11 Replies Latest reply: Sep 27, 2015 9:58 AM by MuddGripGraphics
RAFREEB Level 1 (0 points)

My 17 inch Macbook Pro is less than two weeks old. The headphone jack does not recognize the headphones about half the time. This occurs with several pairs of headphones and yes, they are ther right size. This is really frustrating on a brand new 3500 dollar machine. What is causing this? It almost seems as if the headphones cannot make contact due to the fact that the connection is too far recessed. I don't live near an Apple store so dealing with this is going to be a P.I.T.A. Anyone have any ideas on how I might fix this issue? Thanks!

MacBook Pro
  • Ashwin Bhadra Level 1 (20 points)



    Can you check the Sound prefs of the system preference whether it shows the Headphone in the output section when you connect the headphones.


    Also check if you see a Red Light emitting from the headphone jack, if it does then it could be an issue with the i/o board of your MBP.



    Ashwin Bhadra.

  • RAFREEB Level 1 (0 points)

    Hi, and thanks for your reply. I didn't have a red light emitting from the jack. I had already checked in the sound preferences to make sure the settings were correct. The headphones were not being recognized. This was not working with several differing sets of headphones. I made a phone appt. with Applecare. The laptop PRAM was reset and it works. There is still a bit of a delay when I plug in the headphones before they are recognized and I do feel the port is just a bit "off" as the no headphones plug all the way in. They seem to just sit almost flush but, not quite. However, resetting it resolved the issue to a satifactory level. Applecare said the issue was that not enough power was getting to that function on my laptop. They gave me the case number and I can use it if I have any further problem when I take the laptop in with me to any Apple service center. I was quite satisfied with how this was handled by Apple and if I have anymore issues will follow up.


    I love  this laptop but, even though this is working now I do feel that port is somewhat recessed a bit much.


    I also want to add that this is my first Mac and despite having had this issue I was extremely impressed with the Applecare call that I got to help resolve this. One of the reasons I went with a Mac was the reputation for service Apple has. I was fed up with Sony to the hilt. I was glad I went with this Mac despite the headphone issue because had I still been with Sony, I'd have been give a major run around to deal with this issue. So far, Apple has tried everything possible to help me with this and assured me should I have any further issue they will immediately resolve it or give me a new machine. WAY better than dealing with Sony! I do not regret going with this MAC headphone issue or not!

  • Ashwin Bhadra Level 1 (20 points)



    Surely visit the Apple Service Center and they would give a satisfactory solution.


    Cheerz : Apple Support..  :-)



    Ashwin Bhadra


    Maple DTI, India.

    Apple Premium Reseller

    Apple Service Provider

    Apple Solution Expert

  • swriviera Level 1 (0 points)


    I was having the exact same problem and my MacBook Pro is les than 2 months old - PANIC because I need the headphones to be able to work when I am not at home.

    With the suggestions here I went into the preferences menu, I pluged in the headphones and unplugged them and saw that it was listing that the output was the on the speakers or on the headphones according to what I was doing.  I didn't change anything.  And low and behold the headphone output is working correctly again.


    These are the kind of fixes that worry me.  Why - all of a sudden did the headphone output stop working? How could just the fact of going into the preferences (without changing the settings) fix it. I may have to look into how to reset the PRAM as listed above to be ready for the next time???


    In regards to Apple support, I agree totally with you - it is by far the best I've seen for any product. 


    Have a nice day

  • RAFREEB Level 1 (0 points)

    This issue did come up again for me and for a while I would have to close my laptop to put the computer to "sleep" for a second. After opening it again the headphones would be recognized and it would work fine. Then suddenly one day the laptop started to be able to switch from the speakers as output to recognizing the headphones as output when I plugged them in. It still works now but, it's a really weird problem and I don't think it's just me that has had this power handling issue with the headphones. I've dealt with it okay and as I said it works now but, it worries me. If it happens again I"m definately taking this laptop in and asking for a new one due to the fact that it's been an on and off issue since the day I got the laptop. I am pleased with my purchase otherwise but, I DO feel for what I paid this laptop should have worked perfectly with zero issues from day one.


    At any rate, I hope re setting worked for you. These kinds of fixes worry me too.

  • RAFREEB Level 1 (0 points)

    I am having this issue again, now I'm only getting sound out of one side of the headphones. I have tested the headphones on other devices. Originally, I felt this headphone jack was too recessed and I think that is still part of the problem. Over time this issue gets worse. There are some temporary fixes that stop working after the laptop is used over a period of time.


    I'm going to take this in. This should never have been an issue on such an expensive  machine from day one and it certainly should not be reoccuring this much. I've been looking online and the headphone jack issue has been happening on the Unibodies for quite some time now. I'll take it in for a "fix" once but, after that I'm going to be asking for a replacement. I bought this laptop at such a high price for the main reason I needed something very, very reliable. A headphone jack is a rudimentary part of the laptop that gets a ton of use and should be built accordingly. Taking time to fix, and fix again out of my busy schedule was not what I was looking for. I know Apple will address it but, I am very disappointed for what I paid that something as basic as this keeps going awry.

  • RAFREEB Level 1 (0 points)

    I finally found out what was causing this. Originally I got a call from Apple and the machine was "reset" which caused the jack to work properly for a while. Then it would randomly stop working. I had to plug in the headphones then put the laptop to sleep then wake to get them to be recognized. I just lived with that for a while as I am too busy to be calling and going in to the store for repair. SO glad I got Applecare!


    Well, recently my laptop started over heating and then it stopped recognizing the wifi at all. So, I took it in, the logic board needed replacing, wifi connection was loose AND I was told at that time that the power handling for that head phone jack was bad out of the box. They fixed everything except now I'm having a problem again with a slow start up, I get a spinning wheel every time for about a minute before it starts to work properly. YT videos not always displaying properly and it is taking a while for the wifi to be recognized on booting up. It sees it after a minute or so but, not until the wheel finally stops spinning.


    The logic board issue was mentioned when I got the first call from Apple but, they said we'd try something else first. This issue started from day one. I lived with the headphone jack issue off and on for a while before the other issues came up. My laptop is an early 2011 and I've had it for just over a year now. SO bottom line it was always the logic board. I am still having glitches with this machine so back to the store I go for another repair I think.

  • recoopre Level 1 (10 points)

    Screen Shot 2013-04-10 at 9.16.07 PM.png

  • RAFREEB Level 1 (0 points)

    That was the first thing I checked on out of the box when the problem first happened. Thanks.

  • recoopre Level 1 (10 points)

    No problem.  Good luck! :)

  • MuddGripGraphics Level 1 (0 points)

    This whole time I thought the jack was bad on my mac. I had checked my preferences and everything looked like it was correct prior to today. But on a whim instead of just thinking I already did that I tried it again and its working now! Thank you