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Turning on Microphone Boost in Windows

On some systems Microphone Boost is turned off by default in Windows. This can result in audio recordings made using a PC microphone playing back too faintly. Some SpellQuizzer users experienc this problem when they find that the play-back of their spelling list recordings are too low to make out clearly. Turning on "Microphone Boost" in Windows usually solves this problem. Below are the instructions for turning on Microphone Boost in Windows XP, Vista and Windows 7.

Turning on Microphone Boost in Windows XP:
Not all sound cards support Microphone Boost. The simplest way to find out in Windows XP is to open the Windows Volume Control. If a speaker icon is displayed at the lower right hand corner of the Windows Desktop double-click it. If no speaker icon is displayed then click the Windows Start button and select "Run..." In the Open box enter sndvol32.exe and click the OK button. This will open the Windows Volume Control. Select "Advanced Controls" from the Windows Volume Control's Options menu. You should see an "Advanced" button near the lower right hand corner of the Windows Volume Control screen. Click the Advanced button. If the "Advanced Controls for Microphone" screen shows a check box for "Microphone Boost" then check that box and click Close. Then close the Windows Volume Control screen and try making another test recording using SpellQuizzer's Audio Adjustment Screen to see if turning on Microphone Boost improves the quality of your audio recordings in SpellQuizzer.

Turning on Microphone Boost in Windows Vista and Windows 7:
Click the Start button and select Control Panel. Click on "Hardware and Sound" and then click on "Manage audio devices" under Sound (if you are using the "Classic View" in the Control Panel then double-click on the Sound icon). The Recording tab of the Sound screen that is displayed should show your microphone. Double-click on the microphone to display its properties.
  • If there is a "Custom" tab shown on the Microphone Properties screen select that tab. If a Microphone Boost check box is displayed then check it. If no Microphone Boost check box is displayed or if there is no Custom tab on the Microphone Properties screen then see the next bullet point.
  • If there is no Custom tab shown on the Microphone Properties screen then select the "Levels" tab instead. You may see one or two levels to adjust. Use the slider for the Microphone level to increase the level and try some more test recordings with SpellQuizzer to see how this improves the recording quality. If there is a level for Microphone Boost then adjust that slider control as well and and try some more test recordings in SpellQuizzer. If there is no Microphone Boost slider control then most likely your sound card or microphone does not support Microphone Boost.
Adjusting the Windows Volume and Recording Levels:
Windows XP
To adjust the Windows Volume settings in Windows XP, open the Master Volume control screen. If a speaker icon is displayed at the lower right hand corner of the Windows Desktop, double-click it. If no speaker icon is displayed then click the Windows Start button and select "Run..." In the Open box enter sndvol32.exe and click the OK button. This will open the Master Volume control screen. Adjust both the "Master Volume" and "Wave" controls (usually the first two displayed to the left on the Master Volume control screen) to increase the output of audio to your speakers.

Windows Vista and Windows 7
To adjust the Windows Volume Settings in Windows Vista, open Windows Volume Mixer screen. If a speaker icon is displayed at the lower right hand corner of the Windows Desktop, click on it and make sure the volume control is set at the maximum position. Then, if a "Mixer" link is displayed below the volume slider, click on it to bring up the Windows Volume Mixer screen. Make sure that both the "Device" and "Applications" sound levels are set to their maximum.



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