Your iPhone & its dock: Disabling the mute feature

iPhone dock with Line Out port

I recently purchased a dock for my iPhone from a guy on Ebay. It’s not an official Apple product, because $5 is a far better price than the $29 Apple wants for a piece of plastic. All-in-all, its a great little product, and it would be perfect but for one thing; every time I plug my iPhone 3G into it, it mutes the sound.

Of course, given that this dock has a Line Out jack on the back, it makes sense that it would disable my iPhone’s built-in speakers. After all, why would you want your iPhone’s tinny sound tarnishing whatever you plug in the back? However, seeing as I’m using it as a bed-side stand, there will never be a speaker system to tarnish. Here’s how to prevent it from muting your iPhone.

Step 1: Open it up. You’ll need a small phillips screwdriver, about 2.5mm in diameter. Just stab it through the rubber layer on the bottom and unscrew.

Location of the screws on the bottom of the iPhone dock

Step 2: Using a soldering iron, remove the tiny resistor (Pictured to the right) from the marked location on the PCB.

Location of the resistor to remove on the iPhone dock PCB

Step 3: Reassemble and enjoy. :)

  • Excellent detailed explanation.
    Different docking station but same resistor and same successful outcome when removed.

    Cheers Ashley !!

  • Different dock, but found the resistor. Scraped it off, and got the sound back on my iPhone! Thanks!

  • You can use a microswitch (like that used for mouse buttons, you can get one of them from a dead (!) mouse) and place it at the (internal) end of the jack: when the plug is in it touches the microswith that closes the circuit. Far better than drilling the jack.

  • Software solution (if jailbroken):
    Go to cydia, add source apt.alleon.name, install “accessory not supported”, reboot.

  • Sorry, but I don’t have any experience with other iPhone docks.

  • compre el mismo DOCK, para mi iphone 4s y funciono muy bien unos dias derrepente de un momento a otro dejo de cargar, probe cambiando los cables y claramente es el dock. algun comentario.

  • Thanks!! / Gracias!! me fue de utilidad, ya estaba cansado de que se pusiera mi iPhone en mudo, mil gracias! Jonathan de Argentina.

  • Awesome! I just carefully destroyed the resistor with pincers, that it! This worked great :)

  • Just what I needed, after removing the Line out port with no look I googled this. I have a different dock, there was only 1 resistor on it, removed it and now its working great. Thanks.

  • Thanks so much for this tip. Ordered a dock on eBay and the seller had the audacity to tell me it was a problem with my iPhone. Negative feedback coming his way! This easy fix took less than 5 minutes.

  • Couldn’t work out why it wasnt making any sound – I though the dock had a close to airtight seal around the speakers and caused the sound to be so muffled I couldnt hear it. Turn out the resistor was the issue. 10 seconds at my soldering station and the problem is fixed.

    My dock will never see speakers – its just a charging and syncing station for my iphone near the computer.

    Thanks for the tutorial – I dont think I would have been able to get inside the unit without this tutorial! Took longer to open the dock than it did to remove the smd resistor :)

  • works perfect. i have the same dock bought from dx. i removed the resistance as shown on the pic and now i can hear my iphone while charging on the dock. i owe you a beer.

  • Ashley: Great find, great explanation. You were the first hit in Google for “iphone dock mute” too. Thanks!

    Marcel: I liked your take on this too, nice hack!

    Brettville: I had the same problem after some moisture got in around my mute / vibrate switch. I followed an iPhone disassembly guide on iFixit and bought a replacement part off eBay. From memory the part was the “headphone flex cable” or something similarly named, and cost around $10 shipped. Good luck!

  • Thanks for this. It has worked perfectly as I only want this to charge and no line out.

  • Thanks, this is exactly the information I needed, I have that same dock (from Dealextreme).

  • Is there a way to disable the dock mute on the software side because my iPhone must need cleaning as it mutes my sound every 5 seconds. I have an app to block the popup but the sound still mutes :(

  • You da man! I got mine and was afraid I wasn’t going to able to use it. I was able to scrape off the resistor with a screwdriver, be careful.

  • Great find! Many thanks, now i don’t have to worry about missing calls when charging anymore.

  • Thanks for the great description, it was exactly was I searched for! In the end I even went one step further and just for fun added a sensing pin to the existing Line Out jack so the muting still works when a plug is inserted. If anybody is interested, click on my name for a some pictures.

  • Thanks man, just also got a few from dealextreme! Your trick works great, I can now use clock radio app on it perfectly!

  • The sound works when the charging cable isn’t connected. I got mine in the mail today. Works great.

  • Unfortunately, yes. The resistor links a pin to ground, which, I believe, signals to the iPhone that it should disable its internal speaker and output audio via the pins leading to the Line Out jack.

    All this could have been avoided if the dock’s makers had used a sensing jack, which would detect when a cable is inserted and only then connect the pin to ground.

  • Great find, but does that disable the Line Out jack?

    Hoping to order mine from DealExtreme soon!

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