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I'm looking for a desktop switch/hub/amp/splitter (whatever you want to call it), which ideally outputs to 7.1 surround 3.5mm jacks (the green, orange and black ones - not sure what the official name for this is).

My base use case is that I want to have a second line to my computer speakers so I can plug my laptop in when I'm using that, so as a minimum I need a 2-in, 1-out arrangement. But I'll happily buy something more 'heavy duty' if needed, though I'd prefer it to be not much larger than a desktop headphone amp/DAC or similar.

At the moment, the best I can find is this (https://www.amazon.co.uk/Nobsound-Switcher-Passive-Selector-Splitter-Black-RCA-Version/dp/B07CQXRRRV?ref_=ast_sto_dp). This has the 2-in, 1-out arrangement, and I have an RCA to tri-3.5mm adapter for the speakers to handle the output. This isn't ideal though as it will lose the surround sound for the computer which is currently plugged directly in to the speakers.

I know there will be no surround sound from the laptop (which is fine), so really all I need to do is hook in to the green line with the laptop, but if I could get this in the form of a switch/hub to swap on the fly that would be great.

Other ideas I've not considered are welcome!

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  • This may sound a little strange, but what about using a standard receiver? You'd get 7.1 digital audio over one cable from your laptop (and other computer if you want it), plus easy switching. – JMY1000 Nov 25 '20 at 2:22
  • Can you elaborate a little? I'm not sure exactly what you mean by a 'standard receiver'? – Joe Healey Nov 25 '20 at 14:27
  • Sorry, an AV receiver. You could use HDMI connected to your computers to provide an audio signal, which would then be sent out to your speakers from the receiver. – JMY1000 Nov 25 '20 at 22:56
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Actually ended up (sort of) solving this in a fairly low tech way as I detailed at the end of the OP. I used a Y-splitter from the PC output and laptop output into the 'green' channel, so they are both connected simultaneously.

Unfortunately, this doesn't allow for full use of the surround, but I get stereo plus sub via the green channel with my speaker set up so this is good enough for me while using the laptop anyway.

Just thought I'd post to offer some closure to the thread.

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