One of the biggest appeals of Oculus Quest and Quest 2 is the communities, collaboration and multiplayer games you can enjoy on the VR system. Users can now not just play games with each other, but work together using apps like Facebook Horizon Workrooms or Oculus for Business headsets.
When you’re using Oculus with friends or work partners, it gets frustrating when they can’t hear you even though you can hear them. This problem usually occurs when you are using Oculus with a Link cable. Or when you’re in party chat.
There are different causes for this issue, some of them are quite basic while others require a bit of adjustment to settings. Whatever the cause, we have provided all the possible fixes to ensure that you get your Quest or Quest 2 microphone working again.
Why Can’t People Hear Me On My Oculus?
In order for people to hear you…and for you to hear them…on Quest or Quest 2, Oculus uses a microphone to project voice to co-gamers and colleagues, just like with any other communication device.
Although this microphone is a hardware device, its functioning is controlled by settings in the software. Therefore, when people can’t hear you on Oculus, the problem may be from the microphone hardware itself or from the software settings that control it.
Having said that, here are the main reasons why people can’t hear you on Oculus.
1. Microphone Is Damaged
The first possible reason is a hardware fault. The Quest and Quest microphones are tiny devices inside the headset. They come in pairs and are found at the bottom sitting on your nose, and pointing towards your mouth.
Because of the size and location of these microphones, it is not easy to detect damage on them or know the cause of the damage. One usually arrives at the conclusion of damage after trying other solutions to no avail.
2. The Battery is Too Low
Apart from the built-in microphones, Oculus also has built-in speakers. The mics and speakers are interconnected to provide you with a great audio experience. This integrated audio system requires considerable battery power to work well. When the battery on your Quest or Quest 2 is too low, it may power up your headset but provide a poor audio experience.
This is especially true for the microphones as opposed to the speakers. That’s why you may be able to hear others but they cannot hear you.
3. Dirty Mic
With use over time, your Quest or Quest 2 headset can gather dirt from the environment and even from body waste. The microphones are very sensitive and also use noise cancellation technology. So, if they are dirty or covered by some material, they will not pick up your voice and your co-gamers or colleagues will not hear you.
Now that we have explored the hardware part, the rest of the causes of people not hearing you on Oculus are usually from software and settings issues
4. Software Glitch
Just as with any other system that runs on software, there may be occasions where the programme stops running properly. These are called glitches or bugs. Glitches usually go away after a while and may not require any action from the user whereas bugs may require you to perform one or a series of actions to resolve the issue.
In the case of your Quest or Quest 2, there are several factors that can cause a software glitch or bug including:
- Out-of-date software on your AirPods, connected PC, or headset
- Bug from a sideloaded app on your Quest or Quest 2
- Glitch that is caused by a newly-installed software update on your headset or PC
- Temporary programme error in the software that corrects itself
Any one of these could cause a glitch in the microphone software and make others unable to hear you.
5. You’re Muted
Hasn’t it happened to us all? On Zoom calls, on Phone apps, on PC…at some point you are likely to have either mistakenly muted your microphone, or forgotten that you had muted it earlier. This is actually a very common scenario on Oculus and should be your first check when your co-gamers or colleagues can’t hear you.
You could be muted on the headset settings, on your PC or on your Phone. When others can’t hear you, please check your settings on all the relevant devices.
6. Voice Isn’t Turned On For the Particular App in Settings
Another common reason why people cannot hear you on Oculus is that, even though you may not be muted on your device, voice isn’t turned on for the particular app you’re using, in settings. This setting is available in the Settings menu for each game on Quest and Quest 2.
7. Their Speaker Is Broken
On other occasions, it may be that the fault isn’t from your microphones but from your co-gamer’s Oculus speakers.
When you are using Oculus with several people, and more than one person is saying they can’t hear you, it’s safe to assume that the fault is from your end. However, if it’s just one person who can’t hear you, the issue likely from their speakers.
This is harder to detect when you are playing with just one person, though. On such an occasion, you may contact the person outside Oculus and walk through their own settings with them when you’re sure that yours are in order.
8. They’re Just Ignoring You
Also, if they don’t have any issues with their speaker, it may just be that they’re ignoring you. This may be intentional, or they may be distracted by the game or some other thing they’re involved in. In fact, when you feel that you’re not being heard on your Quest or Quest 2, the best thing to do is wait a few minutes to see if they start to respond, before looking for any other causes and fixes detailed in this article.
How to Fix People Can’t Hear Me on My Oculus
Trying to fix the issue of people not hearing you on your Oculus should be a step-by-step process. This method is necessary to help you trace the root cause of the problem and avoid it in the future.
