Microphone help

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by azRieLThaNe, Mar 17, 2012.

  1. azRieLThaNe macrumors newbie

    Feb 8, 2012
    I just got my 21.5 inch iMac yesterday, and I was so excited I video chatted with cousin about it. I plugged the microphone to the mic slot and well...it didn't seem to work. I already changed the audio in settings to line in instead of the internal speakers since they're so sensitive to noise, the same for skype, I changed it to input from line in, but I'm still not getting any sound from the mic. You may say it might be broken, but no. I plugged it back to my old Windows laptop and it was working fine.:( Could anyone help me with this? thanks!
  2. chown33 macrumors 604

    Aug 9, 2009
    What is the exact maker and model of your microphone? If it's not a powered mic with line-level outputs, then plugging it into the audio-in jack won't work.

    The Mac audio-in jack requires line-level inputs, approx 1 volt p-p. A microphone without an amplifier only outputs a few millivolts (called mic-level), which is roughly 1000 times too low a level. It's like whispering from midfield in a football stadium.

    PCs often have mic-level inputs (jack labeled MIC) and sometimes separate line-level inputs (jack labeled LINE or LINE IN). The MIC input has a builtin amplifier stage so it can accept mic-level input.

    I suggest getting a USB headset or a USB microphone. It will probably cost less than buying a microphone pre-amp**.

    ** If you're handy with a soldering iron, there are circuits freely available, google: mic preamp circuit.

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