How to test your microphone on Windows 10 - Bark Sedov

How to test your microphone on Windows 10

  • You can test a microphone on a Windows 10 computer to make sure it’s properly connected and working.
  • To test your microphone, you need to open the Windows Sound Settings menu.
  • Testing how your microphone sounds must be done with another program like Audacity.
  • Check out Insider’s tech reference library for more stories.

You’re on a Skype or Zoom call and you’re told you can’t be heard — or when you get through, it sounds like you’re using a tin can on a string. This even happens to professional streamers.

It could be that you have a high-quality headset plugged in, but for some reason your Windows computer is trying to record with its horrible built-in microphone. Or it might be a bit more difficult to manage.

Here’s how to find out.

How to test your microphone in Windows 10

1. Look for the tiny icon that looks like a speaker in your taskbar at the bottom right of the screen.

Screenshot of Windows 10 hidden toolbar with sound icon highlighted.

You may need to press the up arrow at the bottom of the screen to view hidden icons.

Ross James/Insider

2. Right-click the speaker icon and select Open the sound settings.

Screenshot of the Windows 10 sound icon with right-click options visible.

Right-click the speaker icon to bring up your audio options.

Kyle Wilson/Insider

3. Scroll down to the Label section entry. Windows shows you which microphone is currently your default microphone — in other words, which one is currently in use — and a blue bar showing your volume level. Try speaking into your microphone. If the blue bar jumps around as you raise and lower your voice, it means it’s working properly.

Screenshot of the Windows 10 sound menu with the input area highlighted.

My laptop is currently using the correct microphone and the microphone is working.

Ross James/Insider

4. If your computer is using the wrong microphone, you can change it by clicking the dropdown menu and choosing a new option – make sure the correct microphone is plugged in incorrectly or it won’t show up.

Screenshot of sound input selection options in Windows 10.

Select the microphone from the list to set it as the active setting.

Ross James/Insider

However, this method will only let you know if Windows recognizes your microphone – it won’t tell you what you actually sound like.

If you want to know exactly what your microphone sounds like, Audacity is a free audio recording program that you can use to hear yourself. All you have to do is download it, select your microphone from the menu at the top of the program and click record.

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