Plugging in Headphones and Speakers to the same jack
Apr 29, 2013 at 6:28 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 4

illuminator3

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I own a pair of sennheiser hd 595's and a pair of small laptop speakers that draw their power from usb. Most of the time I prefer using the headphones, but there are times when I am home alone and would therefore prefer using the speakers. I upgraded my desktops sound card from an integrated one to an asus xonar dg. My desktop has a headphone jack in the front, but I believe it is tied to the integrated sound card. I'm not sure on this, I could use some clarification. Either way I would prefer to not have to open my desktop and "tie" the front headphone jack to my asus xonar dg. My problem is that the xonar only has one 3.5 jack where I would like to have two so that I would not have to constantly climb down to the floor to unplug the headphones and plug in the speakers and vice versa. Is there a way to fix this? I was thinking of buying a splitter that I would connect to the xonar's 3.5 jack and then buying two 3.5 jack extenders and taping these to the top of my desktop to make it easier to use. Would that work? Would there be any problems with the audio using this solution? 
 
Apr 29, 2013 at 7:35 PM Post #2 of 4

HalidePisces

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A splitter would work, but audio would play through both at the same time unless you disconnect one of them. You could save on cables by plugging in a 3.5mm cable into the Xonar first and then using the splitter.

Another way instead of a splitter is an A-B switch. It's a passive circuit box that lets you direct which of the two outputs gets the signal (much like a railroad switch).

Either way, your setup would look like this:
Xonar DG -> 3.5mm cable -> 3.5mm splitter or AB switch -> HD595 and speakers
 
Apr 29, 2013 at 10:08 PM Post #3 of 4

illuminator3

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Apr 30, 2013 at 2:30 AM Post #4 of 4

HalidePisces

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I didn't really have a specific switch in mind. But cruising Amazon, I did find what appears to be a more economical switch. And yes, they are more expensive than a simple splitter.

I'm in a similar situation myself. My current setup has an extension cord from my sound card. I do have to plug and unplug when switching between headphones and speakers. But since the connection point is on my desk, it's not much of a bother. Depending on the space around your computer, you could skip the splitter/switch and just get a 3.5mm cable, and do the same.

As you've mentioned before, you could open your computer and connect the front panel audio to your sound card (it's the left most pin socket in the third picture) instead of your motherboard. It looks like the same as the motherboard, so it should just be a simple operation (unlike Creative who decided to use a proprietary port that requires some work).
 

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