It is annoying when audio stops playing or you are not getting the right output from the microphone. There is a seamless number of issues or settings problems that can affect audio levels and microphone sensitivity, issues like improper configuration, audio driver issues, and malware. In this article, we will be looking at some of the problems associated with audio levels and microphone sensitivity in Windows 10, how to fix them, and types of microphones. But first, what is audio levels and microphone sensitivity?
Whether you want to test the audio levels or adjust microphone sensitivity, you should always make sure the microphone is connected, and before performing any task, make sure to test the microphone properly. Depending on how loud you like your audio, you can adjust the sensitivity higher to 100 which is the maximum, or lower. Below you will find step by step guide on adjusting microphone sensitivity and audio levels.
Understanding audio levels and microphone sensitivity
Audio levels are measured in Decibels, where 0 decibels (dB) is the maximum level and -15 dB is negative.
The microphone sensitivity is the ability of the microphone to measure converting acoustic pressure to electric voltage, higher sensitivity means less pre-amplification required, less sensitivity means higher pre-amplification required.
How to test audio levels
Here are steps by step guide to test your microphone in Windows 10
Check to see the microphone is connected, then select “Start“, then select “Settings“, then click on “System“, and then “Sound“.
Once in the “Sound” settings, under the “Input” select “Test your microphone“, you will see a blue bar that goes up and down while you speak into the microphone. If you notice the bar moving up and down while you speak then the microphone is working, if not then you will have to fix it by selecting “Troubleshoot”, this will identify and fix the problem.
How to install a microphone in Windows 10
To install a new microphone in windows 10, make sure the microphone is connected to PC, then select “Start“, on the start menu select “Settings“, on the settings menu select “System“, then select “Sound“.
In the Sound settings menu look for “Input” then select “Choose input device“, on the drop-down select the recording device or microphone you want to use. Doing this will instantly connect to your chosen device and ready to use.
By adjusting the microphone sensitivity settings it can solve distortion and noise problem enabling you to hear crystal clear audio.
How to adjust microphone sensitivity in windows 10
In the search box taskbar type in “Control panel“, on the control panel menu select “Hardware and Sound” or just “Sound“, then on the sound result you find the list of all connected device, then “Right-click” on the device which has sensitivity issues, then click “Properties“.
On the “Level tab” make sure the mic is set to “100” as the maximum level.
How to turn down mic sensitivity windows 10
To turn down the mic sensitivity of windows 10 you have to follow the above directions, but instead of leaving it at 100 which is the maximum, you can reduce it to your desired levels. Remember that higher sensitivity means less pre-amplification required, less sensitivity means higher pre-amplification required.
Windows 10 microphone boost missing
If the boost option is missing on properties for the microphone, it may be because the mic does not support it. But to fix the microphone missing boost follow these steps:
On the taskbar right-click on the “Sound” icon then select “Open Sound Settings” then on the Input section select “Device Properties” then select “Additional Device Properties“, on the result page click on “Level Tab. This is where you will find the Boost option and if this is not there it may be the microphone does not support boost.
How to stop microphone auto-adjusting windows 10?
There are reasons why the microphone auto-adjusts either higher or lower, and this could be due to installed apps or driver problems. Skype can automatically adjust the microphone level, and to stop this you have to go into the skype setting and disable auto-adjust. Steam can also adjust microphone level automatically, to stop this head on to friends list and disable “Automatic Volume/Gain Control”. Other applications that are allowed exclusive control to adjust microphone level automatically, and to stop this you should disable exclusive mode or boot in clean mode to allow you to see the app doing this.
Other causes can be malware infection and outdated or corrupted microphone driver. For malware infection, you can perform a Malwarebytes scan, for an outdated or corrupt driver you should replace the current microphone driver.
How do I stop my mic from picking up background noise?
If your mic is picking up background noise, there are several causes and ways on how to stop this. One of the possible causes is if your microphone is too close to your computer fan, or if it is too close to a spinning hard drive, to stop this you have to move it. If you are sitting close to an electrical unit that produces static noise like a fan or air conditioning.
Position a noise cancelling microphone close to your mouth to help filter out unwanted noise. Also, check to make sure the microphone has no damages. If the device you are using is not optimized for Lync 2010 or Microsoft 365, this could be a problem, make sure it is optimized.
What is a good sensitivity for a microphone?
Good and active sensitivity for a microphone rating is 8 mV/Pa to 32 mV/Pa range, and most active microphones have a typical sensitivity rating either the active ribbon or the condenser.
How can you tell a good microphone?
You can tell a good microphone by the frequency response, if the frequency response ranges between 80 Hz to 15 kHz, then this is a good microphone. The microphone frequency response is measured by the lowest and highest frequency, or how high or how low its able to pick up.
What does dB mean on a microphone?
The dB stands for decibel which is a unit used in measuring the intensity of sound wave and power level of a mic signal, this is done by comparing it to a level on a logarithmic scale.
What are the four types of microphones?
Mainly, there are four types of microphone, the cardioid microphone, the super-cardioid microphone, the omnidirectional microphone, and figure 8 microphone.
What is a cardioid microphone?
A cardioid microphone is a very sensitive microphone that can pick up the tiniest of sounds and it is most sensitive to front sounds and rejects sounds from the rear. The cardioid microphone is used in recording up-close vocals.
What is an omnidirectional microphone?
The omnidirectional microphone is the opposite of the cardioid microphone, it picks up sound from all sides and all directions, they can easily pick up sound from every direction and they are also sensitive. The omnidirectional microphones are used in recording orchestra, and in-home studio recording because it works well with room ambiance.
What is figure 8 or bidirectional microphone?
A figure 8 microphone pickup pattern is front and rear sound, the microphone is sensitive to sounds coming from the front and rear but rejects sounds from the sides.
What is the difference between cardioid and omnidirectional?
The difference between cardioid and omnidirectional is that the cardioid is sensitive to front sounds only and rejects sound from the rear and can pickup only tiny sound from sides, while the omnidirectional microphone is sensitive to sounds from all directions, it picks up sound from all direction.
What is the difference between a cardioid and a super-cardioid microphone?
The super-cardioid and cardioid microphone are much similar only that the super-cardioid has a tighter pickup angle than the cardioid, it rejects more sounds from the sides than the cardioid.
Which is a better condenser or dynamic mic?
The dynamic microphone is better than the condenser microphone, the difference and why it is better is that dynamic captures loud and strong sound like heavy drums and loud vocals especially in live events, while the condenser captures delicate sounds and higher frequencies like studio vocals.
Which microphone has the highest sensitivity?
The condenser microphones have higher sensitivity with typical values ranging from 8 to 32 mV/Pa or -42 to -30 dB re 1V/Pa, like the Neumann KMS 105 condenser which has a sensitivity of 4.5 mV/Pa (4.5 millivolts at 1 Pascal).
We have looked at some of the issues that can affect audio levels and microphone sensitivity, issues like improper configuration and audio driver issues, and also looked at some steps by step guide to test your microphone in Windows 10. Another important point before installing a new microphone in windows 10 is to make sure the microphone is connected to the PC. Adjusting the microphone sensitivity settings can solve distortion and noise problem enabling you to hear crystal clear audio. Finally, a microphone frequency response is measured by the lowest and highest frequency and that is how high or how low it’s able to pick up.