Static from internal mic

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by ThatGirl, Jun 12, 2005.

  1. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
    Location:
    California
    #1
    Hi,
    I'm on an iMac G4, which I just upgraded to Tiger today. I've been having a problem with my internal microphone, and the problem continues, with the upgrade. When I try to use the microphone to chat, the person on the other end hears mostly static, although I can hear them clearly.

    Does anyone know how I can fix this?
    Thank you.
     
  2. macrumors 68030

    slooksterPSV

    Joined:
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    Nowheresville
    #2
    EDIT: Sorry, I should read more closely, try adjusting the Microphone volume.
     
  3. thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 19, 2003
    Location:
    California
    #3
    Won't that just make my voice disappear completely and leave only the very loud static audible? It's as if the mic were unplugged, but it's internal.

    Thanks for replying, by the way!



    It sounds like a lot of static, and way in the background my voice sounds like it's been altered in a broken Darth Vader toy!
     
  4. macrumors 6502a

    Kelmon

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2005
    Location:
    United Kingdom
    #4
    Not sure if it is the same issue here, but when I use Skype to place phone calls using the internal microphone on my PowerBook I HAVE to use headphones in order to avoid the speakers interfering. If I don't use the headphones then my voice is unintelligible (more than normal, at least) so perhaps this is what is happening to you. Once the headphones are used, however, the microphone and chat works fine.

    If you are playing the audio back using the internal speakers, using a pair of headphones may be worth a try.
     
  5. thread starter macrumors regular

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    #5
    Well, I don't know, but I appreciate the reply, and will check it out.
    Thanks!
     
  6. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
    Location:
    montreal
    #6
    i get something sort of similar. i know its not feedback for me, cause the volume can be off, but i can see that the audio input is reading loud static from either Audacity (recording program) or just Speakable Items (the little input meter shows that its hearing something loud and constant). This static seems to go away after a couple days or something, i can't figure out the patern. I think its some kind of charge that sorta builds up or something. I'm guessing you've tried restarting the computer?
     
  7. thread starter macrumors regular

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    California
    #7
    Yes, I have restarted several times. I've also repaired permissions, which may have nothing to do with it, but people here are always saying to do that!
    I checked and found 2 preferences files from Audacity, (which I tried at one time and then deleted). Guess I missed those files. Anyway, I deleted them, restarted, and it made no difference. I see that there are two more files that might be connected to Audacity, but I'm not sure if they are.

    They are:
    an empty folder titled ardbAudio
    and
    Something called ardbDatabase.

    Are they also Audacity files? I keep trying to "get info" on them but apparently they are a big secret.

    Thanks :)
     
  8. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
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    California
    #8
    I'm still hoping someone can help me fix my mic. It sounds like it's listening to all the noise inside the computer itself!
     
  9. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
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    California
    #9
    Anyone have any more ideas? :) Thanks!
     
  10. macrumors 68000

    Eniregnat

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2003
    Location:
    In your head.
    #10
    I am a professional audio engineer, and work with a lot of different compression routines. I don’t iChat
    Could you record a bit from your microphone and post it here? I may not be the best person to help, but here are my thoughts.

    My guess is a fault with the microphone. For giggles, try the headphones to see if it isn't software induced (correcting for feedback). If it sounds like your voice has been altered, perhaps it is the compression algorithm used to force your voice down the line. A and mu law compression algorithms (once used extensively by American and European telecom companies) do awful things to the audio. Most VOIP and voice chat programs automaticly adjust how audio is compressed. See if there is a preference for this. (Yahoo chat for PCs used to allow for diagnostics and altering of the routeens used.)

    If you’re using a modem, check your speed. If your sharing DSL, it may be your router or switch. If it’s an admind or “intelligent” switch, it might just be the need for you increase the bandwidth allocated to your network address. What exactly is your set up.

    I'll post some links to some free sound routing software. This will help ferret out the problem. In the mean time, try these things, and look for an external headset mic (one of your friends must have an extra).

    [EDIT] Look at this thread (my second post) for a link to SoundFlower and SoundFlowerBed- an audio routing utility. http://forums.macrumors.com/showthread.php?t=124734&highlight=SoundFlower. Also you might need Audacity, also linked there, to record the audio. Also Free.
     
