I've retracted this request. enderland has explained the difference between the two pieces of hardware in his answer and why they shouldn't be merged. Now that I know the difference, I agree with his answer.

I propose merging into and making an appropriate synonym

There are currently 2 questions with the tag and 3 questions with the tag. These are all referring to the same type of hardware and the questions even use "headphone" within the question.

1 Answer 1


Headphones are distinct from headsets.

They might be related, and in some cases the same, but they do not serve the same primary purpose.

For example, nearly all headphones will not work as headsets. Making it a synonym seems inappropriate in this case.

A headset requires some sort of microphone input. It's intended to allow communication into the system.

Headphones have no such requirement. They are primarily intended to listen to content.

Many headsets may work as headphones, but most headphones will not work as headsets.

  • 1
    How do you define the difference? I've used them interchangeably and they seem to be used that way in the two questions. What makes something a headset and not a headphone (or the other way around if I got the relationship backwards)?
    – Andy
    Commented Oct 5, 2015 at 17:44
  • @Andy clarified
    – enderland
    Commented Oct 5, 2015 at 17:54
  • Ah. That makes sense then.
    – Andy
    Commented Oct 5, 2015 at 18:41

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