If you work at home or are constantly traveling, you probably know the frustration of not being able to listen to your music or watch your video at the same time as someone else who also wants to listen to their headphones. Luckily, there are some simple solutions to this problem. Here’s how to use two pairs of headphones on a PC or Mac.
Why Do You Want To Connect Two Headphones?
The apparent reason to use two or more headphones is for multiplayer gaming. Some games offer only essential audio support for multiple headsets, but it’s easy to get around that with technical know-how. If you want your computer to recognize an extra set of headphones—or more than one, if you already have multiple pairs—then there are three things you can do. But which should you choose? Let’s take a look at how each method works and its benefits and drawbacks so you can decide what’s best for your setup.
With The Help Of USB Splitters
One way to set up multiple pairs of headphones on a computer is to plug in a USB splitter. This is essentially a Y-shaped USB adapter that will allow you to connect two headphones, or more directly into your computer at once. Here’s how it works: Take one side of your splitter and connect it to an open USB port on your computer; now, take another side and plugin both pairs of headphones. This way, you can wear different sets of headphones with other people without swapping out any hardware physically. Just make sure that they use plug-and-play technology, so there isn’t any additional setup required.
Without The Splitters
Connecting two pairs of headphones to a single audio jack is a quick and straightforward way to get more pairs of ears listening. All you need is an extra 3.5 mm or 1/8 male-to-male audio jack adapter, available from any electronics store for less than a dollar. Connect one set of headphones into your computer’s headphone jack, then connect your additional pair into one end of each adapter and both jacks on the other end together. For the best sound quality, use a good quality splitter with gold-plated connectors and a durable build.
Through Bluetooth Connection
If you have two Bluetooth-enabled devices—such as a pair of headphones and a smartphone—you can connect them through an app, which will allow you to use both pairs of headphones at once. You’ll want to make sure that both your smartphone and headphones are compatible with Bluetooth 4.0 LE, also known as Bluetooth Low Energy or BLE. This is important because BLE is less power-intensive than older versions of Bluetooth, so it allows more devices to connect simultaneously while using very little battery life. Some lower-end smartphones may not be compatible with BLE technology; check with your manufacturer if you aren’t sure about compatibility.
Use Two Headphones for Particular Apps Only
If you are looking to use two pairs of headphones on your Windows 10 machine, then you can do so with one caveat: each pair must be plugged into a separate jack. For example, if you have a desktop and wish to use an audio jack and a USB port at once, there’s no way to configure Windows 10 for that particular hardware setup. Also, keep in mind that two headsets cannot be used simultaneously. If you plug them both in and activate each one by double-clicking its volume button in Device Manager, only one will work. The other headset will remain silent even if it’s capable of producing sound since Windows doesn’t detect it as active hardware.