Anyway to turn off laptop speakers when the headphones fall out?

It’s been a year since this thread, and surely someone must have thought of something by now. Right?

To explain further, say you are watching, um, Youtube, in public with your headphones on. And you want to avoid an accident where you somehow knock out the headphones and everyone in the library hears the, um, Youtube video.

Anyway to turn off the speakers so that the only way you can hear sound is through your headphones?

I know the good souls at Apple have found a solution. Does a Windows solution exist? I have an Extensa 5420 Notebook with Vista.

The wiring for the speakers and headphones share a common line in most notebooks so the answer is quite probably “no” on a practical basis/

Google wireless USB headphones and there are lots of units that won’t get knocked out.

As a side note watching “um” in public is incredibly retarded, and doing it in a library is borderline insane. The consequences can be a lot worse than simple embarrassment if you are caught doing it by someone in authority.

If you get headphones with a USB connector, in my experience, Windows treats it as a separate sound driver entirely. You should be able to set it so that the computer speakers are set to mute, but the USB headset is set to however much volume, and it will switch automatically between them.

At least, that’s the case on my computers. I’d test this with say, uhm, a Quicktime movie trailer before you break out the, uhm, Youtube.

Also, I agree with the who said that you shouldn’t watch, uhm, youtube in public or in libraries. When I worked in a library, people did get kicked out for that sort of thing.


Don’t worry, I’ll look out for Carl Monday.

I had a loaner laptop with the bug that the external speaker didn’t shut off when you plugged headphones in. This was embarrassing on a plane.
Not as embarrassing as it would have been if I was watching um youtube, though.

Bumping this up to see if anyone else has an answer.

One way to do it would be to get headphones with a 2.5mm jack, then plug a 3.5mm jack adaptor into the headphone socket and fix it in place with duct tape or something - that way, the headphones will pull out of the adaptor, which will stay in place, maintaining the little sprung connection and preventing the speakers from firing up.

Not elegant, but I think it should work. I don’t think you’re going to find a non-hardware solution to this. Apple can do it because they design their own hardware - other computer manufacturers have to make do with off-the-shelf components.

But how big of a problem is this anyway? How likely is it that the plug will get accidentally yanked out? Are you um hand-jiving or something?

The only solution really is the USB head sets. They are a different device than your soundcard. They are handled by a separate volume control. You’ll have to go this more expensive route if it really matters to you to have this type of function. It’s answered, even if you don’t like the answer.

Lol. Seriously, depending on where you live, getting caught simply viewing your um, youtube videos might vary from a warning/fine, to varying levels of criminal sexual behavior, especially if kids are around (“kid” < 18-21 years old). That means, again depending on your area, your face on a nice state-sanctioned website, perhaps a custom license plate, having to register every time you move or go on vacation, being prevented from having certain jobs (even fast food jobs–you might work with a minor!), and being rounded up in the first batch of people when the Illuminati get around to their extermination plan. (I couldn’t help but throw that in.)

People in some places get to enjoy this fun because a cop saw their car parked by the side of a dirt road during a 30 second emergency piss stop in the middle of nowhere at night with nobody else around. (A family friend found this out the hard way.) As the general consensus is that there’s not really a good reason to watch um, youtube videos in a library (or other public places), the chances of winning over a jury are probably nil. Add in the fact that such “crimes” get put in the criminal sexual column for prosecutors and judges, and those folks like looking tough on these types of crimes, leniency is probably going to be minimal. And really, going to prison because you looked up um, youtube videos pretty much guarantees you’re going to have a new boyfriend, whether you want one or not.

At the very least, check your local/state laws, it might save your ass…literally. :smiley:

The other thing worth noting is that if you’re using their wireless network to visit Um Youtube, there will be ways that they can observe your activity other than physically peering over your shoulder, or overhearing the audio when your energetic Um Hand Jiving results in accidental disconnection of the headphones.

Dear god, I don’t watch porn in the library. I actually watch Youtube.

I thought that if I just mentioned Youtube that no one would believe me. I was also making fun of the thread I linked to in the OP.

But now everyone thinks I’m a pervert.

Can we focus on the question now?

I had always thought it would cool to set up some speakers on my back porch and wire them to my home theater receiver’s B speaker outputs. Then my then-wife and I went to a party at the home of one of her co-worker’s, who had wired their house that way. The co-worker’s husband was explaining to us how great it was and everything … “except,” he said, “for the times when we accidentally hit the B-speaker button and wind up sharing whatever movie we’re watching with the whole neighborhood.”

He didn’t specify “whatever” movie … but that’s instantly where my mind went.

We already did. The answer isn’t likely to change.

My laptop has different mixer settings for the headphones and main speakers. I never use headphones but I do plug my desktop speakers into the headphone jack and it doesn’t seem to automatically disable the speakers. I don’t think it behaved like this when I had Windows, suggesting it may be a software issue after all, at least on some machines.

I think it’s been answered a few times now, consider getting a set of USB headphones. I’ve got a USB microphone stereo headset made by Lenovo that uses a USB adapter. When I have the USB adapter in, the sound is active and two clicks up on the windows volume control. When I pull the USb adapter out, it switches to mute. Listed price is about $45. There are probably cheaper USB no-mic headsets out there too (I’d avoid Logitech, their headsets are too stiff and squeeze my head uncomfortably, but then I’ve got a bit head.)