If you’re using many computers on a KVM switch, then you might have another problem. What about the audio? Do you connect each computer’s sound to a separate speaker system? Or, is there a way to connect all of the computer’s audio outputs, into one speaker system?
I would like to introduce you to a product called “TinyMix” from a manufacturer called “StoweBank LLC.” (Cost $44.00) This is in fact a tiny mixer designed to work with up to four computer’s sound systems, and direct that into a single amplified speaker system. In other words, instead of having four individual speaker systems, one for each computer, you have one sound system. Audio from any or all of the computers will be mixed and fed directly into a single audio system using this method.
See the diagram.
With this configuration, you can hear audio from any computer regardless of whether the KVM switch is actually connected to the computer are not.
The way people use KVM switches is they may have two, or three, or maybe even four computers all going at the same time. But the keyboard mouse and display are only connected to one computer at any particular time. So under normal circumstances audio may be produced by a computer that is not being worked with at a specific time. With the “TinyMix” mixer, you can hear audio from any computer even though it is not being worked on at a particular time.
To take a closer look at the TinyMix mixer, it is a very small box with four terminals on one side and two terminals on the other side. The four input terminals are 3.5 mm plugs (standard audio plugs) which can be connected to the output of any computer. On the other side, there is one 3.5 mm plug, which now goes to the input of your single sound system. Also there is a USB type A plug for power to the device. Any typical USB power adapter can be used to power the mixer. It is not recommended to use a computer to power the device. Due to ground loop problems, it is much better to use an independent power source for the device. Of course, you will need a handful of cables with 3.5 mm male to male plugs on each end.
It has been my experience that this system works extremely well. I have been able to get rid of several speaker systems that were just taking up shelf space. To accomplish this with a full mixer system would involve not only much higher cost, but also involves a level of complexity, adjustments, and waste, that makes it virtually impossible to do under normal circumstances. Who’s going to spend several hundred dollars on a professional mixer to do this kind of task? The TinyMix mixer, is an excellent solution to a problem that I’m sure many people have. There are no adjustments, no fiddling around, nothing to do, except install the TinyMix mixer and use it. It’s just that simple.
I have a Windows 8 machine, a Windows 7 machine, a Mac Mini, and a Chromebox, all connected to the same set of speakers. The system works great.
Rustymicrophone.com, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org