he'll be able to hear himself without any delay.

What wireless headphones are good for watching TV?

Phil from Anaheim, CA

Episode 1238

Phil would like to watch TV with wireless headphones so he doesn't disturb the rest of his family late at night. Leo says to look for a good Bluetooth headset that uses A2DP or AptX. USA Today recently came up with a whole list of options at usatoday.com

Another good place to look is at headphones.reviewed.com Beyer Dynamics and Sony both make great wireless headphones.

Scott Wilkinson on Home Theater

Episode 1237

Scott took a call from a guy next week about headphones with surround sound. Subsequently, he's heard about Sony's MDR-DS7500. They're wireless headphones that you can hear surround sound with. Not cheap at $300, but an option. Also, Scott heard that Sennheiser is bringing back the Orpheus headphones, which are $55,000! WHAT?! They're electrostatic and have transistors built into the cans themselves. Sure, they're probably the best headphones in the world, but for that cost, give me a break. Can you really hear the difference, objectively?