Dead microphone

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If the microphone has a mute switch, make sure it's off. It may be unclear which way is mute-off / mic-on, so try both positions.

 

If the computer has front and rear microphone jacks, try both. We've seen computers where only one actually works.

 

A computer may have two rear microphone jacks, one connected to motherboard audio and one connected to an audio card. Use the audio card jack if available.

 

Don't place 100% confidence in the color coding of jacks and plugs. The PINK plugs on our microphones definitely go into the BLUE jack of our SoundBlaster card.

 

Try increasing the microphone's level. Sometimes we've had to boost it by as much as +30dB.

1 On the Windows taskbar, click Start / Control Panel.

2 On the control panel, click Hardware and Sound / Manage audio devices.

3 On the Sound window, click the Recording tab.

4 Click the device you're recording.

5 Click Properties..

6 On the Volume Properties window, click the Levels tab.

 

Try selecting to a different channel, then go back to the microphone channel. Don't ask us why, but on one computer, we had to do this after every computer restart.

 

Another program may be hogging the microphone and you need to uncheck Allow applications to take exclusive control of this device. See http://support.microsoft.com/kb/938287

 

Microphones DO go bad. We once had a microphone that prevented the computer from starting. I'm not making that up.

 

You may need to restart the computer for changes to take effect.