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Old 21st August 2004, 11:32 PM   #1
Gambit is offline Gambit  United Kingdom
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Default Connecting a speaker to a headphone jack

Hi guys,

I really need some help. I will give you some background to my problem first:

I have a four speaker surround speaker system for PC and it used to be connected to my Sound Blaster Live! 1024 card (4 speaker output... 2 front, 2 back). I recently bought a new Sound Blaster Audigy 2 Card which can provide up to 6.1 digital surround... however i only have the 4 point speakers.

The Audigy itself has 3 outputs on the back (standard headphone jack outputs). The first output is for the 2 front channels, the second output is for the 2 rear channels and the 3rd is for the front center and rear center speakers.

Now the problem: I have got the front left/right and the rear left/right speakers connected without any problems. I wanted to use an old set of hi-fi speakers as the front center and rear center speakers but the problem is that the output on the sound card takes a standard headphone jack... whereas my speakers are raw cable.

I have cut up an old set of headphones and am left with a length of wire with the jack at one end and the right and left channel wire ends (each with 2 wires within = 4 wires total!).

So how do i connect the +ve and -ve of the speakers to the headphone wire... so that 1 speaker is the left channel and 1 is the right channel?

Please help... im really sorry if i have made things more complicated than they are but as you can see I am a TOTAL newbie to this... so please no big words!

Thanks in advance guys,
Gambit
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Old 22nd August 2004, 06:56 AM   #2
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*shakes head in dismay*

There are three wires you care about here: the left (which is the *center* channel), the right (which is the *sub* channel) and the ground, which will be in common between the two speakers.

Center + connects to the left wire. (Left wire is the "tip" part of the headphone plug.)

Center - connects to ground.

Sub + connects to the right wire. (Right wire is the "ring" part of the headphone plug.)

Sub - connects to the same ground as the Center -.

Now, let me save you some time: DON'T DO THIS. It's a waste of time. The hottest signal you can possibly get out of your Audigy headphone preamp is 2.1 volts (I know from experience) but it's designed to drive a 32ohm load, not the 4 or 6 or 8 your speakers are. The result will be so quiet as to be useless.

The correct answer is to get another 2 amplifier channels (one for center, one for sub) and amplify the Audigy's output, then send it to the speakers.

Further questions? Ask again :-)
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