iPod Hack: Use the iPod Headphones as a Microphone

Posted April 18, 2006 by Anthony in iPod

Yes, the iPod headphones are actually low quality microphones.


I found this this to be quite interesting. There is one thing of which you might want to take note–there are 2 models of headphones that apple has made. I have the older one with the longer jack. The newer headphones have a much shorter jack area. I don’t know if it will work with the newer headphones. (I got mine a little bit before the video iPod came out).

I discovered this while I was in diagnostic mode. To get your iPod into this mode follow the instructions in this recipe: http://www.tech-recipes.com/rx/1314/put_your_ipod_photo_nano_video_or_mini_fourth_generation_in_diagnostic_mode.

1. Once you are in diagnostic mode select IO. Go down to the option “Audio” and select it. Select “Mic”.

2. When you select “Mic” the screen on your iPod should say RECORDING. While it says this just talk into your headphones. Remember to talk loudly because they do not record in the best quality.

3. After a while the RECORDING screen will go away to reveal a screen that reads “ACTION to play”, and “MENU to exit”

4. Insert your headphones into your ears. Press the center button and you will hear whatever you said into the headphones. You could also just hook them up to your computer and open up the sound recorder, but they record in such low quality that you just can’t hear yourself well through the default windows sound recorder.

Quite frankly, I am not quite sure why I decided to try to talk into my headphones while my iPod was recording, but I was sure surprised when it actually worked!

Please remember about which type of headphones I have, though. I don’t think it matters what you use to record it because it recorded on my iPod and computer, but the sound quality was much better when I recorded on my iPod.

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