Car Aux Lightning Chargers & Audio Cables for iPhone

Car Aux Lightning Chargers & Audio Cables for iPhone

If you’re looking for a cable to listen to your iPhone’s music or charge it while you’re driving in a car, you’re in the right place. We’re going to go down the list of some of the best iPhone cables for cars in this roundup. Note: some of these iPhone car aux cables have the ability to charge your phone, others don’t, so be sure you pay close attention to what you’re choosing if charging is an important feature to you.

The Best Lightning Connector iPhone Car Audio Cables

Belkin 3.5 mm Audio Cable with Lightning Connector

This basic Lightning to headphone adapter for car stereos features a standard 1/8th inch headphone jack on the end that you plug into your car’s aux audio port and a Lightning connector on the end that you plug into your iPhone. It will work with any iPhone that has a Lightning connector (iPhone 5 and higher) and it reaches either 3 feet or 6 feet, which is plenty long enough for most car setups. You can also use it to connect to your home stereo.

Comes in black.

Continue reading Car Aux Lightning Chargers & Audio Cables for iPhone

Best Wireless Bluetooth Headphones for Kids

The Best Bluetooth Headphones for Kids (Child Size Wireless Headphones)

If you’re looking for child wireless headphones, you’re in the right place. Bluetooth headphones for kids have two major advantages. First: there’s no cord to get tangled, which is a huge advantage with some kids. Second, with Bluetooth headphones you don’t have to worry about whether or not your phone or tablet has a headphone jack or a USB-C jack or a lightning jack, because Bluetooth works with all of them. This way you can pair them with a variety of devices without worrying about what specific size jack they use.

Some wireless Bluetooth headphones for kids also offer a plug-in option called a “shareport” which lets you connect two different sets of headphones together so both kids can listen to the same content (movie, music, YouTube etc) without the parents having to hear it, such as during a car ride. We’ll point out which models offer this connection option below.

Child size wireless headphones

Puro Sound Labs Child Headphones (Wireless)

Here’s a great pair of children’s wireless headphones for iPad, iPod, iPhone or Android devices. They ship with Bluetooth 4.0 which works up to 30 feet away from your device. Like many headphones for kids, this model has a volume limiter (85 decibel max, plus a noise isolation feature) that will protect kids’ ears from turning their music too loud, even if their phone or tablet would ordinarily allow it. This model also comes in multiple colors and has soft ear cups with no sharp edges. It also has physical volume controls on the side of the right ear cup, plus a microphone for call answering. Estimated battery life: 18 hours (200 hours of standby time). Comes with a hard carrying case.

LilGadgets Untangled Pro Premium Children’s Wireless Bluetooth Headphones

This set of child size headphones work wirelessly with your iPhone/iPad/Android tablet using Bluetooth. These headphones for kids have a convenient SharePort on their side which allows you to link two sets of headphones together so both kids can listen to the same thing at the same time. This solution to link two kids’ headphones together is great for sharing a movie on an iPad without disturbing parents in the car. To use the SharePort feature, simply plug in a pair of wired headphones into the headphone jack on the side of these headphones. These child over ear headphones also limit volume to a maximum of 93 decibels to prevent your child from damaging their ears by turning the music up too loud. Recommended for ages 4 and up, available in a variety of colors.

eKids Bluetooth Wireless Headphones for Kids

These headphones for children come in an assortment of fun and bright designs that correspond with popular kids movies. They work with any phone, tablet, or computer that has Bluetooth connectivity (iPhone/Android, Mac/PC). These child wireless headphones fold to fit into a compact space for easy travel packing, and feature soft ear cups and a soft headband. The eKids headphones are volume limited so sound doesn’t get too loud and they also come with a detachable plug in cable in case you need to use them with a device that doesn’t offer Bluetooth wireless connectivity. Up to 18 hours continuous play time before recharging, offered in a variety of kid-friendly designs.

PowerLocus Wireless Bluetooth Over-Ear Headphones for Teens

This pair of wireless headphones fits teenagers and adults and some older kids. It has an FM radio and a Micro SD card slot so you can store your own music in the headphones and use them as an MP3 player without any other device needed. These Bluetooth headphones also come with a detachable cable which lets you plug into devices that don’t offer Bluetooth wireless access. Has a built in microphone to take calls with, when paired with a cell phone. Comes in a variety of color schemes (the product listing shows your color options). Note that because this pair of wireless over ear headphones is designed with adults in mind, it does not have the same volume limiter features as some of the other bluetooth headphones for kids listed in this article. So if volume limited headphones are an important feature to you, consider a different pair of wireless Bluetooth headphones for kids on this list.

