Steps to follow when the microphone is not working on MAC OS

No matter what kind of computer you are using, if you are suddenly unable to hear the sound that respective apps installed on your work station are supposed to make or you are unable to communicate over the microphone with people you want to, the ordeal could be quite a frustrating one. Whether your speakers aren’t connected properly or configured properly, or the volume level it is set at is not right, there could be multiple reasons why the microphone is not working on your MAC OS. Or have you recently downloaded a third-party app that uses your microphone? Now third party applications can hijack your microphone and its systems. Other issues like system junk or a cache could also be reasons why your microphone has stopped working on the MAC OS.

This guide will assist you with the know-how to check your microphone as well as the audio system of your MAC OS, to fix the underlying issue.

How to turn on the microphone on your MAC?

Applications like Zoom, Google meet or Skype uses the microphone for two-way communication. But in order to use your mic for audio and video calls, But in order to use the microphone, you need to grant an app permission to access your microphone.

In order to enable the microphone on your MAC just go to the system preferences. From here, you need to navigate to Security & Privacy. In the Privacy tab, choose Microphone from the list on the left. Now check the box next to the app to allow you to use your microphone.

In case you find that the app is open in that case you will need to quit it to enable it to give microphone access. To do this simply click Quit Now in the pop-up tab that appears and then simply reopen the app again.

How to test the microphone on your MAC?

Now before we start to look at other solutions, let us simply look around to see what the issue could be. Let’s check whether your mic is actually working. No need to look for third-party tools – you can use a built-in app called QuickTime Player. Navigate to Launchpad to find and open QuickTime Player.

Now, in the app menu please click the next file and select new recording. Now simply turn the volume up and say something.

If you can hear yourself clearly then your microphone is in perfect working condition.

How can you get the internal mic to start working?

1.Check your launch agents

It could happen that there is some lingering background app that is conflicting with one another. It might also be the reason why the microphone is getting affected. So all you have to do now is to disable these launch agents that are running in the background. In order to do so, you can also use the free version of Clean my Mac version. This MAC optimizer app is recognized by Apple.

  1. Open CleanMyMac X.
  2. Click the Optimization tab and choose Launch Agents.
  3. Check if there are any background apps are running (if any of them are audio-related then they could be the ones preventing the mic from working).
  4. Now simply delete any background apps that could be causing this issue. Now check the box next to the process and click Perform.
  5. Now just test the mic again. See it is working or not.

How to configure the settings?

A low input volume could also be an underlying reason why your microphone is not working. In case you have set the volume to a minimum, in that case, your microphone will be muted. So, the first thing to do is to set the microphone settings in the right way.

Now let us start by checking the settings and making sure that it is configured correctly.

1. Open your system preferences

2. Click on the Sound

3. Now select Input > Internal microphone

4. Now make sure that the input volume is maximum

5. Now try speaking nearer to the mic and you can see that the bars are moving up and down.

  1. If this is not working, then your MAC is not registering the mic as an input.

Switching to dictation mode

Now, switching on the dictation mode will initiate the launch agents that activate the microphone and could get it to work again.

1. Go to the system preferences

2. Click on the keyboard

3. Within this is the dictation

4. Now this should download the relevant files to be worked on.

Once your dictation mode is switched on, you may find that there are some drivers or systems that you have never used before. It will automatically find and download them and this should ensure that the microphone starts to work again.

In case it still doesn’t work then we have other ways to fix the issues.

1. Download this app to make the work faster.CleanMyMACX.

2. Now simply run a system junk run.

3. Now see what junks the system run can come up with.

  1. Now it can delete anything your Mac doesn’t need, such as old caches and files preventing your Mac mic from working.

1. Now, re setting your MAC PRAM

  1. Now, resetting your MAC PRAM

    Another possible solution is to reset your Parameter RAM. Since it stores a whole lot of MAC settings with this reset your issues could be resolved. In order to do that.

    1. Click the top-left Apple icon and select Shut Down

    2. Wait until your Mac has turned off

    3. Hold the power button and the keys cmd + alt + P + R at the same time.

    4. Hold down for a good 20 seconds.

    5. Now once the PRAM is reset, this should allow things to work perfectly.

Solving Mic issues on Mojave or Catalina of MAC OS

If none of the above steps gets your microphone up and running then you sure are in a rare issue. This problem was already spotted on macOS Mojave and macOS Catalina. If your Mac’s running one of these OS, try the following:

1. Open Terminal (Applications > Utilities).

2. Enter this command and press Return:
rm -rf ~/Library/Application\ Support/

Now after using this command, your app permissions will get reset and you will have to allow apps to use your mic again. We hope that once you have carefully followed all these steps enlisted above, your microphone should start working properly.

Apple has always invested considerably in creating audio systems and also in the microphones. MacBook microphones are pretty robust and reliable. But every so often, something can stop them from working.

  1. Enter your password again.
  2. Restart your MAC.