USB-C Headphones Guide - Everything You Need to Know
- 21 Nov, 2018
Table of content
- Do you know USB-C? And what are USB-C headphones?
- USB-C headphones
- PROS and CONS of USB-C headphones
- USB-C headphones VS 3.5mm headphones
- USB-C headphones VS Lightning headphones
- What to look for when buying USB-C headphones?
- What can you do if you don’t want to use USB-c headphones but you have a phone with USB-C connector?
- Use a Bluetooth Adapter
- USB-C to 3.5mm Adapter
The innovation adoption has never been an easy task. Many audiophiles are going through the same situation since USB-C technology came into existence. It is because it has urged the need for purchasing USB-C headphones.
USB-C earbuds are a step ahead to our conventional headsets. Despite its benefits, people are facing trouble. It is because the previous protocol has swayed the industry for decades. Now, it will take years to adapt to new equipment.
However, many big companies have started implementing this practice. With that, you may also find many models of USB C headphones available on the market.
Our today’s topic covers this gadget. We have organized a brief guide that will let you know more about them.
Do you know USB-C? And what are USB-C headphones?
USB-C and USB-C headphones both contain similar technology. However, their applications are different. Let’s discuss them to make it clear:
USB-C is a port for devices just like we have USB type A, type B, charging, and other ports. It was introduced back in 2014 by USB Implementers Forum. It is an industrial standard for the connector. The thing distinguishing about this port is its ability to transfer both data as well as power at high speed. Moreover, it is compact in size too.
The appearance of USB-C is more or less the same as the micro USB. However, it is relatively oval in shape and thicker as compared to the micro connector. You can attach it from both sides, as it’s up and downsides are similar you don’t need to flip them. The Lightning and MagSafe also possess this feature. Moreover, the cable of USB-C contains connectors at its both ends. It prevents you from the trouble of finding the right side to plug in your device.
The major aim behind evolving USB-C is to free users from attaching various cables for different purposes. Rather, this latest technique would allow you to do all your work with it. You can do charging, transferring, and even playing video at large screen all through this USB-C connector. It works with USB 3.1 protocol. It is considerably faster as compared to previous protocols. However, it is not necessary that you will get all USB C connectors with 3.1 standards. Few are coming with older versions too.
USB C headphones are follow-up device for USB-C technology. They have come to replace the 3.5 mm jack. These headphones are useful for gadgets that have abandoned 3.5 mm port completely. They contain USB-C connectors.
Like technology, USB-c headphones are also comparatively advanced. They are efficient and can perform more task rather than just transferring sound waves. Though their available models are limited at the moment, we can expect them to hold many functions on their side.
They are able to provide users with valuable monitoring information. Furthermore, people can perform various tasks on them that were previously performed on their audio devices.
PROS and CONS of USB-C headphones
USB type C headphones come with its certain profits and detriments. Here are few of them:
⊕ Sound quality: The most prominent benefit of these headphones is their improved sound quality. However, the constraint is if they contain good quality DAC. With an adequate converter, they can provide better audio results as compared to previous earbuds. This is particularly helpful for those who don’t use very expensive smartphones. As of now, the sound quality will depend only on their USB-C earphones. They can purchase their latest headsets with a good DAC and amplification. In this way, they can enjoy hi-fi audio without spending a lot of money.
⊕ Noise lessening: as in conventional protocol, all digital to analog conversion was take place inside the mobile device. The problem was present of other circuitry there. The sound waves carry noises from these radios circuits too. It results in producing noise in the original audios. However, USB-C headphones are free from this trouble. It is because DAC and amplifier work separately from other circuits.
⊕ Multiple uses: these headphones have much more potential as compared to previous versions. They don’t only allow you to heat audios but would let you track your vitals like blood pressure, heart rate, and others. This information would be later available on your phones.
⊕ Battery-free: these USB type c headphones are smart. They won’t ask you to recharge them repeatedly. Rather, it will take any required battery from your phone.
⊕ Advanced features: these USB-c headphones will perform advanced functions too. These operations may include shuffling, adjusting bass and treble levels. It will also allow you to perform equalizer settings all with the help of earphones only.
⊕ Frees up space: as these earbuds take some functioning on their end, it helps is sparing space inside the mobile body. This additional space can be helpful in making smartphones thinner or adding large batteries.
⊖ Offers low compatibility: the USB-c headphones bring with it a large compatibility issue. First of all, you can’t connect them with 3.5 mm jack port. It is an obvious issue though. There is a bigger problem too. These earphones are not compatible with all USB-C ports. You might shock to hear, but it is a bitter truth. These headphones either offer compatibility with any one device or with those made by a single company.
⊖ Prevents parallel working: with the headphones you can’t charge your device while listening to music. It is because there is an only a single port. You can only do this by connecting additional adaptor that would let you have two USB-c connections.
⊖ Might exhibit error: common headphones only transfer data. But the case with USB-c headsets is different. They involve signals conversion too. That’s why there are chances of errors that would end up in distorted signals.
⊖ Costs more: these headphones are complex as compared to previous 3.5 mm headphones. As they are performing more tasks now, they ask for their compensation in the form of money.
