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New Macs Separate Speaker and Headphone Jack Audio

Paul Kafasis of Rogue Amoeba has uncovered a huge improvement in the new MacBook Air and Mac mini—the internal speakers and headphone jack are now two distinct, independent audio devices rather than a single output split into two ports. That means it’s possible to do things like output system sound effects through the system speakers while routing other audio through headphones. We hope this also means that if the internal switch in the headphone jack gets stuck, it won’t disable system audio entirely—we noted this design flaw three years ago in “The Headphone Port: The Mac’s Achilles Heel” (2 September 2015).

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