Methods to Join AirPods or AirPods Professional to a Mac

Do you need to connect your AirPods to your Mac? Don't worry, it only takes a second – and it could have happened automatically.

Connecting AirPods to a Mac is easy, whether you're pairing your wireless earbuds for the first time or trying to set up auto-switching between all of your Apple devices. Don't get me wrong, it's not quite as easy as pairing AirPods to an iPhone, but it's not far from it.

If you have an iPhone, your AirPods might already be connected to your Mac.

In any case, we'll show you how to connect your AirPods or AirPods Pro to your Mac in no time at all and easily switch your AirPods from one device to another.

Here's how to connect AirPods to a Mac for the first time

If you've never used your AirPods or AirPods Pro with your Mac, the first thing you need to do is pair the two devices. This applies whether you're connecting AirPods to an iMac, MacBook, Mac mini, or any other type of Mac.

Here's how to check if your AirPods are already connected to your Mac

However, if you've already used your AirPods with your iPhone, it is possible that they have already been automatically paired with your Mac. This only happens if your iPhone and Mac are compatible with Apple's Handoff feature and use the same Apple ID account.


To check if your AirPods and Mac are already connected:

  1. Open that control center from the menu bar on your Mac.

  2. Hover your mouse over that sound Section of the Control Center and click on the arrow seems so.

  3. You will see a list with output Options; With your AirPods in place, click to connect them to your Mac. You need to take your AirPods out of the charging case before you can plug them in.

Here's how to pair your AirPods with your Mac

If your AirPods don't appear in the list of outlets, they aren't yet connected to your Mac. That means you have to pair them. The process of pairing your AirPods with your Mac is the same process that you would follow to pair your AirPods with a device other than Apple.

Just follow these steps to pair your AirPods or AirPods Pro:

  1. Put your AirPods back in the charging case, but don't close the lid.

  2. Press and hold the Put up on the back of the case until the status light flashes white. Make sure you hold down the button until the light flashes. Your AirPods are now in pairing mode.

  3. On your Mac, click the Apple Logo in the menu bar and go to System settings> Bluetooth.

  4. Your AirPods should appear in the device list. If it doesn't, turn your Mac's Bluetooth off and then on again.

  5. click associate next to your AirPods to pair them.

If you still can't pair your AirPods, make sure you update to the latest version of macOS. The AirPods (3rd generation) only work with macOS Monterey or higher.

Here's how to automatically switch AirPods to your Mac

After you've connected your AirPods to your Mac for the first time, they should automatically switch to your Mac when you use it. That means you can just put your AirPods Pro in your ears and play music from your MacBook Pro, and they'll automatically connect for you.

The process is usually automatic – you don't have to do anything – but if you've used your AirPods with another device like an iPhone before, you'll need to click associate in the notification that appears on your Mac.

Make sure your AirPods sound the best they can

That's all there is to it. Usually, your AirPods will automatically connect to your Mac and you don't have to do anything other than put them in your ears and play music. But if it doesn't, now you know how to pair your AirPods manually and choose from the audio output options.

After all of that, you should take full advantage of this connection by making your AirPods sound the best they can.

9 ways to improve the sound quality of AirPods Pro

Do you want to get the best possible sound quality from your AirPods Pro? Follow these tips for even better sound.

Continue reading

About the author

Dan Helyer
(175 articles published)

Dan writes tutorials and troubleshooting guides to help people get the most out of their technology. Before becoming a writer, he earned a BSc in audio engineering, oversaw repairs at an Apple store, and even taught English in China.

By Dan Helyer

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