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This teardown is not a repair guide. To repair your Apple EarPods, use our service manual.

  1. Apple EarPods Teardown, Apple EarPods Teardown: step 1, image 1 of 1
    • What better accessory to accompany the new-and-improved iPhone than a set of new-and-improved headphones?!? Here are some of the hot new features on Apple's freshest auditory accessory:

    • Redesigned case for improved in-ear fitment and sound distribution.

    • Exterior acoustic vents for increased bass.

    • In-line microphone and volume remote.

    • Dual-material speaker diaphragms to cut sound loss and increase output.

    • Standard issue with any new iPhone 5, iPod Touch 5th Generation, or iPod Nano 7th Generation.

  2. Apple EarPods Teardown: step 2, image 1 of 1
    • In case you were wondering, the EarPods have a model number of MD827LL/A.

    • Apple claims that their new EarPods perform at the same level as headphones that cost hundreds of dollars more, but these sweet beat makers will only cost you $29 (plus tax, if applicable).

    • Call us skeptics if you'd like, but we're not sure how that could be accomplished with a single-driver setup.

  3. Apple EarPods Teardown: step 3, image 1 of 2 Apple EarPods Teardown: step 3, image 2 of 2
    • The first thing we notice (and already knew) is the totally redesigned shape of the EarPods. Apple seems to believe that cramming a perfectly round earbud into your ear is no smarter than trying to fit a square peg through a round hole.

    • With the EarPods in your ears, it's actually pretty difficult for passersby to tell that your headphones aren't just good ol' Apple Earbuds.

    • If someone can tell, they either have quite an eye for detail, or they're way too close to your face.

    • The next noticeable design feature for the EarPods is that the main speaker port faces forward, rather than directly into your ear canal.

    • Is sound that is not pointed directly at your ear drum better to listen to? We don't know, but that's the verdict of Apple's acousticians, and they get paid a lot of money to do what they do.

  4. Apple EarPods Teardown: step 4, image 1 of 2 Apple EarPods Teardown: step 4, image 2 of 2
    • Apple had durability in mind with the new EarPods. Notice the new remote design (left), which includes larger cable wrapping near the remote than the previous earbuds (right) to reduce strain on the wires.

    • If you're using your EarPods with an iPhone or iPod, chances are you'll be stuffing them into your pocket or backpack a lot, which can put a lot of stress on the connections.

    • To make the new EarPods more resistant to water and sweat damage Apple's designers removed the external microphone grate.

    • As an iFixit user rightfully pointed out to us, the previous microphone grate was for show only! We confirmed that no hole exists in the plastics. Thanks Todd!

    • It's finally time to crack these little guys open; this is a teardown, after all.

    • We prefer to use our guitar picks to shred a pair of EarPods instead of shredding a guitar (which would probably sound great through the EarPods).

    Hello Fix-It Team, could you please describe in detail (!) how to open this remote. I tried it, but had to stop before getting it open, becaus i felt to break any of the hidden plastic snaps?! Is there a „correct“ way to open it so nothing gets damaged?

    Thanks for your reply

    Dominik - Reply

    My volume up buttons was not working at all and the volume down button was getting stuck sometimes forcing the volume all the way down. I was able to open the compartment that holds the volume buttons and the mic and I was able to deal out some debris. My volume up now works a little and the volume down button doesn't seem to be getting stuck. This is all with the lid still off. My question is: I can't seem to easily pit the lid back on. Is this a one way trip? How do I put the lid back on?

    Rafael - Reply

    I have exactly the same problem. I notice that the lid seemed to be held on by the middle part, yet there's no plastic bit in the middle, or anything that would secure it in place there. But there is a little discolored circle both on the inside of the lid and on the metal under it. I think it's glued on or something. Do tell me if you found a way to put the lid back on!

    oliaudet -

    But how do you put it back together? It seems as thought there was nothing but glue to hold it and now I cannot properly get the plastic to stay in it’s place

    Juanma Gonzàlez - Reply

  5. Apple EarPods Teardown: step 6, image 1 of 3 Apple EarPods Teardown: step 6, image 2 of 3 Apple EarPods Teardown: step 6, image 3 of 3
    • The underside of the remote cover reveals three buttons and a microphone. No surprise here, as the remote has three buttons.