  11. macrumors 68000

    Eniregnat

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    #11
    I should really read, this reads as though you have a faulty internal microphone. Get an external headset, USB is pricy, though better, and analogue is just fine (though mini jacks are not the most robust.)
     
  12. thread starter macrumors regular

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    #12
    I can just bypass the faulty internal mic? How would I do that? Also, is an external set-up more expensive that getting the internal mic replaced?

    Thanks!
     
  13. macrumors 68000

    Eniregnat

    Joined:
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    Location:
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    #13
    It's easy to by pass (and cheaper).

    In OSX
    System Prefs --> Sound -->Input --> then choose :
    Line in- if your using a cheap analogue headset or external mic (the kind with a 1/8th inch/also called mini, plug(s)
    USB [insert name] if you go the USB rout.

    Googel USB OSX microphone, or the like.

    or Logitech headset microphones. Analogue and USB.

    In general, don't spend less than 15 or more than 60 $US, unless you want to sound really good. COMPUSA, Sears, Staples,etc.. should all have inexpensive solutions. I would hit up a friend first, borrow one and see if it solves the problem.

    None of these solutions are 'pro' grade, but they will likely work better than the internal one. One of the benefits of using a headset mic is that the chance of feedback is greatly reduced. (Feedback is caused by resonnance or positive feedback- with enfough of a dely it is a cool effect.)

    Hey, you havn't said what your band width is.
     
  14. macrumors 68000

    Eniregnat

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2003
    Location:
    In your head.
    #14
    Online Internet Benchmarks

    • To ping a server, Find Network Utility (Found in Applications->Utilities)
      Trace Rout may also show bottle necks.

    Just on the off chance that it is your bandwidth, not the mic. If you recorded perfecly good audio with the internal mic, then you might take a look at your connection speed. The audio degredation may be because the software is attempting to squeeze your voice through a straw, when it really needs a pipe. (I am aware that this is an over simplifaction.)
     
  15. thread starter macrumors regular

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    Nov 19, 2003
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    #15
    Eniregnat- Thank you so much for the information. I must admit, I'm going to have to ask my son to help me understand it! :)
    I'll let you know what we find out. Thanks again!
     
  16. thread starter macrumors regular

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    #16
    Actually, I believe my trouble started when I tried using Soundflower and Audacity. I think I made some kind of mistake in the settings. Anyway, I deleted the programs, but perhaps there is something left causing the trouble.

    Anyway, my son gave me an external headset mic, and he says the problem is solved. So that part is good, and I appreciate your advice. But, I'm wondering what is the real cause of the trouble because the mic worked fine before I downloaded those two programs and tried to use them. I wish I knew what to look for in the system, to get it back to the way it was before.

    Anyway, thank you, very much, for your help.
     
  17. macrumors 68000

    Eniregnat

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    Location:
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    #17
    Sound routing can get a little confusing. I thought that you had static problems predown loading software. What those software programs would allow you to do is diagnose the problem. Audacity shouldn't cause problems. It's a great application for quick and easy sound editing, its GPL- so its free.

    I bet the internal microphone went bad, and it is not worth fixing. The internal connector for the microphone is tiny and easily broken. At work, oxide builds up on the contacts of all of cables (we are next to the ocean). From time to time a little movement is needed to insure a good connection. Something as simple as a little oxidation on the connector could of been the problem. But trust me, it's not worth taking apart a Mac. I just disassembled my 12" PB, and I frazzled. An iMac might be easyer.

    I'm glad you got a fix. Hey, if it’s under warranty or Apple Care, have them fix it.
     
  18. thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Nov 19, 2003
    Location:
    California
    #18
    Thank you. Yes, now that I know it's probably the mic that went bad, I'll take it in to be fixed. I just wanted to be sure it wasn't something I did with that software, first.

    I really appreciate your help. Thanks again.
     
  19. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2008
    #19
    Hi! I have a g4 with built in tiger, and sometimes get a problem similar to this... now, I only get static when recording when I am not in my house. I think it might be some sort of electromagnetic interference... like something in the ultrasonic range or a radio wave or magnetic field... I am not a scientest but I think that is what might be happening to me.

    Do you have any electrical appliance close to your computer, such as a desk light or speakers? Something quite close to your mic? Other than that, I havn't a clue >.> I find that when I record it randomly appears and dissapears...
     

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