So, I have a predicament: I am a 6'5" guy with massive ears. Like it's not funny how big my ears are. When I go on an airplane, the headphones they give me are terrible and hurt my ears when I wear them.

So last year, I thought I would get my own pair of headphones and take them on the plane. Lo and behold however, it was a 2-hole jack, and I had no adapter on me.

So I am going traveling again in a couple of days (14-hour flight), and I would really like to be able to use my comfortable headphones without having to purchase an adapter (my Best Buy didn't have them, and it would take until after I leave to get them if I was to order them from Amazon).

I am pretty handy with electronics as well (as I do computer engineering for a living), and so I wanted to make my own adapter. But it seems like there is no documentation for how to do it! I have solder, a couple of 3.5mm male plugs with their cords, and a couple of 3.5mm female plugs with their cords. Is it possible to make an adapter out of this?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Are you sure that plugging your headset into just one of the two holes didn't work? I believe the two holes are so that two people can share one screen... \$\endgroup\$ – Ron Beyer Aug 7 at 1:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ Even if you plug a stereo headset into a mono jack, you should still hear the one of the audio channels in your left ear. \$\endgroup\$ – Dave Tweed Aug 7 at 1:24
  • \$\begingroup\$ If you plug a stereo headset into a mono jack, you should hear one of the audio signals in both ears. \$\endgroup\$ – immibis Aug 7 at 1:55
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yeah but isn't that bad? Or is it bearable? \$\endgroup\$ – a.mosallaei Aug 7 at 2:22
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Bring two sets of earbuds. Use the half of each pair that has sound (if it actually turns out that using one pair is not satisfactory) \$\endgroup\$ – Chris Stratton Aug 7 at 14:14

The sockets are wired exactly as you'd expect them to be, with the sleeve of each jack as the ground for each channel, and the signal at the tip. The grounds must be commoned within the panel, as I was handed some free headphones on one flight, that had a novel connector to allow them to be used with either the two separate jacks, or a single TRS (tip-ring-sleeve) jack - probably that airline had a fleet with both.

On that connector, both headphones were grounded to the sleeve of one of the jacks, which was a TRS type, and the other jack was a TS type, with nothing connected to the sleeve, and the jack was hinged to allow it to be folded into the body, at which point a protrusion from the back of the hinged jack, that was presumably part of the turned component that formed the tip, then came into contact with a leaf inside the body that connected it to the ring on the other jack, to produce the standard TRS wiring.

So to make the adapter, you take the ground from the sleeve of the TRS female, and connect it to the sleeve of either of the two male TS jacks, and the ring and tip connections go to the two tips on the male jacks. The sleeve of the other male doesn't need to connect to anything, but could be commoned to the sleeve of the first one.


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