Recording or Microphone issues

Team Kaizena -

If you're having trouble recording voice comments, there are several things which could be causing this.  Start at the top of this article and work through each step: if you get stuck, or have found a problem but aren't sure what to do, just contact us.

 

1. Do you have a built-in microphone?

Not all computers have a built-in microphone.  If you haven't recorded audio on this computer before, it's worth checking if you actually have a built-in microphone.

On Windows:

Right click the speaker icon in the taskbar, then select "Recording Devices":

windows_settings.png

You'll see a list of any connected microphones.  Look for an internal microphone on this list - an internal microphone will often be called "Microphone Array":

internal_mic.png

If you don't see anything on the list, you don't have an internal microphone.

 

On Mac:

Most Macs do have built in microphones. If you aren't sure if you have one or not, you can check for an internal microphone in the sound settings.

Click the Apple menu, then select "System Preferences":

mac_1.png

 

In the box that pops up, select "Sound":

mac_2.png

Next, click "Input" to see your available microphones:

mac_3a.png

An internal microphone will be called "internal microphone" (like the first microphone in this image).

If you don't have a built-in microphone, you'll need to connect an external microphone to record voice comments. 

 

2. Make sure your external microphone is properly connected

If you're using an external microphone, make sure it's connected properly.

If the end of your microphone looks like this: 

Image_uploaded_from_iOS.jpg

...you'll need to plug it into the microphone port.  This looks similar to a headphone port.  It may have a microphone next to it, or a pink or red ring around it, to indicate that it's a microphone port.  Here are a couple examples of how this can look:

Image_uploaded_from_iOS__1_.jpg

pink_mic.jpg

If your computer only has one port that looks like this, it's probably a combination microphone and headphone port.  (This is common on laptops.)

Some microphones use USB connectors - these can be plugged into any USB port.

Make sure the microphone is firmly plugged all the way into the port.  Some microphones have a cable that plugs into the microphone body - make sure this is also connected properly.

Some external microphones have physical switches: check for a physical switch, and make sure it's set to "on."  

 

3. Check you're using the correct microphone

You can test your microphone on your computer to make sure it's connected and working properly.

On Windows:

Right click the volume icon in the taskbar, then select "Recording Devices":

windows_settings.png

This will open the microphone settings.  (You can also find this by opening the Control Panel, selecting "Settings", then clicking the "Recording" tab.)

You'll see a list of devices: look on the list to find the microphone you want to use:

recording_settings.png

If the microphone you want to use does not have a green check mark next to it, click the microphone you want to use, then click "Set Default":

mic_set_default.png

 

On Mac:

Click the Apple menu, then select "System Preferences":

mac_1.png

 

In the box that pops up, select "Sound":

mac_2.png

Next, click "Input" to see your available microphones:

mac_3a.png

Click on the microphone you want to use:

mac_4a.png

The active microphone is the one that is selected on this menu.  

 

4. Test your microphone

On Windows:

Look at your microphone in the sound settings (see previous step).  When you speak, you should see green bars appear if your microphone is detecting sound correctly:

mic_working.png

 

If you see green bars only when you shout or speak very loudly, you can adjust the microphone levels. Click the microphone in the list, then click "properties":

mic_properties.png

 

In the box that pops up, click "Levels":

properties2.png

 

Increase the microphone volume by moving the microphone slider higher:

levels.png

Then click "OK" and check the green bars show up when you speak at a normal volume.

 

If you've tried adjusting the levels (and have gone through the previous steps), but you still aren't seeing any bars, the microphone may be broken.  Try using a different microphone.

 

On Mac:

Make sure you've selected the microphone you want to use on the input list:

mac_4a.png

Next, try talking into your microphone.  If your microphone is detecting sound, you should see these bars move:

mac_4b.png

If the bars only move only when you shout or speak very loudly, try increasing the input volume by adjusting this slider:

mac_4c.png

If you've tried adjusting the input volume (and have gone through the previous steps), but you still aren't seeing any bars, the microphone may be broken.  Try using a different microphone.

 

4. Have you given Kaizena permission to access your microphone?

Chrome:

The first time you use the Kaizena add-on to record a voice comment, you need to give it permission to access your microphone.  Just click "Allow" on the box that pops up:

allow_mic.png

 

If you missed doing this the first time, click the video camera icon next to the URL at the top of your browser:

mic_allow_1.png

 

On the box that pops up, select "Always allow" then click "Done."

mic_allow.png

 

Firefox:

The first time you use the Kaizena add-on to record a voice comment, you need to give it permission to access your microphone.  Select the checkbox next to "Remember this decision," then click "Allow":

FF_allow1.png

 

If you don't select "Remember this decision," you'll need to allow Kaizena to access your microphone each time you use it.  

If you select "Don't Allow" by accident, you'll be blocked from recording a voice comment.  To un-block the microphone, click the microphone icon next to the URL at the top, then click the "X" next to "Blocked Temporarily."  Then refresh the page and open Kaizena again.

 FF2.png

 

5. Close other programs using your microphone

If you're using your webcam in a different tab or different program, that can interfere with recording.  Try closing any other programs or tabs that use your microphone.  Then refresh the Google Doc, re-open Kaizena, and try recording again.

If that doesn't help, try restarting your computer.

 

6. If you can record a comment, but don't see a sound wave in the box

When you record a voice comment, you should see a sound wave in the box, like this:

voice_waveform.png

If you don't see the sound wave but have been able to record voice comments in the past and are using Chrome, Chrome's audio recording component may have crashed.  This can happen if you've had Chrome open for a long time, or if you have a lot of tabs open.  Try completely closing Chrome, then re-opening it again.

 

7. You can record comments, but the audio is distorted

If you're able to record comments, but they sound strange when you play them back (eg, the sound is choppy, it sounds sped up or slowed down, etc), your computer may be having trouble processing the recording.  Try closing any tabs or programs you aren't using, then re-recording your comment.  

 

8. Contact Kaizena help

If you've tried everything here and nothing has helped, try restarting your computer.

If you're still having trouble recording comments, you can email help@kaizena.com and we can help!  Tell us what you've tried, and what's happening.