My wife and I wanted to watch Blu-Ray movies without waking the kids. We had a $5 Monoprice headphone splitter but our Blu-Ray player didn’t have a headphone jack. It didn’t have Bluetooth, either, so wireless listening was out. (We didn’t want to spend hours converting disc > digital > Plex server > Apple TV > AirPods.)
What the Blu-Ray player did have was an optical audio output port. After a bit of research, I found I could connect the optical audio port to the back of a $24 “Prozor” digital-to-analog audio converter box (using the included TOSLINK digital audio cable), then connect the Monoprice headphone splitter to the front of the same converter box. What we end up with is a contraption that looks like this:
The converter box is well-built and easy to setup. The downsides:
- The volume control knob on the front of the box has a wide range of volume available, but it’s sensitive. If you’re not careful when twisting it, you’ll get a major volume change.
- You have to get up from the couch to adjust the volume. This means we almost never adjust the volume. Set it and forget it. (Though if you have headphones with built-in volume control, you may be able to use that to adjust your own volume.) And thankfully, 9 out of 10 discs we play do not need any adjustment. (Unlike streaming where audio levels are highly variable.)
- Untangling the cords. You can use a hook on the wall behind your TV to dangle the headphones from to minimize the amount of untangling you do.
Overall, we’re happy with this setup. For under $30, we have good quality stereo sound coming to both of our headphones when watching Blu-Rays and DVDs. And with Redbox, new movie releases are basically free or extremely inexpensive. 👍