MindKoo Wireless Bluetooth Headphones – Cat Ear Foldable Headphones for Kids

This fun set of children’s wireless headphones for iPad/iPhone/Android is inspired by cats. It has LED lights in the ears that light up when it’s playing music and features soft, comfortable ear cups. This model is pink but it’s available in a few different colors including black. Features volume control buttons as well as an integrated microphone for taking calls without plugging anything in. Like some other models of child size wireless headphones, this pair has the option to plug it in when it’s low on battery (it comes with a detachable cord to plug into a normal headphone jack). As you might expect, battery life varies depending on whether you’re using it with the lights. Ranges from 5-10 hours of continuous play time, depending on whether the lights are on (unlimited battery life when it’s plugged in with the included wired headphone cord and not using any lights).

Frequently asked questions about child sized wireless headphones

What is a volume limiter? Do headphones for kids need to have this?

Many headphones for children now feature a built in volume limiter which prevents the headphones from reproducing sounds louder than a specific decibel range (usually 80-90 decibels). This is because many parents are concerned about kids damaging their hearing by listening to music too loudly in their headphones. Some manufacturers are wireless bluetooth headphones for kids have built this feature into their headphones, and many of the options featured in this article (although not all) offer a volume limiter for kids.

What kind of devices can you use children’s wireless headphones with?

All the wireless headphones listed in this article use the Bluetooth wireless audio standard that has been embraced across the audio device industry. That means that you can use these headphones with iPhone and Android phones, as well as with tablets like iPads and Android tablets, plus computers like Mac and PC laptops and Microsoft Surface and Chromebooks. Some of the headphones listed in this article even come with cords that you can plug in to make them work with devices that don’t have Bluetooth, such as portable DVD players built into cars.

Do these wireless headphones use AA batteries or are they rechargeable?

All of the child headphones wireless connection type featured on this list have rechargeable batteries. You simply plug the headphones into a power source to recharge them. Many of these headphones feature USB charging cords. You can check on each individual child wireless headphones product listing page for the specifics on how to recharge them.

USB-C to Headphone Jack Adapters for Cell Phones, Laptops & More

usb c audio adapters for headphones

More and more devices are shipping with only USB-C ports and without traditional headphone jacks, from modern Android phones like the Moto Z or HTC Bolt or Google Pixel 2, to the new Macbooks. This trend isn’t going away anytime soon as long as phone and computer manufacturers keep chasing ever-thinner products.

There are three possible solutions to use headphones with these new USB type C devices: you can either A) use special USB-C headphones, B) use Bluetooth wireless headphones, or C) use a USB C headphone adapter.

That last type of solution is the one we’re going to focus on for this article. There are a few reasons why you might prefer to use normal headphones with a traditional 1/8th inch audio jack instead of those alternatives. For one, Bluetooth wireless headphones need to be recharged and may be more complicated to operate. And special USB-C headphones can’t be used with other devices that have traditional headphone jacks. So using a USB type C to headphone jack adapter can be a great solution.

USB Type C to Headphone Adapters

USB C to 3.5mm Audio Adapter (male to female)

This is a basic USB C to headphone jack adapter. It’s flexible and it will allow you to use normal headphones with your Google Pixel 2 or other USBC only smartphone (like a Xiaomi 6 or a Huawei P9, etc).

This USB C audio adapter will securely hold your headphones in place and won’t easily slip out. It comes in black.

USB Type C to 3.5mm Audio Adapter (2 pack)

Here’s another USB type C to headphone jack adapter option. These adapters come in a 2 pack and convert a USB C port to a normal 3.5mm headphone jack. It can be helpful to get more than one of these at a time in case you have multiple devices, or simply because they’re easy to lose since they’re so small.

Works for making phone calls if your headphones have an in-line microphone built in (although it volume up/down buttons may not work, as is typically the case with these types of adapters).