USB-C headphones VS 3.5mm headphones
The basic difference between USB-C headphones and 3.5 mm headphones exist in the form of their signals. The common headphones deal with analog data only. They accept pre-processed signals from their 3.5 mm headphones jack. They perform the task of passing these signals towards your ears only.
However, USB-c headphones take digital signals from the mobile device. They contain their own Digital to analog convert and audio amplification. After processing digital data, they send information in the form of analog signals.
Undoubtedly, USB-C headsets contain much potential. They can successfully replace the previous version. But, due to lack of manufacturers’ interest, there are not many advanced models available in the market right now. The present models lack in their quality and advanced functioning. Also, they are expensive too.
Due to all these reasons, many people consider 3.5 mm headphones as a more appropriate option for playing audios.
USB-C headphones VS Lightning headphones
Both USB-C and Lightning are latest technologies. They have one thing in common too. They both are reversible. No matter, at which direction you plug them, they would perform their task.
On the other hand, there are certain dissimilarities too. The prominent one is their size. The USB-C port is still larger then lightening. Other than this, they are different in term of transferring data and power.
By all means, USB-c is more powerful. It is able to transfer data quickly by its 24 pins. Lightning, however, contains 8 pins. Usb-c is able to transfer video data with 8k resolution.
Furthermore, USB-c is a future as it is a widely accepted standard. However, the audio quality of both these latest technologies is more or less similar.
What to look for when buying USB-C headphones?
You might feel overwhelmed if you go out to purchase an item for the first time. As USB-c headphones are still new in the market, you may find it difficult to make a right purchase.
In order to ease your difficulty, here we will highlight a few aspects that you should consider:
We have already mentioned, there are many compatibility issues with USB-c headphones. Therefore, you should check the compatibility of your particular headsets before purchasing them.
Normally when you purchase any of them, there will be a list available. It will contain names of all those devices that are compatible. It is a most important consideration that you should make before purchasing them. Otherwise, you will face utter disappointment if your smartphone will not support your headphones.
It is another important factor that you should consider. It is because if your USB-c type headphones won’t offer good audio quality, what else they would do?
Though you can only check the quality by listening to audio on them. However, there are certain ways. You can check the frequency range. It should be wide. Human ears can hear frequency range from 20 to 20k Hz. This is what you should look for your headphones.
Moreover, there are also few models available with noise reduction or cancellation features. You should opt for them too.
You are going to hear audios for long hours on your headphones. This longtime struggle asks for adequate comfort too. You can evaluate the comfort factor by checking the weight. It shouldn’t be heavy. Otherwise, it will drain you soon.
After that, you should analyze the design. Different designs and sizes are available in the market. You should look at the headband, earcups, and size of ear tips. All these factors together can make your headphone either comfortable or irritating for you.
There are few models of headphones available in the market that comes with a built-in microphone. They provide two-way communication. You can listen and talk at the same time. They may also contain some control unit to turn the microphone on/off when required.
You should look for this feature too. However, here one thing is worth remembering. You won’t get a top-class microphone. The sound quality will be acceptable only in most of the cases.
The name of the brand plays a significant role while purchasing any product. A top brand will definitely deliver first class product and vice versa.
It is therefore important to do some research on the brand background. What features do they offer? How are their customer services? What are their distinctions? All these questions can help you in making a right pick.
Regarding top class brands, there are few headphones like Sony, Bose, and others. Pixel 2 headphones are also worth trying.
This factor will ensure how long your headphones are going to provide its services. It is greatly annoying to purchase headphones frequently. That’s why, you should look for its durability with special attention. You can check their sturdiness by evaluating the following things:
Check the material of your headphone. It will greatly depict the type of depletion it can endure. You can check the material for each headphone in their specifications.
How long manufacturers are going to back their product? The answer to this question will clear many things about your USB-c headphone’s durability. It is because it the company offers a long warranty, it will show their confidence in their product.
Your headphones also need to be waterproof. It is because most of the headphones stop working after absorbing moisture. Moreover, this feature will allow you to use it during your workout sessions, or during rain.
What can you do if you don’t want to use USB-c headphones but you have a phone with USB-C connector?
It is the major problem many Apple and Android users are facing these days. With the low number of USB-c models available in the market, people don’t get their required headsets.
However, there are solutions to this problem as well. They are:
Use a Bluetooth Adapter
The first solution is to go for Bluetooth headphones. It will also spare you up from tangling wires. However, this solution might feel expensive for many users too. But, if you already have a pair of Bluetooth headsets, you won’t feel any problem with USB-c ports.
USB-C to 3.5mm Adapter
There are many USB-C to 3.5 mm adapters available in the market. They perform DAC task inside them, and transfer signals to conventional headphones. It is rather affordable options. However, the drawback is you would need to carry an additional adapter.
There are both positive and negative aspects of everything. Same is the case with USB-C headphones. Many people love them because of their innovative features. Few still adore their oldie Goldie headsets. It seems like USB-c technology is a future, as it is under the control of USB standard makers. Moreover, many big companies seem interested in them.
What your say on this?
We have discussed many facts related to these headphones in this write-up. The purpose was to make you aware of its relevant details. It will somehow make adoption of this innovation a bit easier for you.