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Internal speaker stopped working after headphones unplugged.

2325 Views 6 Replies Latest reply: Oct 7, 2011 3:47 AM by antonefrommoorpark RSS
elisabethfromseattle Calculating status...
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Jul 21, 2011 6:55 PM

The internal speaker on my MacBook Pro stopped working after I plugged in my headphones.  I have restarted many times, cleared the PRAM, done an extensive hardware check, plugged/unplugged the headphones.  I get a startup tahdah but volume icon is gray.  It seems that a few people are having this problem, is there any fix?

MacBook Pro, Mac OS X (10.6.8)
  • louie Level 4 Level 4 (2,945 points)

    The most common cause is a malfunctioning contact in the headphone jack, which the computer uses to sense whether something is plugged into the headphone jack. Although you tried already, the usually remedy is to insert/wiggle/remove/repeat the headphone plug. Some people prefer a toothpick. It might take dozens of tries.


    Do you see a red light coming out of the headphone jack? When you look at System Preferences/Sound/output, what choices are shown?


    It is also possible that something is really broken.

  • Allan Jones Level 7 Level 7 (29,575 points)

    Louie is right all the way. This goes back to the old PowerBook G4s.


    The actual cause is a slightly out-of-spec analog plug going into a tightly-speced digital jack. Nearly all analog mini-plugs make proper contact long before their stop shoulder touches the computer case. The plug's stop shoulder should be 1/8 to 3/16-inch from touching the case to avoid problems.


    Pushing the plug so hard that its stop shoulder touches the case jams the contact that mutes the internal speakers in the muted position. Apple's official fix is a new logic board, so it behooves you to fix it yourself, applying Louie's suggestions..


    Incidentally, the "wiggle" works best in the horizontal plane.

  • Fred V Calculating status...

    In my case this never happens when I am in Bootcamp (Windows 7). However, as soon as I plug my headphone and unplug them under OSX (10.6.x) it does it. So while I agree that the only fix I can do by myself is too use the toothpick dozens of time, it does hint that this not just a hardware problem.


    At one point I thought that maybe because the system typically runs at higher temperature under Windows, the mechanical sensor might have more leeway, I could just get it to heat under OSX, but that didn't change anything. So I am not convince at all that this only hardware.

  • antonefrommoorpark Calculating status...

    Wow!!! That really worked like a jet!!! Thanks man!! My first Mac and I have only had  for 1 year and just had the display replaced thankfully for free @ the Apple store. I miscalculated the timing to go back and get Apple Care and so I am out of warranty and was by about a month when the display thing happened.

    They took care of me , but I was dreading having to go back again a month later with this speaker issue.


    Thanks again to all the toothpick posters in this community!!!!  I thought ahhhh this probably won't work for me. By the way I didn't have a toothpick but we did have some small wooden matches in the cabinet and that's what I used. It was stubborn at first but it finally worked and I felt like I had just walked into to Disneyland for the first time  as a little kid...........I was like get the fudge outta here!!!! TGIF and have a great weekend !!!


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