How to Connect Old Stereo Speakers to a Computer

Old speakers with some life left in them can be hooked up to a computer for kicking stereo sound. The problem is, computers are not equipped with an amplifier sufficiently powerful to drive a pair of stereo speakers at any volume, so an amplifier must be used to make the connection work. A Y-adapter for audio applications also will be needed to convert the RCA jacks from the amplifier into a mini-plug connection for the computer. The entire setup should take less than 10 minutes.

Three speakers
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Step

Attach the speakers to the amplifier with speaker wire, using the red wire to connect to the positive terminal and the other wire to connect with the black terminal. Lift the spring-loaded clips on the back of each speaker and the amp to reveal holes for inserting the wires.

Step

Connect a set of RCA-type audio cables to a set of free audio input jacks on the back of the amp. Make a note of which set of jacks (such as Aux, or Auxiliary) is being used for the connection. The red plug on the cable attaches to the right audio jack. The white plug attaches to the left.

Step

Insert the plugs on the other end of the cable into the RCA jacks of the Y-adapter.

Step

Connect the other end of the Y-adapter to the computer's Audio OUT jack.

Step

Plug in and turn on the equipment; then set the amplifier selector knob on the front of the component to AUX or whichever jack is in use.

Step

Play back an audio source on the computer and adjust the amplifier volume to the desired level for listening with the old stereo speakers.