USB Type C to 3.5mm Audio Adapter (male to male)

Here’s a different type of USB-C to 3.5mm jack adapter: this allows you to plug your USB C phone into a car’s aux port to play music. This adapter cable is almost 4 feet long and comes in black. Its connector tips are gold plated and works with USB C phones like the Google Pixel or the Samsung Galaxy Note.

This cable can also serve as an extension cable if you’re plugging your phone into a device (like speakers) to play music out of it but you need to extend its reach.

USB C Headphone adapter with charging cable

This headphone adapter for USB C cell phones has a trick up its sleeve: it can also recharge your phone while you’re listening to music. It’s a splitter, providing you with a standard 1/8th inch headphone jack as well as a USB C port which you can plug the charging cable or a portable USB Cbattery pack into. Comes in silver and built in a sturdy braided design.

USB C Computer Hub with headphone jack

If you have a new Macbook or another computer with only USB C ports, you might wish that you had a headphone jack (as well as several other ports!). Luckily USB C hubs exist to supply you with a plethora of ports when you need them. This USB C converter box gives you a headphone jack, 3 normal USB type A ports, an SD card reader, a Micro SD card slot, a VGA output port, an HDMI output port, a Mini Display port, an ethernet jack for wired internet hookup and a USB C port for charging. Whew, that’s a mouthful to even say! If this hub doens’t fit your needs, be sure to check out our other list of USB C hubs.

Frequently asked questions about USB C headphone adapters:

Do all USB C adapters work with all USB C devices?

There are some edge cases where even USB type C adapters don’t work with some USB C ports. For the most part, devices work cross-platform but there are still some scenarios where manufacturers may not have built their devices to be cross-compatible as specified in the official USB C spec.

As time goes on this problem will sort itself out but in the meantime we recommend double checking to make sure your device is listed as compatible with USB C adapters if you’re concerned about your choice working properly. Retailers like Amazon also have very customer-friendly return policies if products don’t work.

Is USB C the same as Apple’s Lightning cable?

No, Apple’s proprietary Lightning cables are different although they look similar to the USB type C connector. One difference in the design of the two ports is that USB C has a hollow tip, while Apple’s Lightning connector is solid.

Related USB C Adapters and Accessories:
USB Type C Data Sticks, Thumbdrives, USB-C Flash Drives, and USB C Keys

The Best USB C Adapters for the new Macbook & Macbook Pro, Chromebook Pixel

Best USB Type C to Normal USB Type A Adapters

XLR to RCA Audio Adapter Cables & Converters

XLR to RCA audio adapter cables are quite handy when you need to connect (for instance) audio from an RCA source to a recorder or camera with XLR inputs. Or when connecting speakers with XLR inputs to a music or video player with RCA outputs. Of course there are plenty of other uses for RCA to XLR audio adapters as well, like connecting DJ controllers to amplifiers and other purposes. Here are some of the best reviewed RCA to XLR or XLR to RCA adapters, cables and converers we could find:

XLR to RCA adapter cableMogami Gold 6′ XLR Female to RCA Male Cable

Here’s a 6 foot (1.82m) long XLR female to male RCA adapter cable. It’s gold plated on the RCA end so you can be sure that it’ll provide high quality audio transmissions. You might find these commonly used with DJ controllers and equipment, though they have other uses as well.

Article continues below

XLR to RCA adapter cableMogami Gold XLR Male to RCA Male Patch Cable 6 feet

This XLR to RCA cable offers male connectors on both ends (it’s a male RCA to male XLR cable). It features an ultra-high density spiral shield to keep signal noise out and a lifetime warranty.

XLR to RCA adapter cableXLR Y Splitter Patch Cable, 1 XLR Female to 2 RCA Male Stereo Plug Adapter Cable

This shielded 5 foot XLR to RCA adapter cable is a patch cable that is actually a Y splitter, offering a single XLR female port and two male RCA jacks. It’s a stereo cable, meaning if you have stereo output you won’t lose half the signal like on some cables. Pefect for pro audio uses like connecting DJ controllers and amplifiers or home theater setups.

XLR to RCA adapter cableHosa Male XLR to Female RCA adapter

This short adapter, also known as a “barrel” converts an XLR cable into an RCA cable, with an RCA female connector on one end and a male XLR plug on the other end. Great for circumstances where you don’t want a full length cable.

