Did I Blow My Internal Laptop Speakers?
February 6, 2008 4:41 PM   Subscribe

I'm not getting any sound out of my internal laptop speakers. I checked my volume control settings and it's not accidentally set on "Mute" or anything obvious like that. Beyond blown speakers, is there anything else that may be causing this that I'm not thinking of?
posted by The Gooch to Computers & Internet (11 answers total)
What kind of laptop is it?

Mine (thinkpad running windows) has two ways it can be muted - one on the mixer volume on the task tray, and the other on the little volume buttons above the keyboard.

Did you check both of those?
posted by aubilenon at 4:44 PM on February 6, 2008

Rebooted? Added/removed any software recently? Windows automatic update?

(My Computer -> Properties -> Hardware -> Device Manager (or a variation thereof)) - does anything have a yellow exclamation mark over it?
posted by Leon at 4:45 PM on February 6, 2008

It's a Gateway MX3231
posted by The Gooch at 4:47 PM on February 6, 2008

Usually there's a master volume, a mute, and then individual volume controls for individual kinds of sound inputs. On every machine I've ever used, you had to bring up an extended menu to get to the latter.

If the mute is off, and the master volume is up full, but the digital sound input is set to zero, then playing DVDs won't produce any sound on the system.
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 5:38 PM on February 6, 2008

Also, I've noticed that on some machines there's also individual mutes for each sound source. Those, too, can only be accessed from the extended sound control menu.
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 5:38 PM on February 6, 2008

The speakers on my old laptop quit working out of the blue once. I ended up opening the entire thing up to see if there was anything physically wrong (which there wasn't that I could see). But I put it back together and then they worked again, so it must have just been a loose connection or something. The computer was going on 4 years old at the time though, so if yours is newer, I don't know if that would necessarily be the same problem.
posted by gueneverey at 5:49 PM on February 6, 2008

I should add that I also wasn't getting sound out of the headphone/speaker jack when my speakers quit...so it was actually probably more of a sound card issue as opposed to speakers.
posted by gueneverey at 5:58 PM on February 6, 2008

On my laptop there are no separate hardware volume control buttons, but the hardware volume is set by holding down Fn and W or E (these keys have little speaker +/- icons painted on the edge). Even if windows is showing full volume, the hardware needs to be turned up too.
Maybe Gateway has similar?
posted by bystander at 6:51 PM on February 6, 2008

Once when I used to work tech support we had a laptop in with a similar problem, and it took my boss two days of trying to fix it to realize that there was a tiny analog dial on the side that somehow had been turned all the way down without the laptop's owner (or any of us) realizing it existed. I know it's a long shot, but maybe worth checking for just in case.
posted by you're a kitty! at 9:00 PM on February 6, 2008

Hmmm, when I got into work today and booted back up it seems to work fine. I guess I'll never know now what caused this. Weird
posted by The Gooch at 8:43 AM on February 7, 2008

Try plugging headphones into the jack...do you hear sound now? If so, it could be like one of my laptops, where the headphone jack had started to go bad, and no longer recognized when something wasn't plugged in, thus preventing the onboard speakers from working.
posted by nomisxid at 8:46 AM on February 7, 2008

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