When you’re playing your favorite PS4 games, everyone in the room can hear what you’re doing.
If that doesn’t work for your family or friends, you can use regular headphones on a PS4 to listen to your audio output. Any product with a 3.5mm jack will work through your DualShock controller for this need.
Do your headphones have a microphone built into the system? Some models may let you chat through your PlayStation Plus account using this process.
This outcome is different than what gamers get with Xbox One, which only has mUSB and proprietary expansion ports.
How to Use Regular Headphones on a PS4
For the PlayStation 4 (PS4) or PlayStation 4 Pro (PS4 Pro), you can use regular audio output headphones successfully. Plug the 3.5mm jack into your DualShock control to hear game audio or use your microphone. You may need to make settings changes on your system.
If you plug in your headphones to the PS4 and hear nothing from the TV or your equipment, you’ll need to make some changes to your system.
- Boot up your PS4 and log into your account.
- When you reach the home screen, go to the menu options that appear above your game library.
- Select the “Sound and Screen” option.
- Once in this menu, choose the “Audio Output Settings” choice.
- From there, you must go to “Output to Headphones.”
The default option for your PS4 is to send the chat audio only to your headphones. If your equipment is not set up for this selection, you won’t hear anything. The sounds of your game will still play through your TV.
You must choose to export all audio to your headphones. This option ensures that you can hear the game’s sounds and music.
This procedure also works for anyone who wants to watch streaming shows or movies without disrupting their environment with sound.
What Happens If I Cannot Hear Sound?
If you’ve plugged your regular headphones into your DualShock controller and everything is quiet, you may have an incomplete connection.
Try pulling the 3.5mm jack out of the DualShock controller and reinserting it. Listen closely through your headphones to see if any audio feedback occurs. If it does, that means you have a software exporting issue instead of a hardware problem.
If you still do not hear any audio from the system, take a close look at the 3.5mm jack. Are the connectors worn? Is there debris on the item?
One of the DualShock controllers’ issues for the PS4 is that they pick up skin oil and grime. These materials can work their way to the jack input, clogging up the system enough where it won’t work.
Use compressed air to blow out the 3.5mm port. If you see oil and grime on the controller there, use an electronics cleaning wipe to remove the debris.
When debris is inside the DualShock controller, use a dry swab to remove it. Do not use water or cleansers for that task as you may ruin the controller.
These steps should restore your connection to the audio for your PlayStation 4.
How to Fix a PS4 No-Sound Issue
If you start playing games on your PS4 with your regular headphones and the sound terminates, you have some troubleshooting work to do.
Follow these fixes if you have the audio cut out abruptly during gameplay, or no sound occurs at all when using your PS4 system.
1. Switch the Display Input
When your PS4 or PS4 Pro has no sound at all, your concerns should focus on signal issues. Some TV sets and monitors do not load their display profiles correctly, which means it doesn’t broadcast the audio from your system.
Try switching the channel away from your connected HDMI port. Allow the TV to load the command before returning to the one with your PlayStation connection. You’ll hear immediately if the process worked.
2. Restart Your PS4 or PS4 Pro
If you made audio changes to your PlayStation console, you might need to turn it off and turn it back on again for the settings to function correctly.
Choose the “Restart” command from your account screen. Allow the console to go through a full reboot. You’ll know if audio is available when you reach the login screen with the music playing.
3. Configure Your Audio Device Settings Again
When you restart your PS4 system, the audio device settings sometimes return to default. This issue typically happens after you get a software upgrade to the core unit.
Try going back to the audio devices menu to return the “Output to Headphones” to “All Audio.” If you hear sounds in your regular headphones, you’ve corrected the issue.
4. Configure Your Audio Output Settings
If your audio output settings are incorrect on your PlayStation 4, you may not hear any sounds coming from your system. This issue will prevent it from playing through your television or monitor.
You can reconfigure this area of your PS4 or PS4 Pro by following these steps.
- Open your “Settings” menu of options.
- Go to the “Sound and Screen” selection.
- Navigate through “Audio Output Settings,” “Primary Output Port,” and “Digital Out.”