XLR to RCA adapter cableHosa Female XLR to Female RCA adapter

Here’s a female to female barrel type adapter that converts an XLR cable into an RCA cable, or vice versa. Handy for connecting a mixer’s line output to a standalone recorder’s RCA inputs or other uses.

Browse more XLR to RCA adapters here.

Read more about XLR connector spec and the RCA connector on Wikipedia.

XLR to 3.5mm (1/8th inch) Audio Minijack Cables & Adapters

In some situations you need a way to connect a 3 pin XLR audio cable to a 1/8th inch (3.5mm) audio minijack, or vice versa. These adapters and cables can be tricky to find and not all of them are up to the same quality standards (some reviews of these products are terrible– owing perhaps to cheap manufacturing). Here are some of the best reviewed XLR to 3.5mm audio minijack plug adapters and cables we’ve been able to find:

XLR to quarter inch adapter3.5mm Male Minijack to XLR Female 3-pin adapter cable

This six foot black cable converts an XLR 3 pin female plug to a 1/8th inch (3.5mm) minijack audio plug which is male. It comes extremely highly reviewed with more than 100 positive reviews on Amazon as of the time of this article’s publication. You can use it for all sorts of uses, like connecting an MP3 player or phone with a headphone jack to an externally powered speaker with an XLR input.

Article continues below

XLR to quarter inch adapter3.5mm Male Minijack to XLR Male 3-pin adapter cable

Here’s another 6 foot adapter cable with a 3.5mm audio minijack (for normal sized headphone ports) on one end and an XLR connector on the other. The difference between this cable and the previous one is that the XLR end is a male connector as opposed to a female one, perfect for connecting microphones and speakers or other audio gear.

XLR to quarter inch adapter3.5mm Female Minijack to XLR Female 3-pin adapter cable

This bright orange 25 foot adapter cable has two female connectors: one end is a 3 pin XLR female plug, the other is a 1/8th inch (3.5mm) minijack female plug. Both ends of this cable have secure slip-free grip textures so connecting and disconnecting other cables is easy.

XLR to quarter inch adapter3.5mm Female Minijack to XLR Male 3-pin adapter cable

Although this cable looks almost identical to the previous cable, there are two differences. Instead of being a 25 foot cable it’s a 100 foot cable, and instead of offering a female XLR connector on the XLR end, it provides a male one.

XLR to quarter inch adapterStereo 3.5mm Mini Female to Male XLR Audio Adaptor

In some cases you may not want to use a full length audio patch cable to convert XLR to 1/8th inch or 3.5mm. This small converter plug (or “barrel” in audio parlance) will help bridge the gap between both cables with a male XLR connector on one end and a female 3.5mm connector on the other. One example use is to connect a powered XLR microphone with a small camcorder’s minijack port if it doesn’t have an XLR input. Note that this solid metal adapter is able to convert stereo audio to mono audio.

Browse more XLR to minijack adapters here.

Read more about XLR connector spec and the 3.5mm plug on Wikipedia.

XLR to 1/4 inch Audio Minijack Cables & Adapters

XLR to 1/4th Inch TRS Adapters & Patch Cables

If you’ve ever needed to connect an XLR device to a 1/4th inch audio device, you’ve probably needed one of these cables. On one end this cable or adapter provides a balanced XLR plug, and on the other end it offers TRS (Tip, Ring, Sleeve) 1/4th inch plug. Be sure to select the the correct gender cables: some of these are male to male, others are male to female XLR adapters. These adapters and converters come in various lengths and types. Here are some very highly reviewed XLR cables & adapters:

XLR to quarter inch adapterMogami Male to Male XLR to 1/4th inch Balanced Quad Patch Cable

This is pretty simple: the Mogami XLR to quarter inch adapter patch cable is 3 foot long cable which does just what the name says. This is a male to male cable (both the XLR side and the quarter inch side will plug into your ports). The TRS 1/4th inch side of the cable is gold plated and the entire cable comes with a lifetime warranty. Comes in black. Also available in a 25 foot length.

Article continues below

XLR to quarter inch cableMogami Female to Male XLR to 1/4th inch Balanced Quad Patch Cable

This high quality XLR to quarter inch adapter cable is 10 feet in length and offers a female XLR plug on one end, and a male 1/4th inch plug on the other. The quarter inch TRS plug is gold plated and this product comes with a lifetime warranty.

