How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask MacTechTrainer Your Own Question

MacTechTrainer, Sr. Mac Support Specialist
Category: Mac
Satisfied Customers: 1700
Experience:  Apple Certified Desktop & Portables Technician, A+, Cross-Platform (Mac/PC) Tech - for over 14 Years
Type Your Mac Question Here...
MacTechTrainer is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

My external speakers just quit working on my iMac. The internal

Customer Question

My external speakers just quit working on my iMac. The internal speakers still work and the external speakers work when hooked to another device. Is my headphone port blown?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mac
Expert:  MacTechTrainer replied 5 years ago.
Hello and thank you for asking your question, with
I am Sr. Mac Tech Support Specialist, Terry, glad to assist you.

**Please note: An "Answer" by me, or an"Accept" from you, does not mean
the session has ended. So please remain patient with me and I will work
diligently, to resolve your technical question to your satisfaction.-Thanks!*

Could you provide me with the following information, so I can better assist you with your technical question:
• What version of Mac OS X are you using on your Mac?
(i.e. "Mac OS X 10.6.6 or Mac OS X 10.5.8, etc" -)
( If not sure how to check version of Mac OSX system- Click on Apple icon (Apple Menu) on upper left corner of screen- from the menu select "About this Mac" - you will see your version in the popup window)

• With the About this Mac window still open, could you also provide me the processor speed and RAM for your iMac?

• Finally, is your iMac an iMac 20", 12.5", 24" or 27" model?

Your answers to the questions I have submitted, will allow me to work with more detailed information, in order to effectively answer your question.

I will be looking forward to your reply.

Thank you!


Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I am running OS X 10.6
Ram 4GB 1067 MHz DDR3
I believe it is a 24" model. I know it is not 12.5 or 27.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I am running OS X 10.6
Processor 3.06 Ghz Intel Core 2 Duo
Ram 4GB 1067 MHz DDR3
I believe it is a 24" model. I know it is not 12.5 or 27.
Expert:  MacTechTrainer replied 5 years ago.
Thanks for your reply and my apologies, the "12.5" is incorrect, the correct model designation is iMac 21.5". That was my error.

So, to determine if you are experiencing a bonafide hardware issue, here is what I recommend you try.

Take your speaker jack and insert it into the Optical Audio port on the back of your iMac.


• Once it is fully seated in that port, remove the jack and then insert in in the Headphone port.

• After you have done this, then remove the speaker jack completely. --
** Do not reconnect external speakers yet**

• Close all applications and windows and shutdown your iMac

Now perform an SMC Reset (as shown below)

The System Management Controller is an integrated circuit (computer chip) that is usually on the logic board of your Mac computer.

It is responsible for power management of the computer. It controls backlighting, hard disk spin down, sleep and wake, some charging aspects, and some input/output as it relates to the computer sleeping.

• Shut down the computer.
• Unplug the computer's power cord.
• Press and hold the power button for 20 seconds.
• Release the power button.
• Attach the computers power cable.

* Start your iMac back up and from the main desktop, click on the
Apple menu icon and select System Preferences
• From System Preferences select Sound
When in the Sound preferences click on the Output tab

Without your externa speakers connected, you should only see Internal Speakers
under Name.

• Keeping this window open, proceed to connect your external speaker jack back into the Headphone port.

Check to see in the System Preferences>Sound pane if the output changes to External Speakers.

If it does, go ahead and run some audio on your Mac to check and see if you are now able to hear any audio from your external speakers.

• If you do not see the External Speakers description show in the Sound pane window, then the next step I want you to take because I noticed in your reply with your system specifications, that you are running Mac OS X 10.6.

If you have not updated to Mac OS X 10.6.7 please go to the black Apple icon and select "Software Updates" and update your Mac OS X to the latest update. This could help with System Preference settings for your Sound and possibly the issue you are having, but that is only one possibility.

For now, try the aforemention procedure with the speaker jack and SMC reset of your iMac and let me know how that turns out.

This is my first answer, but certainly not my last, as long as this issue remains unresolved.

Please do not press "Accept" until you have experienced a resolution from this answer and are satisfied with the results.

If you have not achieved the desired resolution with this answer for any reason, please update me as necessary, with details of what you experienced.

This will allow me to continue working to resolve this technical issue for you.

I will be watching for your next reply.



Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Sorry, I had to leave for a while to take my son to dinner.

I have tried the SMC reset and have updated my software to 10.6.7. Before I did the SMC reset, I plugged the speaker back into the headphone port and the left speaker started working. The right speaker didn't work and the external volume control wouldn't work. The internal volume control worked on the left speaker. I unplugged the speaker from the headphone port, shut down, unplugged the power cord, held the power button for 20 seconds, reconnected the power cord, turned on the computer, looked at the system preferences and saw that the internal speakers were selected. I plugged in the speakers into the headphone port. The "headphone" speakers appeared in the window however, I still only got sound from the left speaker. What's next?
Expert:  MacTechTrainer replied 5 years ago.
Thanks for the update.

However it appears that your headphone port is fine, the issue may be with your speakers.

The true way to tell if the headphone port (which is also to be used for external speakers) works or not, is to take a set of headsets and connect to the port and test the audio.

If the headphones work in both left and right ear, that means your speakers more than likely have a short and that is where the issue lies.

Try that out and update me when you can.

Thanks for your patience!


MacTechTrainer and 3 other Mac Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
It turns out the the audio cable for the speakers went bad. I replaced it and all is well in stereo land.
Expert:  MacTechTrainer replied 5 years ago.
Fantastic! I was more confident it had to do with a short in your speakers that your headphone port which you confirmed for me yesterday was working fine despite the right speaker not working. So thanks for the update, I was curious to know how things turned out.

And thank you for the Accept. I hope the information I provided you, has helped you resolve your Mac technical issue.

If you are satisfied with the Answer(s) provided you, however, we appreciate you taking a moment to provide feedback of our service, as we are always striving to continually provide the best possible customer service experience for you, here with

Thank you for using!

Sincerest Regards,

-Terry ("Mactechtrainer")
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I though I had left positive feedback and now I don't see any place to provide feedback. If you can direct me I will be happy to provide positive feedback. I appreciate your help in putting me on the right track for the answer.
Expert:  MacTechTrainer replied 5 years ago.
Thanks much, I believe I just have to click the Answer key from here and send you an answer.
We cannot see what you see from the customer side, so I can't be sure if this will work, but here it goes..

Make sure however, if you do not see any way to provide feedback to not press the Accept button if it appears again as you have already paid and we thank you for that in itself.

Even if this does not work, you success is still a positive feedback in its own right, so in advance I thank you for at least trying.

Warmest Regards,