Ubuntu: Can I use telephone jack for audio input and ouptut



Question:

My laptop has a standard US telephone jack, which an internet search taught me is called Rj11. I'm pretty sure it's for telephones, because it has a picture of one next to the jack. I have a microphone/headphone headset that uses the same kind of phone jack as its input and output. Can I route all audio output to the phone jack to these speakers? Can I use the microphone input from the phone jack? How?

My laptop is a HP Elitebook 2530p running Lubuntu 16.04.3 LTS, which I believe means it uses PulseAudio for most sound.


Solution:1

Your laptop has a 56 KB modem. The RJ-11 jack you see plugs into a standard telephone jack but is designed to only convert inaudible digital computer signals to analogue (audible) sounds.

NO you can't use it as a speaker, microphone or anything remotely similar. Your laptop does have USB 2.0 ports though which can be used to connect speakers and other devices.

As another poster mentioned your laptop also has an RJ-45 Ethernet jack which is nicely rated at 10/100/1000 Mbps which is very advanced for your year of laptop.

Interestingly your laptop was listed as running Windows Vista AND Linux Suse.


Solution:2

RJ11 jacks are 4-pin phone jacks although some electronics out there can use the same type of connection BUT ARE NOT COMPATIBLE! Just because a plug fits, doesn't mean it will work. user68186 may well be right and it could be an Ethernet port. A telephone jack will fit into an Ethernet port physically but the Ethernet socket will be bigger than the phone plug. That's because the Ethernet socket/plug were originally intended to allow the inner 4 wires to be used for phone and the outer 4 for Ethernet. Look up the specs on your laptop and see what that port is if you can't identify what it is for. Then look up your headset (Google may steal your personal info but it is your "friend" when needing help) and see if it came with the RJ11 plug or if it was added later and what it was intended to plug into.


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