How to Connect Headphones to Digital Piano or Keyboard?

How to Connect Headphones to Digital Piano or Keyboard

Headphones are the best accessories for digital pianos and keyboards, as they help in rendering a thorough keyboard experience without disturbing others. It also helps in listening to one’s composition and allows others to listen to your masterpieces as well. Above all this, one of the best functionalities of coupling a headphone with a digital piano or keyboard is that it helps in listening to the minute details of the tune emitted from the piano pretty well, and is truly bliss for music lovers. 

Also, headphones are a must for digital pianos and keyboards that don’t have an onboard speaker. But every single electronic keyboard features a headphone output for the purpose. And users are free to use different types of headphones to serve the purpose. Having a headphone connected with the digital piano helps to bring the sound very close to the ears, and to listen to the minute music nuances.

Check out this Editor’s Choice Headphone for Digital Pianos

Plugging the Headphones into the Keyboard

One of the best features of keyboards is that almost all of them come with a headphone jack. They all possess an in-built jack to connect the headphones to the device without any hassle. Plugging the headphones in the keyboard can help deliver an exceptional and high-quality sound, that is far better than the sounds of its inbuilt speakers. 

Most of the high-end digital pianos feature a headphone output which is a vital feature that every pianist should consider before purchasing the digital piano for self. The headphones and the headphone outputs have two types of connectors. There will be a receptacle on the keyboard that accepts the headphone. It has a jack and a connector at the end of the cable plug. 

The most common cable for the audio connector is called the phone plug or a ¼” plug. It is large and has a long shaft, and is good enough to make the connection. This jack is available in both mono and stereo versions and is indicated by dual black rings, present near the tip of the plug. The stereo plug helps the sound to come out of both the speakers of the headphone. In mono, speakers sound comes only from one side of the piano, which is not desired. 

1. Standard keyboard jack size:

There is also a 3.5 mm plug, also termed as the mini-plug, and is also termed as the 1/8th plug. This smaller plug is of use when space is minimum and it is the most common plug size for media players, mobile phones, and earbud headphones. There might be a slight deviation from the standard headphone jack size and the size of the keyboard jack and both the sizes may not be compatible with each other. To solve this issue, there are adapters available to connect the device with headphones that are differently sized. These adapters are highly efficient in converting between two sizes and are easily available at the local electronics and music store and also online. The standard size of the keyboard jack is 3.5” to 6.33” and with the help of an adapter, connecting the headphone with the digital piano becomes an easy task. 

2. Type of cable required:

There are a variety of cables that are available in the market to connect the digital piano with the keyboard. Almost all the digital piano comes with a jack for headphone and if the keyboard doesn’t possess this feature, then it is better to use an additional cable to solve the issue. The majority of the digital pianos come with a USB port and we can easily connect the cord with the port to link it with the headphones. 

3. Wireless headphones for digital piano or keyboard:

Wireless headphones are true leaders in the market these days and it is possible to connect these wireless headphones to the music instrument with the help of the Bluetooth facility. There is no need to look for a cable to connect them, but we have to make sure that the piano or the keyboard comes with Bluetooth connectivity.

Check out: List of Best Digital Pianos in the Market

Types of Headphones Available to Connect With Digital Pianos

The headphones offer the best sound quality and listening experience, but not all of them come with the same features. There are different types of headphones, and they differ based on their weight, construction, sound quality, and durability. The common types of earphones are,

1. Ear pad headphones:

As the name suggests, these headphones come with comfortable padding to help with cushioning effect at the ears. They will render excellent comfort while practicing at the digital piano. They also render excellent sound quality and will not block the sound in the surroundings. Also, people can hear what you are listening to, as sounds can leak from them.

2. Earbuds:

The earbuds sit inside the outer here and are anatomically designed to contour the curves of the ear. They are available in different qualities and they don’t block sound leaks. They also tend to reproduce the bass frequencies and are not a good choice for pianos and keyboards.

3. Over the ear headphones:

These headphones are very comfortable to wear and they cover the entire ear, rendering an excellent sound quality. They also help reduce external sounds and help prevent leakage of sounds. They are also exceptional in rendering the required privacy that one requires for practice sessions. 

What to Look For in the Headphone for Digital Piano?

The two most important things to look for, in the digital piano and keyboard are comfort and sound quality. Choose headphones that offer a well-balanced and neutral sound with a high-frequency response. It is better to avoid DJ headphones and those that are oriented on bass.

Comfort is the next important factor to consider while choosing the headphone, as using them for a long period can result in pain and fatigue. Apart from these important factors, make sure that the headphone has other important features such as sound stage, sound isolation, preventing sound leakage, etc.

What To Do if the Piano Doesn’t Connect With the Headphones, or Doesn’t Detect it?

If the piano or the keyboard doesn’t detect the headphone, or if it doesn’t connect with the headphone, then it will not be possible to hear what we are playing on the instrument. To rule out this trouble, make sure of the headphone is linked appropriately to the digital piano and is plugged in properly. Make sure that the jacks are free from dust and dirt especially at the headphone output and jack. Still, if you are not able to connect, then try using another cable or seek professional help.

Check out: Best Digital Pianos & Keyboards for Beginners

Bottom Line

With the right headphone and cable connector, plugging the headphones with the digital piano becomes an easy task. Headphones are extremely convenient to render high-quality audio with a 3-D effect. It will also render exceptional practice sessions with top-notch sound quality. It also offers ambient practice time, without disturbing anyone. Headphones help with an accurate and consistent sound and also make the sound more natural. You will have a fantastic playing experience and it is important to choose the right pair of headphones. Do not ignore buying a good quality headphone, as it is directly proportional to the sound quality.


Hi, I'm Lachlan Williams, an expert in Piano & Keyboard accessories. I have worked in an electronics shop for 4 years and I have a great passion for music. A combination of both gives me a decent knowledge of which accessories to use with different musical instruments.

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