How to choose your default microphone on Windows 10

Windows 10 microphone icon

Nowadays, Windows 10 users often have to juggle multiple microphones – there could be one built into a computer, one on a webcam, a headset, and maybe a podcasting microphone. With so many to choose from, here’s how to tell Windows which microphone to use by default.

You can also set a default microphone in some applications

Before you get started, it’s worth noting that in some applications (such as Zoom, for example) you can select the microphone device within the application, and that choice will work regardless of the sound settings of your Windows system.

You can also assign the microphone that you want to use depending on the application, using a menu that is buried in Settings. But if you want to set the default microphone to system level, follow the steps below. Every application that uses the default Windows microphone – this is the default option for most applications – will use it.

RELATED: How to set sound outputs per application in Windows 10

How to choose the default microphone using the settings

You can easily select the default microphone in Settings. First, open “Settings” by clicking on the “Start” menu and selecting the left wheel icon. You can also press Windows + i to open it quickly.

You can also right-click the speaker icon in the system tray on the right side of the taskbar and select “Open sound settings.” Windows will open the “Sound Settings” screen.

In the Windows 10 Start Menu, click

In the “Settings” window, click “System”.

In Windows 10 Settings, click

On the “System” screen, click “Sound” in the sidebar menu.

In Settings on Windows 10, click

Scroll down to the “Input” section of the “Sound” screen. In the drop-down menu labeled “Choose input device,” select the microphone you want to use as the default device.

In the Windows 10 sound settings, select an input device from the drop-down menu.

Once you have selected a device from the drop-down menu, Windows will use that device as the default microphone. After that, close “Settings” and you’re ready to go.

How to choose your default microphone using the control panel

You can also set the default microphone using the classic Control Panel. You can access it using the speaker tray icon in the system tray, which is on the opposite side of the taskbar opposite the Start menu.

Right-click the speaker icon in the system tray and select “Sounds” from the menu that appears.

Right-click on the taskbar and select

In the “Sound” window that appears, click the “Record” tab.

In Windows 10, click

Then you will see a list of recording devices recognized by your system, which includes microphones. Select the microphone you want to use as the default from the list and click the “Default setting” button.

In Windows 10, click the microphone in the list and click

After that, the microphone you selected will have a green check mark next to it in the list, showing that it is set as the default recording device. The listing will also include the words “Default device”.

In Windows 10, a green check mark next to the microphone icon means that it is the default device.

Click “OK” and the “Sound” window will close. If you ever need to change the default microphone again, select “Sounds” from the speaker icon in the system tray.

Good luck with your new podcast!