Philips Headphones & Earbuds Problems? (5 Issues Solved)

Philips is a well-known brand with a good track record of designing products that customers come to depend on. Their headphones are no different.

There are some fantastic Philps headphones on the market, but sometimes a problem can occur.

Here you can take a look at some of the typical issues, what causes them, and how to find a solution.

Why am I Only Hearing Sound from One Side of my Philips Headphones?

Headphones have two sources of sound – one in either ear – so if you’re experiencing a situation when only one side is working it’s understandable to be a tad frustrated.

However, there may be a simple reason (and solution) why this is occurring.

Luckily, if you take a look at the information below, you’re sure to make this problem a thing of the past.

You should also read our article about how durable Philips headphones are.

Are you on a Call?

So, you’re listening away to your favorite music (sound playing in both ears), and then all of a sudden a friend calls. You answer the call and then the sound switches to only the right earpiece.

You might be wondering why this is, but it’s a common misconception that the sound will play in both earpieces whilst on a call.

Philips headphones, such as the SHB4385, will only produce sound from the right earpiece during a call. It’s also worth noting that the microphone is found on the right earpiece too. 

So if you’re making or receiving calls on your Philips headphones, don’t be surprised if you only hear sound on the right side.

One of your Earpieces is Out of Charge

Do you have a pair of Philips headphones that are Bluetooth in-ear earbuds? If that’s the case, then perhaps one of them is out of charge. It’s not the first time that someone forgets to charge both earbuds and it won’t be the last.

Remember: always insert both earpieces inside the charging case together and place them on charge. 

Have your Right and Left Earpieces Become Disconnected?

A problem you might encounter with Philips headphones is when the right and left earpieces are no longer connecting with each other.

Here’s how to ensure that they’re connected. Just follow these simple steps:

  1. Switch off both the right and left earpiece.
  2. Find the multi-function buttons on your earpieces (one on each).
  3. Hold the multi-function button down for around 3 seconds.
  4. After 3 seconds the earpieces will have reactivated and connected themselves to one another.
  5. Now connect your headset to your Bluetooth device.

Has your Headset Become Connected to More than One Device?

Philips headphones are not designed for being connected to more than one device simultaneously.

If you’re finding that only one earpiece is producing sound, it could be that the headset is connected to another device at the same time.

Try performing these steps to resolve this issue:

  1. Deactivate Bluetooth functions on all of your connected devices.
  2. Switch off your earpieces.
  3. Now, like before, hold down the multi-function buttons on your earpieces (both of them).
  4. After 3 seconds you can release and reconnect the headset to the desired Bluetooth device.

It’s always worth remembering that any device that you’ve previously connected to or paired with will maybe connect with your Philips headphones unless you switch off the Bluetooth function.

Are you Having Battery Life Issues with your Philips Headphones?

When it comes to on-the-go listening it is essential that your headphones can go the distance. You don’t want your headphones to fail you on a long commute due to an inconsistent battery, right?

However, despite Philips being a great brand, sometimes, your Philips headphones may not be performing for as long as you would like.

If you’re experiencing poor battery life with your Philips headphones it may be down to heat or humidity.

  • Understand that battery life can be affected by temperatures exceeding 60°C (140 °F).
  • Or any temperature below 0°C (32°F).
  • Anything above 90% relative humidity will also undermine the functionality of the headset.
  • Try to avoid leaving your headset in direct sunlight for a long period of time, such as leaving them lying on the beach or by the bbq!

Are you Struggling to Connect your Philips Headphones to your Phone or Device?

Having a pair of headphones, whether they’re Philips or not, means nothing if you cannot connect them to your phone or Bluetooth device. Without them being connected there’s no way to play any sounds through them, so it’s crucial you have your headphones properly connected.

If you are unable to re-connect to your device then try following these steps, and in a matter of moments, you’ll be sitting back and enjoying your favorite tune.

  1. First things first, ensure that your headphones are charged and that the device you want to connect to is switched on and also charged.
  2. Go to your Bluetooth device list using your smartphone or device. This list is found in your Bluetooth options.
  3. Find your Philips headphones in the device list.
  4. Select to delete the headphones from your device list.
  5. Now perform a factory reset on your headphones (differs between models, see below).
          • TAT5505 Put both earbuds inside the charging case and hold the headset-function button for 4 seconds. The earpiece will flash white two times to signal reset is complete.
          • M2BT Hold the track-control button whilst also pressing down the call music button. Wait until the led flashes white 5 times. The reset is complete.
          • PH805 Hold the power button up and tap the touch control panel twice. A purple LED will signal reset has been achieved by flashing three times.
          • TAH5205 Whilst in pairing mode hold the power button for at least 6 seconds and reset will be signaled by a solid purple LED light.
  6. Once the headphones have been reset, and are switched on, you can pair your device as normal.
  7. Ensure your headphones are in pairing mode and that your device has Bluetooth enabled.
  8. Now select your Philips headphones from the list of available devices and you should then be connected.

Why can I Not Control the Music from my Philips Headphones?

Some models of Philips headphones have the ability to allow users to play, pause, and skip tracks using only the headphones.

This means that you don’t have to rummage in your pocket for your smartphone if you want to pause your music or change a song suddenly.

However, you may find that despite being able to hear your music through your Philips headphones you are unable to control the music. The problem here is whether or not your audio source Bluetooth device supports AVRCP. 

If your device does not support AVRCP then you will not be able to use this function, but this is not a problem with your headphones.

Why is there a Crackling Sound on my Philips Headphones?

When you listen to music on your headphones you want crystal clear sound. Distortion or crackling is a big no.

If you run into this unexpected issue then the cause is likely to be one of two things:

  • Your headset is in need of charging.
    Yes, the simplest of answers and often the most overlooked. If sound quality begins to suffer it is usually because your headphones need some juice.
    Fully charge them for that full-quality sound.
  • Your phone or device is out of range.
    Bluetooth can only stretch so far. If you’ve placed your audio source device somewhere outside of your vicinity then the further you get from it the more your sound quality will suffer. Physical obstacles between your device and headphones will also strain the Bluetooth connection.

Stay close to your audio source when using Philips Bluetooth headphones and ensure you keep them charged. These two simple tips will prevent crackling sounds or poor sound quality.

General Pros and Con for Philips Headphones


  • Undeniably detailed sound resolution
  • Impressive price/quality ratio
  • Ergonomic and adjustable designs ensure comfort
  • Innovative control technology
  • Decent materials used in manufacturing


  • Problems connecting to devices
  • Only one earpiece working
  • Battery lifespan
  • Issues controlling the music from the headset

Final Thoughts

Philips makes great headphones at a reasonable price considering the quality of the product.

The problems that users encounter are not often due to a major fault with the model. More often than not there is a simple solution, whether it be resetting your headphones or just making sure they’re charged up.


Sound comes only from one side of Philips SHB4385 headphones
Headphones Fidelio L3 Manual
How to Factory Reset PHILIPS Headphones

Was this article helpful? Like Dislike

Click to share...

Did you find wrong information or was something missing?
We would love to hear your thoughts! (PS: We read ALL feedback)