In one’s day-to-day activities, you need to input audios into your circuits. Audios or sounds are essential as they increase the production value when information is being delivered. Audios enhance multimedia applications in various ways; for example, during a presentation, music can add interest and emotions.
Among the most versatile ways to connect speakers is using a 3.5mm audio jack. Can be gotten from old devices, most commonly old sets of portable headphones when the earbuds are cut off, connecting the wires directly to your circuits by plugging the jack into an audio source. This article contains guidelines and steps to help solve problems on connecting speakers.
General connection guide
Most speakers have the right channel speaker as the main speaker with the volume knob. Most commonly, it usually has two wires or even more connected from the back. During connection, one of the wires should have a 3.5mm mini-plug connecting the computer’s audio to the output jack, and the other one should be connected to the left speaker.
Under circumstances where the speakers need a power source to amplify the sound, a power cord should also be available. This power cord needs to be connected to a wall outlet or a surge-protector outlet.
Locate the audio line-level output from the back of your computer. After you have found it, plug the 3.5mm mini plug to the audio line level. The port is mostly colored lime green.
Different types and models of motherboards contain different connections. Some of them may have 4, 5.1, and 7.1 speaker setup connections.
- CS-Out is the center or the subwoofer speaker.
- An RS-Out represents the rear surround sound line out
- Finally, the SS-Out means the side surround sound speaker.
Connecting the mini plug to various devices
- Connecting to a laptop; if your computer lacks any sound out port, the mini plug should be merged into the headphone’s port for the connection to be successful.
- Connecting speakers with a subwoofer; where the speaker has a subwoofer, the required speaker should be connected to the subwoofer and make sure you turn on the subwoofer if the power switch is at the back.
- Connecting USB speakers or headphones, you need to insert your USB connector into one of the open USB ports on your computer. The computer should immediately recognize the USB. You should also consult your device’s user manual.
After successfully connecting all speakers, you need to test whether the connection was successful by adjusting your volume. Make sure it’s not too loud or too low by adjusting the volume knob. Open an audio application or a sound-video file, test the speakers and make sure they are working.
You should be aware that you can plug speakers into a running computer. Most operating systems pop up notice nowadays when speakers are plugged in or disconnected from the device.
Common audio connections
- Yellow or orange audio connection. It signifies digital audio out port.
- A light blue audio connection represents an analog in port.
- Pink audio connection; it simply signifies analog microphone in
- A green or lime green audio connection; shows an analog audio out or a surround sound front out
- A black audio connection port represents a surround sound rear out
Common types of audio jacks
There are two common types of audio jacks, namely, TRS and TRRS. The T represents ‘tip’ whereas the R represents ‘ring .’ Finally, the S stands for ‘sleeve.’
1. The TRS audio jack
TRS jacks can be found on standard stereo headphones lacking microphones. Immediately after cutting into the cable, you will find ways in which they can be wired.
- You will find a copper wire ground sheath wrapped around two audio signal wires and insulated.
- Other insulated two separate wires. Every wire has its signal wire and also a ground wire inside.
- It would help if you now separated the ground insulated wires, the right, and the left audio, inside a single cable.
To differentiate the audio channels, they are colored where the red wires are the correct audio channels, and the blue wires represent the left audio channels. One may have access to pins inside the connector’s housing, depending on the plug type.
Only a mono output is needed; the left audio channel can be connected to the correct audio channel. After you have identified the wires, solder them to the proper input channels on your circuit, or you can attach pin connectors to be used in a breadboard.
2. The TRRS audio jacks
The TRRS audio plug is usually found on iPhone headphones or any other headphone that contains a microphone. Cut open the plastic sheath to see five other separate wires. The wires are as follows;
- A solid red wire signifies the right audio channel.
- Twisted red and copper wire- This wire is usually the ground for the right audio channel.
- You will find a solid green wire that acts as the left audio channel signal.
- A twisted green and copper wire- It is usually the ground for the left audio channel.
- Finally, a red and green sheath in which its inside contains a copper wire. The inner copper wire is a microphone signal, while the outer red and green sheath is the microphone ground.
- Here you will find a plastic cord, and its use is mainly to strengthen the headphone cable.
If only mono audio is needed with the TRRS connector, you can quickly join the red and green wires to get just one ground wire. You will find a thin coating of insulating material on every wire, which is precisely how to bundle the wires without any plastic insulation.
It would be best if you did not connect the wires to anything conductive before cleaning them. The best way to clean them is by running a flame quickly over the cables and cleaning them clean. After cleaning is done, you can solder your wires directly to the jumper pins or your PCB’s inputs to easily insert them into the breadboard.
You are not required to install drivers for speakers. If no speaker is working on the computer, the problem must be with the sound card. Drivers should then be installed on the sound card.
Jacks should be rightly plugged into the matching colors or labels for the connections to be successful. The above information should help you settle the troubles when connecting speakers.