As a general rule, before you begin troubleshooting the problem, make sure your Quest or Quest 2 headset battery is charged. We have already established that a low Oculus battery may be unable to power your headset microphones for others to hear you. Once that is sorted, you may try the steps below, one after the other.
1. Unmute Yourself In Settings
The first step to take is to check your device microphone settings to see if you’re muted. There are different ways to check this, depending on the device you are using for Oculus
Check Mic Settings on Headset:
- Press the Oculus button (right controller). This opens the Oculus menu for your Quest or Quest 2 headset
- Select Settings. This is the gear icon at the bottom right corner
- Select Device
- On the menu that opens to the right, check if your microphone is muted. If it is, toggle to the left to unmute it
Check VR Chat Microphone Settings:
- In your VR chat, open the Shortcut Menu
- Select the Microphone icon
- If it is red, click on it to unmute yourself
If connected to PC:
- On your PC, right-click the speaker icon at the bottom right of your screen
- Select Sound Settings
- Under Input, move the volume bar to at least 70%
- Close the Settings window
2. If You’re In A Party You Have To Switch The Mic Between Party And App On The Main Oculus Menu Status Bar
First of all, if you are in a Party alone, people will not be able to hear you in other games. You need to leave the party if you are the only one in it. To leave:
- Press the Oculus button on the right controller
- Under Active Call, click the red phone icon to exit the party
When you are in a party and on an app simultaneously, you have to switch the mic between app and party depending on where you want to chat at the time. To switch mic:
- When you’re in a party, you will find the Active call bar at the bottom of the Universal menu. Or, you could press the Oculus button on the right controller to bring the menu up
- On the Active Call bar, under Chat Option, select to switch from party chat to in-app chat.
Select Manage Microphone in the Party Menu to switch between Party and App Chat.
3. Ask If They’re Ignoring You
As we explained earlier, it may just be that the people are ignoring you for some reason; they may be distracted, for example, which is often the case. The best thing to do is, when you have confirmed that your mic settings are in order, just wait a few minutes to see if they start responding.
Another possibility is that they may be having speaker issues at their end or the wrong speaker settings which is preventing them from hearing you. In such a case, there is little you can do except perhaps to contact them outside Oculus and work together to resolve the issue.
4. If You’re PVCR Streaming, Enable Oculus Mic Device In Windows Sound Settings
When you are using Oculus on your PC via the Link cable, you need to ensure that all the relevant audio settings on your PC are correct to allow your Quest or Quest 2 microphone function properly.
Please follow these steps in the order provided.
First, you need to grant your Oculus access on your PC
- Connect your Quest or Quest to to your PC
- Press the Windows logo on your PC keyboard
- Type Microphone privacy in the search bar, and Select Microphone Privacy Settings from the results
- For Windows 11, Toggle to turn on Microphone Access. Then find your Oculus headset and ensure that access is also turned on for it
For Windows 10, click the Change button, then
1. Toggle to turn on Microphone access on this device
2. Below that, toggle to Allow Apps to Access Your Microphone
3. Below that, toggle to Allow Desktop Apps to Access Your Microphone
4. Connet your Quest or Quest 2 to your PC
5. Right-click the speaker icon at the bottom right corner of the taskbar, and click Open Sound settings.
6. Under the Input section, choose Headset Microphone (Oculus Virtual Audio Device) from the menu.
7. Scroll down to select Sound Control Panel.
8. Navigate to the Recording tab. Then select Oculus Quest 2 headset microphone and click Set Default.
9. Beside Set Default, click Properties.
10. Go to the Levels tab in the Properties window and set the mic volume to the desired level (70% at least)
11. Select the Advanced tab.
12. Under Exclusive Mode, uncheck Allow applications to take exclusive control of this device.
13. Click OK
Finally, On Oculus App:
1. Open Oculus app on PC and under Devices, make sure that the PC has been recognized by Oculus software.
2. Click on your device and ensure audio is set to Quest or Quest 2 mic
5. Clean Your Mic
In our previous articles on issues with Oculus Quest or Quest 2, we advised that cleaning your Quest or Quest 2 headset should be a habitual practice. All the parts of the headset are hypersensitive; this is necessary to provide seamless virtual reality experiences.
The Oculus microphone not only picks up your voice, it also prevents other sounds in the background from interfering. These two functions require that the microphones do not have anything covering them, not even dust, as this would interfere with their optimal functioning.
As with your lenses and proximity sensors, only use dry microfibre cloth to clean your Quest or Quest 2 microphones to continue enjoying your VR experience.
