Enhance Your PC's Sound with External Speakers - dummies

Enhance Your PC’s Sound with External Speakers

The PC has always come with an awful, internal speaker. It still does today, but in addition, most PCs have a standard set of stereo speakers. Those speakers are fine for basic sound, but your PC is capable of so much more sound quality. Subwoofers and surround sound, for example, can boost your listening pleasure!

  • Subwoofer: A speaker box designed for low frequency sounds, which gives oomph to the bass in music or adds emphasis to the sounds in games. Typically, the subwoofer sits on the floor beneath your PC. It plugs directly into the PC’s sound-out jack, and the stereo speakers plug into the subwoofer.

  • Surround sound: Multiple speakers located around the computer. This table gives you your surround sound options.

Surround Sound Speaker Options
Surround Sound Version Speakers Used
3.0 Left, Right, Back Surround
4.0 Left, Right, Surround Left, Surround Right
4.1 Left, Right, Surround Left, Surround Right, Subwoofer
5.1 Left, Right, Center, Surround Left, Surround Right,
6.1 Left, Right, Center, Side Left, Side Right, Back Surround,
7.1 Left, Right, Center, Side Left, Side Right, Surround Left,
Surround Right, Subwoofer
  • Headphones: One step down from the traditional stereo speakers is to use headphones. Good headphones come with a volume control and maybe even a mute button on the same wire that connects the headphones to the PC.

    Better headphones come with a built-in microphone for online communications as well as game playing. Such headphones are often referred to as headsets. Headphones (or headsets) plug into the console’s headphone jack.

Run your speakers electrically rather than through batteries. If your speakers didn’t come with an AC power adapter, you can usually buy one.