    • With a little more coaxing cutting, we are able to remove the flexible PCB within the EarPods' remote.

    • The microphone in the EarPods' remote bears the markings 2F17 045.

    • Will this microphone be similar to one of the three microphones inside the iPhone 5? Probably. Will it be the same? All will be revealed in due time three more days.

    • We also uncover another IC with the markings TI25ASGVI 079, which Chipworks believes to be a Texas Instruments ADC, or a device used for volume-control duty.

    • All these components look large when shot in our pictures, but they're quite small in real life. That's how the board looks like when compared to a U.S. dime.

  6. Apple EarPods Teardown: step 7, image 1 of 2 Apple EarPods Teardown: step 7, image 2 of 2
    • As a reference, here's what the insides of the old remote look like: two turntables three buttons and a microphone.

    • The control board in the old earphones isn't nearly as sealed or secured as the new EarPods, leading to a common complaint among gym-goers finding that their sweet earphones don't work so well when doused in sweat.

    • The microphone reads: S262 9164.

  7. Apple EarPods Teardown: step 8, image 1 of 1
    • With such a tight fit between the two halves of the EarPods, simply pulling them apart wasn't an option. We knew what we needed to do.

    • We don't normally cut open earbuds, but when we do, we prefer X-Acto #11 blades.

    • This isn't something you'd want to try at home. Once these Pods are open, they're not closing back up unless you want to involve glue.

    This is good to know, I really wanted to know what kind of components these guys use!

    Luis Sanchez - Reply

  8. Apple EarPods Teardown: step 9, image 1 of 3 Apple EarPods Teardown: step 9, image 2 of 3 Apple EarPods Teardown: step 9, image 3 of 3
    • While an updated remote is nice, the real innovation in the EarPods is in the speakers.

    • Like most speakers, the speakers in the EarPods consist of a diaphragm/cone, a voice coil, a permanent magnet, and a cabinet.

    • Paper or Plastic? The voice coil is supported by a composite diaphragm made of a paper cone and a polymer surround. This is the first iteration of Apple headphones to use paper cones rather than all plastic.

    • The most exciting—and most widely publicized—feature of the EarPods is the unique teardrop-esque shape of the cabinet.

    • Yet once these guys are open, things start looking quite similar to other earbuds.

    • Apple spent a lot of time analyzing people's ears, so hopefully their external design will pay dividends in the auditory excellence department.

    What is the order of positive/negative and left/right colors for the wires?

    Nathaniel Kirchoff - Reply

  9. Apple EarPods Teardown: step 10, image 1 of 1
    • For the audiophiles, here are front and back views (top and bottom, respectively) of the separated drivers.

    • Apple's switch to paper-based speaker cones may be the source of their advertised improved low and mid-range response.

    • We also discovered that the speaker basket has a much more refined look than previous models (see comparison in next step), with a fine mesh covering the back and symmetrically-placed vents.

    • The basket is a critical component, as it must be rigid to maintain consistent sound quality while still being open enough to not inhibit movement of air behind the vibrating diaphragm.

    i have to repair the coil of the i phone earpods suggest me the procedure to do so..

    War Mudasir - Reply

    show me the video

    War Mudasir - Reply

    hello sir driver back side connection wire position.

    So smaller chip item code??????? plz send code


  10. Apple EarPods Teardown: step 11, image 1 of 1
    • Hardly peas in a pod, different revisions of Apple earbuds exhibit some drastic changes in internal construction and driver design.

    • From the top, we have:

    • Previous-generation iPhone earbuds

    • First-generation iPod earbuds

    • New-generation Apple EarPods

    • The most notable differences separating the EarPods are just what you'd expect—a drastically redesigned housing, and a new material for the speaker cone.

