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Modifying headset

Discussion in 'General Electronics Discussion' started by icehowler, May 31, 2012.

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  1. icehowler

    icehowler

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    May 31, 2012
    Hello! I am new on this forum so I am sorry if I post this question on an inappropriate section.

    I have an USB 5.1 headset from Zalman. I would like to modify it to also add support for 3.5 mm jack output. To do this I would need to cut the wires between the headset's speakers and it's sound card and connect them with a stereo cable. So basically I would have the headset split in 2 parts -> input from it's sound card (USB) and input from other sound card (3.5 mm jack) both connected to the speakers.

    Would this work well? Another question is how should I connect the wires since it is a 5.1 headset and has 8 cables. I have attached some pictures of how the cables are connected to it's sound card.

    Big thanks!
     

    Attached Files:

  2. CDRIVE

    CDRIVE Hauling 10' pipe on a Trek Shift3

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    May 8, 2012
    What model number is it?
     
  3. icehowler

    icehowler

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    May 31, 2012
    Zalman ZM-RS6F
     
  4. CDRIVE

    CDRIVE Hauling 10' pipe on a Trek Shift3

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    May 8, 2012
    I went to Zalman, pasted ZM-RS6F in the search box. Not found was returned. The closest model found is ZM-RS6F+M, which isn't USB.

    Post your pdf.
     
  5. icehowler

    icehowler

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    May 31, 2012
    http://www.zalman.com/ENG/product/Product_Read.asp?idx=213 :) there is the manual too.

    The problem is they say the headsets have 3 connectors instead of USB but that isn't true. If you search them on google you can see they have USB connection. I don't understand why on website is different.
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2012
  6. CDRIVE

    CDRIVE Hauling 10' pipe on a Trek Shift3

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    Ah, there's the issue. Last night I spent nearly 45 minutes trying to garner 'accurate' information on this item. Today I've downloaded two pdf's that don't pertain to it. I haven't made it to first base helping you and I'm already frustrated and burnt out. :eek:
     
  7. icehowler

    icehowler

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    May 31, 2012
    I feel guilty :-s
     
  8. CDRIVE

    CDRIVE Hauling 10' pipe on a Trek Shift3

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    May 8, 2012
    OK, what we need here is some input from members that are familiar with this technology. USB is a data port so, unless someone tells me differently, I have to assume that your headset receives raw data which is processed by an on board chip, which converts it and then outputs 4Ch audio. I also have to assume, that since Zalman makes it damn near impossible to extract tech data about it, it's not too popular and may even be dropped by them.
     
  9. icehowler

    icehowler

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    May 31, 2012
    You have all my thanks for your help! I really appreciate it. Maybe I should not touch them :D and buy other headset for my phone. It would be the best. I just wanted to "upgrade" them.
     
  10. CDRIVE

    CDRIVE Hauling 10' pipe on a Trek Shift3

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    Don't run off just yet. I rarely abandon people. I've just re-read your original post and will make some suggestions later on. I had a rather large birthday meal, G&Ts too, and now I can barely breathe! :eek: Now where the heck did I put my cigarettes? :rolleyes:
     
  11. CocaCola

    CocaCola

    3,635
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    Apr 7, 2012
    Having a single 3.5mm jack is going to just make the headphones stereo, you won't have the 5.1 effect as that is encoded in the USB datastream... Basically you will be dumbing them down to stereo unless you bring in all 5.1 channels over multiple plugs...

    The short of it is that on the one side of the sound card you have all the speaker take offs, you are going to want to identify the 'center' speaker wires and install a switch there to flip between the USB card and 3.5mm jack... I wouldn't 'Y' those connections out as this might very well damage the sound card...

    What you will be doing it splitting the headphone into it's two components parts, the speakers and the USB sound card... To use the speakers with a 3.5mm jack in short you need to 'unplug' the USB sound card and plug in the 3.5mm to the speakers... Mind you that is not the same as unplugging the USB jack on the headset and plugging in the 3.5mm jack, the break point has to be between the internal USB sound card and the speakers...