XLR to quarter inch adapterXLR 3pin Female To 1/4″ inch Male Adapter

If you don’t need a full XLR to 1/4″ inch cable and all you need is an adapter, here’s a great choice. On one end of this four inch adapter is a male 1/4th inch TRS plug, and on the other end is a female XLR 3 pin port.

XLR to 1/4 inch adapterXLR 3pin Male To 1/4″ inch Male Adapter

Here’s another XLR to quarter inch audio adapter but this one is a male to male adapter instead of a male to female XLR adapter. Measures about 3 inches long and comes in silver.

XLR to 1/4 inch adapterXLR Male To 1/4″ inch Female Adapter

This XLR adapter will plug into your female XLR port and adapt it into a female 1/4 inch port. In other words, it’s a male XLR to female quarter inch audio converter.

Note that this kit contains two identical adapters (not one female and one male).

XLR to 1/4 inch adapterXLR Female To 1/4″ inch Female Adapter

This XLR converter offers a balanced female XLR plug on one end and a female 1/4″ TRS plug on the other. Perfect for when you need to connect two male cables together.

XLR to 3.5mm (1/8th inch) Audio Minijack Cables & Adapters

The Best Clip on Microphones for Smartphones, Cameras & Computers

Using a clip on microphone can dramatically improve the quality of any video because 9 times out of 10, it will provide higher quality audio than the built in microphone in your phone, tablet, computer or camera that you’re recording video with. Clip on microphones work by providing an omni-directional microphone (often protected by a windscreen) which is close to your voice, and is connected to your recording device with a cable of various lengths.

Best Clip on Microphone for iPhones & Android Phones or iPads, or Cameras

Clip on microphones plug into your phone’s headphone jack (or your computer’s headphone port, or your camera’s 3.5 inch microphone port) and clip on to your shirt or jacket. We recommend avoiding the cheapest clip on mics because they are generally poor quality. So instead, here are some of the top reviewed clip on mics for phones:

Good: DurbPro 15 Foot Long Clip on Omni-directional Lapel Microphone for Smartphones

Best iPhone and Android Clip on Microphone

DurbPro offers an affordable clip on microphone for iPhone/Android/iPad with a 15 foot long cable. It’s well reviewed and will capture good quality audio when you record video on your phone or tablet device. On one end of the cable is a lapel microphone which you can clip to a shirt or tie, and on the other end is a normal 1/8th inch jack which will plug into your phone’s headphone jack.

It also comes with a carrying pouch (handy for a microphone with a 15 foot long cable!) and two fuzzy windshields which can be used to cut down wind noise when you’re recording outside.

Article continues below

Better: Stony-Edge Lav-Mobile Condenser Lavalier/Lapel Microphone for iPhone & Android Smartphones

How to connect Galaxy S6 to TV

The Stony-Edge Lav-Mobile microphone (that’s a bit of a mouthful to say!) is a great quality clip on microphone that works with your smartphone to capture crisp and clean audio. It comes with an 8 foot long black cable, a carrying pouch and a foam windscreen which for use outdoors to cut down on wind noise. It also comes with a velcro cord strap so you can keep the cable coiled when you’re not using it. This model has gotten great reviews from hundreds of users.

Best: Shure MVL Omnidirectional Condenser Lavalier Microphone

How to connect Galaxy S6 to TV

Shure is an internationally recognized brand that makes high quality microphones for all sort sof uses, both professional and consumer. Their MVL clip on microphone works with your smartphone to capture exceptional sound quality. The cable plugs into your headphone jack on one end and has a genuine Shure microphone at the other end, along with a detachable clip to fasten to your shirt, jacket or tie. It also comes with a carrying pouch and a foam windscreen. One thing that sets this microphone apart from some of its competitors is that it has an especially good signal-to-noise ratio which means that your voice will be captured as you speak but background sounds (like wind, air conditioning, etc) will be much quieter than they would be on comparable microphones.

