Kenwood vs. Midland (or other) headset compatibility

Hi folks,
I have motorcycle to motorcycle communications set up using an Autocom (Active-PLUS) and Kenwood TK-3131 Freetalk XLS radios. Unfortunately the radios are acting up. One no longer receives anything. When I press the ‘mon’ I can hear transmissions from the other but they are weak. The other behaves as if it the squelch is set to zero (IOW it receives at all times that it is not transmitting.) Bummer. :mad:

My little bit of research finds no Kenwood FRS/GMRS radios so I guess they are no longer in that business. I looked at Midland radios and saw that they had a similar looking headset jack - two pins of different size. I checked this out at the store tonight and found that the pin size looks the same but spacing between them is not the same.

I’m wondering what is the best way to proceed to get a working system. SWMBO has a different system that works with a Cobra FRS/GMRS radio so I’d like to stick with that. Hers will also do Bluetooth but I cannot imagine it will have nearly the range so I’d like to stick with FRS/GMRS if possible.

Can I graft a Midland connector on to the cable in place of the Kenwood connector and have a reasonable expectation that it would work? In other words is the spacing likely the only difference between the two headset connectors or are there going to be electrical differences?

Are there other radios that would be compatible with the Kenwood headset connector?

Any other options I’m overlooking?


Obviously you and I are discussing the same issue. The key is which each ring or tip on the plug does (speakers, mic, ptt button, etc). You should be able to find out by searching for a “pinout” on the various plugs and radios and if you or someone you know can solder, make your own adapter. You may find an adapter for conversion but I haven’t found much luck in that. Whatever you find, let us know.