If you notice in your Windows installation that iTunes audio is coming out of the speakers for iTunes even when you plug in headphones, try this tweak, which should fix the behavior to be the normal expected behavior (no headphones, play through speaker; headphones, play through headphones).
Under Play audio using, select Direct Sound instead of Windows Audio Session.
Restart iTunes after saving your changes.
Big shout-out to my colleague Jerold Malone for finding this fix.
20 responses to “Fixing Windows iTunes playing only through speakers and not through headphones”
This does not work for me – audio still not coming through headphones (just speaker)
Rocks !… Thank you
Worked like a champ.. I’ve been banging my head off the table for weeks on this
Wonderful and easy fix for Windows 10 playing iTunes. Thanks
Thanks, issue solved.
I still cannot hear audio for movies, not through speakers or headset
Fixed it completely, after days of trying other fixes. Thanks!!
how about doing the opposite of this? I would like itunes to play out of my speakers and not my headphones
Thanks! This is an easy fix once you know where to go!
marvellous! tried for days to do this in Windows 10. Many thanks Doug.
Dude thank you this explanation was so straight forward and didn’t waste any time. Worked right away.
I am in windows 10 but in iTunes can’t find the preferences tab. My music is playing out of my iPhone and I at the moment want it playing directly out of laptop speakers. This happened after I synced laptop and iphone
Works like a charm – thanks!
Just got a new computer, and this worked perfectly! Thanks!
Awesome! Thank you SO much! Transferred iTunes to new computer and could not get the headphones to work without your help.
Awesome. Didn’t work on first attempt but after a little bit of patience and a couple of retires it came though the headphones.
The problem was that whatever was set as the default output in Windows when iTunes was started, remains iTunes’ output. An inelegant method was to change Windows’ output (left-click on audio icon, then select) and then start iTunes. This method allows you to switch outputs while iTunes is running.
Thank you. Your instructions worked. I was about to pull some hair out.
In my findings, if I start iTunes and then connect my headphones/speakers. iTunes songs will not play through those devices.
I have tried several solutions which did not work. So, I must make sure my audio is set to either speakers or headphones before opening iTunes.
Big thanks from a Loyola University Chicago grad!