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Solved: Very low microphone volume


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Akril Akril is offline
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04-Jun-2009, 04:22 PM #1
Solved: Very low microphone volume
My computer (A Gateway Pentium 4 running Windows XP SP2) uses RealTek audio (the codec is alc880), and some time ago, I was attempting to record some audio with an old "stick" microphone, and found that the mic barely picked up any sound. I suspected that this might be due to the age of the microphone, since I have recorded audio with it before and the volume was just fine then.

However, when I bought and tested a new one (I'm not sure of the brand), I had the exact same problem. All sounds recorded by the mic are very faint and often have a tinny sound, and it won't pick up my voice unless I practically shout into it from less than an inch away.

I have looked around for various solutions to this problem. I turned up my mic's volume as high as it could go, I have tried checking the microphone boost box under the advanced microphone controls, tried installing a new driver (although I'm not sure if it was the correct one, my current driver version is 5.10.00.5127), and various other solutions I have found online, and none of them have helped. The microphone also works perfectly fine on other computers, so it can't be at fault.

I have emailed RealTek about this problem, and it's been almost a month since I did and I still haven't received a response, so I thought I'd ask for help here instead.

Thank you in advance.
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07-Jun-2009, 12:45 AM #2
Bumping the thread.
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07-Jun-2009, 01:31 AM #3
if your computer has both a front and rear mic jack, try both. It could be the wiring.
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07-Jun-2009, 03:31 PM #4
I have tried both jacks, but the problem still persists.
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09-Jun-2009, 02:55 AM #5
Bumping again...
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10-Jun-2009, 08:03 PM #6
And again...
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12-Jun-2009, 04:10 PM #7
And yet again...
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13-Jun-2009, 04:46 AM #8
And still yet again...
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13-Jun-2009, 09:36 AM #9
my current driver version is 5.10.00.5127

Akril:

You're using a pretty old driver version.

You didn't specify if you're using Realtek AC'97 Audio or Realtek High Definition Audio.

Here is the Realtek site main link.

The current driver versions for XP are:

AC'97 (second one down the list)

4.06 - 5.10.0.6300

High Definition (third one down the list)

2.26 - 5.10.0.5864

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Last edited by flavallee; 13-Jun-2009 at 09:42 AM..
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13-Jun-2009, 08:01 PM #10
Sorry -- I'm using RealTek HD Audio. I went to the site you directed me to and downloaded the latest driver.

After restarting my computer, however, the sound is still pretty faint and tinny. The only way to make recorded sounds louder is by checking the microphone boost box, but the playback is still pretty quiet. If I speak in a normal tone of voice, the recording is barely louder than a whisper at my computer's usual volume level, even with the boost.

Is there anything else I can do to increase the volume?
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13-Jun-2009, 08:07 PM #11
Obviously, you've already checked the settings in Volume Control.

Have you checked the settings in the Realtek Sound/Audio Manager and Sound And Audio Devices applets in the Control Panel?

In the Audio tab, make sure that Realtek is selected as the default device and that "Use only default device" is checked.

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13-Jun-2009, 08:15 PM #12
Realtek is selected as the default device in Sound And Audio Devices and the "Use only default device" is checked.

There is no icon for "Realtek Sound/Audio Manager" under my Control Panel, but when I opened Realtek HD Audio manager from the taskbar, I didn't see any settings that needed changing.
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13-Jun-2009, 09:25 PM #13
There's not anything else that I can do without being there and having a "hands on".

The on-board Realtek audio may be crapping out, and you may need to upgrade it with a new sound card.

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13-Jun-2009, 09:43 PM #14
What about left and right or treble and bass controls for the microphone?
Maybe the computer/audio hardware is HD audio, but the microphone is AC'97, and therefore has problems. Also make sure that your motherboard's BIOS isn't set to HD audio while the sound hardware is only AC'97.
Also, make sure the microphone isn't plugged into any modem mic port.

Last edited by baladio; 13-Jun-2009 at 09:51 PM..
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13-Jun-2009, 10:21 PM #15
The sliders that control my mic's treble and bass (under Advanced Controls for Mic Volume) are grayed out, and there aren't any controls on the mic itself.

How do I determine whether my motherboard's BIOS is set to HD audio or AC'97?
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