The OnePlus 5T has a very in-demand feature in smartphones right now — a 3.5mm headphone jack; but that doesn’t mean it’s the way you should be listening to music on the phone. OnePlus is one of the few manufacturers that supports Bluetooth AptX HD into its phones. It’s a wireless audio codec that provides a greater than CD quality sound when using compatible wireless headphones.
To experience AptX HD, you need to follow a few simple stages to get it working. Here’s our guide to enjoying AptX HD on your OnePlus 5T. If you haven’t bought a OnePlus 5T yet, read our OnePlus 5T review to find out why you should.
The right equipment
Owning the OnePlus 5T gets you only halfway to AptX HD audio nirvana. You also need an AptX HD-ready pair of headphones. That’s right, your old pair of well-used in-ears that came free with an old phone won’t cut it here. You’re going to have to splash out, but it’s worth it.
The easiest way to find out what headphones are ready for AptX HD is visit the AptX website, where you’ll find a complete, up-to-date list of compatible hardware. We are particular fans of the amazing Audio Technica ATH-DSR9BT over-ears, the Bowers & Wilkins PX noise canceling headphones, and LG’s Tone Active+ halo-style in-ears.
More products are being released with AptX HD support all the time, so if you don’t find a pair to suit right now, do keep checking back.
How to activate AptX HD
You’ve got your OnePlus 5T, and the right pair of Bluetooth headphones all ready to go. Now, we need to prepare and then pair them together. Here are the stages you need to follow:
- First, open Settings and scroll down to Advanced. Tap to open and look for the Bluetooth Audio Codec option at the bottom of the page. Tap it and select AptX HD in the menu that appears.
- Once you’ve activated it, go back to the Bluetooth settings and pair your smartphone with the headphones. Tap Bluetooth and make sure it’s switched on using the slider at the top of the menu page. Ensure your headphones are also turned on and in Bluetooth pairing mode.
- Look for the headphones in the Available Devices list, and tap to pair.
- Just as the two devices pair up, provided AptX HD has been activated correctly and you have a compatible pair of headphones, you’ll see a notification at the bottom of the screen saying AptX HD is active.
That’s it, you’re now set up for the best wireless audio quality you’ll hear.
Use the best music sources
When you use AptX HD and play hi-res files, the sound is as close to high resolution audio quality usually provided by wired headphones as you’ll get. It plays up to 48kHz/24-bit LPCM audio, and it’s genuinely unlike any wireless Bluetooth experience you’ll have had before. To get this, you should use hi-res sources, such as Tidal HiFi, or your own hi-res music files.
Playing regular MP3 files, or music from Spotify, will sound better using AptX HD; but it won’t be the eye-opening experience you’ll have with hi-res content.