Bonus: MXL MM160 Lavalier Microphone for Smartphones and Tablets

How to connect Galaxy S6 to TV

This MXL clip on mic offers a unique feature that sets it apart from many of the other clip microphones for sale: it has an extra port which you can plug your headphones into. How does this work? Say you want to be able to record a friend talking on your smartphone or camera and you want to be able to monitor their voice levels at the same time. Most clip-on microphones don’t allow you to do this since they use your camera or phone’s headphone jack to plug in to. But this mic allows you to plug your own headphones directly into its additional port so you can record and listen at the same time. Not everyone will need this feature which is why we are putting it on this list as a bonus item, but for those that do, it’s extremely handy to have this option. The MXL MM160 is very well reviewed and delivers great quality audio.

Frequently asked questions about clip on microphones:

Do clip on mics use batteries? How are they powered?

While some clip-on microphones use batteries, the ones we’ve linked to in this article are instead powered by your phone or other type of device (tablet, video camera, etc). This uses a small amount of the your camera’s power but keeps the size and weight of the microphone small and light so we think it’s generally a good trade-off. The amount of power these draw is very small compared to the size of your phone’s battery capacity.

Where should I clip on my microphone on a person’s body?

Ideally you want to clip on the microphone no further than about ten inches away from their mouth. The further away you clip it from their mouth, the weaker the sound quality will be and the more background noise you will pick up in your audio recording. If you clip the microphone too close to their mouth, you may get over an modulated recording that sounds distorted. Common lavalier mounting techniques include: clipping the microphone to a person’s shirt collar if they are wearing a non-collared shirt like a t-shirt, clipping the lav relatively high up on a man’s tie.

A frequent mistake that inexperienced lavalier mic users make is failing to hide the cable underneath the speaker’s shirt. Often it can seem awkward to ask them to thread the cable through their shirt or underneath it, but it looks super amateurish to have a big black cable dangling in the middle of your shot if you’re filming an interview. Of course, if you’re only using the lavalier for sound purposes and you won’t be filming the person speaking, then it’s fine not to hide the cable. In cases when you do need to hide the cable, we’ve found that the easiest way to do it is to ask the person to drop the end with the plug down the front of their shirt and hold on to the microphone. Once you clip the mic to their collar and then you’re free to plug the microphone in to your recording device, like an iPhone or other type of camera.

Is a clip on microphone the same thing as a lavalier or lapel microphone?

Yes! These are all different names for the same thing. Sometimes a clip on mics are called lavalier microphones or lapel microphones.


Best Wireless Lavaliere Microphones for Documentary Film

The Best Wireless Lavalier Microphones For DSLR Cameras

5 Best XLR to USB Adapters, Converters & Preamps

If you’ve ever had a professional XLR microphone and wanted it to plug it into a computer so you can record instantly, you know the dilemma. There are myriad XLR to USB adapters and not each one of them will work for every microphone. In this list, we’ll go over some of the best XLR to USB microphone adapters, XLR to USB converters, and XLR-USB preamps, and the use cases where they’re most appropriate.

Best USB to XLR Cables, Adapters, Converters & Preamps

Hosongin 10 ft USB Male to XLR Female Microphone Cable

This is a simple XLR to USB cable but take note: it will not work with every XLR microphone on the planet. At first glance with an XLR female connector on one end and a male USB plug on the other, it looks like all you’d need to connect a professional XLR microphone to your Mac or PC. But in reality, this XLR to USB cable does not include a preamp, meaning it doesn’t provide power to microphones that need it, as most condenser microphones do. But if you have a dynamic microphone (examples here), then this cable should be all you need. For those with condenser microphones (examples here), read on to the other XLR to USB converters in this list!

This cable is compatible with Mac OS X, Windows 2000, XP, Vista, 7, & 8, as well as PS2, PS3, Wii, and Xbox systems.

Polsen XLR to USB Mic Converter/Mic Preamp

If you don’t have a dynamic microphone (or one that has its own battery inside it) then you’ll need a microphone preamp built into your XLR to USB adapter.

When it comes to XLR to USB preamps, this is about as simple and basic as you can get: it provides 48 v phantom power to condenser microphones via XLR cable (not included) and allows you to plug in a supplied USB cable into your computer from the other end. If you need more frills, keep on reading this list for the next option.

