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Why is My Mic So Quiet?: Troubleshooting Audio Issues

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If your co-workers, family, or friends are having trouble hearing you from their end of the call, you might be experiencing some microphone volume problems. 

With the world transitioning to mostly online forms of communication over the past three years, having a solid microphone is vital. It doesn’t matter how well-researched your presentation is or how fast your internet speed can be – if your audience can’t hear you, it’s game over.

Luckily, there are plenty of steps you can take to make sure your hard work doesn’t go to waste. By following these audio troubleshooting tips, you can ensure that your co-workers, family, or friends can hear you crystal clear during those long calls.


Why is My Microphone Quiet?

If there’s one thing we all learned in the past few years and hundreds of Zoom calls, it’s that technical difficulties are normal. Be it webcam issues or internet flubs, these problems often come and go just as easily. The same is true for low-volume microphones; usually, all you have to do is tweak a few settings and you’ll be good to go. Actually, many people are able to troubleshoot their audio devices on their own because the process is intuitive.

Reasons For Low Volume In Pc Mics

If you’re having trouble being heard when you speak into your microphone, chances are there is something wrong with your computer settings. Below, we’ll talk about the different ways you can configure your personal computer, laptop, or gaming console in order to maximize your mic volume.


How Do You Fix A Quiet Mic?

Have you noticed your voice sounds a little quiet on the other end of the line? Perhaps your colleagues or friends can’t hear you pretty well and they’ve mentioned that you sound “far away.” 


Often, in situations like these where your microphone volume is too low or your voice cannot be heard, it’s simply a question of altering the configurations on your computer, console, or the microphone/headset itself. By doing so, you can greatly improve and fix the sound quality of your default communication device.

How Can I Make My Mic Louder?

Think you’ve done everything you can to fix your mic volume? Turns out, there are more than a few ways you can tweak your microphone settings to fix a broken mic or low voice chat volume. Most recording device audio issues can be adjusted using your Windows settings. 

In this next section, we’ll go over the best solutions to troubleshoot low mic problems when recording audio. From tweaking your mic boost settings to checking for new audio drivers, this guide can help correct microphone issues from your audio interface to ensure that you won’t sound quiet anymore. 

Re-Test

Go to your Windows search box and type in Voice Recorder. Test your current audio item first to see if the problem persists. If your voice still sounds too quiet, then head to the next steps.

Adjust the Placement of Your Mic or Audio Devices to Fix Microphone Volume

Experiencing audio problems when you try to record audio? The first thing you should do to address these audio problems is to check the placement of your mic. The mic works differently in different positions. You may sound loud in one position but quiet in another. 

The location of your input device plays a very important role in how your voice is going to sound – for example, you might want to position your mic close to your mouth if you sound far away or move it farther if your voice sounds distorted. If your problem is loud background noise, check out our guide to reducing background noise here.

Going back, there is not just one optimal placement for your microphone as this can vary on a case-to-case basis. What works for one device might not work for others. For the best results, try to record your voice in different mic positions to see which sounds best as this can resolve your audio problems.

Adjust Your OS Settings via Sound Control Panel

If your mic placement isn’t the problem, you might want to check your OS volume controls. There are plenty of options on your computer’s sound control panel that may help. Below, we’ll go over how to adjust the microphone input for each operating system.

Mac OS

To adjust the audio input on a Mac, simply select Apple Menu then System Preferences. Once there, click Sound, then select Input. From the list of devices, choose the one you want to use (an internal display microphone will be labeled ‘Display Audio.) From here, you can adjust the levels to your liking by moving the slider.

Note: The options that show up can vary on your Mac model as well as the microphones plugged into your computer.

Windows 10

If you’re using Windows 10, you can adjust your mic volume by right-clicking the volume icon on the bottom right of the taskbar. Then, select ‘Open Sound Settings’. This will open a new window. Scroll down to the section labeled Input, then look for your device name. Under that, select Device Settings. To adjust, simply move the slider to your preferred level. Also, make sure that ‘disable’ is unchecked.

