Why headset doesn’t work on computer [Fixed]

Sometimes after connecting the headset to the system unit or laptop the user realizes that the headset simply doesn’t work. As a result, the headset owner begins to look for ways to fix the situation but often does not find effective solutions. That’s why we decided to prepare a thematic material in which we will tell you why the headset doesn’t work on your computer. In this article, we will consider two types of situations. First, we will talk about the cases when the computer cannot see the headset. Then we will discuss situations when the headset is visible but does not work. At the end of the article, we will attach a useful video.

Why can’t the computer detect the headset? Here are some fixes

The computer can’t see the connected headset for both hardware and software reasons. In the first case, we are talking about some malfunctions of technical nature. In the second case – about the wrong system settings (including audio device settings) or about the conflict between the devices or programs, responsible for sound recording and playback. Below we will directly look at the reasons why the computer does not see the headset:

Headset not working.

If we are talking about a new headset, this cause is rare, although it can not be excluded. So if the computer does not see the headset (and there is no sound either), it is necessary to connect the headset to another PC or laptop. If the device is detected (the sound appears), then the reason is obviously not the headset failure.

Damaged connection ports.

If you have a corded headset, the cause of the malfunction may be a defective connection port. If it is a USB headset, try connecting the device to a different USB port. If it is a headset with a combined plug (with 3-4 pins) or two plugs (for headphones and microphone), you should check in another way – by connecting to the right ports another headset model with similar plugs. If the new device is also not detected, then the problem with a high probability is the failure of the ports.

By the way, if you connect the device through the 3.5 mm jacks, the computer may not see the headset in the list of connected devices. This is a normal phenomenon. Therefore, in such a situation, the headset must be checked for the presence of sound (headphones and microphone must be checked simultaneously). Additionally, if possible, it is worth checking the state of the sound card. If it is damaged, there will be no sound, regardless of the device used for its playback.

Damaged cable.

It is not superfluous to check the condition of the cable (relevant for wired headsets). If the cable is torn or there are strong bends on it, then this circumstance explains the non-working condition of the headset. In such a situation, you should return the product to the store (if it was purchased literally just now) or give the headset to specialized specialists to check the current state of the device.

Incorrect connection.

Sometimes the user connects the headset to the wrong jacks by mistake. So it is important to make sure that the mistake didn’t happen. To do this, we advise you to read the article “How to connect the headset to the computer”.

If we talk about software reasons, then usually the computer does not see the headset due to the following circumstances:

Lack of drivers.

Sometimes the sound drivers get “flipped”, and the computer can’t see the new device. For this reason, we recommend updating drivers for sound devices (through Windows functionality or using special utilities for driver installation and updating). It’s highly probable that you’ll be able to detect the headset and use it further for its intended purpose.

Connecting other devices.

Sometimes so-called conflict of devices occurs in the system. Usually, it happens in situations when there are other sound devices connected to your computer besides the new headset. In such cases, you need to manually search for the headset in the list of connected devices and select it as the default device.

Sometimes the headset is not detected because it is turned off. This usually applies to wireless headsets with a power button on the side of the headset. Also, the computer can’t see a wireless headset if there is no synchronization activated beforehand (no button on the headset is pressed or no synchronization module is connected to the PC).

Please note that all the above checks should only be performed in situations where the computer does not see the headset. If it can see the headset, but the headset is not working (does not broadcast or record sound), it is necessary to use the tips from the next section of today’s article.

Why doesn’t my headset work on my computer and how to fix it?

Then let’s consider situations when the headset is physically intact but does not perform its main functions. We will present the main causes of such a phenomenon and tell you what you can do to normalize the situation:

Short-term system failure.Sometimes the headset does not work due to a temporary Windows failure. In this situation, it is usually enough to reboot the computer. If it does not help, it is advisable to try reconnecting the headset plugs (if using a wired device) or reconnecting the headset to a PC (if using a wireless device).

Incorrect connection of one of the plugs. Exclusively for headsets with separate plugs. When using a PC, the plug marked green must be plugged into the headphone jack, and the plug marked pink into the microphone jack. If either plug is connected incorrectly, the corresponding part of the headset (headphones or microphone) will not work.

Disconnecting the microphone from the headset. Some headset models have a removable microphone. If handled carelessly, it may “come off” a little. In this case, just insert the microphone firmly into the corresponding jack on the headset and the sound recording situation will normalize.

Mute. If the volume is at zero, no sound will be heard through the headphones. You can check the volume value through the volume mixer (located at the right bottom of the screen) or through the Sound menu in the Control Panel. In addition, it is worth turning the volume knob on the headset itself. Of course, if this control is present there.

Select another device by default. If several headsets (or separately headphones (speakers) and microphones) are connected to the computer, the operating system may by default use different devices than the user wants. To make changes, go to Audio Device Management, and then select the desired devices in the Playback (headphones) and Recording (microphone) tabs. Then select the default devices, press Apply and evaluate the changes in practice.

Conflict of similar applications. If the user is using several programs for sound broadcasting and recording at the same time, the applications may conflict, so that the headphones or microphone stop working in at least one of them. In this case, you should properly adjust the programs or temporarily stop using some of them.

Headset malfunctions when using a browser. Sometimes people communicate directly through the browser. In this case, a website or extension may request the appropriate permission (e.g. to use the microphone). If the request is ignored, audio will not be recorded and transmitted via the headset microphone. It can be difficult to play audio if you mute a particular site (such an option exists in, say, Google Chrome). In both cases, you can easily override the bans in the browser settings. As an example, in Google Chrome you can enable access to the microphone on a particular site in the Security and Privacy settings, while you can turn on the sound by clicking on the desired tab with the PCM and selecting the appropriate option.

If the wireless headset does not work on your computer, it is worth checking the battery charge additionally. If the charge is zero or close to this value, you will need to charge the device, and then try to use it again.

If the above tips didn’t help (the headset still doesn’t work), we recommend watching the video below. The video provides additional recommendations on the issue at hand. That is why we recommend you to read it. Especially if you have decided to buy a headset for PC for the first time, which means that you are practically unfamiliar with the nuances of using this device.

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