mic keeps cutting out in a pc

Why Does the Mic Keep Cutting Out in Windows 10? [Simple Fixes]

Do you have problems with the sound input on your Windows PC?

Many people are experiencing issues with their auto-muting microphones (both internal and external). Although this issue is most prevalent in Windows 10, the microphone problem was present in previous Microsoft products also.

As the work-from-home revolution changes how we get things done, a functional microphone is more important than ever. You can now hold a conference in the comfort of your own home, but you’ll need a microphone to convey your message.

We’ll show you how to troubleshoot a microphone issue in Windows 10, whether you’re using a headset microphone with a 3.5mm jack or a USB microphone.

If your mic keeps cutting out and in or isn’t detected at all, the step-by-step solutions in this article can help.

According to Microsoft experts, this could be due to incorrect sound settings or outdated device drivers. However, the malware/virus infection should not be overlooked.

Learn how to repair your microphone in Windows 10, even if it keeps cutting out or isn’t being recognized at all.

How to Fix the Mic Disconnecting Problem on a Windows 10 PC?

If your microphone isn’t picking up any sound or isn’t clear, you should fix it as soon as possible.

To analyze and resolve microphone issues in a Windows 10 PC, use the solutions listed below.

1. Restart Your Computer

Restart your computer if you are experiencing this microphone issue for the first time. Windows 10 occasionally has problems, but not all of them require a comprehensive solution.

Sometimes restarting your computer is the best and quickest option. Restarting a PC clears out all of your system processes as well as minor software glitches, which may resolve the issue.

If the problem persists after restarting the computer, try one of the other solutions listed below.

2. Run the Windows 10 Troubleshooter

The built-in troubleshooting tool in Windows 10 can be used to resolve a variety of system issues, including microphone issues.

It may also help with the Windows mic cutting or disconnecting issue. To be honest, the majority of the time, the Windows troubleshooter is ineffective.

=> Select Settings from the Start menu.
=> Navigate to the Settings app’s Update & Security section.
=> Select Troubleshoot from the left-hand menu.
=> Choose Additional Troubleshooters from the right pane and then select Recording Audio
=> Follow the on-screen directions to complete the troubleshooting.

After running the troubleshooter, check to see if the problem has been resolved.

If not, repeat the preceding steps, but this time select Speech instead of Recording Audio.

If your microphone problem has not been resolved, proceed to the next step.

3. Perform a Malware Scan

An internal or external microphone will usually mute itself due to incorrect sound settings. Even if you haven’t changed the settings, they could have been changed automatically due to software upgrades or malware infection.

As a result, the first thing you should do is run a thorough system scan with reputable anti-malware software.

Most of the time, free versions of Windows Defender or Malwarebytes will suffice. We recommend Malwarebytes Premium, which is reasonably priced and available on Amazon.

This utility will also verify that all of the Windows Registry files are in good working order.

If the scan didn’t solve your problem, here’s the next solution you should try.

4. Verify Windows Sound Settings

If the previous fixes did not resolve the issue, the sound settings in Windows should be your next stop for microphone troubleshooting, especially if your microphone is not working at all.

You can find them by going to Settings > System > Sound.

Under Input, click the dropdown box labeled “Choose your input device“.

Select the microphone that you want to use. Other possible inputs, such as your laptop’s built-in microphone or webcam, will be displayed here as well.

When you’ve found the right mic input, speak into it. The input sound capture should be displayed in the microphone bar when tested.

Ensure that the microphone is close enough to your lips to pick up your voice.

If the microphone does not work, select the Device properties option from the Input menu. This will divert you to a new page where you can rename the input to make it easier to find in the future.

You can disable the microphone by checking the Disable check box, or you can adjust the Volume to control how loud the microphone’s input is.

Under the Advanced sound options heading, you can find the App volume and device preferences menu at the bottom of the main Sound page.

This allows you to select a different output and input device for each open app. Check here to make sure you’re not using the incorrect microphone for the program.

It’s also a good idea to close any programs that aren’t in use. If you have multiple apps attempting to use your microphone at the same time, your microphone may not function properly in the app you want to use.

5. Check Your Input Devices List

If your microphone is still not working, check the list of available input devices. You can do so by going to the Sound Control Panel.

Go to the Start menu and select Sound to access the Sound Control Panel.

When the entire list of options appears in a Sound window, click the Sound Control Panel in the upper-right corner under the title Related settings.

In the window, navigate to the Recording tab, which displays all of the microphones connected to your PC.

