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How to fix broken headphone cable?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
A few days ago I was replacing the plastic grills on my SR80i with metal mesh. The mod went pretty smooth, except for one little problem. When I was putting one of the cups back together, I accidentally pushed the sides too far together. This caused the wire between the two halves to get cut into. After this happened I checked to see if sound would still come from that side, as it appeared only the wire covering had been cut, but unfortunately it would only work if I held the wire straight. My initial reaction was to cover the exposed wires with electrical tape, but I couldn't find any, so I used duct tape instead. To my surprise, this actually worked! I put my headphones back together, and have been using them for the last couple of days with out any problems. Sound still comes from both sides, and it appears to be the same volume. Even though it seems to be working fine with the duct tape covering, I'm wondering what a better way to fix the connection would be? This would mostly just provide me with peace of mind, so I wouldn't have to worry about one side being louder than the other or degradation of sound quality. Could I just twist the exposed wires together and cover them with electrical tape, or would I need to solder them together? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
post #2 of 10
You'll have to recable it most likely....
you can do this yourself or send it off to someone
if you have any other questions about it for me specifically, it would probably be best to shoot me a PM
post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 
Would it really require a recable? It doesn't look like any of the actual wiring was damaged much, as the headphones are still totally usable. If that's really the only option I'll consider it, but I doubt that I could do it myself. Do I have any other options?
post #4 of 10
Oh, read it wrong, i thought the actual wire was cut. If it is just the insulation that was cut, you're ok for the connection and you could possibly heatshrink it but you would have to unsolder the wires from the driver in order to get the cable in the tubing.... otherwise, I cannot think of any other way
post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
Well I just took another look at the cable, and it looks like the actual wiring wasn't affected. I'm a little puzzled as to why there was no sound was coming out the first time I tried it without duct tape, as it seems to work fine now. Maybe the two different cables on that side were touching each other? Would that even make a difference? Anyways, could I just wrap the wires in electrical tape instead of using heat shrink? I've never soldered before, so I'd like to avoid detaching the cable from the driver.
post #6 of 10
I would just wrap them in electrical tape, as you said.
In fact, if the duct tape is working fine, and there are no cosmetic issues with it, I'd just leave it.

but, keep in mind that you should probably eventually recable them. It's really not that hard.
The biggest issue is that the cost to recable them is probably about the value of the headphones.

Of course, then you would have the equipment, supplies, and experiance to make cables or start on other DIY projects.
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 
I wrapped all the wires in electrical tape so they're all nice and insulated again. I'm still confused by the fact that the side where the insulation got cut wasn't working the other day, but everything seems fine again. I'll probably go ahead and recable these sometime in the future. I could use the experience, Grados are easy to recable, and that would probably also increase resale value. Thanks for the help guys!
post #8 of 10


Edited by labrat - 9/14/11 at 4:13pm
post #9 of 10
cut the cable where they were cut, make sure both sides are even (left and right) then recable your headphones using their original cables, so no cost on your end just a bit of time
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by labrat View Post
As you lost sound after your accident. the wire has been cut.
But by keeping the wire straight, you have made the ends of the cut-off strands to make contact, and the signals are being transmitted over the cut.
But the cable is damaged, and eventually you will have a problem again.
If you could solder the broken wires together, and then put some electrical insulation tape around it, you will have a more permanent solution.
But by now, your solution is very much a short time one.
I am sorry about this, but that is the fact.
A rewiring is also a solution, though rewiring such a cheap item I am not sure would be worth it.
You could also cut off some of the wire,from the cut-off point, and solder the wire back on the drivers.
You would have to do this on both sides though, to keep the symmetry.
Practically, a rewire job.
Since the cut is so close to the drivers, you should not have to cut off too much of the wire, so it is up to you to determine if this is a viable solution.
Good luck with your phones!
Yeah, that's what I'm considering doing. It really doesn't look any wires were cut, though. No matter how much I twist the cable around, I can't make it lose sound anymore. I took a very close look at all the exposed wire last night before I wrapped everything in electrical tape, and I couldn't find anywhere that the wires seemed to be disconnected. I wonder if I just imagined it the first time; I didn't even have the 'phones fully assembled, and just held the drivers to my ears. That seems a little unlikely, but who knows. Anyways, I'm planning on building my own cable. Does anyone know of a guide tutorial on how to do so?
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