View Full Version : Need Help with Broken Audio Jack on iMac G5

Nov 8, 2008, 04:42 PM
Hey guys,

Earlier this week the audio jack/line-out on my iMac G5 broke. I don't necessarily mean that it stopped working, but the molding and perhaps the contacts within the hole physically broke. It had been getting increasingly sensitive over the past months and the plastic molding finally crapped out a few days ago. Now, I can't plug in my external speakers into the hole like I used to be able to because, well, there's no discernable, circular hole to plug it into.

When I stick it in, it remains at a slight angle and the only sound that'll come out of the speakers is a static buzz. I've tried searching for help with this, but I've only come across threads with questions that are asking something different (either the person's jack is physically fine, but sound doesn't come out or something along those lines).

Would something like this (http://www.geeks.com/details.asp?invtid=HE-280B&cat=GDT) do the trick or would I need to actually open up the computer and do something fairly technical to fix it?

The internal speakers have never worked (it's a refurb), but i never really looked into fixing it because I could always just use my external speakers. Now that I can't use my external speakers, I'm not sure what to do.

Nov 8, 2008, 06:04 PM
If you don't want to take it to Apple then I have a fix, but it requires you to take your iMac apart, at least you will have sound right?

You need a few things before you begin to take it apart (I don't know how to take it apart so you will have to look that up). You are going to need some Audio Wire, Electrical Tape, a Wire Cutter (a basic one is all you need), and a "3.5mm headphone cable extender". The extender would normally plug into the headphone jack of your iMac, and then it would have an input on the end that you plug your speakers into.

Take your iMac apart so that you can see the speakers. Take the speakers out and look at the wires. Make sure you look carefully. Take one wire from one speaker and another wire from the other speaker, i don't know if they need to be grounded or not. Now that you have identified which wire is the right speaker and which wire is the left speaker, mark them.

Now get the headphone cable extension and cut it about in the middle. You are going to "recreate" the headphone jack so you are going to need the female end connected to the speaker wires. What you do is splice the headphone extender and connect the right and left wires and possibly the ground. Now see if there is a way you can leave the new headphone jack hanging out of the bottom of the case or where the old jack used to be. Tape up the wires really good and put the iMac back together.

This should work, well, it will work as long as the wires going to the speakers are good. Personally, if the speakers didn't work when I got a refurbished Mac, I would take it back ASAP or have it fixed. Refurbished is a lot different than used. Used is more "as is" where refurbished is nice new and fixed.

Good luck with that. Maybe someone else has an easier suggestion, but this would have been my first instinct. It shouldn't take more than an hour from start to completion.

Good luck; Nick

EDIT - Alternatively you can get one of these - http://www.griffintechnology.com/products/imic - The one with the USB Audio interface should be just what you are looking for. The problem with this is you have to dedicate a whole USB port to it (that means it cannot be connected to a USB hub, it has to connect straight into the iMac). They are around 30.00 depending on where you get them.

Nov 8, 2008, 06:47 PM
I think i may go with the imic - there's no way I'd be savvy enough to actually fix it (or even be able to find some of the tools). Do you think the adapter that I posted in the first post would essentially do the same thing as the imic, though (albeit, with less options)?

Thanks again.

Nov 8, 2008, 08:08 PM
Oops, didn't see that link the first time around. That would do the job just fine, the great thing about the iMic is that it has a flexible end, but then again. Coming out of the back of the iMac wouldn't make much of a difference.