Can speakers be used as microphones?

Surface sound, volume, and audio accessories

Note:Some Surface products might not be available in your country or region.

Use the built-in stereo speakers and microphones or your favorite audio accessories to listen to music, make phone calls, record sound, etc.

For information about the location of the speaker and microphone jacks, and the volume button, see Surface features.

Use your favorite audio accessories

With the stereo speakers and microphones built into your Surface, you can listen to music and videos, make phone calls, and record sound. But you can also use your preferred USB and BluetoothConnect ® accessories such as loudspeakers, a microphone or a headset.

To switch between your speakers and connected audio accessories, select the speaker icon on the right side of the taskbar, then expand the list to select a different audio device.

Adjust the volume

There are several ways to adjust the volume on your Surface:

  • Volume key:: Press the volume down button on Surface to adjust the volume.

  • Keyboard: If your Surface Typing cover or other keyboard has volume keys, press the volume down, volume up, or mute key.

  • Desktop taskbar: Select "Speakers" on the desktop taskbar and adjust the volume up or down.

  • Audio accessories: Adjust the volume on the headset, speakers, phone, or other audio accessory, or in the accessory's software. For more information, see the documentation that came with the accessory or the manufacturer's website.

  • Apps: Volume control is integrated in some apps.

Interaction between the volume controls

When you increase, decrease, or mute the volume using one of the following volume controls, the volume levels in the other settings also change:

  • Volume down button on your Surface

  • Volume setting of the desktop on the taskbar

Volume controls in apps and accessories like headphones and external speakers may work independently of the controls built into Surface. However, you may need to adjust the volume levels in several places.

Adjust the microphone settings

Here's how to customize your microphone settings:

  1. change to "start", and choose "Settings">System> Sound> Sound "off.

  2. Select the tab admission, then the microphone you want, and then the option properties.
    Make sure you choose a microphone that is turned on and connected to your Surface.

  3. Select the tab level out. You will see two sliders:

    • Microphone or microphone array: Controls the volume of the microphone.

    • Microphone boost: Controls the strength of the microphone signal.

  4. Drag the sliders until the microphone uses the desired levels for recording.
    The levels used will vary based on the amount of background noise and whether you're using the built-in microphone on your Surface or an external microphone. Best to lay for microphone initially "50" and for Microphone gain "+24.0 dB" fixed.

    Note:Microphone boost isn't available on all Surface devices.

Use USB or Bluetooth audio accessories

The full-size USB port can be used for external USB speakers, headphones or a headset.

You can also use wireless BluetoothConnect headphones or speakers to Surface.

You can achieve the best sound quality with USB or BluetoothSpeakers by turning up the volume on both Surface and in the app (if available) and then turning the volume up on the external USB or Bluetooth-Set the speakers as desired.

If you're having problems with your bluetooth, go to troubleshooting on bluetooth devices.

Set the default audio device

  1. Choose begin and then Settings > system > Sound.

  2. Do one or both of the following:

    • Highlight the section Sound the device you want to use for playback (for example, your Surface's built-in speakers, external speakers, or a headset) as the output device. By selecting this device, you set it as the default.

    • Highlight the section input the input device you want to use for the recording (for example the built-in or an external microphone). By selecting this device, you set it as the default.

If you use a communication app such as Skype, you can set your communication device separately when using speakers or a headset. How to define a communication device:

  1. change to "start", and choose "Settings"> System>Sound > Sound ".

  2. Do one or both of the following:

    • Select the tab reproduction then the device you want to use for communication playback (for example, the built-in Surface speakers, external speakers, or a headset), and then Specify the standard communication device out.

    • Select the tab admission, then the device you want to use for communication recording (for example the built-in microphone or an external one), and then Specify the standard communication device out.

Record audio

You can make audio recordings with the voice recorder app. How to open the voice recorder app

  • Choose begin and then Voice recorder.

Change the sounds to be played

You can specify which sounds are to be heard for notifications and system events (for example, the tone when a new message arrives). And this is how you proceed:

  1. change to "start", and choose "Settings"> "Control Panel> Sound> Sound "off.

  2. Select the tab Sounds, and select below Program events an event (for example Calendar reminder).

  3. Choose under Sounds select the sound that should be heard during this event.

  4. To test the selected sound, select Testing out.

  5. To change the sound for the event, select Take and then OK out.

Switching typing noises on and off

The Touch Cover can play key tones as you type. (If you're not sure which Surface keyboard you're using, see What Surface keyboard do I have?) To turn the key tones on or off:

  1. Switch to "Begin", and select "> equipment> out.

  2. Tap or click below On-screen keyboard For Key tones when entering on A or Out.

Note:Use the volume button on your Surface to adjust the volume of the key tones.

Audio playback problems

If the sound from the speakers or audio accessories does not sound good, the audio recording itself is likely to be of poor quality. Listen to the same recording on another device.

For help with audio problems, see Troubleshoot Surface audio and accessories.

If you're having audio problems while Surface is connected to another display, see Connect Surface to a TV, monitor, or projector.

Note:VGA adapters and cables do not transmit audio. The audio will play through the Surface speakers unless you have external USB or Bluetooth-Speakers connected.

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