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Listening to audio on your PC through headphones offers a convenient way to enjoy your content without disturbing others. However, encountering issues where Windows 11 fails to detect your headphones can be frustrating. Despite Windows 11’s generally reliable detection of accessories like headphones, occasional hitches can arise.
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In this post, we’ll guide you through the steps to resolve the problem of Windows 11 not recognizing your headphones, regardless of whether you’ve connected them via wired or Bluetooth connections.
Steps to Fix Windows 11 not Detecting Headphones
Method 1: Verify Wired Headphones Connection:
If you’re using wired headphones, make sure they are properly connected. Unplug and reconnect the headphones to ensure a secure connection. Sometimes, ensuring proper contact might require an extra push. Over time, these connections can loosen due to use.
Inspect the headphone jack on your PC for any visible damage, dust, or debris that might hinder the connection. If dust or debris is evident, clean it out and use a soft bristle brush for persistent particles.
Check the headphone wires for any physical damage that might be causing the connection issue. To be sure the headphones’ working, try plugging them into a different device.
Method 2: Check Audio Output Device:
It’s possible that Windows is detecting your headphones, but the audio output source is incorrect. Fixing this issue is straightforward:
Press the “Windows key + A” to access the Quick Settings menu.
Click the sound output button (speaker icon) on the right side of the volume slider.
Choose your headphones from the list of available audio output devices.
Method 3: Re-enable Bluetooth Headphones:
For those using Bluetooth headphones, re-pairing them with your system could solve the problem:
Press “Windows key + I” to open the system Settings. Select “Bluetooth & devices.”
Click the three-dot button next to your headphones and select “Remove device.”
Once removed, click “Add device” next to the Devices option and follow the onscreen instructions to re-pair your headphones.
Method 4: Enable Headphones in Sound Settings:
If Windows isn’t detecting your headphones, another audio app or device might have accidentally disabled them. Here’s how to enable them:
Right-click the speaker icon in the notification area of the taskbar and choose “Sound Settings.”
Scroll down and select “More sound settings.”
Right-click an empty area if your headphones aren’t listed and click “Show Disabled Devices.”
Right-click the headphones and select “Enable.”
If multiple audio devices are connected, set your headphones as the default device by right-clicking them and selecting “Set as Default Device.”
Method 5: Update or Reinstall Audio Drivers:
Outdated or corrupted audio drivers can contribute to detection problems. Updating or reinstalling these drivers can often resolve the issue:
Press the Windows key, type “Device Manager,” and select the top result.
Expand the “Sound, video and game controllers” section.
Right-click your audio device and select “Update driver.” Follow the onscreen instructions.
To reinstall the driver, right-click the problematic audio driver and choose “Uninstall device.”
After the uninstallation, restart Windows 11. It will automatically reinstall the audio driver during the boot process.
By following the troubleshooting steps outlined above, you should be able to resolve the issue of Windows 11 not detecting your headphones. Keep in mind that occasional system bugs might also contribute to such problems, so be sure to check for Windows updates during your troubleshooting efforts.