Verify that both Show Disabled Devices and Show Disconnected Devices are checked by right-clicking anywhere within the window.

Check the list to ensure that your primary microphone isn’t turned off. If it is, right-click it and choose Enable from the context menu.

When you talk into a microphone, the bar will light up, if it is operational.

6. Check for Microphone Physical Problems

In this step, we inspect the microphone or headphones for any physical problems.

This is critical if your microphone cuts in and out, if there is no input from your microphone at all, or if it does not appear in the input menu.

Try inserting your USB microphone into a different USB port on your computer if you’re using one. Rather than using a USB hub or extension, plug your microphone directly into a PC port.

If the microphone works in another USB port, it means the original USB port is probably dead or malfunctioning.

Related: Motherboard diagnostic tests and common motherboard problems

If you’re using an analog microphone, make sure the cord is plugged into the pink microphone port on your PC (mic jack).

If the headphones are detachable, they may come with cable extensions. Check to ensure that all microphone wires are fully inserted and that nothing is loose in the scenario.

If you have an extension cable, try removing it to rule it out as a possible source of the problem. Inspect the cables for breakage as well.

Replace any broken wires that are causing problems such as the microphone cutting out.

The next step is to make sure you haven’t accidentally activated the physical mute toggle switch (if there is one) on your microphone. On your headset, it inline control part, or the front of the mic, look for a mic on/off slider or button.

If you still don’t have a mic input signal after trying almost everything, try plugging your microphone into a different computer.

If it doesn’t work on the second PC, your microphone hardware may be broken. If the product is still under warranty, you may be able to get a replacement if you contact the manufacturer.

When choosing a headset, always look for the top-quality headset with a microphone (many of the finest headsets are available on Amazon that is perfect for your needs and budget).

7. Ensure Microphone Access to the App

In Windows 10, the Privacy option allows you to prevent programs from accessing sensitive information through the use of your camera and microphone.

As a result, you should check to see if you’ve prevented an app from accessing the microphone.

To confirm this, navigate to Settings > Privacy.

On the left sidebar, click Microphone under App permissions.

If you turn off the Allow applications to use your microphone slider, no apps will be able to use it. Then, look through the list of applications to see if the one you want to use is permitted.

The first On-Off slider and list are only for Microsoft Store applications.

If you scroll down the page, you’ll see a section titled “Allow desktop apps to access your microphone“.

Check that the On-Off toggle slider beneath this title is turned on.

If you cannot control the access of a specific desktop program to your microphone, you can see its last access time. This may help you determine whether or not the program is correctly recognizing your microphone.

8. Adjust Mic Levels

If Windows has detected your microphone, you can improve performance by using the Sound settings.

They can help you with issues like your microphone cutting out or not sounding clear.

Right-click the speaker icon in the Taskbar to open the Sound window.

By double-clicking on your microphone in the Recording tab, you can change a few settings.

If you didn’t change the name of the microphone in Settings, you can change it on the General tab if you want to rename it.

On the Levels tab, you can change the input volume (and boost, on supported mics).

If it appears to be too low, try increasing it and if your microphone clips and sounds are distorted, try decreasing it.

Depending on your microphone and computer, additional tabs may appear on this page. These include features like background noise reduction and others that you can experiment with if you want.

It’s a good idea to disable any Windows audio enhancements to avoid interfering with troubleshooting.

Turn off any automated gain control or similar features that could cause your microphone to go out of sync.

Uncheck both Exclusive Mode options on the Advanced tab.

Allowing programs to gain complete control of your device implies that one app may “lock” your microphone and prevent others from using it. By disabling this, you can solve a lot of mic problems.

You can also adjust the Default Format in the selection box to change the input quality. If this is set too low, your microphone will sound bad.

Once you’ve finished making changes, go back to the Recording tab.

To reduce input option clutter, right-click any inputs you don’t use and select Disable. Finally, right-click your main microphone and select Set as Default Device to make it the application’s default device.

9. Record Your Voice to Pinpoint the Problem

If your microphone is still cutting in and out in a particular game or app at this point, you should determine whether the issue is with your microphone or the program itself.

For this, you’ll need to record a brief audio clip. For a quick test, the built-in Voice Recorder app in Windows 10 is ideal.

Audacity, on the other hand, offers a plethora of additional options and monitors for a more in-depth examination. Launch one of the apps and record your voice for one minute.

Then play it again to see if it fades out or sounds hazy at any point.

