Warning: Headphone Incompatibliity with Current Gen iPods
Jul 5, 2005 at 2:03 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 16

gratefulshrink

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This is really bad, people.

I sprang for a brand new 60 gig color ipod (they are no longer called ipod photo -- all new standard ipods are either 20 or 60 gig and have a color display).

Loaded it up and started using my AKG 24P, just for a test drive. It kept randomly pausing during playback, with the headphone firmly plugged into the jack.

Without doing any research, I called Apple, and then went to the store in Soho, NYC. They explained the auto-pause feature, in which if you disconnect a headphone during playback, the unit will automatically pause and then power down (power-saving feature, according to Apple). They also restored the software for me, but it still happened. They were nice enough to just replace it for me with a new one.

However, the problem recurred with the new one as well. I did my reasearch later, and found that this has been a problem for months (see thread here: http://forums.ipodlounge.com/showthr...ausing+problem), and Apple has no fix for it yet. The crux of the problem is that the iPod senses that a headphone has been pulled out (even if hasn't) and auto-pauses. This may have to do with the physical contact of the plugs, or may not, and any brand or type of headphone is susceptible to this problem (except stock ipod buds, of course). People have suggested putting clear tape over the jack, and similar home-made remedies, but frankly it is ridicuous that Apple did not field test with a variety of third-party cans.

I have tried with some of my different cans, and luckily, most don't show the problem. Plus, if you are using the dock/line-out, you avoid the issue.

I just wanted to warn folks.
 
Jul 5, 2005 at 2:15 PM Post #3 of 16

Jahn

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what the FREAK. *coddles his 3rd Gen ipod for dear life*
 
Jul 5, 2005 at 3:12 PM Post #4 of 16

episiarch

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Many 1/8" plugs have a metal disc at the base of the plug, rather than the insulating plastic that the iBuds have. What's happening is that when this conductive disc shorts against the metallic portion of the iPod body, the auto-pause 'feature' is activated.

This is super-irritating but not hard to defeat: you just need to provide some insulation between the base of the headphone plug and the iPod body.

My preferred way to do this is to coat that conductive disc at the base of the headphone plug with something. Even Wite-Out (or generic equivalents) will do the trick, though I use a goop-dispensing pen made for adding insulation to printed circuit boards: http://www.mgchemicals.com/products/4190gp.html (warning: nasty smell, use with good ventilation)
 
Jul 5, 2005 at 3:39 PM Post #6 of 16

gratefulshrink

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Quote:

Originally Posted by episiarch
Many 1/8" plugs have a metal disc at the base of the plug, rather than the insulating plastic that the iBuds have. What's happening is that when this conductive disc shorts against the metallic portion of the iPod body, the auto-pause 'feature' is activated.

This is super-irritating but not hard to defeat: you just need to provide some insulation between the base of the headphone plug and the iPod body.

My preferred way to do this is to coat that conductive disc at the base of the headphone plug with something. Even Wite-Out (or generic equivalents) will do the trick, though I use a goop-dispensing pen made for adding insulation to printed circuit boards: http://www.mgchemicals.com/products/4190gp.html (warning: nasty smell, use with good ventilation)



From my research so far, I would say that your answer is only partly true, because some headphones with a metal disc at the base of the mini plug do NOT cause the problem. It is even less logical than you suggest.

Also, who wants to start messing with a $300-400 product over something like this? If the issue is arising due to the auto-pause feature, then the solution should derive from that as well. I have not yet heard of a definitive way to disable the auto-pause feature.
confused.gif
 
Jul 5, 2005 at 3:43 PM Post #7 of 16

episiarch

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Quote:

Originally Posted by gratefulshrink
From my research so far, I would say that your answer is only partly true, because some headphones with a metal disc at the base of the mini plug do NOT cause the problem.


gratefulshrink, are you in fact shorting that disc to the iPod body? Are you quite certain?
 
Jul 5, 2005 at 3:45 PM Post #8 of 16

Little J040

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Well Im not sure if this is related to the topic but I figured I'd throw it out there in the first place. My ipod eats every pair of headphones I plug into the headphone jack. Thank god I haven't plugged in the Er-4. 595s, or SR125s into the headphone jack yet. Every pair of portable headphones I've bought the Ipod has a way of killing the right ear bud all the time. Not sure if it's shorting out on the bottom of the jack like you said, but It surely pisses me off!
 
Jul 5, 2005 at 4:04 PM Post #10 of 16

philodox

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Wierd, the K 26 P worked fine on my Wife's 4th Gen iPod. Maybe the process that it underwent at www.colorwarepc.com when they painted it green made a difference or perhaps this problem doesnt happen with all of the 4th Gen iPods?
 
Jul 5, 2005 at 4:11 PM Post #11 of 16

gratefulshrink

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Quote:

Originally Posted by philodox
Wierd, the K 26 P worked fine on my Wife's 4th Gen iPod. Maybe the process that it underwent at www.colorwarepc.com when they painted it green made a difference or perhaps this problem doesnt happen with all of the 4th Gen iPods?


From what I've read, it's highly variable which headphones are affected, and whether or not it will happen each time with each pair of headphones.

All I know is that it is very frustrating. I'm not usually one for conspiracy theories, but why shoudl the stock buds be the only immune phones? Without those ipod earbuds, you can't get the free advertising. I dunno, makes me suspicious .....
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Jul 5, 2005 at 4:19 PM Post #12 of 16

gratefulshrink

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Quote:

Originally Posted by episiarch
gratefulshrink, are you in fact shorting that disc to the iPod body? Are you quite certain?



All I know is that I have tried a few of my cans and stuck them in the headphone jack, and hit play, and then tried swiveling them and rotating the minplug, etc. I know the phones were fully in, because they were working. But, for example, my Grado SR-60's worked fine (thank God!), and they have a metal base which shoudl clearly come in contact with the metal top of the ipod.

So, my answer is that I think I am shorting them, but the problem is still variable.

(Totally irrelevant, but as I wrote this I noticed that Grado contains the two words "god" and "ra" -- an Egpytian deity. Maybe that's why they are such good cans......)
 
Jul 5, 2005 at 4:25 PM Post #13 of 16

episiarch

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Hmmm. OK, well, explanations aside, painting some insulation onto that disc has, as far as I can determine, fixed the problem with each of the four or so headphones on which I've tried it.

Wite-out seems to work just as well as the green insulation fluid, though I suspect it won't hold up as well in the long run. It's easy to scrape off with a small, sharp knife, so it's not a bad way to try out this fix and see if it's right for you.
 
Jul 6, 2005 at 11:44 AM Post #14 of 16

Wimmig

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Yet another typical example of how Apple makes products for mass profit and rides consumer fashion instead of producing dedicated A/V products.

Not unique to Apple, but a sad, sad trend in the world. They will never fix it from a manufactoring point of view, why? Because they include perfectly working buds and i'll bet somehwere in their explanation is a clause stating that the product was not designed with aftermarket audio products in mind.

Do they even make those products? I've got a feeling...
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Jul 6, 2005 at 11:48 AM Post #15 of 16

kin0kin

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well i dont really own one of the latest ipods but i do have a 1st gen mini. for some reasons, the auto pause feature when a headphone is disconnected no longer works. i cant recall since when that happen but my ipod just wont pause even if i diconnect my headphone from the remote or the headjack on ipod directly.
 

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