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Monday, August 24, 2009

Connect a microphone, music player, or other audio device to your computer

[This content is preliminary and subject to change.]

You can connect a microphone, portable music player, or other audio device to your computer by using one of the jacks on the front, back, or side of your computer. These jacks directly connect to your computer's sound card or sound processor.

Most desktop computers have at least one line-in jack to connect a music player or other audio device and one line-out jack to connect speakers. These jacks typically appear on the back of a desktop computer. Many desktop computers also have a microphone jack, which is often on the front of the computer.

Most laptops don't have line-in or line-out jacks, but usually have microphone and headphone jacks located on the front or side of the laptop.

If you don't hear any sounds coming from an audio device you've plugged in to one of the jacks on your computer, check to make sure the jack is not muted. To do so, follow the instructions below.


  • You can also plug most portable music players into a universal serial bus (USB) port on your computer instead of directly into your computer's sound card. If you do this instead of plugging the device into a jack, Windows will try to identify the device and install a driver for it. This allows you to use a music program or other software to sync music to the device.

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