    This earpods aren't the 12 step

    Serafim Valmorbida - Reply

    unfortunate for the paper speaker cone in a way as precedent version could go thru a heavy cleaning in water with no problem.

    the paper one will die directly

    Krikor Kouchian - Reply

  11. Apple EarPods Teardown: step 12, image 1 of 1
    • At iFixit, our bottom line is durability and repairability, and their impact on electronics waste.

    • The new Apple EarPods do have significant improvements in durability:

    • The new remote is better sealed against water damage, and features strain relief wrapping to increase the life of the cable.

    • Paper speaker cones are more resistant to tearing than plastic, decreasing the likelihood of blowing out your drivers.

    • But unfortunately, these products are still of the throw-away kind. Sourcing parts is next to impossible, and it would be a tough sell to convince someone to take apart their earbuds instead of buying a new pair. They will never be the same once taken apart.

    My Apple earbuds cable has broken, I also didn’t like them bc they always hurt my ears. I bought another company’s wireless earbuds with microphone. But the sound quality of horrible. Can I replace the speaker part from this cheap wireless with the Apple one? Does anyone know how to do that or maybe there is some tutorial ? Will be grateful to some hints !

    Agnieszka Olszewska - Reply


I'm not sure if my edit worked or not, but Step 4 has some incorrect information:

"To make the new EarPods more resistant to water and sweat damage, Apple's designers removed the external microphone grate."

The old microphone grate was actually just for show. There was no hole, just a recessed area and a piece of metal glued to it to indicate that it was a microphone :P

ToddKeebs - Reply

The step was updated with a hat tip your way, Todd! The "hole" on the other side was covered by a metal piece. It was evident that no hole existed once we removed that piece, but we didn't think to do it earlier since we just *assumed* it would have a hole :)

Miroslav Djuric -

Another little correction on Step 4:

The previous design you're showing isn't in fact the previous design, just A previous design. The previous designe (starting ca. iPhone 4S) did already include a larger cable wrapping.

foobar - Reply

I'm surprised to hear that it's "unfortunate" that these earpods are the throw-away kind. Does anyone in the world realistically repair their ear buds, especially the $30 kind? It seems like you felt obligated to put an "unfortunately" clause in your article.

Jonathan - Reply

It's sometimes easy to forget that $30 for a pair of earbuds isn't exactly chump change. Sometimes all you can afford is just a pair of earbuds.

Growing up, if I bought a pair of $30 earbuds, I'd have to hold onto them for a long, long time. There was no "toss it in the trash because it broke" fund. If it broke, I either fixed it or didn't have earbuds. I'm willing to bet that a lot of people are in that same predicament today.

Now granted, I probably wouldn't buy these particular earbuds with my $30, but that's a different story altogether. It is, however, a shame that they — just like most other earbuds on the market — cannot be fixed if broken. I think that sentiment extends to all other non-fixable earbuds, not just the EarPods.

Miroslav Djuric -

Really late but I agree, I refurb these earbuds a lot and came here to check which is the ground pad and which is the positive on the lil drivers

Ethan Chow -

Showing a white color product teardown images on a white background? Just a thought a light grey or any other muted color background might have been looked more clear and convincing.

Again, Just my point of view.

wat ever - Reply

Oh, it's a doozy to shoot white on white, but alas it was the only color paper we had...

Miroslav Djuric -

Have you guys checked out Iron Buds yet? ( The entire purpose of the 'phones was to build earbuds that have user replaceable parts.

IanLogsdon - Reply

Hi everybody. I was using my ear pods for 1 week and the plug fail. Somebody knows what is the pin assignment and the cable distribution?. Thanks, Uber

Uber Velez - Reply

I have a problem

Unlike normal earphones and YOUR earpods, my earpods have 4 wires connected, not just 2.

I wondered why and my father said that it's because it has 2 stereos in each speaker. 2 wires for one stereo and another 2 for another stereo. That's 4 stereos in every Apple earpod.

