In Windows 11, if you need to switch between speakers, headphones, headsets, or other sound output devices, it’s easy to do thanks to Settings and a taskbar shortcut. We’ll show you two ways to do it.

How to Select a Sound Output Device in Settings

It’s easy to change speakers in Windows Settings. To do so, right-click the speaker icon in your taskbar. In the menu that pops up, select “Open Sound Settings.” (Alternately, you can press Windows+i to open Settings, then navigate to System > Sound.)

The Windows Settings app will open automatically to the “Sound” settings page. In the top section, labeled “Output,” find the menu labeled “Choose where to play a sound” and expand it if necessary by clicking it once.

Click "Choose wehre to play a sound" to expand the menu if necessary.

Below that, you’ll see a list of all the audio output devices Windows 11 has detected. Click the circle button beside the device you’d like to use as your audio output.

Click the radio button beside the speakers you'd like to use.

That’s all it takes! Told you it was easy. Close Settings, and you’re good to go. You can change your audio output device back any time by repeating the steps above.

RELATED: All the Ways Windows 11's Taskbar Is Different

How to Select a Sound Output Device in the Taskbar

You can also quickly switch speakers from the Windows 11 taskbar. To do so, open the Quick Settings menu by clicking the hidden button around the speaker icon in the lower-right corner of the taskbar.

Click the area to the left of the clock in the taskbar to bring up the Quick Settings menu.


When the Quick Settings menu opens, click the sideways arrow (caret) beside the volume slider.

Click the arrow beside the volume slider in Windows 11 Quick Setup.

When you see a list of audio output devices, click the one you’d like to use.

The Windows 11 manage audio devices list in the Quick Setup menu.

When you’re done, click anywhere outside the Quick Settings menu to close it. You switch speakers at any time again by using the Quick Settings menu at any time. Happy listening!

RELATED: How to Switch Audio Devices From Windows 11's Taskbar

Benj Edwards Benj Edwards
Benj Edwards is an Associate Editor for How-To Geek. For over 15 years, he has written about technology and tech history for sites such as The Atlantic, Fast Company, PCMag, PCWorld, Macworld, Ars Technica, and Wired. In 2005, he created Vintage Computing and Gaming, a blog devoted to tech history. He also created The Culture of Tech podcast and regularly contributes to the Retronauts retrogaming podcast.
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