USB headset with physical multiplexer/switch
June 30, 2011 7:45 PM   Subscribe

USB headset with a physical switch that enables speakers. OS X. Can I (my employer) buy such a thing?

At work we are moving from physical phones to a VoIP system based on Microsoft's Lync. I'm running Lync inside a VMware Fusion virtual machine on OS X (10.6.8). So far so good.

But I found out today that if I'm not sitting around with my headset on then I won't know a call has come in (especially if my VM is minimized at the time). Hrmm. I could unplug my USB headset eachtime but that's a hassle.

What I would really like is a little multiplexer/switch on the headset where I can just send the output to speakers. Does such a thing exist? Bonus if it's available through CDW.
posted by sbutler to Computers & Internet (5 answers total)
A Google search for "headset speaker switch" turned up a few items, including this from Plantronics. You could also use a splitter, and turn your speakers on/off/up/down manually if they have that capability.
posted by Runes at 8:12 PM on June 30, 2011

Can you use two audio outputs? I know Skype lets you set the ring output and the actual call output independently. This is how I work and it is awesome :-)
posted by luciphercolors at 9:19 PM on June 30, 2011

@Runes: that product has been discontinued, and is selling on Amazon for ~$100. Yikes! I did find a similar product from another manufacturer that is ~$15, so I'll have to consider it.

@luciphercolors: in the VM Lync, doesn't seem to let me choose a separate device for ringing. The other sound options (microphone, speakers) have drop downs but not the ringer. That's assuming I could figure out how to tell VMware to add two virtual sound devices and bind them to different devices...

The OS X client doesn't appear to have any options to configure sound output at all.
posted by sbutler at 9:47 PM on June 30, 2011

Ahh ha, there is an "Also ring" checkbox I missed! I'll have to experiment and see if I can get that to work in VMware.
posted by sbutler at 9:57 PM on June 30, 2011

Must you buy from Amazon? Google product search finds it for $9. I threw that out there as just one example of what you're looking for, here's another. And another, which is available from Amazon. Or you can build one yourself.
posted by Runes at 12:23 PM on July 3, 2011

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