Designer Builds 3D-Printed Headphones That Use No Manufactured Parts

If the whole of human knowledge were to be wiped out tomorrow, how would you recreate the consumer electronics industry so you can jam out to some rockin’ tunes? Why you’d build these unique 3D-printed headphones. Except for some twists of wire, these cans consist of thin pieces of printed plastic and the speakers are actually plastic with a coil of copper wire embedded, by hand, into a set of tiny traces. Even the audio plug which consists of wire wrapped around a small plastic spindle.

You can download the project here and print it yourself or marvel at how the creator, designer J.C. Karich was able to use wire and plastic to build a pair of cans that actually work. He obviously had to source the wire and magnets (although, arguably, he could have dug the ore himself, right?) but the rest of the project is completely hand-designed and printed on the fly, an increasingly common feat with today’s 3D printers.

The audio quality looks surprisingly good, all things considered, and the design is ingeniously primitive. Writes Karich:

Anyway, the sound quality is very nice against all expectations but will necessitate a power amplifier to be louder when using only portable sources like pods or phones.


Sadly no one has reported actually being able to build these things yet on Thingiverse but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try. Who knows? Maybe this is the future: artisanal headphones.