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Can You Play Audio Through AUX and Bluetooth at the Same Time?

In addition to using Bluetooth for your set-up, sometimes you might want to listen to the same music through auxiliary speakers and your Bluetooth device at the same time. Unfortunately, it’s not as simple as pressing the play button on both devices. Chances are if you’ve tried it, the sound is only emitted from one or the other. So, is it even possible to sync AUX and Bluetooth?

Most devices won’t let you use the auxiliary output and Bluetooth simultaneously, however, if you add an auxiliary splitter and Bluetooth adapter you can listen to the same music through both channels. There are other devices you may need to learn about as well.

Put simply, it is possible to play audio through both aux and Bluetooth at the same time, however, you’ll need another component or a device like a male-to-female dual auxiliary splitter (on Amazon). If you’re not sure why you need to do this or need some tips on setting it up, you’ll find the information you need in the following paragraphs, including why some people would even want to use both channels in the first place.

Why Would You Want to Use Both AUX and Bluetooth?

iPhone Connecting to Bluetooth & AUX Headphones

There are times when using Aux and Bluetooth together is convenient. You might want to share the music you’re listening to with friends via your PC or Mac.

There are also times when you want to output the audio from wired headphones to Bluetooth-enabled ones. Or send the audio from a wired speaker to a Bluetooth-connected one.

For example, your Bluetooth enables mobile devices might contain your playlist and you want to listen to the music on your home speakers. Or someone in the home could prefer headphones to speakers.

Audio often sounds better through speakers than mobile devices, which is why we have a guide on connecting Bluetooth speakers to mobile devices, but not all components are designed to play audio at the same time.

Most Devices Can’t Natively Use AUX and Bluetooth at the Same Time

Even though, the Bluetooth Special Interest Group states that it’s the most commonly used global wireless technology, it doesn’t mean that it’s compatible with all devices.

Older versions of Bluetooth have limited capabilities which were explored in our article on whether Bluetooth can be used to connect one device to more than one speaker. Your auxiliary speakers often can’t communicate with Bluetooth devices.

If this is the case, you won’t be able to listen to audio through aux and Bluetooth at the same time. The reason for the issue with device communication often comes down to the hardware and software Bluetooth depends on to function.

The device you are trying to use with Bluetooth must speak the same ‘language’. Even if there is a communication problem between the devices you want to use, there is still a solution.

How to Use AUX and Bluetooth at the Same Time with Any Device

There are a few components you’ll need to use AUX and Bluetooth at the same time, regardless of the device, there are some things you should know if you’re going to use Bluetooth 5 as well.

The first is a device with an auxiliary output. It can be anything from wired speakers or headphones. You will also need a Bluetooth transmitter, such as this one (on Amazon), and your options are almost unlimited. It can be a handheld device, speakers, or headphones.

You will also need a male to a dual female auxiliary splitter (on Amazon). It’s a small component that you can pick up online or at an electronics store. It’s not expensive, and you’ll definitely need it if you want simultaneous audio from both aux and Bluetooth.

Connect the AUX Splitter to the Source Device

Also known as a “y” splitter, it allows you to divide an audio signal between two devices, and it’s not difficult to install. It typically comes with two 3.5mm outputs that allow you to connect speakers or headphones to the jack your device is connected to.

The splitter typically sits between the two devices so the cables connect. You might have to rearrange some components.

Connect the AUX Device to One End of the Splitter

On the splitter that should be within cable reach of the devices, you want to connect your auxiliary device to one end of the splitter.

Like most connectors, there are at least two ports, one of these is for your auxiliary device. You’ll plug your aux speakers into the splitter so the signal is divided between the two connected components.

If you’re worried about losing audio quality, it usually isn’t an issue. Distortion also isn’t a typical problem since the connecting cables and splitter are close.

Interference and reduced audio quality often only occur when two cables for the same device are connected together over long distances. If all of the devices are kept within a single cable’s length, the audio should sound crisp and clear.

Connect the Bluetooth Transmitter to the Other End of the Splitter

On the end opposite of where you connected the aux device, you want to attach the Bluetooth transmitter. You shouldn’t have any problems because the cable is designed to be plugged in smoothly.

Once the cable is connected to the splitter, there is one more step which is to pair the Bluetooth transmitter with the auxiliary device.

Your Bluetooth transmitter is the Bluetooth-enabled device that you want to play audio simultaneously with an aux one. It’s easy to sync the two devices, your Bluetooth-enabled one should walk you through the on-screen steps if it’s a PC or Mac.

If you’re connecting wired speakers or headphones, pairing the devices is as simple as using a splitter. Although, your Bluetooth device may require you to follow a few simple steps.

Conclusion

There are several reasons why you might want both Bluetooth and auxiliary devices playing the same audio simultaneously.

You might want to share music with others, or someone in the house prefers listening to music and shows with headphones, instead of speakers. Whatever the reason, you can do both with an aux splitter.

The ‘y’ splitter has male to female ends so you can connect and sync both devices. You can share music with your friends or block out external noise and immerse yourself in the audio with headphones.

Whatever your reason for wanting both aux and Bluetooth, you can enjoy your audio how you want.

Confused

Friday 30th of September 2022

It’s 2022 at my time of typing this. You don’t have any type of diagram, image reference(s), video tutorial, nothing? I followed your guide but it’s easy to lost in all the details other than what you need to buy.

Jose

Monday 11th of July 2022

What to do if there is a delay between the wired and wireless connections

MR

Tuesday 29th of March 2022

I do this just so I don't have to deal with Window's 11 terrible mixer, and because I want to pre-process the sound with a DAC. I run aux out through a usb soundcard, split it and send it to both my speakers and a 'dumb' bluetooth sender that's paired to my earbuds. So if I want to hear music from my speakers, I power them on. If I want my headphones, I just put them on. No windows pairing, windows mixer, etc. It just works every time, no CPU sound stutter when using high load apps either. It's a great reason to set it up like this!

Mike

Saturday 15th of January 2022

I'm glad to see I'm not the only one

Daniel

Friday 3rd of September 2021

Hey Jonah, cool guide! We've tried this set-up at one of our projects but we are getting some delay (presumably from the Bluetooth branch). Have you ran into this problem before? Thanks,