You downloaded a new album or single or wish to play a movie late at night and you wish to share it with a friend. However, you cannot play it out loud, so you need to listen via a headset. Your choices are to share a wired headphone and one earbud per person, an audio splitter if available, or listen on separate Bluetooth headsets, of which the latter option is not normally possible as Windows can only output to one sound channel. This time, we’ll discuss how to connect two Bluetooth headphones to one PC and use them simultaneously.
How to Use Two Bluetooth Headphones at once in Windows
The Bluetooth technology on most laptops does not allow for more than one Bluetooth headset to be used. But the good thing is, it’s possible to use two separate Bluetooth headsets on one computer and this tutorial will teach you how, so you and your partner can listen to the same music or show in a more satisfying way. Carefully follow these steps on how to connect two Bluetooth headphones to one PC.
1. Download and install the free lite version of the Virtual Audio Cable software. Once downloaded, extract the zip file to any folder you wish. Then, run the setup file. Don’t forget to do so as Administrator.
2. After installation, go back to the folder where you extracted the setup files. Look for the x64 folder. You will see a file called “audiorepeater”. Drag the file to your desktop.
3. Next, you need to open your Sound Settings. Press Start and type Control Panel. Go to the Control Panel and click on Hardware and Sound. Click on Sound. In the Playback tab, scroll down to Line 1. Set it as the default device. Do the same for the Recording Tab. Then click on Ok.
4. Next, go to the Desktop. Open the audiorepeater file twice by right-clicking and choosing Run as Administrator. It will result in two instances of Audio Repeater. In the first instance, select Microsoft Sound Mapper on the Wave In option. On the second instance, select Line 1 (Virtual Audio Cable) in the ‘Wave In’ field.
5. On the Wave Out option of both instances, select your separate Bluetooth devices. Then click on the Start buttons. If you see the Queue bars moving, you have successfully set up two Bluetooth headphones on your laptop. You can now listen to films and tunes on separate headphones simultaneously.
Kindly note that sound quality will depend on the laptop’s Bluetooth hardware. High-end laptops should not have any issues with this method.
When you no longer need to share your Bluetooth audio, do not forget to return to Sound settings and set Speakers as the default audio device. Otherwise, you won’t be able to play audio on your laptop speakers and wired headphones.
If for some reason, you want to share the audio to several pairs of Bluetooth headphones, you will need to buy the paid version of Virtual audio cable which can share audio to up to 256 devices. The number of devices you can share however will depend on how powerful your computer hardware is.
Play Audio through Wired and Bluetooth Headsets at the Same Time
Not everyone has multiple Bluetooth headsets lying around. The other person can also do so using a wired headset. But as mentioned, Windows can only play sound using one audio output. It’s either the Bluetooth headsets or the speaker/wired headset. You can go around this through Sound settings. We won’t be needing Virtual Audio Cable for this one.
1. First, establish the Bluetooth connection to your wireless headset. Then, plug in your wired headset to your computer or laptop’s headphone jack.
2. Notice that on Windows, when you click on the speaker icon on the system tray, you can select which of the two output devices you can route the audio through.
Let us go to Sound Settings to play sounds on both audio devices. Right-click on the speaker icon. Choose Sounds. On the Playback Tab, depending on which device you choose, you will see it playing. To add the other device, go to the Recording tab.
3. On the Recording Tab, look for the Stereo Mix option. If it’s not visible, it must be disabled and hidden. To show and enable it, right-click and select Show Disabled Devices. Stereo Mix should now show itself. Enable Stereo Mix by right-clicking on it and choose Enable.
4. Highlight Stereo Mix and click on Properties. On the Properties Screen, click on the Listen Tab. Then, enable the option Listen to this device. That option will listen to the default Playback device. In this case, let’s assume it’s the Bluetooth headset.
5. Then, under the option ‘Playback through this device’, choose the other audio device. This time, it would be the speaker/headphone jack. Then click Apply and Ok.
Now you know how to connect two Bluetooth headphones to one PC, and a bonus method for running more than one audio device. We hope you found this little tutorial useful.