How to watch TV with Bluetooth Headphones

Bluetooth headphones have to be one of the best inventions for audio lovers in a while. Sitting back and enjoying your favourite shows and movies without that damn wire flapping around and getting caught on everything – yep, we’re sold.

This guide will cover all aspects of how to watch TV with Bluetooth headphones. We’ll try to keep it general and dip into brand specific details when needed. Sit back relax and get ready for wire-free TV audio.

Headphones like the Avantree HT3189 (Amazon) come with a Bluetooth transmitter. Pic: Amazon

Is connecting your Bluetooth headphones to a TV difficult?

Jumping into the world of wireless TV listening not only lets you enjoy your TV and streaming stuff at a decent volume when everyone’s gone to bed, but the sound quality is also much better than what you’d hear through normal TV speakers.

Thankfully, getting it all set up and working is not difficult.

The hardest part is deciding HOW to do it.

There’s so many different options to pick from when you’re looking to get your TV audio via your headphones. Let’s look at each one in turn, along with the pros and cons of each.

Method 1 n(Best method): Pick up a Bluetooth transmitter

Diving in to what is probably the fastest and easiest way to get your TV and wireless headphones to talk to each other – grabbing a 3rd party bluetooth transmitter, like this one on Amazon, to do the job for you.

These come in a few different shapes and sizes, from dongles to external little boxes. The idea’s the same. The transmitter sits between your TV and your headphones and handles the sending of data from your TV to the headphones.

They’re super-easy to setup and are pretty cheap. One of the best things is you can connect more than one pair of headphones wireless to them. As for connecting to your TV, you’ll normally get a choice (unless it’s a dongle – in which case it’s USB only). They’ll normally have a choice of AUX, optical at least. There’s a good one of the job on Amazon we’ve found for the job.

Pros: Simple way to use wireless headphones with TV. Connect 2 pairs at once easily.

Cons: You’ll have to order a ‘bit’ of the Interwebs

You can also get combined headphones and transmitter bundles that come all-in-one. One of the best ones you can get is the Avantree HT3189 (Available on Amazon UK). This wireless headphone set comes with the transmitter and features completely accurate lip syning. something that’s not as easy or straight forward as it sounds. They’re a decent price too and have good reviews on Amazon.

Method 2: Using your TV’s built in Bluetooth

So the obvious thing to do to get your TV and headphones to talk to each other via Bluetooth is TO USE the TV’s Bluetooth, right? Well the problem is that not all TV’s have Bluetooth yet. Sounds crazy, but it’s true.

Check your TV has Bluetooth in the TV’s settings menu, or the manual, or the specs online. If your TV does have Bluetooth, it’s simple a case of pairing them together. Put the headphones into pairing mode and go to the Bluetooth settings on your TV. It’s that simple.

Pros: Quick and easy to do. Stable connection and minimal lag.

Cons: Your TV might not have Bluetooth (lots don’t)

Method 3: Use the 3.5mm jack on your streaming service remote

Love your streaming services? So do we. And who’d have thought they’d be able to solve the problem of how to use headphones with TV programs? Some streaming hardware, like Apple TV and Amazon Fire have a handy port on the side of the remote where you can plug in your headphones.

OK this is CHEATING! This involves wired headphones, or using a cable with your headphones. As such, it’s definitely not a recommended method, but we thought we’d post it anyway as it does work pretty well!

Pros: If you’ve got a cable, and the right streaming hardware, go for it.

Cons: You’ve still got a wire, damn it!

Method 4: Using the streaming feature of Amazon or Apple

If you’ve got something like Apple TV, or Amazon’s streaming service, chances are the box will allow you to watch TV with wireless headphones. Simply pair the box with your headphones and you’ll be able to enjoy your TV shows and movies through your Bluetooth headphones.

Pros: Quick and easy. No extra hardware.

Cons: It only covers your streaming service, not general audio from the TV and other things like your Sky box.

Method 5: Use the Bluetooth on your TV soundbar

Soundbars are wonderful things. We’ve written a fair bit about them here on Audio Punch. Not only are they a fantastic way to replace your TV’s flat, tinny sound with a rich cinema-esque sound, but they can also SEND Bluetooth audio to your headphones.

If you’ve got a soundbar sitting there, you’ve got a good chance this will be a good option for streaming to your headphones. Of course, you’ll either need to have a soundbar or splash out on one.

Pros: Easy way to watch TV with headphones.

Cons: You’ll need a soundbar and good ones don’t come cheap.

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