VLC audio output to two different sets of speakers: is it possible?

You may use VLC to watch your movies or listen to your music sometimes through the PC speakers, sometimes through your home theatre system, external amplifiers, USB DAC, etc. The easiest way would be to configure VLC to send the audio output signal simultaneously to all possible devices.

As it is right now, VLC cannot send the signal simultaneously even to just two devices and there is not even an easy way to toggle device on the fly. Each time you need to send your audio to your ‘other’ device, you have to open the VLC preferences, go to the Audio section make the necessary changes, even experimenting until you find the output that works!

Here is a nice and easy solution. I made two shortcuts to VLC using command line options. The first shortcut sends audio to my PC speakers, the second shortcut sends audio to my home theatre system. When I watch a movie I open VLC using the “Theatre” shortcut, and when I want to browse some movies or music in my PC, I open VLC using the “PC” shortcut. Here are the two command line shortcuts that work for me:

Theatre: "PathTo\vlc.exe" --aout=waveout --waveout-audio-device="Speakers (Realtek High Definiti ($1,$64)"
PC: "PathTo\vlc.exe" --aout=any --waveout-audio-device="Speakers (USB PnP Sound Device) ($ffff,$ffff)"

Here is what you can do to create a pair (or more) of similar shortcuts for your configuration:

1) Go to VLC config folder, usually at C:\Users\YourPCAccount\AppData\Roaming\vlc
2) Copy the vlcrc file on your Desktop, then open VLC Player.
3) Change the audio settings to the alternative mode you’d like to use, and close VLC Player.
4) Open the file vlcrc from the vlc config folder, and the same file in the version you saved on your Desktop.
5) Locate in both files the relevant instances that define audio output, i.e., aout and waveout-audio-device
6) Create your shortcuts using the different options as I made in the examples above. Do not forget to enclose in quotes all values that contain blank spaces.
7) Put these shortcuts to your Start Menu to have them available easily. You can also put copies of them in the SendTo context menu (usually at C:\Users\YourPCAccount\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\SendTo) in order to be able to right click media files and open them directly in VLC without having to drag and drop them to an already running instance of the player.

Do you want an even better solution? Just get or make an adapter that will get the signal and divide it to two outputs, one for each of your speaker sets!


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