Headphone jack replacement part number?

Hey all. While I would rather not spend money on unverifiable schematics, nor risk stripping my laptop down to the motherboard just to match the headphone jack with a Digikey part number, does anyone happen to know a suitable replacement part number for the headphone jack(s) on the Alienware M14x R2? While the second jack with the built-in mic still works, I would rather have this thing completely unbroken and working.

Squinting at low-resolution eBay photos, the jacks LOOK a bit like the SJ1-3414-SMT-TR from CUI, Inc, but the footprint is unverifiable without someone's previous experience, and I'd rather be absolutely sure before I start disassembling all the plastic prettiness and touching the board with a soldering iron.

Note: the jack is definitely physically broken. It's been getting loose for years and finally I backed into the protruding plug and cracked the plastic barrel a few days ago.



First thing to note: the CUI, Inc. SJ-3506-SMT-TR connector is NOT a perfect drop-in replacement for the headphone and microphone jacks on the laptop, but is very close and can be used with some slight modifications which I describe in the following. Also, the middle headset jack is definitely a different form factor and pinout and so I didn't touch that, especially since it works fine.

Following the breakdown of the link @mayer posted, I was able to tear down the laptop all the way to the motherboard with a surprising amount of ease. However, I did not bother taking the fan or the processors off of the motherboard. I simply extracted the board from the case in order to desolder the broken connector, which was, in fact, VERY broken, and may have been so for way longer than this incident last week..

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Problem 1:

Take 1:

First thing to note is that the SJ-3506 matches the original jack in terms of footprint, except for two extra pins, and one of these "extra" pins is actually important and had to be kept.

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The datasheet displays the pinout while looking down on the shielded side of the connector housing, so the pins are flipped vertically when looking at it from the pin side.

You'll note that I had to cut 2 pins to make the connector match the original footprint on the PCB:

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In the first photo, it's obvious that the middle shield pin was redundant with the other side, and could be safely removed. However the second pin I had cut (without first checking the pinout) was pin 2 (tip) instead of pin 6 (tip switch). This is bad, as I actually NEED the tip for the left channel!

However, the connector would not have fit into the PCB pads if we simply cut pin 6, and so my second attempt involved installing a short bus wire or 30AWG Kynar wire between Pins 6 and 2 before cutting pin 2 above that point. We can verify from the empty PCB that Pin 5 (ring switch) is definitely connected to SOMETHING hidden under all the grime and dust, and it's safe to assume that the ring (pins 3 and 4) will work, as I was already getting good sound from that channel. So I assumed that the ring switch was the switch doing the work of muting sound to the speakers when the connector was plugged in.

Take 2:

As I state before, cutting pin 6 and bending pin 2 into the pad would not have worked. The alignment is just too far off. So I had to short pins 2 and 6 with a small length of 30-AWG Kynar before cutting off Pin 2.

Upon re-assembling and booting up, I got good sound out of the internal speakers to start. This meant that I didn't inadvertantly cause an always-open switch anywhere in the new connector.

A pair of earbuds into the connector, a try of Winamp aaaaand BOTH EARS WORK! And no sound from the speakers, which means the switch is also working properly.

So a modified pinout diagram for the SJ-3506 is as follows:

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which ends up looking like

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Problem 2:

The height of the connector housing is, in fact, a few millimeters higher than the old one, because I actually bothered to get a good-quality connector with a full shield ring instead of the cheap shield pin. That, and the modification of a small jumper wire also cocked that side of the connector further off the board by a small distance.

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This means that when installed on the bottom of the board, the jack itself sat slightly higher off the board, and thus did not align with the chassis hole, which it does need to do for the board to sit flat in the base. The simple fix was to take a round needle file to the plastic hole (which does have a bit of metal beneath the paint). Elongating the hole downward just slightly allowed all three jacks to fit through and for the motherboard to seat properly in the chassis despite some slight aesthetic flaws which I can totally live with.

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You are a dead ringer for what I looked like 50 years ago, actually much closer than my son. See my daughter here: http://www.taosnews.com/election/image_2...


Nice. That being your grandson in the photo then? Because he looks strikingly familiar too! (Not a great comparison via the pose, but me at his age: https://twitter.com/depwl9942/status/481...)


Not as close as I thought after looking at your other photos.


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Please take a look at minute 18:30 of this video and see if that's your port integrated into the logic board:


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Yes, that looks like the same thing, as far as I can tell. It does narrow it down to one particular category - "board cutout, right angle, SMT." And seeing the bottom side of the part, I am guessing more that the SJ-3506 (http://www.digikey.com/product-detail/en...) may be what I'm looking for. And for $2 apiece definitely worth it to get a couple, then open and try. I'll let you know how it turns out! Thanks.


Accepting this answer to give cred as I'm back in business! There was one minor and one major mismatch with the SJ-3506 connector that I'll detail in another answer (as photos will be helpful).


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