Headset Operation

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How to create a virtual reality environment

If you want to know how to use your PC with headphones and a microphone to create a sound proof environment here's how to do so economically:


  1. 3.5mm Stereo Jack Plug To 2x 3.5mm Stereo Jack (40p to £4.00) {The Gold plated version costing £4.00 is actually a good investment from a technical perspective {better connections}).
  2. 1 set of headphones (£10+)
  3. 1 mono-headset with microphone (£10+)
  4. Your PC / Laptop with even the most basic modern sound card with CD quality recording / playback {16Mhz+) (that supports full duplex playing / recording)**

** To test the full duplex capabilities of your sound card (having configured your system as per the instructions below {you only need to connect a microphone}), play a song in Windows MediaPlayer, then open the Sound Recorder (Start >> Programs >> Accessories >> Entertainment >> Sound Recorder) and try to record your voice. If you can, you have a full duplex sound card, if you can't, you will not be able to speak to your client via their headphones using your PC. However, most modern

Plug the client's headphones (above) into the splitter Plug the splitter (above) into the audio out socket of your PC Plug the microphone socket from the headset (above) into the microphone socket of your PC. Plug the earphone plug from the headset (above) into the splitter.
Your client wears the headphones (full stereo effect to benefit from bilateral sounds {sound that pans from left to right}) The splitter splits the audio output of your PC into two (there is little / no loss of signal) You wear mono headphones (so you have one ear free to listen to what your client is saying) and you can speak into your headset's microphone to speak to your client via their headphones.

The configure your software as follows: (Takes 5 mins max)

These instructions are based on Windows 98 but the same approach should work well on XP / Win 2K etc. If you encounter any issues please let us know.

Ensure your volume controls are visible by clicking on start / settings / multimedia

Ensure that "Show volume control on the task bar" is selected - click on OK. Leave the "use only selected..." check box as it is.

Double click on your volume control on your task bar (bottom of the screen probably)

Double click on "options" within the volume control panel

Double click on "properties" within the volume control panel

Click on "recording"

Ensure that at least "microphone", "CD" and "wave" are selected then click on "OK"

Ensure the settings look something like this ("microphone", "CD" and "wave" are selected with volume levels at 70%+ to 100%) then click on "OK")


Some therapists much prefer not to use any form of headphone and that's fine. Headphone use is not written in stone. You can still use the bilateral sound effects by placing normal / ordinary speakers strategically. If you don't want to use the bilateral sound effects at all that's fine also. This is not rocket science! The most important thing is for the client to see what is happening on the screen and for the client to able to hear you.

More Notes!!

Test your levels periodically - especially if you use other software that may alter your recording settings without you realising and if your system encounteres a "major windows error" from which Windows has automatically recovered / after PC rebuilds.

If you're recording vocals deselect the "wave" option (merges in many sound streams into one).

Beware of using the microphone boost option in advanced settings - you could end up with a lot of distortion!

Treble / Bass options are present on playback under the advanced tab - they will only be selectable if your sound card supports it.

If you're playing a LOUD BACKGROUND TRACK OR LOUD BEEPS then your client may not be able to hear you above the other sounds!

"I have a microphone that I use with my audio cassette player - will it work with my PC?" Older style microphones are too insensitive for PC use, however PC microphone headsets are not that expensive and are also highly directional which means that background sounds will not be picked up and amplified also.

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