Take the 2-minute tour ×
Ask Different is a question and answer site for power users of Apple hardware and software. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Is it possible to set up an iOS 6 device (for example, specifically the iPhone 5, or 3rd generation iPad) such that all the usual sounds from apps and the system sounds like typing or message notifications play when the headphones are plugged in, but when headphones are not plugged in the device is silent?

share|improve this question
Where do you want the sounds/notifications to play? Through the headphones, or the external speakers on the iPhone (despite headphones being plugged in)? I'm pretty confident it will come down to you throwing the silent switch. –  bassplayer7 Mar 28 '13 at 13:50
The goal is to have sounds only through the headphones and silence otherwise. –  CGP Grey Mar 29 '13 at 12:34
What you are describing is what my phone does when the silent switch is flipped. Sound plays through headphones, but not through the speaker. –  dwightk May 28 '14 at 14:01

3 Answers 3

For media sounds, it will use different level when the headphones are plugged in. To do this, you turn down the volume to nothing while an app using media sound is active and your headphone is not plugged in. Plug in your headphone, and you will see that the volume comes back on.

But for notifications and ringtone sounds, it will use same volume regardless of headphones plugged in or not. There are no settings available for differentiating this, I'm afraid.

share|improve this answer

What you are describing is what will happen when the silent switch is on (orange).

Orange means that none of the system sounds (notifications, typing, etc.) will come out of the device's speakers.

enter image description here

share|improve this answer

The headphone port consists of small metal ridges which come in contact with the lines on the connector portion of the headphones.

If these are pushed in it may not be able to emit sound without headphones because it believes headphones are plugged in. Likewise, if the logic board believes these are plugged in no sound will be emitted without headphones either. This is a hardware issue that can be address at Apple Retail or AppleCare

The other potential issue is if Do Not Disturb is enabled, a crescent moon icon will be present by the battery icon, no ringing/notification will occur.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.