(Last Updated On: September 9, 2020)

An in-depth guide to connecting any kind of headphones to the PS4.

Connecting Headphones to PS4
Connecting Headphones to PS4

When playing games on the PS4, enjoying the audio allows for a more enjoyable and immersive experience. However, it’s sometimes best to route the audio to your headphones rather than having it play out on the TV’s speakers. The only problem is that due to the PS4’s compatibility issues, connecting your regular headset to the console proves a lot harder than you thought.

What’s worse is that using headphones may be your only option, and this is especially true if you want to game at night without having to disturb everyone else in the house. Are you really going to sacrifice the game’s audio and lose out on the immersive experience?

Luckily enough, you don’t have to deal with that problem. We’ve made this in-depth guide showing you exactly how to use headphones with PS4. No matter what kind of headset you have, you’ll definitely find a method that helps you connect your device seamlessly.

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Can You Use Regular Headphones on PS4?

PS4 with headphones
PS4 with headphones

Yes! You can definitely use regular headphones on the PS4.

The PS4 follows the Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association (CTIA) standard, which is the newer, more followed layout for headphone jacks. This means that most headphones should work just fine, but some may require a bit of modification or even third-party devices.

How to Connect Wired Headphones to PS4

Most headphones with a 3.5mm audio jack can work on the PS4 after a few tweaks to the settings to set them up. However, non-compatible wired headphones (those that follow the OMTP standard) can still work with the help of a converter.

How to connect compatible wired headphones to PS4

  1. Turn on your PS4 and navigate to the Settings using the controller.
    Go to settings
    Go to settings
  2. Scroll down and select Devices.
    'Devices' in Settings
    ‘Devices’ in Settings
  3. On the Devices page, you’ll see a list of all the possible devices that you can connect to your PS4. Since we’re looking to connect a pair of headphones, select Audio Devices.
    Select audio devices
    Select audio devices
  4. Plug your wired headset to the PS4 controller.
    Plugging in headphones to PS4 controller
    Plugging in headphones to PS4 controller
  5. Select Output Device, then select Headset Connected to Controller.
    Changing the output device
    Changing the output device
  6. To properly set up and test your headset mic, go back to the Audio Devices page and select Adjust Microphone Level. Adjust the microphone input level using the slider accordingly.
    Adjusting the microphone level
    Adjusting the microphone level
    Note that the PS4 does NOT route all the audio to the headphones by default. If you’re fine with having the voice chat audio to play through the headphones while the game audio plays through your TV’s speakers, then you can stop here. But if you prefer ALL audio playing through your headphones, then proceed to the next step.
  7. Go back to the Audio Devices page and select Output to Headphones, then select All Audio.
    Routing all audio to headphones
    Routing all audio to headphones

How to connect non-compatible wired headphones to PS4

It’s important to note that there are two common arrangements or standards for most smartphone headsets. These standards are the Cellular Telecommunications and Internet Association (CTIA) standard, sometimes known as the American Headset Jack (AHJ) standard, and the Open Mobile Terminal Platform (OMTP) standard.

The difference between the CTIA and OMTP standard is that the former has the microphone connector point on the base of the jack and the ground connector on the 2nd ring, while the latter has these positions swapped.

Comparison of CTIA vs. OMPT (From: stackoverflow.com)
Comparison of CTIA vs. OMPT (From: stackoverflow.com)

What this means is that connecting a CTIA headset to an OMTP port, and vice versa, will result in the audio being too quiet due to compatibility issues. Newer smartphones and your PS4 use the CTIA standard, so if you want to use OMTP standard headphones, you’ll have to make use of an OMTP to CTIA converter/adapter.

OMTP to CTIA converter (From: amazon.com)
OMTP to CTIA converter (From: amazon.com)
For your reference, the converter in the picture is the Occus Universal 3.5mm OMTP to CTIA Earphone Converter.
  1. Refer to the steps listed on the “How to connect compatible wired headphones to PS4” section.
  2. On step 4, simply connect your headphones to the OMTP to CTIA converter before plugging the converter to your PS4 controller.
    Using the OMTP to CTIA converter (From: Kliatskia Marina YouTube Channel)
    Using the OMTP to CTIA converter (From: Kliatskia Marina YouTube Channel)
  3. Continue with the rest of the steps.

How to Connect Wireless Headphones to PS4

There are different ways that you can connect wireless headphones to your PS4. However, it’s important to know that not all Bluetooth headphones can work seamlessly with the way Sony sets up its Bluetooth connections, which primarily focuses on branded PS4-compatible wireless headphones only.

There’s no need to worry though, as other non-compatible headphones can still work on the PS4 using a few tricks.

How to connect PlayStation Wireless Headset to PS4

This section is meant for officially compatible headsets made primarily for the PS4. Please refer to PlayStation’s list of compatible headsets to see if your headphone model is listed.