If your microphone name doesn’t show up, this means your device isn’t paired with your computer. Make sure to pair it first as this might be the reason your mic’s volume is low.

Windows 11

Click the microphone icon on the taskbar. You’ll find a toggle for the computer volume and beside it, an arrow that reads ‘Manage audio devices’ – click that. Then select ‘More volume settings’ and scroll down to find Input settings. If your input volume is too low, then this might be the problem. Simply turn it up and you’re good.

If the problem persists, click Advanced Tab then check that the boxes below Exclusive Mode are empty.

Double-Check the Wires 

In case you’re using a headset, headphones, or a USB microphone with a computer, make sure to check that the wire is connected securely to the port. We may not realize that the cord has loosened through movement or a shift in our positioning. If this turns out to be the case, try moving your mic or headset to a different port (if possible).

Adjust the Mic Volume on Your Headset

Are you using a headset as your main audio device? If so, definitely try to check your headset’s mic volume as this could be the culprit. 

Voice Low on Skype, Teams, or Zoom? Check Your Settings

Does your audio seem to be low only when you’re in a video call? The problem might be in the app’s settings. First, make sure you don’t have the mute button enabled. 

For Skype, all you have to do is tick ‘Automatically adjust microphone settings’ to ensure your microphone performance is at its peak.

Zoom has a similar function that automatically adjusts your mic volume. However, if you want to be extra careful, you can test out your computer audio using the program’s tester option located in Settings > Audio Settings > Test Microphone.

If you’re using Microsoft Teams, head over to Start Menu > Sound Settings > Device properties (microphone) and toggle the slider until you have your desired microphone audio level.

Try Microphone Boost

Still experiencing the same issue? Another sound option you can try is adjusting your PC’s microphone boost which can determine how loud your recording apparatus or headset will be.

A microphone boost or mic booster is a unique feature on Windows 10 that lets you amplify the volume on your input device or microphone. In the event you’re still struggling with good quality mic audio after following the steps above, then adjusting your computer’s microphone booster could be the solution. 

To do this, go to Start > Settings > System > Sound. Look for the section labeled ‘Input.’ Make sure you’ve selected your device, then click Device Properties which will open your microphone properties. Go to the Levels tab then tweak your Microphone Boost level as desired.

Update your audio drivers or sound card

If all the settings mentioned above did not solve your problem, don’t rush to the store to replace your device just yet. The issue might be with outdated sound drivers. Audio devices need up-to-date drivers in order to run smoothly and properly on your computer. Here’s how to update your input device drivers on Windows 10.

Simply head over to Start > Device Manager / Windows Control Panel. Once you’ve opened the Control Panel, head to Sound, Video and Game Controllers. 

You’ll see the hardware linked to the audio chip on your computer – double click that, then select the Driver tab. Windows will display an option that allows you to Update the Driver. Click it and select Search automatically for updated driver software.

If you have downloaded drivers, you can return to the Update Driver window and click Browse my computer for driver software.

Try using a different microphone

Since the concern is not a software issue, then it is definitely a hardware issue. Unfortunately, if any of the above fixes did not resolve your microphone issue, then you might have to buy a new microphone.

The good thing is there are plenty of wonderful microphone options dedicated to a whole range of recording activities, be it gaming, streaming, video creation, and more – all at reasonable prices.


Final Note

If your microphone is too quiet when recording audio, it’s usually a question of tweaking your microphone properties, whether it’s on the operating system, your preferred video chat software, or on the device itself. 

However, if you find that none of these settings seem to make you sound louder, then it may be time to look for a new microphone or headset. Luckily, there are a plethora of options available online that can meet your needs, from recording microphones to podcasting devices. 

For more information on all things recording and sound, check out our website now.

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Ash Burnett

Hailing from Chicago, IL - Ash made his break into journalism at the age of 23 writing music reviews for a local website. Now in his late 30's and after being pulled closer towards the technical side of the music and live gig industry, he founded Shout4Music to write thorough microphone reviews.

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