Master Guide: How to Use Apple Earbuds as Mic and Headphones on PC

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Apple’s line of high-quality audio devices includes its popular earbuds, typically used with its range of iPhones, iPods, and iPads. However, while they were designed for use on Apple devices with a relevant port or wireless capability, this does not mean they can’t be used elsewhere. In this piece, we will dive into how you can co-opt Apple earbuds for use as both a microphone and headphones on your PC.

Apple’s well-designed and compact earbuds often prove more than satisfying for audio needs on a PC, offering superb quality and practicality for a myriad of tasks from gaming to taking Zoom calls.

Basics of Apple Earbuds

2.1 What are Apple Earbuds?

Apple Earbuds, known as EarPods or AirPods, are sleek, compact devices designed to deliver superior audio quality in traditional wired or wireless forms, respectively. They offer comfortable fit with their ergonomic design and pack some brilliant features.

2.2 Different Features of Apple Earbuds

Among the stand-out features of Apple earbuds include noise cancellation, easy integration with other Apple products, and in the case of AirPods Pro and later models, even spatial audio for a true surround sound experience. They can serve as a mic and speaker simultaneously, making them ideal for tasks like video conferences or online gaming.

Challenges in Using Apple Earbuds with a PC

3.1 Compatibility Issues

One challenge is compatibility, especially with older PCs and non-Apple products. It’s worth noting the plug on Apple earbuds. It’s not always compatible with all PCs’ audio jacks.

3.2 Software Problems

Software issues may present another potential hurdle. Some PCs may have problems identifying and utilizing the earbuds as a microphone in addition to headphones, requiring additional setup.

Using Apple Earbuds as a Microphone on a PC

4.1 Step-by-Step Guide to Connect Earbuds

To connect your earbuds to your PC, simply plug them into the microphone jack, which usually has a small microphone icon for easy identification. If your device uses USB-C, you may need an adapter to connect your earbuds.

4.2 Configuring PC Settings for Microphone Use

On the software side, the PC may not immediately recognize the earbuds as a microphone. In Windows 10, you’ll have to head to Sound settings > Input > Select your input device, and then choose your earbuds from the dropdown list.

Using Apple Earbuds as Headphones on a PC

5.1 Connecting Earbuds as Headphones

Connecting earbuds to be used as headphones on a PC is similar. Just plug it into the corresponding jack, usually labeled with a headphone symbol.

5.2 Adjusting PC Settings for Headphones Use

Again, your PC won’t necessarily recognize the earbuds automatically. In Windows 10, go into your Sound settings, select Output, and then choose your earbuds from the options available.

Troubleshooting Common Issues

6.1 Poor Sound Quality Issues

For poor sound quality, you might want to check your PC’s sound settings. Updating your audio drivers can also rectify this problem.

6.2 Connectivity Problems

Connectivity issues can sometimes be solved by simple restarts or trying a different port.

6.3 Microphone Not Picking Up Sound Issue

If your microphone isn’t picking up audio as expected, ensure it’s selected as your input device in your PC’s sound settings.

Best Practices and Tips for Using Apple Earbuds with a PC

7.1 Maintaining Sound Quality

Maintaining sound quality means ensuring your earbuds are clean and free of dust.

7.2 Ensuring Longevity of Earbuds

Ensuring longevity would include proper storage and handling of the earbuds.

7.3 Tips for Optimal Use of Apple Earbuds as Mic and Headphones on PC

For optimal use, always keep your system drivers updated, and adjust settings such as volume levels, balance, and input sensitivity in the settings panel as needed.


As we’ve seen, while Apple earbuds aren’t natively designed for PC, with some tweaks they can be adapted for great efficiency and quality. With the right steps, these already valuable audio devices can reach new heights of versatility and usability.

Key Takeaways

– Apple Earbuds can be used both as headphones and a microphone on a PC
– Ensuring compatibility and perfecting settings/customizations can improve performance
– Regular cleaning and proper storage contribute to longevity of earbuds
– Ensure the latest system updates for optimal performance
– Troubleshoot common issues such as poor sound quality or connectivity problems through settings and driver updates.