Belkin Launching Lightning to 3.5mm Audio Cable for iPhones

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, May 22, 2018.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot

    MacRumors

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    Belkin today introduced a certified Lightning to 3.5mm audio cable, and announced that pre-orders will begin on its website today.

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    The cable has a male Lightning connector on one end and a 3.5mm output on the other, allowing iPhone models that lack a headphone jack to be connected to a car stereo via the AUX port without the need for any adapters.

    The cable can also be used to connect an iPhone to other products with 3.5mm inputs, ranging from home speaker systems to over-ear headphones. This is possible because the cable has a built-in digital-to-analog converter.

    [​IMG]

    Lightning to 3.5mm audio cables have been available for several years, but Belkin's edition is certified by Apple under its MFi Program, which was recently expanded to include specifications for this type of cable.

    Belkin's cable will be available in a three-foot length for $29.99 or in a six-foot length for $34.99 in the United States, with prices varying elsewhere. In addition to pre-orders on Belkin.com, the cables will available in the coming weeks at Apple Stores, Best Buy, Target, and select other retailers worldwide.

    For a pricing comparison, Master & Dynamic recently released an Apple-certified Lightning to 3.5mm audio cable with an in-line microphone for $69.

    Article Link: Belkin Launching Lightning to 3.5mm Audio Cable for iPhones
     
  2. jamesschmidtke macrumors regular

    jamesschmidtke

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    #2
    So conceivably we could use this with out bluetooth headphones and in flight entertainment finally?
     
  3. robbieleffel macrumors member

    robbieleffel

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    #3
    Or, for a better, cheaper solution, add a Bluetooth module to your car. You are then free to charge your phone while you play music in your car.
     
  4. lederermc macrumors 6502

    lederermc

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    #4
    Only twice as expensive of buying 1) an Apple lightning to 3.5mm and 2) a 3ft patch cord.
     
  5. bladerunner2000 macrumors 68020

    bladerunner2000

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    #5
    $70 for a 3.5mm cable? Apple's greed and stupidity to remove the headphone jack started all this. What a circus.
     
  6. coolfactor macrumors 68040

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    #6
    Launching where? Into space?

    It's a reach to call it greedy. Apple has always pushed the envelope of technology, introducing new, better tech. When is a right time to do it, or not to do it? If we always stuck with older tech, imagine the world we'd be in today.

    But I do agree that the price of these new accessories and cables is outrageous and unreasonable.
     
  7. HobeSoundDarryl, May 22, 2018
    Last edited: May 22, 2018

    HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604

    HobeSoundDarryl

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    #7
    This appears to be about audio OUT, not to make anything go IN.

    To use without bluetooth headphones, you can use the free adapter that shipped with the phone: wired headphones into the adapter, the adapter plugged into the iPhone.

    For in-flight entertainment, those same wired headphones need to travel with you. I'm not aware of any major airlines supporting either bluetooth or Lightning connections yet (and I would bet heavily on "never" for the latter). But pretty much all of them have a good, old 3.5mm jack. Apparently nobody is telling the airlines about "the future."

    Furthermore, lose or forget to charge the bluetooth buds or lose the 3.5mm-to-Lightning adapter and none of the major airlines can sell you a replacement set of phones that "just work" either. Of course, they pretty much all have headphones that can plug into 3.5mm.

    But hey, Apple knows best. We consumers don't mind making personal sacrifices to support what a corporation wants us to do. We also don't mind paying more for an inferior (sound) alternative or keeping up with a dongle. We don't mind having to pack an extra set of buds or headphones to cover all bases such as being able to plug into a (very common use) in-flight entertainment system. Really, whatever Apple wants is fine by us. They know best for all of us. We will comply... even readily work to try to convince other consumers to comply too. Resistance is futile. ;)
     
  8. bladerunner2000 macrumors 68020

    bladerunner2000

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    #8
    There is NO better tech than the headphone jack for the SIMPLE purpose of plugging in a pair of headphones. What Apple did is straight garbage.
     
  9. fhall1 macrumors 68040

    fhall1

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    #9
    Apple didn't pice that cable - Master & Dynamic did. I guess it's what they figure the market will bear.
     
  10. ignatius345 macrumors 68000

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    #10
  11. BB1970 macrumors member

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    #11
    I wonder if this is bi directional.
    Could I for example take a stereo feed out of a mixing board into an audio app?


     
  12. BeamWalker macrumors 6502a

    BeamWalker

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    #12
    So you can listen to music in the car, at least until the battery is dead. But hey they'll probably sell you a wireless charger for $150 at some point.
     
  13. H3LL5P4WN macrumors 68000

    H3LL5P4WN

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    #13
    Except, yanno, digital audio is far superior to what can be delivered over a headphone jack. So there is that small detail.
     
