5 best ways to fix microphone not working on Mac

Home office is the new standard these days. Many companies like Shopify, Salesforce, Twitter, Spotify, etc. allow employees to do things from home. In virtual meetings and conferences, if your device’s microphone, speakers, and webcam are working as intended, you can leave a lasting impression. Patchy microphone performance can be embarrassing because others cannot hear you. If you are facing such a problem on Mac, then read on.

A malfunctioning microphone on your Mac can make a bad impression in an ongoing interview or meeting. The guide below will walk you through various steps to find and fix the problem.

1. Configure microphone settings

This is the most common method to try to fix microphone problem on Mac.

Before using your microphone, you can check the microphone input level. If it’s too low, your Mac won’t recognize any sound.

Use the following steps to configure microphone settings from the System Settings menu.

Step 1: Click the Apple icon in the menu bar and select System Preferences (in the applications or via Siri or Spotlight search). Then click Sound in the Hardware group.

Step 2: In the tab at the top of the window, click Enter. Now click Internal Microphone in the device list to adjust the microphone settings for your Mac’s internal microphone, or click the name of an external USB microphone that you have installed.

Step 3: Move the input volume slider to the right to maximize the microphone volume, or move the slider to the left to decrease the volume.

After adjusting the microphone, close the Sound Settings window.

2. Activate the microphone authorization

If you have not activated microphone permission for an app, you will not be able to use the microphone of the selected app despite your best efforts. Apple allows you to adjust microphone permission through the System Preferences menu.

Follow the steps below to make the necessary changes.

Step 1: Click the Apple icon in the menu bar and select System Preferences.

Step 2: Navigate to Security & Privacy> Microphone.

Microphone permission on the Mac

Step 3: Enable microphone permission for the apps you want to use.

Now open the app that you had microphone issues in and check again.

3. Try to activate the dictation

This method may or may not work for everyone. You may not know how it works, but some reports claim that enabling macOS dictation can help fix some internal microphone issues.

All Mac computers come with a dictation setting that takes over and initiates the things that activate your microphone and get it working again for speech-to-text capabilities.

How to activate it.

Step 1: Click the Apple logo in the upper left corner of your Mac’s menu bar.

Step 2: Select System Preferences from the drop-down menu.

Step 3: Choose Keyboard from the menu.

Step 4: At the top of the window, click the Dictation tab.

Keyboard dictation

Step 5: Switch the dictation to On.

This will force your Mac’s microphone to work for you even if another app is causing problems.

4. Reset your Mac’s PRAM

Your Mac’s Parameter RAM, or PRAM, will save any loaded Mac settings and prevent your microphone from working properly. Resetting your PRAM can do the job – if nothing else has started it again.

How to do it.

Step 1: Turn off your Mac completely.

Step 2: Hold down the Cmd + Alt + P + R keys while turning your Mac back on.

Step 3: Press and hold all buttons for 20 seconds.

Step 4: Release all the buttons and let your Mac restart normally.

Now test the microphone again and make sure it works. If it still doesn’t work, try the method below.

5. Restart your Mac in Safe Mode

This is a simple but effective way to troubleshoot microphone problems. It’s always a good idea to run Safe Mode. The method will check for specific issues and log your Mac out in Safe Mode to fix microphone issues.

Restart your Mac in Safe Mode

Follow the steps below to restart your Mac in Safe Mode.

Step 1: Shut down your Mac.

Step 2: Immediately press the Power button on your Mac and hold the Shift key until you see the login screen.

Step 3: After that, you may want to enter your password a few times and the Mac will start up in Safe Mode.

Enjoy flawless meetings on Mac

If none of the tricks work for you, you might have a hardware problem on your Mac. In such cases, you need to book an appointment at the nearest Apple Store. If this fixed the microphone problem, let us know in the comments which tip worked for you.

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