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New Laptop Sound Issue. Tinny Sound Unless Using Powered Speakers/Headphones

Last response: in Computer Peripherals
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August 26, 2013 12:11:55 AM

I own a Clevo P150EM Laptop and I've noticed something quite odd. When listening to music using my large powered speakers or my Bose QC15's, it sounds just fine, great actually. But when I plug in my Etymotic HF5's or even my old JVC HARX500's, the sound gets very Tinny. I have updated to the latest Realtek drivers, then I uninstalled Realtek altogether and the issue persisted. When I plug the headphones into my usb mixer though, they sound fine again. The issue only appears to pertain to the Audio jack on the laptop. Could this be because of the built in sound card in the laptop? Does it require powered speakers to function properly?
a b D Laptop
August 26, 2013 2:05:19 AM

YES ALL COMPUTERS DO NOT power speakers, and haven't for a very long time. You need to seperate power them (hence why even cheapo ones have a USB power cord on them).
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August 26, 2013 9:35:12 AM

Tom Tancredi said:
YES ALL COMPUTERS DO NOT power speakers, and haven't for a very long time. You need to seperate power them (hence why even cheapo ones have a USB power cord on them).


I understand that computers do not power speakers to the point where you wouldn't need a stereo receiver, but seeing as both my HTC One X+ and my HP Pavillion DM1Z can both produce correct sound, as did my old desktop, I'm confused as to why this laptop is having this particular issue.
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a b D Laptop
August 26, 2013 10:24:10 AM

A laptop is portable, compact and expected to OFTEN be on battery power. These are limitations on space, functionality and sustained power consumption. Based on these factors decisions are made on the components used, in this case common components that are NOT going to provide the amount of power over the sound port to power speakers, but expect (as is very common among all computer makers and models for years now) you to provide self powered (usually the USB port) speakers. Now if you have a old desktop or other specific desktops with a seperate soundcards specifically wired to provide power, those are lucky finds, but the norm is no power, especially for laptops.
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September 1, 2013 10:28:50 AM

Tom Tancredi said:
A laptop is portable, compact and expected to OFTEN be on battery power. These are limitations on space, functionality and sustained power consumption. Based on these factors decisions are made on the components used, in this case common components that are NOT going to provide the amount of power over the sound port to power speakers, but expect (as is very common among all computer makers and models for years now) you to provide self powered (usually the USB port) speakers. Now if you have a old desktop or other specific desktops with a seperate soundcards specifically wired to provide power, those are lucky finds, but the norm is no power, especially for laptops.


Alright thanks, it still blows me away that my $1500 dollar Sager gaming notebook can't power my earbuds, yet my $375 HP laptop sounds fine.
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Best solution

a b D Laptop
September 1, 2013 11:19:36 AM

it depends on the resistance of the speakers/headphones you plan on using.

for instance my laptop, ipod, and even many other devices can power my 35 ohm studio headphones however those same devices would not power high resistance models which are meant to use an amp.
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January 1, 2014 3:56:07 PM

ssddx said:
it depends on the resistance of the speakers/headphones you plan on using.

for instance my laptop, ipod, and even many other devices can power my 35 ohm studio headphones however those same devices would not power high resistance models which are meant to use an amp.


How would you know which type of headphones would be high resistance?
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a b D Laptop
January 1, 2014 4:42:46 PM

Quote:
General SPEC
Driver Unit
40mm
Frequency Response
20Hz–20KHz
Input Impedance
65 ohms
Sensitivity
100dB S.P.L. at 1KHz

Connector
3.5mm/ 6.3mm
Ear Coupling
Circumaural
Cord Length
11.2 feet
Weight
7.0 oz.


generally you can tell when looking at both the impedence and sensitivity.

more sensitive headphones can be driven by less power and generally lower resistance headphones can be driven by less power.

though.. re-reading the above post based on my response there appears to be a deleted post somewhere along the lines (perhaps removed for some reason by the poster or moderators)

generally though you shouldnt have to worry about impedence unless you are going to use higher end headphones like "studio headphones"
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