Using Back To School Doorbusters as Cheap Earphone (and Headphone) cases

From late June until September every year, many of the big chain stores across the country run a variety of “Back to School” sales. Some of the items that are featured as doorbusters or on sale or as freebies can be repurposed by the thrifty as …earphone and headphone cases.

Having said that, the price of the headphones has to match the price of the doorbuster “cases”. Not a good idea to put $1000 Custom IEMs in a $1 box, but $10 earphones, why not? 🙂

$1 Office Depot Clearance (more details on these coming later)

As of mid-September 2016, Office Depot and Max has put some of their house-brand supplies on clearance for $1 each. These could make great earphone containers.

I plan to post about each one of the above here, “modeling” with earphones inside, but until, then you can get a brief description of each one of the six boxes at this post. UPDATE: they are also available via the Office Depot website.

Really Useful Boxes lock in Earphones

These little “Really Useful Boxes” (or any other brand names that are available) are nice if you have enough space in your bag (the smallest one (pictured below) is roughly 3.5 by 2 by 2 inches). They lock in on both sides, so the chances of your earphones falling out are low. They have extra volume too, so you could also throw in an 1/4″ adapter or shirt clips or additional eartips.


The Soft Pencil Box has more room

If you need more room for your earphones to expand, or include more than one pair, or extra accessories, the soft pencil boxes are another traditional doorbuster and coupon promotion. They have a little button that locks them in too.



Novelty Erasers for Smaller Earphones

If you have smaller earphones (smaller shells, short cable, more pliable), look for the even smaller eraser novelty sets. They are small enough to even through in a pocket or shirt without standing out like the boxes above. The pictures tell the story below 🙂



The earphones inside are the Monoprice 8320, the ones with the seashell-style shell.


They also have a way to securely close them in:

Bigger Pencil Boxes may fit Folding On-Ear Headphones

If you have folding headphones, especially of the on-ear kind, with fairly small earcups, fairly short cables, and generally smallness in the design, you may actually be able to fit them in the doorbuster solid pencil boxes. Folding is the key here, otherwise they are too big.

The box you see below measures roughly 8 x 5 x 2 inches (rounded/approximate measurement). Fitting nicely as you can see here is the Sony ZX-310, part of the ZX-series.



But similarly sized on-ears that do not fold, cannot squeeze themselves in. The one below is a popular OEM design that has many variations in different brands, including Able Planet and AmazonBasics. It does NOT fold, so it can’t fit. It’s simply too big for the box:


For a sense of scale, here’s how a typical pencil box looks with a Sony MDR-V6 and a Grado SR60i. They definitely DO NOT fit inside 🙂



Don’t Forget The Soap Box

Liquid soap is a shower trend these days, but that doesn’t mean you have to say no to a soap box doorbuster. They too can be used to store some of the smaller earphones:



Just throwing earphones in a box may not be a big risk if these are your $10 semi-disposables, but if you prefer some extra protection, you can take them a step up by using bubble mailer and any other padding you have available at home. Depending on the shape of your container, you can either tape/glue it or just have it casually cover the bottom. Here are some of the above “cases” bubbled, first the “Really Useful Box” and then the “Soap Box”: