How to connect headset to laptop with dual sound output

willgl

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Apr 22, 2015
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Hi Guys,

I can't understand why this problem isn't more documented online. I've tried googling endlessly and keep coming up with questions that are completely different to mine, yet seems like such a common problem.

I have a laptop - the Gigabyte P35G - http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=5033#kf

I also have some headphones - the Bose QC20i - http://www.bose.com/controller?url=/shop_online/headphones/noise_cancelling_headphones/quietcomfort_20/index.jsp

On the laptop I have a 3mm jack for Microphone and a 3mm jack for headphones.

When I plug the headphones into the laptop I either get the microphone working and the sound coming out of the speakers, or I get the headphones working and no microphone.

The sound is controlled by the Realtek HD Audio Manager. I've tried changing settings within here but to no avail. I've also tried buying a couple of different splitters which plug into both of the 3MM jacks and combine to a singular 3MM jack to plug the headphones into - this doesn't work at all.

Any suggestions please?
 

Napalmhardcore

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Mar 11, 2010
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Yes, that will work.

Just a pointer for in future. There are two common types of headset connector. One which is used for Apple and some other devices (I believe HTC Windows phones use that standard). The other is slightly more common and is used by the majority of other smart phone brands such as Samsung. So if in future you buy another device and the cable you use for Apple devices doesn't work, that will be why.

Apple devices use an AHJ (American Headset Jack) connector. I believe the other type of connecter is called OMTP.
 

Napalmhardcore

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Have you tried right clicking the speaker icon in the taskbar and checking both your playback devices and recording devices (after attaching the headphones)? The device you want to use should be selected as "use as default".

This is all assuming that whatever version of Windows you are using operates in a similar fashion to Windows Vista and 7.

Edit: I apologise, I didn't look at the headphones at first and did not realise it had an inline mic. Are any of the splitters you mentioned that you bought 4-pole to mic and stereo? That is what is needed.
 

Napalmhardcore

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Yes, that will work.

Just a pointer for in future. There are two common types of headset connector. One which is used for Apple and some other devices (I believe HTC Windows phones use that standard). The other is slightly more common and is used by the majority of other smart phone brands such as Samsung. So if in future you buy another device and the cable you use for Apple devices doesn't work, that will be why.

Apple devices use an AHJ (American Headset Jack) connector. I believe the other type of connecter is called OMTP.
 

Napalmhardcore

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Hope you enjoy your new headset. Any more problems with it, just post back here or message me and I'll be happy to help :)
 

willgl

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Apr 22, 2015
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I'm afraid the adapter arrived and the sound works perfectly, but the microphone isn't recognised. I've checked that it is enabled and had a look through the settings but cannot see anything that appears to need changing. Any suggestions?
 

Napalmhardcore

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Sorry for the delayed response. I've had a search for info and not found anything useful. I am unsure as to why they are not working but we'll try some troubleshooting steps.

1) Plug the headset into the splitter you purchased, then plug the green connector to the headphone input on the PC and the pink to the microphone input (ensure it is a microphone input).

2) Presuming your version of Windows operates in a similar manner to Vista and 7, you should be able to right click the speaker symbol on the task bar. A menu should appear. Select recording devices. This should bring up a window showing the microphones and other audio inputs on your PC. Try speaking into the mic and see if anything is detected (the small meter will go up and down if sound is detected).

3) If none of the meters show any activity, try right clicking a blank space in the window and select show hidden devices (if this option is available), show disabled devices and show disconnected devices. If this brings up more devices, again try speaking into the mic and look for activity.

If any activity is shown when speaking into the mic, you will want to right click on the device and set it as the default device.
 

Nmid

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Was the OP able to resolve his problem?
I'm having the same issue and following the trouble shooting steps doesn't get the mic working for me :(

Any other suggestions?
I just want my Bose qc 35's mic to work.. it's troublesome wearing 2 headsets :s
 

Napalmhardcore

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I don't know if the OP ever solved his problem. Can you describe the problem to me exactly.
 

Nmid

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Hi Napalmhardcore
Thank you for replying.
I have connected the Bose QC35's cable to the splitter and connected the splitter to the desktop ports (keeping the colors in mind for mic+sound).
While the sound works fine, the mic doesn't work.

I went to the recording devices and saw 3 options:
1. Microphone (Default)
2. Line In (Not plugged in)
3. Stereo Mix (ready)

The Bose qc35 cable is firmly plugged in (I can hear fine) as is the splitter's mic connector to the desktop.
I tried out all available options (Properties, listen to this device etc), but I couldn't get the Microphone to work, nor get the line in to get plugged in (only showed the general tab). The controller information showed "Realtech high definition audio" and the properties of that showed "This device is working properly".


 

Napalmhardcore

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Are you certain that the splitter you are using is a headset adapter and not a stereo splitter? You should be able to confirm this by trying both connections into the headphone port (not at the same time obviously) and seeing if you hear sound. Alternatively, if you bought it online you could link the product and I could have a look.
 

Napalmhardcore

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I found a discussion on Reddit about another Bose device here. In this case the headphone connector was only TRS and it was speculated that the mic may only operate via Bluetooth. Can you confirm that the QC35 has a TRRS connection. If it does, the only other thing I can think of is that the headset adapter you have is the incorrect standard or faulty.

There are two standard headset connection types: CTIA (Apple and some other devices) and OMTP (traditionally Android). Both use a TRRS connection but they are wired differently. Unfortunately both the companies that produce adapters and those that produce devices that headsets can be connected to (like phones for example) are not very good about making it clear what standard they use. In fact, I contacted Samsung last year to ask whether the Galaxy S4 has a CTIA or OMTP port after reading some reviews of products that were intended for Apple devices working with the S4 (suggesting that it may be CTIA). They refused to tell me and said that they could only give information already contained on their website.

It might be best to contact Bose before spending any more money and confirm whether the mic should function with the correct type of splitter. I'm sorry if this answer is less than definitive, but being I don't personally own the headset, I do not want to make a recommendation for a product that may not work.

Edit: I found another discussion here suggesting that the mic won't work with PC. I'd still try contacting Bose though just in case.
 

Nmid

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Hi Napalmhardcore,
That's actually a very helpful answer. I didn't know about TRS / TRRS... or that would make a difference in the type of splitter required. I just thought/hoped that the splitter would work.

I think you've hit the nail on the head, as the headset mic so far has only worked connected via bluetooth (to my phone).
I wonder if there's a bluetooth adapter that I can use to connect my headset to the computer (but that's going to drain the battery even faster which isn't ideal for my long daily usage.)

I will contact Bose Support during working hours tomorrow, but I don't hold much hope from their customer support.
When I contacted them earlier about how the battery might be replaced for the headset, I got 3 different answers (Not possible, buy a new headset for 50% or get a service headset replacement for a further reduced price. There was no option of getting the battery replaced!)

Anyway, I'll be sure to post an update here by weekend.
 

Napalmhardcore

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There is mention of a cable with an inline mic in the Reddit discussion I linked. I also managed to find this. Have a read and see if this is a good solution for you.
 

Nmid

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Thank you for pointing it out to me.
I replied to that discussion a few day ago, but didn't get any reply.

I contacted Bose support today and as I thought, they didn't have any idea on this issue, especially as it involved a 3rd party converter.
The Level 1 customer support on the phone support, suggested I send them an email so they could escalate it higher up, so that I could get the information I required.

The seller from whom I got the the TRRS adapter on the other hand was more illuminating.
He confirmed that the headset cable is a TRS cable, so my QC35 won't work with the splitter.

Guess I'll have to fall back to either
using it exclusively through the bluetooth adapter for the desktop ($7)or
see if I can buy the mic cable (about $25) for the bose headset as you suggested.

Thank you for your help Napalmhardcore.
You helped me get to a solution in a much easier manner than me trying to figure it out on my own.
Cheers.
 
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