Computers & Electronics

Where do you plug in your headphones? (PC or speaker)

  • Last Updated:
  • Dec 13th, 2016 9:38 am
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[OP]
Jr. Member
May 7, 2009
163 posts
35 upvotes
Toronto

Where do you plug in your headphones? (PC or speaker)

At the back of the motherboard for onboard audio there is a 3.5mm jack where you normally plug in your speakers. Most desktop speakers also have an an additional 3.5mm jack for your headphones. Is there any change in audio quality if I were to plug in my headphones directly to the onboard jack vs the desktop speaker jack?
3 replies
Deal Fanatic
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Mar 17, 2006
6798 posts
5687 upvotes
North York
why don't you plug in and find out? I don't think it's that hard to figure out.
If it's way way better using 1 output, use that one.
If it sounds the same, clearly the difference isn't noticeable enough for you.
Deal Fanatic
Sep 23, 2013
5047 posts
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NORTH YORK
crunchyfrog wrote: At the back of the motherboard for onboard audio there is a 3.5mm jack where you normally plug in your speakers. Most desktop speakers also have an an additional 3.5mm jack for your headphones. Is there any change in audio quality if I were to plug in my headphones directly to the onboard jack vs the desktop speaker jack?
The two should have the same quality as desktop speaker out is just a pass through
If you care about sound quality, you should get the digital out [optical or coaxial or HDMI] of the motherboard to connect to a decent amplifier or receiver. Then your audio will get proper amplification. And you hook up your headphone to the receiver or amp
Daniel

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Deal Guru
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Jun 27, 2004
12329 posts
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Vancouver.bc.ca
I would think that plugging the headphones into the computer would be better than daisy-chaining it via speakers, as far as signal integrity goes. Think about it:
computer -> headphones
versus
computer -> speakers -> headphones

You want to minimize the number of paths that the analogue signal is taking.

It's like plugging in headphones directly to the soundcard versus plugging it into a computer case's front ports.
soundcard/mainboard -> headphones
versus
soundcard/mainboard -> computer case -> headphones

If you're connecting your speakers to the soundcard digitally, that's a different story.

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