How to use earphones as a microphone – surprised or you don’t think it’s possible? We are going to show just how possible it is to use your earphone as a microphone. Just read on.
In order for microphones and earphones to convert sound into electrical signals and back to sound again, so you can speak into your earphones to record audio, they depend on vibrating diaphragms. But that the audio quality of re-purposed earphones is inferior as compared to purpose-built microphones. However, they can still be improved slightly with the aid of audio settings on the computer.
If you need to record something, talk to a friend, or make an announcement, you can actually do that without an actual mic.
How does this work? Well, headphones and microphones are quite similar in construction. They both have a diaphragm and deal with sound in different ways in the way they use sound vibrations.
A microphone takes vibrations from an input source and captures them to be recorded or broadcast. Headphones, on the other hand, vibrate the diaphragm to create sound to be heard by a listener.
The summary of all we are trying to say is that earphones can be used as a microphone if you know how to make them work.
Basics of Earphone Mic Usage
Even though earphones and microphones operate on the same principle, they are also optimized to do their job well. As such, your earphones can be used as microphones, however not good ones. But your microphone cannot be used to make a good speaker.
Now, most earphones and earbuds feature a four-band 3.5mm TRRS connector (with four sections separated by three insulators). They provide an additional audio channel like a microphone input added to the stereo output. TRRS plugs work well in computers with integrated microphones and earphone jacks. Thus, for computers with separate microphone and earphone jacks, an external microphone adapter should be used in converting the 3.5mm TRRS plug to a three-band 3.5mm microphone input connector (with three sections separated by two insulators).
However, because of design limitations, you will have to talk loudly into your re-purposed earphones or earbuds. This is so the sound can be picked up by your computer system
Use Headphone Mic on PC
Here’s how to use a headphone mic on PC:
- Look for the microphone, which is also known as audio input or line-in jack on your computer.
- Get your earphones plugged into the jack.
- Key in “Manage audio devices” in the search box.
- Click on the “Manage audio devices” option in the results to open the Sound control panel.
- Click on the “Recording” tab on the Sound control panel.
- Continuously blow on or tap your earphones and watch for green bars to react. This indicates that your device is picking up the noise.
- Once you have confirmed that your improvised microphone is listed and working, select it and tap the “Set Default” button.
- Tap on the “OK” tab.
- Thereafter, you are ready to use your earphones or earbuds as a microphone.
How to Adjust the Mic’s Loudness
In order to improve the input sound loudness, you need to adjust microphone levels. You can do this by:
- Selecting your microphone in the “Sound” control panel
- Click on the “Properties” tab
- Click on the “Levels” tab
- Move the “Microphone Boost” slider to adjust levels.
- When you move to the right, it will make the microphone louder, while moving left makes the microphone quieter.
- You have to note that adjusting the Microphone Boost levels too high, especially when talking loudly into the earphone, will produce clipped sounds.
Now that you have succeeded in making your headphones work as a microphone, you can make Skype calls, make announcements, as well as do some low-quality recording. However, don’t expect high-quality audio.