If it sounds clear in Audacity, keep troubleshooting. Your microphone problem is almost certainly the result of a specific game or any other software.

If your microphone recording comes to a halt here, double-check your hardware. As long as your hardware isn’t broken, one of the solutions listed above will most likely solve your issue.

10. Disable Xbox Game Bar Recordings

Windows 10’s Game Bar can record game footage and images.

While this is convenient, it has been reported that it causes microphone issues in some games.

Disable the Xbox Game Bar option for activities such as recording game clips. 

In Settings > Gaming > Xbox Game Bar, move the slider to the right.

Then, on the Captures page, uncheck the boxes that say Record in the background while I play a game and Record audio while I record a game.

These features are useful if you use them, but if you don’t, it’s best to disable them to avoid microphone problems.

Look into other excellent game recording tools for Windows 10 to replace this.

11. Change Microphone Settings in Your App

You’ve almost ruled out a microphone hardware issue, and you’re fairly certain that the microphone issues are limited to one app.

As a result, you should check your app settings to see if you can change the microphone settings there. Also, check that the application is using your primary microphone.

Furthermore, most video games allow you to reduce the volume of your microphone input.

If your input is clipping and the mic is cutting in and out, turn this down just a bit or two. Turn up the input volume if others complain that your voice is too soft.

Finally, if the game includes a microphone test, use it to see how your voice sounds in it. If it works fine in the test but cuts out in-game, it could be a network issue.

Perhaps your router has restricted the game’s voice chat because it uses a port that has been blocked by your router. Restart your router and modem if necessary.

Related: Why Is Your Modem Keeps Resetting? Fix It In 10 Easy Steps

If the microphone issue persists, consider using a third-party voice chat program such as Discord for communication.

12. Check Mic Settings in Zoom, Discord, or Similar Apps

It’s irritating when you have a microphone issue in a chat app like Zoom.

If you’ve tried everything above and still have problems with your microphone, the issue is most likely in the app’s audio settings.

Click the Gear icon on the right side to access Zoom’s settings, then select the Audio tab. When you speak, the Input Level under the Microphone should change.

Click Test Mic and record yourself for a few seconds to hear how it sounds. Use the dropdown box to switch your mic input to another device if necessary.

Other Zoom options may result in your microphone clipping in and out. Automatically adjusting the microphone level is usually useful because it saves you from having to adjust it if you start speaking loudly or quietly.

If the audio from your microphone isn’t clear, uncheck this and manually adjust the Input Volume slider. If you use the Suppress background noise option, your microphone may fade in and out.

If you use this option too forcefully, it may cut you off while you’re speaking. Rather than using Auto mode, try lowering it manually.

If your Discord microphone is cutting out, go to the Settings gear in the bottom-left corner and choose Voice & Video from the left sidebar.

Disable Noise Suppression and Echo Cancellation to see if anything improves. You can also change the sensitivity manually by deactivating the Automatically calculated input sensitivity.

Finally, check to see if you’re on a call that has you muted. In most chat programs, you can silence your microphone by scrolling to the bottom of the screen. If you forget you’re muted, you might think your microphone isn’t working.

How to Fix Echo on Your PC Mic?

It’s inconvenient to have to repeat yourself. While mic echo is frequently a problem on the other end of the line, you can take a few steps to reduce mic echo on your computer.

First and foremost, use a headphone when making phone calls if at all possible. Most echo is caused by your microphone picking up noise from your computer’s speakers when using your laptop’s built-in microphone and speakers.

When you wear headphones, the likelihood of your microphone picking up that sound is greatly reduced.

As said before, ensure that the sensitivity of your microphone is not set too high. Even if you’re wearing headphones, a sensitive microphone may pick up some of the sounds.

If you can hear everything you say in your headphones even when you aren’t on a video conference, you almost certainly have a Windows setting turned on.

Return to the Control Panel’s Recording tab’s Sound section, double-click your input device, and then go to the Listen tab to fix this.

If you select Listen to this device, everything from that microphone will be heard in the output device you’ve chosen.

This can be useful in some circumstances, but it will almost certainly drive you crazy. Uncheck the box and press OK to avoid hearing everything your microphone picks up.

Final Words

Hopefully, one of these solutions solved your Windows microphone issues.

Because microphones, games, applications, and settings differ so greatly in each use scenario, identifying these issues may be difficult.

But you’ll know what to do if your microphone starts cutting in and out or stops working totally.

We hope you found this post informative, and do like and follow us on Facebook and Twitter for regular updates.

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