Modified Earbuds

Discussion in 'iPhone Accessories' started by Dr. Cabrera, Sep 28, 2008.

  1. Dr. Cabrera macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #1
    If you are like me,and hate the feel and lack of bass on the Apple headphones I would recommend soldering on new ones.

    The best option is to replace the apple earphone buds with something you like

    I was debating between the er-6i's and the Skull candy Ink'd. After much debate I went with the Skullcandys ( price and performance)


    [​IMG]

    Those people who are interested in this and are local to Los Angeles, send me a PM.

    hee sorry for the rapid posts :)
     
  2. cyclingplatypus macrumors 6502a

    cyclingplatypus

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2007
    Location:
    Earth
    #2
    I did the exact same with the silver Ink'd, very nice upgrade indeed!
     
  3. Dr. Cabrera thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #3
    Good to know Domo-kun :D

    I was considering getting the white, skullcany's but i wanted these to stand out ( hence the black color )

    This was actually my first experience with SkullCandy headphones

    Before soldering them on permanently I tried them out for a week

    It was really a hard choice between these and the ER-6I's

    I think the ultimate decision was that, if I happen to mess these up, the replacement buds can be had for 12 bucks at Best buy ( as opposed to $80 plus online for replacement er-6i's)
     
  4. gunnarliden macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2008
    #4
    is this hard to do? can you describe how you did it or post a link?

    thanks
     
  5. cal6n macrumors 68000

    cal6n

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2004
    Location:
    Gloucester, UK
    #5
    Been there.

    [​IMG]

    Done that!

    These are the Etymotic ER6i earbuds. Photos of the process (not mine) are here.
     
  6. Dr. Cabrera thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #6
    It's not hard to do, but if you are not a very careful person, or not good at soldering I would not recommend it ( the wire is quite thin, and the solder points are very close to each other... that and the risk of melting your ear buds is pretty high)

    The link provided will give you a good idea as to what is involved. One thing though, red + copper = right side, while green+ copper = left side ( the guy in the link didnt figure this out :p )



    did you solder those yourself ?

    thanks for the link... now that i know how to take apart the somewhat expensive er-6i's I might attempt it in a few months ( also need to get some clear 3/8" shrink tubing)
     
  7. cal6n macrumors 68000

    cal6n

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2004
    Location:
    Gloucester, UK
    #7
    I did do the soldering work myself, and very fiddly it was, too. As you've noted, the wires are very thin and the contacts very close to each other. I really would not recommend it to the inexperienced.

    I've been an Engineer or Scientist all my life, but this was the smallest piece of manual work I've done! I worked on one side at a time so that I wouldn't get left and right mixed up during the procedure. In order to keep them steady, I used a cardboard box with a small hole punched in it. When the rubber flanges are removed there's a stub that can be inserted into said hole. When fitting the new heat-shrink sleeving, don't get too cavalier with the heat-gun or you'll be needing the spare filters that came with your earbuds!

    All in all, they sound absolutely stunning and I can answer calls just as Steve intended.
     
  8. Ferris23 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2007
    #8
    Is soldering required? What about a dab of super glue?
     
  9. Daremo macrumors 68000

    Daremo

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2007
    Location:
    Chicago
    #9
    I would think you would need to pick up a conductive glue or liquid solder to work correctly. The problem is, liquid solder is not the easiest to work with, and conductive glue is hard to come by. There are however "How to's" online of how to make conductive glue. I would almost suggest the gel type glue if you could use it to keep it from running.

    I did this hack awhile back, and used a soldering iron. It was a pain in the ass to solder such small contacts.
     
  10. Dr. Cabrera thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Aug 25, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #10
    [​IMG]

    google soldering
     
  11. outkast564 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2007
    #11
    Dr. Cabrera, I was looking to do the same mod. I was having trouble splitting open the skullcandy headphones. How did you get them open?
     
  12. Dr. Cabrera thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #12

    glad you asked

    you will need sharp thin tool. the problem with the headphones is that they are glued together

    CAREFULLY pry something on the top of the headphone

    you need to pry between the plastic that holds the earbud together, and the central ring

    ( i used a blunt exacto blade, start prying. Then you have to start prying from the bottom

    once it starts giving you have to carefully separate the two halfs ( the wire can break so be careful)

    then swap them

    I used a bit of hot glue to hold the wires + keep the two previously glued pieces together

    Its not easy, but its not overly difficult, well worth the effort
     
  13. mdwsta4 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    #13
    what would you charge to do this? i live in santa monica.
     
  14. Ferris23 macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2007
    #14
    Ok, I've soldered stuff before (modded my Xbox and other random crap) but I don't have good skills to get VERY fine areas. There is no reason that if I could have both pieces making contact and applied a small amount of glue to keep them there that it wouldn't work.

    So yes I know it sounded a bit silly, but it COULD work. Take back the face palm!

    ;)
     
  15. Dr. Cabrera thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #15
    No way

    well soldering isnt just a mechanical connection, it's needed so that there is no added resistance introduced..... this is especially important in electronics were amperage are so freaking low

    If you just glue the wires together you would probably get much crappier audio clarity
     
  16. Daremo macrumors 68000

    Daremo

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2007
    Location:
    Chicago
    #16
    As I pointed out above, they do sell CONDUCTIVE Glue, or liquid solder. So, to answer his question, he CAN glue if he gets the correct type.

    If you google conductive glue, you will find different FAQs and How-To's where people give you a formula to make your own home made conductive glue, because it isn't easy to find in a local store. You can however, order it online.

    So, maybe a half a face palm? Or eyes peeking through the fingers might work? :p
     
  17. Dr. Cabrera thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #17
    http://www.instructables.com/id/S55Z9FLF3KMNVQ8/

    even the guy admits that there is an introduced resistance


    look unless you are going with super expensive silver conductive glue or something like that, you will be instroducing unwanted resistance

    Daremo do you work with electronics ? Do you have any experience or background to be giving advice about something you ( probably don't) know about ?

    I'm sure there are other ( worse) solutions, but if you have the skills, soldering is the cheapest and best solution

    You could steer your car with your feet , but would you ( and yes that would deserve a facepalm)
     
  18. headphonejockey macrumors newbie

    headphonejockey

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2008
    Location:
    Missouri
    #18
    BUMP/TUTORING.

    it is always wise to show people how you did it...and why yours was such a good production.
    Not saying you're unwise in any particular manor, i would just like to know what im getting myself into before i consider it. especially since this seems to be a fair option to replace the set so you can have a mic.


    please put pics, im very interested
     
  19. cyclingplatypus macrumors 6502a

    cyclingplatypus

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2007
    Location:
    Earth
    #19
    Check out YouTube, better than pictures:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yLzs5aHv3jI
     
  20. Dr. Cabrera thread starter macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Aug 25, 2008
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    #20
    that video is a bit of a joke, he is working on previously disassembled parts


    no headphones just "snap apart" I would know, the JVC marshmellows in that video are actually glued together

    You have to be realy careful on how you take these apart if you don't want to mar the outside

    and hot glue will not work to keep the headphones together, its doesn't dry hard enough, you need carefully applied crazy glue


    This mod is not difficult, but it's not something I would recommend it to everyone ( you need to take your time and be careful) , you could potentially screw up your headphones

    here is a video that shows the actual difficulty of doing this mod


    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PHDBQdXYByk&feature=related

    notice how he uses a knife to take it apart ( you need to break the glue )
     

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