Shure X2U XLR-to-USB Signal Adapter

Shure makes a multitude of pro headphones and microphones so it’s no surprise that they make XLR to USB adapters too. The Shure X2U adapter accepts an XLR input on one and and a USB output on the other. In between, the adapter provides you with a microphone port for confidence monitoring, a volume wheel, a mic gain wheel, a wheel for adjusting the volume of the headphone monitoring, and a +48 volt phantom power on and off switch, in case you’re using this XLR-USB adapter with some mics that need phantom power and some that don’t (an option the previous XLR to USB adapter on this list doesn’t offer). Its compact size makes it easy to throw in a bag and take anywhere you go, and this kit also comes with a handy carrying pouch.

Behringer Xenyx 302USB Mixer

The Behringer 302 USB mixer provides you with quite a bit more capability than the XLR to USB adapters earlier on this list. It allows you to plug in an XLR microphone, or a microphone or other audio source with a 1/4 inch jack, a 1/8th inch microphone jack, or even RCA left and right (red & white) audio cable. You can mix any one of these with dials and volume sliders, and monitor peaking with built in peak lights. Provides phantom power to XLR condenser microphones and also a headphone port with separately adjustable monitoring volume. If you need to plug in more than one XLR connected microphone, you may want to check out its bigger brother model, the Behringer Xenyx 802 which provides dual XLR ports as well as other port, or the granddaddy model with 4 XLR ports.

TASCAM US-2×2 USB Audio Interface

If you need to convert multiple XLR microphones to USB to plug into your computer, this is a great XLR to USB converter solution. It provides two XLR inputs each with individually adjustable volume plus a headphone jack and volume adjustment. This device might be especially useful if you’re recording a podcast and you want to get audio from two microphones or you’re recording music on your computer and you want to attach multiple XLR input devices. Another nice feature of this XLR to USB mixer box is that it’s designed to sit flat on your desk and not shift or knock over around even when you have long, heavy XLR cables attached to it. Also includes MIDI in and out.

Factors to consider when choosing an XLR to USB converter

Do I need phantom power? If you have a dynamic microphone then you won’t need an XLR to USB preamp which provides power to your device. But unless you’ve got a condenser microphone you’ll probably need phantom power, which means you can pick any of the items on this list except for the first one.

What kind of controls do I need on an XLR to USB converter? In some cases you might only need a volume adjustment or a phantom power on/off switch but in other cases you might want to make sure that whatever XLR to USB adapter you consider has the ability to control gain, provide real time headphone monitoring or additional inputs like RCA jacks or bass/treble adjustment ability or other controls.

Will I ever need to plug in more than one XLR device at a time? If you do, you’ll need a multiple-input XLR to USB mixer device like the last item on this list. If there’s even a chance that in the future you might later need to connect a second XLR input like a second microphone or other device we’d suggest you consider getting a multi-port XLR-USB converter solution.

The Best 1/8th Inch Headphone to 1/4 Inch Headphone Adapters (3.5mm to 6.35mm)

1/8th inch to Quarter inch headphone adapters allow you to plug in your normal headphones with their small standard 1/8th inch jack (3.5mm) into a stereo headphone port that’s a quarter-inch wide (6.35mm). The larger stereo jack used to be standard years ago but the smaller headphone port has replaced it and is much more common these days with headphone manufacturers. This is particularly useful when you need to plug in a normal pair of headphones into an older or large audio device, for instance, a stereo receiver, that only has a 1/4th inch audio jack. (Note: the opposite adapter exists too: a 1/8th to 1/4th inch stereo adapter.)

Here are some of the best 1/8th inch to 1/4th inch audio jacks:

Adapter 1/4″ (6.3mm) Male to 1/8″ (3.5mm) Adapter Plug Female to male

If you’re just looking for a basic “small headphone to big headphone jack” adapter, this is probably the right one for you.

This eighth inch to quarter inch audio adapter allows you to plug in a normal pair of headphones with a standard 3.5mm stereo plug into a female port and supplies you with a 1/4th inch stereo TRS headphone jack on the opposite end (TRS stands for Tip, Ring, Sleeve, which is the term for all of these types of audio jacks). This particular model has a textured grip surface that makes it easy to unscrew when you’re done using it, which is convenient.

3.5mm Stereo Jack to 1/4″ Plug Right Angle Adapter

In some circumstances, space might be cramped and you want a right angle 1/8th inch to 1/4th inch headphone jack adapter. For instance, if you’re plugging a pair of headphones into the back of a stereo which is then placed against a wall. Or perhaps your stereo system is close to the ground but your headphones will be in use several feet above it and you don’t want to stress the cable cuff and risk wearing it out. In those cases, a right angle 3.5mm to 6.3mm stereo audio cable converter is a good choice.