  1. Make sure that the headset is charged up by using the USB cable that came along with it or the one from your PS4 system.
  2. Plug your headset’s USB adapter to the USB port of your PS4 or console.
  3. Turn on your headphones and put it in pairing mode. Once the blue light stops flashing and turns into a solid blue, your headphones should successfully be connected and play audio.
    USB adapter and headphones in pairing mode (From: TampaTec YouTube Channel)
    USB adapter and headphones in pairing mode (From: TampaTec YouTube Channel)
    If you’re having trouble connecting your headphones and still don’t hear any audio playing from them after the steps above, continue with the steps below.
  4. Navigate to Settings using the controller.
    Navigate to settings
    Navigate to settings
  5. Scroll down and select Devices.
    Select devices
    Select devices
  6. On the Devices page, you’ll see a list of all the possible devices that you can connect to your PS4. Select Bluetooth Devices.
    Select Bluetooth devices
    Select Bluetooth devices
  7. Make sure your headset is still in pairing mode (flashing blue light) and wait while your PS4 searches for nearby Bluetooth devices.
  8. Once your headphones appear in the list of Bluetooth devices, select it and wait for a moment while it connects.
    Select your headphones
    Select your headphones
  9. If needed, you may be prompted to register your device to complete the connection.
    Register your device
    Register your device

How to connect regular Bluetooth headphones to PS4

The methods in this section can work for regular Bluetooth headphones (even Apple Airpods) that aren’t officially compatible with PS4. Below are the two options that you can try.

Using the PS4 Remote Play App

This option isn’t perfect as there is a possibility that it might not work for some games and unverified devices, but it’s still worth trying out especially if you don’t want to spend on Bluetooth dongles.

The PS4 Remote Play app basically lets you access your PS4 through your mobile device using a Wi-Fi connection. It allows you to play PS4 games on your phone using the on-screen controller and phone display while also joining chats using your phone’s mic.

The app only works on mobile devices with Android version 5.0 and up or iOS 12.1 and up.
  1. Download and install the PS4 Remote Play app (Download link: iOS, Android).
    PS4 Remote Play App (From: play.google.com)
    PS4 Remote Play App (From: play.google.com)
  2. Activate the Remote Play feature on your PS4 by navigating to Settings, then select Remote Play Connection Settings. Make sure you check the Enable Remote Play option on the PS4.
    Enabling Remote Play on the PS4
    Enabling Remote Play on the PS4
  3. Select Add Device then Code. You should see an 8-digit code.
    Code to use Remote Play
    Code to use Remote Play
  4. Open your PS4 Remote Play app on the phone and enter the code to register your device.
    Entering the code to the Remote Play app
    Entering the code to the Remote Play app
    You may experience slight lagging in gameplay and audio depending on your mobile device specs and network connection speed.

Using Bluetooth Dongle

In order to get the best gaming experience, you should invest in a Bluetooth dongle with a microphone.

USB dongle with microphone (From: amazon.com)
USB dongle with microphone (From: amazon.com)
For your reference, the dongle in the picture is the PS4 Bluetooth USB Adapter with Microphone.
  1. Plug the USB Bluetooth dongle into your PS4 and wait for it to enter pairing mode.
  2. Turn on your Bluetooth headset and put it into pairing mode as well. The flashing blue light should turn into solid blue once the headset is connected to the PS4.
  3. Insert the microphone into the controller’s 3.5mm port.
This should allow you to enjoy audio through your headphones, but you can only use the microphone plugged into the controller and not the built-in microphone on the headphones.

How to Choose the Best Headphones for PS4

The best way to really enjoy playing on the PS4 is to invest in a good-quality gaming headset. You don’t have to worry about breaking the bank and spending a lot of money because “expensive” doesn’t always equate to “high-quality”.

If you’re interested in finding out the best wireless headphones to use on the PS4, please feel free to check out our review.

For a better look at gaming headsets and an in-depth guide to choosing one, you should check out our in-depth guide.

Compatibility

This doesn’t necessarily mean that you have to buy the official/branded PlayStation headsets listed on their website, but you do have to check if the specific model works well with the PS4. Although any pair of headphones can work, it’s always best to invest in something that won’t require any additional expenses as much as possible.

Comfort

Whether you’re dropping down to the WarZone as a fully stacked squad of 4, or prefer to play a solo RPG where you’re part of the Phantom Thieves, you’re most likely going to game it out for hours on end.

Since you’ll be playing for such a long time, you should find a pair of headphones that prioritizes comfort over style. Different factors can affect the overall comfort of your headphones such as the form factor, ear cup material, weight, and headband clamp force.

You’ll want a form factor that suits your personal needs while making sure the ear cup material is both light and allows for airflow throughout your ears. If possible, your headphones should also have an adjustable headband so you can tighten or loosen the headset as needed.

Surround Sound

This is more of a “bonus” factor that is nice to have but isn’t really necessary. However, using headphones that offer accurate omnidirectional hearing can often give you an advantage in some games as you can hear the direction of specific sounds such as footsteps.

Microphone

Having a proper microphone is important if you want to enjoy and fully utilize the gaming experience and chat properties of the PS4. This is especially true when playing competitive multiplayer games where you need good communication and teamwork with friends or strangers online.

Conclusion

With all the methods and instructions mentioned in this article, you should now be able to use your headphones on the PS4 whether you’re using a wired, wireless, compatible, or non-compatible headset.

Not only that, but we’ve also given you exactly what to look out for when buying a new pair of headphones for your PS4. This allows you to narrow down your choices by making it clear on what qualities the headphones should possess for you to have the best possible gaming experience.

How did you like our guide? Were you able to connect your headset? Got any recommendations for headsets to use on the PS4? We’d love to hear from you in the comments!