- Check all of the formats that your audio devices support. You should see five checkboxes on this screen. If the one you use isn’t checked, make sure that it is before clicking the “OK” button.
- Go back to “Audio Output Settings.” Click the “Audio Format Priority” Then choose the bitstream option.
Once you’ve completed those steps, restart your game or streaming app to see if the sound issue has stopped.
5. Update Your System Software
If you haven’t had a PS4 system software update in a while, this issue could be preventing sound from playing in your regular headphones.
Go to the “Settings” menu option. Scroll down until you see the two-arrow icon with “System Software Update.” Hit the “X” button on your controller, and your PS4 will review your current setup to see if an update is necessary.
If you have the latest version of the system software installed, the sound problem isn’t related to this issue.
When an update is necessary, download the new software and automatically let your PS4 or PS4 Pro restart.
Do not let power turn off to your console during this time. Once you’ve rebooted everything, run a game or app to see if your issue is solved.
6. Restore to Factory Defaults
If your PS4 continues to have no sound, it may need to return to the factory default settings in safe mode to restore functionality.
Although it sounds like a scary step, this process won’t impact your game data. It refreshes the console settings to their original state without changing the other information stored on the PS4’s drive.
You can follow these steps to complete this process.
- Turn off your PS4.
- Press and hold the power button until you hear it emit two beeps.
- Press the PS button on your DualShock controller to enter safe mode.
- Scroll down to option #4, which says “Restore Default Settings.”
You’ll receive a warning box that says, “The settings will return to their default values. Are you sure you want to continue?” Select the “Yes” button and wait for the update to occur.
Once that happens, restart your PS4 normally to have the sound issue corrected.
7. Wait until Sony Services Return
When nothing seems to be working with your PS4 or PS4 Pro, the issue might not be related to your equipment.
Starting in April 2020, Sony began working with ISPs to manage downloading traffic, including online games.
This effort started to ensure Internet stability concerns got mitigated with everyone staying home and playing more.
There are times when the services may impact the quality or availability of the audio you receive.
You can check on this issue by reviewing the Network Service Status page. If you don’t see a green check by the “Gaming and Social” category, your audio features may not function as expected.
Some Issues with No Sound Are Headphone-Related
If you’ve tried every step to correct a sound issue with your PS4 or PS4 Pro without success, the problem could be related to your headphones.
Even the best headphones for PS4 gaming and chat can break down with frequent use. After double-checking that your jack is firmly plugged into the DualShock controller’s correct location, try using the equipment with another audio source.
If you hear sound from it and not your PS4, you know an issue exists with your PlayStation equipment.
When you continue to hear nothing through your headphones, it may be time to have the product repaired or replaced.
Unless you spent a considerable amount on your headphones by purchasing a brand-name set, it is usually cheaper to replace a broken pair with something new.
Replacing your regular headphones with a PS4 set can enable more applications with your PlayStation Plus account. Some models include navigational controls to make it easier to start your favorite games or apps.
The best PS4 headsets and headphones are affordable, reliable, and let you coordinate with your friends on all of your favorite titles.
Why Use Regular Headphones on a PS4?
It makes sense to use the resources you already have at home. When you want to play on your PS4 or PS4 Pro, a regular set of headphones can help you have a fun time without disturbing others.
You’ll receive stereo sound with this connection if your headphones are equipped to receive it.
If you have a pair that doesn’t contain an in-line microphone, you can still hear your games’ music and sound effects without disturbing others.
You can pair headphones or earbuds with a PSVR to create an all-immersive experience that you’ll love using.
When the audio doesn’t come through your headphones as expected, please remember to run through the entire checklist found in this guide to determine your issue.
You can also contact Sony’s PlayStation customer service line from 8 am to 7 pm Pacific every day with live chat for more technical issues.
Because the DualShock controller uses a 3.5mm jack, any regular headphones with an in-line microphone are usable for online chat and listening.
If you use a generic controller to play on your PS4 or PS4 Pro, you might lose this capability. Always work with original PlayStation equipment to achieve the best results!