Skip to content

How to Fix a Chromebook microphone issue (Complete Guide)

How to Fix a Chromebook microphone issue

This is one of the most annoying issues you may face when you own a Chromebook. Imagine you’re at a virtual meeting, and you have something to say or a question to ask. Then you start to talk, but nobody responds.

Even when your microphone is on, you begin to understand that none of the participants, or even you are to blame. It’s the microphone on your Chromebook. There’s a problem with it, and you have to solve it.

Well, lucky you!  Starting with the most popular and moving down the list, I’ll go into detail about every single possible way to fix your microphone issue.

Let’s dive right in!


The sensitivity of your microphone is too low

I hate to say it, but I experienced the same thing. I began by experimenting with my microphone settings. I began shouting at my Chromebook when I saw my coworkers responding briefly on the opposite side of Google Meet.

I discovered at this point that my microphone’s sensitivity was much too low.

Fortunately, this is one of the most frequent and straightforward problems to resolve.

How to make a microphone more sensitive

  • Click the clock icon in the bottom right corner of your Chromebook’s desktop to access fast settings.
  • To the right of the sound choice, choose the right arrow.
  • Look for Microphone > Input.
  • To boost sensitivity, move that microphone bar even farther to the right.


The video conferencing software does not use your microphone

If you’re using a video conferencing app like Google Meet, Zoom, Microsoft Teams, etc., you may find this a bit strange. There’s a strong likelihood that your microphone won’t function since it isn’t set as the default in that app.

This is simple to fix.

Just bear in mind that your video conferencing app’s microphone settings and the quick settings on your Chromebook do not sync. They are apart from one another. Therefore, turning on one or making a certain microphone the default won’t also turn on the other.

What does this entail, then? It implies that you must ensure that the settings for both your Chromebook and the video conferencing application you are using are fixed to the appropriate microphone.

You will do this manually. 

I should add that this is primarily intended for those who have an external microphone and prefer to use it in place of the microphone that comes standard with most Chromebooks.

How to change your Google Meet microphone’s default setting

  • Go to the bottom right of the Google Meet window while in a video conference and click on the three vertical setting dots.
  • Select Settings.
  • Change the default microphone to the one you wish to use under the Microphone section of the audio tab.

How to set your microphone in Zoom as the default

  • Go to the bottom left of the screen in a video conference to locate the microphone icon.
  • Toggle it up by clicking the arrow next to it.
  • Click the microphone you want Zoom to use under Select a Microphone.

How to make your microphone the default in Microsoft Teams

  • Go to your floating menu bar and choose the three horizontal option dots when participating in a video conference.
  • To see device settings, click.
  • Choose the desired microphone from the list under Microphone.


Grant websites and applications permission to use your microphone

The permissions feature could be the next person to blame.

As the owner, you have complete control over which applications or websites can turn on your microphone or even camera thanks to the permissions option.

On occasion, you could even see a pop-up box in the upper left corner asking for your permission to use your camera or microphone.

And sometimes, it’s conceivable that you purposefully or accidentally restricted that access.

How can you reach those settings and provide access, though?

Let’s discuss it.

I want to advise you before we continue that you should only provide access to your camera and microphone if you trust the website. The most well-known and, yes, reliable video conferencing programs are Google Meet, Zoom, and Microsoft Teams.

How to enable permissions to allow microphone access

  1. Click on the top-right dot with the three vertical choices while using the Google Chrome browser.
  2. To access the site settings, choose Settings > Privacy and security.
  3. Click on Microphone under Permissions.
  4. Any website that was inadvertently restricted can be accessed by clicking it.

In this box, you can also modify the default microphone.

This is a list of applications that you blocked since you didn’t trust them.


Try disabling extensions

This approach has received support from several communities in Chromebook forums. One extension at a time is what you should deactivate, checking the microphone after each disablement.

The theory is that one, maybe possibly two, of these extensions are obstructing your internal or external microphone in some way. 

You’ll be able to identify the extension that is to blame for the pain by deactivating this one and checking to see whether your microphone works.

It may sometimes have many extensions, which makes it much more difficult to locate. You could even decide to disable all of your extensions without realizing which ones were to blame.

To determine if one or several extensions are the cause of the issue, this technique requires a lot of trial and error.

How to disable Chromebook extensions

  1. Click the three vertical choice dots when using the Chrome browser.
  2. Select Extensions under More tools.
  3. Turn off each extension or application individually.
  4. Turn on a video conference and check your microphone’s functionality after each toggle-off.


Try Guest mode

You may try using the guest mode to see whether the problem with your microphone is related to anything with your account.

In guest mode, ChromeOS seems to be installed from scratch. In guest mode, there are no extensions, programs, or change settings.

You are seeing the pure basis of ChromeOS while in guest mode.

This approach is more of a checking technique.

The extensions, programs, or settings might be the issue if you discover that you can use the microphone just fine when in Guest mode.

This will enable you to rule out hardware as a problem, at the very least.

How to log in using your account while in Guest mode

  1. To access your quick settings, go to the bottom clock and click it.
  2. choose “Sign out”
  3. On the screen’s bottom, choose to Browse as a Guest.
  4. Check to determine whether you can use your microphone by joining a video conference.

