laptop sound distorted after plugging in speakers

  olssonk 20:52 22 Jan 2008

I have a Dell inspiron 8600 with Windows XP. I was playing internet radio on it, then connected it from its speakers plug to my stereo speakers so I could listen to it more loudly. This made the sound go low and distorted. Upon removing the line, it now plays distorted by itself. I can do this no problem with my other laptop, and I believe I've done it with this one before.

Restarting does not help.

What have I done?

  martjc 21:00 22 Jan 2008

...I suggest you get the latest drivers for your sound, which could have gone corrupt, then try again.

If this fails there could be a problem on the speakers socket. These can be a bit delicate and are usually quite tricky to put right.

  olssonk 21:20 22 Jan 2008

It works fine now.

why would simply trying to switch from internal laptop speakers to external ones by plugging my laptop into my stereo (through the headphone jack) ruin the sound like that, I wonder?

Maybe I'll experiment by
a) trying it again
b) trying other speakers
c) trying headphones

(if I had the time and patience!) :)

  wee eddie 21:30 22 Jan 2008

So you have a lead with male plugs at both ends?

  DieSse 01:38 23 Jan 2008

The headphone jack on your stereo is for output - not plugging a speaker output into.

You'd be lucky to get anything, and may even damage somthing permanently if thats what you did.

Please confirm exactly what cable you put between where on the laptop and where on your stereo.

  DieSse 01:45 23 Jan 2008

The output on the laptop is designed to be connected to


Computer (amplified) loudspeakers

A line-level input on a stereo.

Anything else may result in bad sound and/or low levels of sound.

Output sockets on laptops also tend to accumulate gunge in them if not used often. This results in bad contacts, and also bad/low level sound.

There's also a switch inside the socket (to switch off the laptop speakers when you plug something in. If there's some gunge inside it can make the switch not connect properly when you unplug from the socket - thus giving bad sound on the internal speakers.

The usual way to clear the gunge if to push the plug in and out of the socket a few times.

  olssonk 23:55 24 Jan 2008

to clarify, I'm plugging one end of the line into my laptop's headphone jack and the other end of the line is made up of 2 plugs that go into the "aux" jack of my stereo. this works for my other laptop and my ipod just fine. When I do it with this laptop, it results in the distorted speaker sound.

  ambra4 01:22 25 Jan 2008

Try adjusting the volume on the laptop and increasing the volume on the amplifier for the best sound

If the volume level of the laptop were set to high, this would over drive the AUX input on the amplifier and you would get a distorted sound

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