USB vs 3.5mm Headset- What’s the Difference?

People often suffer from the dilemma of choosing a headset when they are given the choice of either a USB or 3.5 mm. The most important feature of the best headset is to have excellent sound quality for both the earpiece and the microphone. Check the advantages and disadvantages of these two headsets to understand whether you can decide on one of them to be the best to use.

USB Headsets

The name suggests that this one works with a USB cable, and can easily connect to any output device with a USB port. It offers better sound quality and is more reliable. They have an in-built processing system. Using the sound card, they will change the digital signal to an analog signal. When the sound passes through the cable, the USB will filter the sound from other noises for clarity. Besides, we can also get more high and low sounds from USB. We can also use in-line call controllers and buttons like mute, volume, receive, or end for managing calls.


  • This offers an easier connection and better sounds.
  • The connection with a computer will be direct without any sound cards.
  • In addition, the headset is easy to plug in and carry around. 
  • Only needs a single cable for all purposes, like connection or charging. 
  • It can record with various tones, timbres, pitches, and so on.


  • The microphones may not work quicker.
  • They are more suitable for beginners and regular purposes.

3.5 mm Headsets

This headset converts analog to digital output. It can also connect directly to any output device that consists of a headphone jack. Most of them come with an audio interface for connecting with computers. They offer recording music or instrumental sounds with the microphone. We can have more control over the sound and special effects. By using these headsets we can easily communicate, and also function different sound activities. 


  • This one gives a better microphone where the voice will be clear and sharp. 
  • By using the sound card, we can make different sound effects.
  • Both the listening and speaking will be quick without any latency issues.
  • They are very useful for professionals like musicians or experienced users. 
  • It is more compatible and easier with the plugin.


  • We may need to bear some static noise due to connections.
  • It needs extra items to function.

Main Differences

USB Headset 3.5mm Headset
It has hardware installed to send the signal that is changed into soundIt can send the signals directly that are then changed to sound.
The sound quality is far better.It only gives good audio for certain functions. 
USB isn’t portable to many output devices.This one is compatible with various devices, including old computers.
The microphone can’t be changed if damaged.We can get a sound card to change the microphone. 
This is more affordable and user-friendly for all kinds of users.This is a bit expensive and suitable for experts mainly.

Reasons to Choose One

The chart below shows how a USB headset and 3.5mm headset are used by people. This will show why you will select one of them over the other. 

Uses of the headsets in a graph

Looking at the differences and uses of each headset, we can understand that both of them are great products, and the choice only depends on preferences. So, depending on the audio quality and uses, we can select one.

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Vitaly Fedorov

Vitaly Fedorov is a seasoned audio technician and writer. After spending ten years in a studio team, I have decided to spread my knowledge to people in this domain. On this site, I work for headphone fixing or repair issues, that you’re thinking about fixing. Click on any article on my site and read the complete answer about that issue. I am excited to read your feedback.

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