  14. halfapie macrumors member

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    #14
    While I agree that removing 3.5mm has caused problems, it is not fair to say that the cable is expensive without noting that the cable is in fact an external sound card. Apple's implementation of the lightning port only allows digital audio and does NOT include analog audio signals that would be required by a 3.5mm jack. This happened when apple went from 30-pin to lightening. So this cable would have to include an DAC (Digital to Analog converter) chip somewhere.

    Apple's version has a DAC hidden inside the tiny jack.
    https://www.ifixit.com/Teardown/Apple+Lightning+to+Headphone+Jack+Adapter+Teardown/67562#s136722
     
  15. zorinlynx macrumors 603

    zorinlynx

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    Florida, USA
    #15
    Why the heck didn't they include a USB plug for power?

    I have a cable like this with the old 30 pin connector. 30 pin on one end, and it has a Y in it with audio and power. It was amazing for hooking up my pre-lightning iPhones in my old car that only had a 3.5mm input, and charging, all with one cable.

    They had a chance to have an actual amazing product here, but fell short. C'mon you can do better!
     
  16. H3LL5P4WN macrumors 68000

    H3LL5P4WN

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    #16
    Sweet, what took them so long? And for the times when I need wired (instead of wireless) charging in the Jeep, I don’t have to use the Apple adapter plugged into the Belkin Dual Lightning Port adapter.
     
  17. turbineseaplane macrumors 601

    turbineseaplane

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    #17
    This whole situation is so ridiculous...
    I hope if there's an SE2, they keep the headphone jack on at least that one model.

    I use the 3.5mm jack on my SE every single day in 2 different locations
     
  18. HobeSoundDarryl, May 22, 2018
    Last edited: May 22, 2018

    HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604

    HobeSoundDarryl

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    #18
    Nobody's ears can hear digital audio... only analog. The change that Apple implemented is shifting where the digital audio is converted from the DAC (still) inside the iPhone to a small DAC outside the iPhone (maybe 2 inches away max).

    For transporting an audio signal over good distances, maintaining a digital stream certainly has merit. But that does not apply to this situation. A distance of only an inch or two matters not. And since there is still a DAC inside the phone so it can function as a phone, this "innovation" created a redundancy requirement that binds an external wired option to a proprietary jack that Apple controls (thus the relatively high price of this product).

    Anyone believing that Lightning or Bluetooth is better ALREADY had both options while iPhone still had a headphone jack too. The latter did not have to go to make either of the former function- they already functioned. As consumers, we simply lost something very useful (if nothing else, the ultimate backup option if either "the future" options failed us by loss, forgetting to charge, etc). And now we can spend money to try to get some of its benefits back while cutting Apple in for Lightning licensing gains too.
     
  19. windywalks macrumors 6502

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    #19
    As much as I agree with the fact, that the DAC is in the Lightning plug, this isn't worth more than $10.
    It's not high tech, the DAC isn't any better than the one in the pack-in adapter, it's a cable. A plain old cable. Nothing more, nothing less.
     
  20. vipergts2207 macrumors 68000

    vipergts2207

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    #20
    You’re ignoring the fact that all audio has to be converted to analog at some point with a DAC. When the headphone jack was still around, you were stuck with whatever DAC was in the iPhone. Now you’re generally stuck with whatever DACs are supplied in these cables, and they’re unlikely to be any better than what Apple was already putting in past iPhones.
     
  21. floling macrumors member

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    #22
    will there be lightning -> 2xcinch? i'd really like that!!
     
  22. HobeSoundDarryl, May 22, 2018
    Last edited: May 22, 2018

    HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604

    HobeSoundDarryl

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    #23
    This part is not quite true. No one was "stuck" as the option to connect via Lightning or Bluetooth existed for those iPhones too. So anyone who would dare argue that Apple's choice of DAC built inside the phone is inferior as part of trying to rationalize the decision has no argument. If they believe that, they could still hook up whatever quality DAC they could get inside of a Lightning dongle and use that instead of the iPhone headphone jack.

    It's really this simple: we used to have more consumer utility when it came to audio playback. Now we have less. But both "the future" options have a way for Apple to make more money... even from a third party product sale like this one (because it connects to proprietary Lightning).
     
  23. fourthtunz macrumors 65816

    fourthtunz

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    Maine
    #24
    I agree! I have some bluetooth headphones but so many times I just want to plug into a system
    I forget the cable and no one has one. Just this weekend my band played out, I thought the break music was taken care of..it was, it sucked so I was asked to use my iPhone 8..no cable around, asked the sound guy, nope he tells me with a smile that he has a samsung..I had to laugh..ran to my car and found one, but what a pain in the ass.
    Apple got this one dead wrong.
     
  24. nutmac macrumors 68040

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    Mar 30, 2004
    #25
    While $30 (3 feet) and $35 (6 feet) are high, this is a niche product. The percentage of cars that has 3.5mm audio input but lacks USB or Bluetooth, is pretty slim. Most of these cars are probably after market stereo, so many may choose to upgrade their stereo instead.

    Anyway, I have several overpriced Belkin cables because they are higher quality and look more Apple-like.
     

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