Laptop speakers don't work: that helps

Laptop speakers don't work: that helps

Your laptop speakers are not working? There can be various reasons for this. As a rule, this is not due to a defect in the hand-ware. In our guide you will find out how you can proceed so that the notebook speakers work again.

Turn on the sound

Perhaps the speakers are accidentally set to "mute". If your keyboard has media keys, you can simply press the mute button to turn the sound on. Otherwise, move the mouse pointer to the loudspeaker icon in the lower right corner of the taskbar and click on the larger loudspeaker icon to the right of the volume bar. The volume could also be set too low – you can increase it by moving the black bar on the volume bar.

Try headphones

Student Laptop Notebook Student Learning

If headphones work, the speakers should actually work too. Image: © Adobe Stock / JenkoAtaman 2020

Plug in a pair of headphones and see if they can play sound. If the headphones work and the speakers don't, then either there is a hardware problem or the driver isn't switching between the headphones and speakers.

Switch to the speakers as the default audio device

If you also use other playback devices such as Bluetooth headphones, one of them may be activated as the default device in Windows. Right-click on the loudspeaker icon on the right in the taskbar and select "Open Sound Settings". Under "Sound> Output> Select output device" you must now select the speakers as the playback device.

Activate the speaker

The loudspeaker may not be activated in Windows. Here's how you go about changing that:

  1. Enter "Control Panel" in Windows Search.
  2. Open the Control Panel.
  3. Go to Hardware and Sound> Sound.
  4. If you do not see the speakers in the list, click with the right mouse button on an empty area and select "Show deactivated devices".
  5. Right click on the disabled speaker and select "Enable".

Let the troubleshooter run through


Run Windows troubleshooter for the speakers. Image: © Microsoft / Screenshot: 2021

Windows troubleshooter may be able to fix the problem with the laptop speakers. You can start it very simply by right-clicking on the loudspeaker icon in the lower right corner of the taskbar and selecting "Treat sound problems". Now decide on the device that does not work as desired. Follow the instructions on the screen.

Disable the sound extensions

The sound enhancements like Virtual Surround sometimes don't work properly. Deactivate them as follows:

  1. Enter "Control Panel" in Windows Search and open it.
  2. Go to Hardware and Sound> Sound> Enhancements.
  3. Select "Disable all Enhancements".
  4. Confirm your choice with "Apply".

Update the driver

Windows 10 sound driver

You can update the driver with just a few clicks in the device manager. Image: © Microsoft / Screenshot: Patrick, 2017

An outdated driver can cause laptop speakers to not work. Usually, the Windows updates also update the drivers. But you can be sure and manually update the driver to the latest version.

  1. Enter "device manager" in Windows search and open it.
  2. Open the submenu under "Audio, video and game controllers".
  3. Right-click the speaker driver, usually with "High Definition Audio" in its name.
  4. Go to "Update Driver".

Have the speaker repaired

If the speaker hardware is actually defective, that would be a warranty or guarantee case. If this has expired, the SATURN repair service may be able to help.

You are stuck?

The iPhone won't turn on, the PC is slow, the PS4 hangs? SATURN and Deutsche Technikberatung will help. By phone or at your home.

Learn more


  1. If the laptop speaker doesn't work, a software or hardware problem could be the cause.
  2. First try the correct settings in Windows (see above).
  3. Try a driver update.
  4. Send the laptop in for repair.

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