Well i'm trying to hotwire the earpods so i take the stereo from it and use it on another pair of earphones. Would i have to split the 2 wires of the other earphones to match all 4 sections of the earpod's stereo?

Hadi - Reply

All earpods have 4 wires, more correctly all TRRS headphones have 4 wires





Ethan Chow -

Ethan Chow's information is reversed, the TRRS plug actually works like this:

T- left audio;

R- right audio;

R - ground;

S - microphone;

It is arranged in an order to be compatible to older TS or TRS sockets.

Cheong Li -

I was surprised at the hidden mic, and the sound channel they provided (seen on the frame to one side of the mic). The gasket between the bottom shell and PCA frame was clearly there to provide isolation and reduce the chamber size (you can see the gasket and it's mic direction in Step 12).

The one I am looking at now has kapton tape over the whole PCB with the little spacers on it over the button domes. Most likely to prevent the metal from on the button from shorting the PCB.

greystarr - Reply

So these are in fact dual driver (2 speakers in each earbud)? It looks like this is the case from step 10 but I'm having a hard time accepting this fact due to the price...

tr1ph0pp3r - Reply

I would also like to know if the EarPods have dual drivers.

William Cody Winter -

It is a single driver.

The left piece of top and bottom in step 10 shows the front and back of magnet and circuit board respectively. The right top and bottom is the front and back of the voice coil and diaphragm respectively.

The pieces fit as follows: Back outer cover, magnet/circuit bard, voice coil/diaphragm, front outer cover.

Ryo Saeba -

Today I managed to repair a broken plug of Earbuds. The speciality is the Microphone cable, which comprises a golden cable which is surrounded by red and green stranded wires.

Newton2k1 - Reply

Hello! Wondering if you also managed to get the microphone and volume control to work?

How did you wire them?

Leanne Fisch -

Everything is worth to be repaired! My son came with his EarPods and broken wire at the plug and after googling and finding the right pin-out he was happy that he learned how they can be fixed. It was not all about some saved bucks but having a great hour+ with my son, having fun and learn something useful. Not soldering in particular but co-work of old school and new age :-)

Besides that each repair is actively saving energy.

Newton2k1 - Reply

You are a wealthy man; you have discovered what's really important.

Stephen W -

I have the stock buds from an iPhone 5s. The right side has 3 or 4 bundles of wire. How would you separate them? I cut them above the mic so it shouldn't be an issue. I want to solder the wire onto another set of buds which don't have a mic. (etomotic ER-6i)

If anyone can help thanks ahead of time.

bear90039 - Reply

I just took my sons apart to clean. They were very tinny sounding and you had to cup your ears to hear them. I thought I had lost the ground to them but alas they were just chuck full of earwax! Q-tip and alcohol didnt cut it so...I seperated the clamshell at the part line and removed the sealing membrane from behind the mesh and soaked the screen halves in alcohol to release the wax. blew out the residue and glued back together and they sound new again, maybe a little more treble with the membrane behind the screen removed. My drivers were clear plastic, not paper as described but I did have the ear-pod duct design. Those cones are very fragile. I touched one with a toothpick to see if the cones were blown and i left a little dent in them that didnt pop out. I recommend cleaning them if they get tinny sounding. you may be able to soak the duct screen in alcohol and toothbrush it without cracking them open. just dont immerse.

steve - Reply

Can you also show a tear down of the other type of earphones by Apple? The one that have silicone tips. Thank you.

jef pablo - Reply

I just got mines yesterday is it okay for me for where ever I go I have to put it in the box so it won't be broke

Karnes Nipple - Reply

Just looking deeper myself - the 3 openings on the housing not described in this teardown are Venting ... and inside the neck is a metal collar that has been insert molded into the shell with the mesh over openings on both sides.

greystarr - Reply

Did you do electrical measurements on the TRRS contacts to reverse-engineer what the schematic is for the control buttons? I have looked all over the Internet and can't find this posted anywhere.

Peter CHECKOVICH - Reply

So which wire of the six hook up to the mic..







