iTunes won’t play through USB headset (songs stay at 0:00)? Here’s my fix.

By | April 24, 2012

My Windows 7 laptop’s hard drive recently died, and after replacing it (with an SSD! yeah!), reinstalling all of my software including iTunes, and restoring my iTunes library, iTunes refused to play any music through my Logitech USB  headset. The speakers plugged into my audio port worked just fine, but when I tried to play a song with the headset configured as my default playback device, the playback diamond would sit at 0:00 and no sound would come out. Furthermore, if I switched my playback device from the speakers to the headset in the middle of a song, iTunes would immediately stop playing.

I searched all over the web for a fix and tried lots of different things. Here’s what finally worked:

  1. Exit from iTunes.
  2. Use Task Manager to confirm that itunes.exe really isn’t running.
  3. Right click on the sound icon in your system tray and select “Playback devices”.
  4. Right click on your headset and select “Configure speakers”.
  5. Even if the configuration is correct, change it to something else (e.g., from Stereo to Mono or vice versa) and apply the changes.
  6. Repeat steps 4-5 again, this time changing the settings to what you want them to be.
  7. Restart iTunes, and with any luck, your music will play!

Unfortunately, I find that I have to repeat this process whenever I unplug my headset and plug it back in, which I do often since it’s plugged into my docking station, from which I frequently undock the laptop.

Hope this helps someone else avoid having to spend a lot of time trying to figure out this problem.

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3 thoughts on “iTunes won’t play through USB headset (songs stay at 0:00)? Here’s my fix.

  1. Paul

    Yip, was trying to get this to work on a xp machine. Low and behold itunes xp wont swap from speakers to headphones when plugging in headphones. The solution was right on the money. Thanks

  2. Aaron Mason

    That said, I don’t use iTunes…

  3. Aaron Mason

    Weird. My Logitech USB headset is plugged into my monitor’s USB ports which connects to my laptop’s docking station and I never have to do that. I do find, though, that whenever I lock my computer the volume goes up to maximum.


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