Consider using an external microphone

It’s important to realize that there may be a hardware problem.

using an external microphone will allow you to verify if your built-in microphone is malfunctioning. You can rule out the idea that it’s a software problem by using an external mic. If the external mic doesn’t function, there is a good chance that the software is at fault.

If the external microphone functions well, there may be no other viable explanation outside the possibility that the internal microphone has malfunctioned.

In most cases, ChromeOS accomplishes this automatically and sets the external microphone as the default, but if it doesn’t, you can try the methods outlined above in the video conferencing tool and permissions menu.

Just make sure that the built-in microphones are being replaced by the same external microphone in both the ChromeOS audio settings and the video and audio conferencing tools.

One thing I want to mention is to try unplugging and replugging the external mic to reset it. Sometimes, it’s effective.

Use another video conferencing software

Sometimes, the problem with connecting to the drivers that control your microphone may just be with the program you’re running.

Try checking your microphone using another communications program, as one piece of advice. There are several options available.

Among the most well-known ones are:

  • Zoom
  • Skype
  • Gmail Meet
  • G Suite for Education
  • Microsoft Teams
  • GoToMeeting
  • Gmail Duo
  • And more…

You must contact the firm and inform them of the situation if the issue is with a particular piece of software. Sometimes updated software is necessary for specific hardware components, such as the microphone, to function correctly.

Attempt a beta channel

Due to the unstable nature of beta channels, this is not usually advised.

Beta channels do, however, sometimes exist to address problems with stable channels, and possibly this is one of the problems that a beta channel aims to address.

Just be aware that it will erase your hard disk and all of your data before considering doing this.

If you haven’t previously backed up all of your files and data, you shouldn’t simply try this out.

Things that are kept on Google are safe, so don’t be concerned.

You may wish to make a backup of everything stored locally in a folder on your Chromebook before switching to a beta channel.

How to turn on the beta channel

  1. Open the fast settings by clicking the clock icon in the bottom right corner of your Chromebook.
  2. Select the Gear button.
  3. Click Chrome OS: About.
  4. Select Additional information.
  5. Switch channels by clicking.
  6. Choose Beta.

Power-wash it

This is the choice that I usually save for last since it’s the least preferred one.

On your Chromebook, a Powerwash essentially deletes everything. When you wish to sell your Chromebook to someone and get rid of any trace of your use from its memory, you can do this.

If you haven’t tried the top 3 ways I’ve listed above, I wouldn’t advise this one.

Power-washing a Chromebook

  • To access your quick settings, click the time.
  • On the gear icon, click.
  • Select Advanced.
  • Simply select Reset settings.
  • Click Reset.

What to do if bad hardware is the reason your microphone isn’t working

All gadgets break out. There’s no assurance that a computer’s parts will always function, even if it’s brand new.

If you’re still covered by the manufacturer’s warranty, which lasts for a year, you should be able to contact the business and ask for a repair or replacement.

The majority of businesses won’t send you a new one while your present one is needed or being assessed, which is the second problem. Without a computer, you can be stranded for a week or so. Therefore, bear it in mind and make a plan.

Here’s something intriguing you may not have known. For most manufacturers, if your warranty is about to expire and you recently had your device repaired or replaced, you will be given an additional three months of warranty for that repaired or replaced item.

You cannot repair a hardware problem on your own.

Fixing your Chromebook microphone

On a Chromebook, there are numerous methods to resolve your microphone issue.

There are various causes for a Chromebook microphone not to function. Other software might be interfering, for example. It could be the settings you’ve chosen. It may also be the case that the sensitivity is set too low.

In any case, it’s crucial to be aware that there are numerous ways to fix a Chromebook’s broken microphone.


Where’s the microphone on a Chromebook?

By looking for tiny pinholes all over your Chromebook, you can quickly locate the microphones. The only thing that could fit through these tiny pinholes is a sewing needle. You’ve likely discovered it if you discover one with a description that matches. A typical Chromebook will feature 2 to 3 microphones on and around its surface.

How can I test my Chromebook’s microphone?

Bring up a Google Meet to quickly test the microphone on your Chromebook. You can test your microphone and see whether it is functioning correctly using Google Meet’s mic sound indication. Just sign up or start a Google Meet here. Start speaking after that, and while you do so, keep an eye out for the green speaking signal to change colour.

How do I get my Chromebook’s microphone working again?

There are two steps you must follow. Toggle the microphone on and off by first opening your quick settings, clicking the arrow symbol next to the speaker gauge, and then click the microphone icon under Input. 

The next step is to go into the settings of the voice or video program you use, find the app’s microphone settings, and switch them on or off. Use the Chromebook’s microphone by making sure all steps are in sync and both are turned on. Your microphone won’t function if either one or both are off.

How will I know if my Chromebook has an inbuilt microphone?

Most likely, the pinholes you notice on your Chromebook are built-in microphones. Most microphones may be located beside the camera. While others are dispersed all about the Chromebook to capture even sound. 

On your laptop, you can find microphone pinholes almost anywhere, but they are most frequently found near the keyboard, on the screen, or even on the side of the Chromebook where all the ports are.

How do I improve the quality of my Chromebook microphone?

This is a topic that deserves its article. But in conclusion:

  1. Speak to your Chromebook at a comfortable distance.
  2. Don’t speak into the microphone directly.
  3. Avoid speaking too softly or loudly.
  4. use a separate microphone.
  5. Speak in a room with little background noise and peace.