Gavin G - Reply

Wondering why this teardown found a silvery diaphragm rather than the hybrid paper cones here?

Did they redesign them?

tipoo - Reply

I've bought an original Apple EarPods but its size is different from what was in case of my iPhone 6 Plus. It's a littler smaller. Is it original or it just has a different size?

The last ones Jack 3.5 mm got a problem.

محمدحسن شیری - Reply

Hi I would like to use this as a mic for my Motorcycle vlog but I don't need the earbuds. Will they still work if I snip them just above the remote? Thanks

jerry - Reply

Yes they will

Ethan Chow -


i have an iphone 4s ..and airpods also ..the problem is i can connecting the airpods to my iphone 4s but i cannot able to change the name and i cannot able to find the options for this..can u pls help me

லட்சுமி - Reply


i have an iphone4s and airpods ..the problem is i can connecting airpods to my iphone4s and listening songs …but i cannot able to change the name my airpods and i cannot able to find the options for it…can u pls help it

லட்சுமி - Reply

Will the mic work with Microsoft Mixed Reality headsets with jack? My speakers work, but not my mic…or maybe I need to set up my mic in Windows…orrrr…a ring and tip conversion/adaptor needed?

Seasons greetings


Dingus McGee - Reply

Do not follow this guide for taking apart the actual ear buds, all you need to do is heat up the earbud (use a heat gun or a hairdryer). I set my heat gun to 350° F and waved it back and forth in the heat for 20 seconds, after the heat loosens up the two halves they will rotate freely. From there simply use your thumbnail to wedge between the two halves while twisting. This method leaves absolutely no damage and afterward the two halves snap right back together easily and stay solidly connected. Don’t just use an xacto knife just because the person who wrote this post wasn’t clever enough to think of a non destructive way to disassemble a pair of $30 headphones, save your money and use heat instead.

UncleDirtNap - Reply

ive gone through lime 20 pairs of these within my first iphone 4 when i was in the 8th grade. Before that i had an Ipod touch and i wizzed through earbuds that quick

Caroline UWU! - Reply

I got no idea if earpods before lightning connectors are the same, but personally I found if you could twist the part of the casing that holds the driver so that the part where the sould comes out faces upwards, you could create a ridge to attack with pry tools. I used my fingernails. And pop. No need to cut, just make sure you don't pull the wires out by accident.

Michael Chang - Reply

Mine came appart when i was swinging them around, i think i can put it back together but to what side does the bleu thing needs to point?

Greetings from Holland.

Teun van Niekerk - Reply

It remains to review “How to remove the cable from the earpiece and insert it back”.

Maximus Panin - Reply

i plugged my ear pod into the input of a mixer, stuck another headphone in the monitor output, and listened through the latter. When i blew or whistled on or spoke or sang around the earpods themselves, i heard the whooshing sound of air (phoo phoo) or the voice very clearly and loudly in my ear. When i tapped them as you would when testing a mic, the sound came through loud and clear. But when i did all of these things near the remote (while closing the earpods in my fist), i got NO output in my ear. i tried this multiple times and got the same result each time. And i swore that the mics were in the earbuds themselves and not in the remote. i came to the web to confirm this, but found this article stating otherwise. i am a novice as far as sound is concerned but this seems like a simple enough experiment. Can you explain my experience? Thank you.

Balkee Balakrishnan - Reply

How large is the driver exactly? I’ve always wondered and if the driver size has changed over the years or not

su.chilliam - Reply

so… i take it apart and then what. this dosent fix my problem.

Matthew - Reply

Hi, does anyone know how to get t he plastic cover for the microphone back into place? I took it apart to clean and now It isn’t clicking into place

Juanma Gonzàlez - Reply

Does anyone know what the thin metal ring is made out of? My puppy got hold of them and swallowed it and I’m trying to work out hiw toxic it is. - thanks - Reply

hi, i have a broken pair of these and got the control box off, and i want to salvage the mic. any specific way to do so?

grinkle graks - Reply

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