    Next step you have to identify if the speakers are being driven singled ended aka one signal and a ground to each speaker or if they are using double ended (balanced) audio aka two signal lines, out of phase... If they share a common ground you can likely leave that connected and common with a simple 'Y' connection and not switch it... This assumes you are not silly enough to plug it into the USB and 3.5mm at the same time that might create a nasty ground loop, or worse...

    From that point you will need to implement a series of switches that switch between the two inputs (integrated USB sound card and 3.5mm jack)... This could be a single/couple of DPDT switches all the way to some fancy automated switching system...

    I'm not going to get into wiring diagrams until you determine if it's singled or double ended audio to the speakers as the approach to switching will differ... I'm guessing from the pictures it might be singled ended as it appears three 'gold' signal lines and a 'green' common ground for each side? You have to crack the speaker end open and verify...
     
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2012
  12. icehowler

    icehowler

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    May 31, 2012
    Happy birthday :D I am opened to any ideas. My birthday will be in 5 days hehe
     
  13. icehowler

    icehowler

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    May 31, 2012
    I think I understand :D but I will verify this tomorrow since it's almost 4 am and I am verry sleepy. I will try deattaching the speakers :)
     
  14. CDRIVE

    CDRIVE Hauling 10' pipe on a Trek Shift3

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    May 8, 2012
    First I want to say that prior to this thread I had no idea what 5.1 Audio was. I'm still not positive but what I read seems to indicate 6 channel audio. I have no idea if this schematic is accurate because the wire count from your headset photo seems to be off by one conductor as compared to what I drew. That said, I do believe that this schematic represents the basics of what you want to do.
     

    Attached Files:

  15. CocaCola

    CocaCola

    3,635
    5
    Apr 7, 2012
    I'm assuming that both the 'green' wires are common ground, just split up left and right in the wiring harness thus the discrepancy in wire count... This is only an educated guess, best to confirm...

    Your schematic does illustrate the splitting of the USB sound card and the headset speakers that will need to be done... The only problem I see is that I believe the object/goal it to allow the headset to work when you plug it into the 3.5mm headphone jack like say on an ipod... And your diagram gave me an idea to simplify the mod...

    Using the diagram CDRIVE posted, reverse the plug/jack configuration so that the plugs are on the USB sound card side and the jacks are on the headset side... When you want to use it as a 5.1 USB headset just plug the three jacks in... But if you want to use it on say your ipod, unplug all three jacks and use a male to male 3.5mm cable from the ipad to the 'center' channel speakers... If you want to plug it into a 5.1 sound system that has three 3.5mm jacks use 3 male to male jumper cables...

    Using jacks like this avoids the need for switches as you are implementing a switchboard with the plugs...

    See attached for a modded CDRIVE diagram
     

    Attached Files:

  16. icehowler

    icehowler

    17
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    May 31, 2012
    Hmm.. I don't have any clue how to open the speakers without damaging them :)) They seem very solid build. You are saying the best way is to add 3 jacks or something like that between speakers and headset's sound card?
     
  17. CocaCola

    CocaCola

    3,635
    5
    Apr 7, 2012
    IMO it's one of the easier fool proof methods to mod this to work with 3.5mm inputs...
     
  18. icehowler

    icehowler

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    May 31, 2012
    On the sound card I can see 2 green wires, 1 green + red wire and 5 read wires (8 total) going to the speakers.
     
  19. CocaCola

    CocaCola

    3,635
    5
    Apr 7, 2012
    I see 2 green and 6 red, is this correct?

    My assumption and educated guess is that the greens are a common ground, the banks of three reds are front, center and rear channels one bank is left one bank is right...

    Something like the attached, but this is only a GUESS you would need to verify the connections at the speakers...
     

    Attached Files:

  20. icehowler

    icehowler

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    May 31, 2012
    I have attached a picture of cables from speakers. The cables enters at Left speaker but the picture is taken at the Right speakers. I see 4 cables there.
     

    Attached Files:

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