If you have a laptop that comes with a single 3.5mm combo audio jack that controlled by a Reaktek audio chip which supports the connection of headphone, speaker out or headset, you will probably see the following dialog box automatically popup when you plug your audio device into that 3.5mm combo audio jack.
Now, what is the difference among the 3 types of audio device that is supported by the combo audio jack?
- Headphones - a.k.a. earphones, are pair of small speakers that are designed to be worn close to your ears. There are headphones that sit at your outer ears, and also in-ear type (a.k.a. in-ear monitors (IEM) or canalphones).
- Headset - is a pair of headphones with attached microphone, normally used for voice chatting.
- Speaker out - external speaker or sound bar, normally with sound amplifier.
If you find that your laptop's 3.5mm combo audio jack is not functioning, you might need to install the correct Realtek audio driver for the combo audio jack to work properly. The driver is normally preinstalled, and its installation file can be found either in the CD that comes together with the laptop or from the manufacturer's support website.
With the Realtek audio driver and software properly installed, you can use Realtek HD Audio Manager to configure your computer sound system.