Headset mic is not working on Windows PC? How to fix

Tim Vickers

When using your headset microphone on your Windows PC, you expect the mic to work properly. But in some instances, you may encounter a problem whereby the headset mic is not working during a video chat or online call.

Sometimes the headset may be working, but the people on the other end cannot hear you. In both of these situations, you need to identify the cause of the problem before you apply a fix.

The advantage of Windows OS is that it is almost possible to know what is causing an issue with a specific component.

For example, a faulty microphone, app permissions, a muted headset, low mic volume, and other hardware problems can cause a normal or gaming headset mic not to work.

How to fix headset microphone not working on Windows PC

If your headset microphone is not working on Windows PC, try the following troubleshooting steps to fix it.

1. Increase the microphone volume

When your microphone is too low or does not appear to work at all, the volume is low. Try the following:

  • Connect the headset microphone correctly to your Windows PC and position it correctly
  • Increase your microphone volume by going to Start > Settings > System > Sound
  • Under Input, select your microphone to see its properties
  • Go to Input volume and adjust the blue bar as you speak into the microphone

You can also test your microphone by clicking on Test your microphone and Start test to troubleshoot other issues with your microphone.

2. Allow your PC to access the headset microphone

Microphone access on Windows

When your PC won’t detect the headset mic, you should give your headset app permission to use your PC. Do the following:

  • Go to Start > Settings > Privacy > Microphone
  • Turn on Microphone access
  • Also, turn on the option Let apps access your microphone

You may also have to select which apps can access your microphone. The steps above work for Windows 10 and later versions.

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3. Set your microphone as the default

Microphone properties on Windows 10

Your headset mic should be the default media device to ensure optimal function. You should make sure that it is not disabled on your PC since it will not work.

You can adjust the microphone settings on Windows as follows:

  • Press the Windows logo key + R key to open the Run dialog
  • Type control and press Enter on your keyboard to open the Control Panel
  • Select Small Icons at the View by drop-down menu
  • Select Sound
  • Select the Recording tab
  • Right-click on the empty place inside the device list
  • Mark Show Disabled Devices
  • Right-click the Headset Microphone
  • Click Enable
  • Right-click it again and select Set as Default Device
  • Right-click Headset Microphone and click Properties
  • Go to the Levels tab
  • Increase the volume slider to the highest number
  • Click OK and then finish the setup

The above steps ensure your mic is the default media device and the volume is up.

4. Check your audio drivers

Device Manager settings

In some cases, your Windows PC is not picking up the headset mic because your audio drivers are out-of-date. The best way is to download the driver from your PC’s manufacturer.

However, you can also try the following:

  • Press Windows logo key + R and type devmgmt.msc to open Device Manager
  • Expand Sound, video, and game controllers
  • Right-click on High Definition Audio Device
  • Select Update Driver
  • Select Browse my computer for driver software
  • Follow the prompts to select a driver
  • Alternatively, you can search for the driver automatically on the internet and install it
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After the installation, restart your PC and try again.

5. Check for hardware issues

Hardware issues can cause the headset mic to stop working when connected to your Windows PC. You can try connecting the headset mic to a different computer and see whether it works.

You can also connect the headset to a different port and notice whether there are any changes. If the microphone stops working because of hardware issues, contact an expert to help you fix it.

Is your headset mic working?

If your headset mic is not working on your Windows PC, you can try to fix it in different ways as explained above.

An alternative solution is to check for hardware issues to determine whether the problem is your PC or the headset itself.

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