Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. It's 100% free.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I've just buyed this headphones:

They have a mic button so you can talk when attached to a mobile.

If I use the headphones in a mobile (I've just tested Samsung S3 and S1) it works like a charm.

But if I use them in my Sony Laptop with Ubuntu, sound quality is really bad. If the player is flash, sound is not good. If it is not, sound is just horrible. But if I press mic button, sound is perfect!!

What can I do?

share|improve this question

closed as off-topic by Braiam, Avinash Raj, BuZZ-dEE, falconer, Lucio Feb 4 '14 at 20:24

This question appears to be off-topic. The users who voted to close gave this specific reason:

  • "This is not about Ubuntu. Questions about other Linux distributions can be asked on Unix & Linux, those about Windows on Super User, those about Apple products on Ask Different and generic programming questions on Stack Overflow." – Braiam, Avinash Raj, BuZZ-dEE, falconer, Lucio
If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

It is very simple. The headphones with mic aren't compatible with the only headphone jack.

The headphones with mic used with phone has 4 step. The standard configuration is either CTIA or OMTP. The tip is audio L, next step is audio right, 3rd step is ground (or may be mic) and 4th step is mic (or ground).

On the other hand the headphone jack only compatible with 3 pin, audio L, audio R and ground.

The reason you get horrible sound because of those last two steps. When you press the mic button, it shorts the ground with mic which intern makes your headset act like earphone without mic.

This is not related anything to ubuntu. Pure hardware issue. You need to get a 4pin to 3 pin spliter like below, or if you're having this similar problem on a mobile try the second picture

enter image description here2

share|improve this answer
Another simple solution which works for me is to not push the plug all the way in. Slowly push it inwards and find the place where both the left and the right channels are receiving audio. – Sicco Aug 4 '14 at 15:58
Or get a rubber band and put it on the remote to keep the button pressed. EDIT: Someone suggested a binder clip at the bottom of the page – Hitechcomputergeek Nov 21 '15 at 4:00

I would suggest going to Sound Settings and try adjusting them. The bad sound might be an issue that can be fixed through the laptops' settings... If you have tried this, please let me know for further details.

Regards, Anthie G.

enter image description here

share|improve this answer
I cannot resolve the issue using Sound Settings (or I don't know how to do it) – xavi Jul 12 '13 at 12:32
Plug your headphones in and go to sound settings. Go to the "Output" tab click on your headphones and try adjusting the settings. * See the picture above :) (I edited my answer) :) – Anthie Georgiadi Jul 12 '13 at 18:07
For anyone reading this: this is the answer, turn your balance all the way left or right and it will fix it – Adam May 15 '14 at 9:30

For the laptop, I just put a small binder clip over the microphone button, keeping it permanently pressed. Problem is most new ear bud come with the microphone, so you may have to shop around.

share|improve this answer

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.