4inch 3.5mm Stereo Female to 1/4inch (6.35mm) Professional Premium Grade Stereo Right Angle Plug Audio Adapter

In other circumstances, a 1/8th inch normal headphone cable to quarter-inch cable that’s fully flexible is more useful, such as when you need to plug in your headphones or another audio accessory into a device at an awkward angle or when it’s directly up against the wall (or up against the back of an entertainment center) and there’s no space to plug in your cable at a right angle.

This four-inch-long audio jack adapter will work in these scenarios where you need a custom angle, and it has a generously sized textured grip to unscrew your headphones when you’re done using them with this stereo quarter-inch adapter.

Hosa MHE325 Female TRS 1/8-Inch to Male TRS 1/4-Inch Headphone Adapter Cable, 25-Feet

Need an even longer 1/8 inch male to 1/4 inch stereo headphone adapter cable? If you need a 1/8th inch to 1/4 inch adapter and you also need a nice, long headphone cable extender too, here’s the adapter for you. This 25 foot long cable will convert your normal stereo headphones with the smaller TRS (tip, ring sleeve) plug into a pair of headphones with the older 1/4th inch jack that you can use to plug into full-size stereo receivers and other devices that require it. Comes with a black cord.

FosPower 6.35mm (1/4″) Male to 3.5mm (1/8″) Female 3-Conductor TRS AUX Stereo Audio Headphone Jack Adapter – 24K Gold Plated (3 Pack)

If you need multiple 1/8 inch TRS headphone jack to 1/4 inch jacks, this three pack might come in handy. It’s also available as a 5 pack and if you really need a lot of them you can buy 20 of them in a pack together.

Factors to consider when choosing a 1/8th inch to 1/4 inch headphone jack adapters

Do I need a cable or a straight adapter? Some of these adapters include a cable of varying lengths, but others are simple straight barrel adapters that convert 1/8th inch tip ring sleeve (TRS) to quarter inch headphones jack.

Do I need a right-angle adapter? Sometimes when you’re converting audio in a cramped environment or need to plug in a cable to the back of a device like an audio receiver, a right-angle adapter is especially helpful. Some of these 1/8″ to 1/4″ adapters have a right-angle plug for just this purpose.

Do I need a grip on the adapter? Some adapters have grips or textured areas on their plugs to make them easier to unplug. This is especially useful when you’re frequently plugging and unplugging audio cables often and as it can save time. Not all 1/8th inch to 1/4th inch adapters have these grips however so if that’s important to you you’ll want to make sure you pay attention to the grip size on the adapter you choose.

Best USB to Headphone Jack Converters

USB to Headphone jack converters allow you to plug in a normal pair of headphones into a USB port. They work by sending your computer’s audio output signal out of a USB port and then providing you with a headphone port to plug your 1/8th inch (standard size) headphones into them.

Example uses for USB to Headphone Jack Converters

You might want to use a USB to headphone jack converter if your computer’s sound card is broken and you don’t want to pay for costly repairs. Or, you might be using a laptop that doesn’t have a headphone jack, or perhaps you just want to be able to plug in a pair of headphones into your keyboard which might have a spare USB port on it, instead of the computer itself.

The Best USB to Headphone Jack Converters:

SYBA External USB Stereo Sound Adapter for Windows, Mac, Linux Extra Audio Source with Microphone Jack
USB to Headphone Jack Adapter

This USB to headphone adapter provides you with a standard size headphone jack in exchange for a USB port on your computer. It does not require USB 3.0 to work– any old normal USB 2.0 port will work just fine. It also provides you with a 1/8th inch microphone jack, in case you want to use one of those as well.

EC Technology Aluminum External USB Sound Card Audio Adapter with 3.5mm Stereo Headphone/Speaker and Mono Microphone Jacks
USB to Headphone Jack Adapter

Here’s another extremely well reviewed USB to headphone jack converter. It does the exact same thing as the other model listed above, but this one is silver. Which one should you choose? Honestly, they’re exactly the same, it just comes down to your color preference: black vs silver.