Note: Do Not Blow Compressed Air in the Microphones, Reasons Below
Some users attempt to clean out or force-activate their Quest or Quest 2 microphones by blowing high-pressure/compressed air into them. This practice can cause your Oculus microphones to stop working completely as it may damage the diaphragm of the mic. Here’s how:
The microphone diaphragm is a very thin layer that moves when exposed to external sound pressure. It is only designed to pick up sound pressure at normal levels. Therefore, when exposed to concentrated, high pressure from the compressed air, the diaphragm may collapse.
6. Restart your Oculus
It might be a bother to leave your game or party even for a brief moment, but restarting Oculus has fixed the microphone issue for several users.
When people cannot hear you on Oculus, it may be because of a temporary hardware or software glitch which is often resolved by a restart…much like your PC or phone.
To restart your Quest or Quest 2:
- While wearing the headset, press the Power button
- Select Restart
- Wait for Oculus to restart
You can also perform a hard reboot. This is even more reliable for resolving microphone issues. To do this:
- Press and hold the Power button for at least 30 seconds
- Wait for Oculus to turn off and then back on
- Release the power button when the light turns bright
7. Reset Your Oculus
If a restart and a hard reboot do not get your Oculus mic working again, you may then try doing a full reset of your Quest or Quest 2. Resetting your Oculus will remove all the bugs and settings that may be causing your microphones to malfunction.
However, it will also remove all the games, settings, and account information from your headset. It will not remove your downloads and purchases made from your account, though.
You can reset your Quest or Quest either on the app or on the headset.
To reset on app:
- Connect your Quest or Quest 2 to your phone
- Open the Oculus app on your phone
- Select Devices
- Select your Quest or Quest 2 headset name
- Select Advanced settings
- Select Factory Reset
- Confirm Reset
To reset on headset:
- Turn off your Oculus headset
- Press and hold the power and volume down buttons simultaneously until Oculus turns on
- On the start-up screen that appears, use the volume buttons to highlight Factory Reset
- Press the power button to select it
- Use the volume buttons again to highlight Yes, Erase and Factory Reset
- Use the power button to select it
Your headset will then reset to factory settings. You would need to log in again to resume your VR experience.
- Please do not press any buttons or perform any other actions on your Quest or Quest 2 when the reset is in progress.
- Also, ensure that the headset is fully charged before you begin the reset process.
8. Update Your AirPods Firmware
If you are using your Quest or Quest 2 with AirPods, then this article assumes that you already know how to connect your AirPods to Oculus.
We have found that out-of-date firmware on your AirPod can cause people to not hear you on Oculus. This is because:
- Your AirPods may develop bugs over time. Updates fix these bugs.
- Oculus Quest and Quest 2 firmware are constantly being updated. Your AirPods also need to be up-to-date to support the latest technologies on your Quest or Quest 2.
Therefore, it is important to ensure that the AirPods you use for Oculus are updated. Please follow the steps below to update your AirPod or AirPod Pro:
- Place your iPhone close to your AirPods and their charging case
- Place the AirPods in their charging case and connect the case to power supply
- Ensure that the AirPod is connected to your phone at the Bluetooth settings
- Ensure that your iPhone is connected to the internet
- Leave it for 15 minutes. Your AirPods will update automatically
9. Update Your PC Audio Software
If you are using your Quest or Quest 2 via Link on PC, and have configured the right settings outlined in this article, you should also check that the audio drivers on your PC are up to date. The drivers are responsible for making the device to work, so if they are out-of-date, this may cause people to not hear you on your Quest or Quest 2.
To Update your PC Audio Drivers:
- Click the Windows key on your keyboard
- In the search button, type Device Manager
- Select Device Manager from the results
- Click the arrow beside Audio Inputs and Outputs
- Right-click on each driver with Microphone in its name
- Select Update Driver
- Select Search Automatically for Drivers
If updates are available, they will be automatically downloaded and installed
10. Repair Oculus
If all of the fixes above fail, then the reason people can’t hear you on Oculus is likely a hardware malfunction.
Hardware malfunction on Quest and Quest is a tricky issue because Oculus (or Meta now) do not repair their devices. Also, expertise on virtual reality systems repair is not yet commonplace.
Therefore, you need to do extensive research for a trusted repair shop, whether online or from friends. We at Techzillo are not in a position to make any such recommendations to you.
11. Replace Oculus
Another way to resolve the issue of people not hearing you on Oculus is to replace your Quest or Quest 2 headset. One thing we can point out about repairing Oculus, though, is that it sometimes results in faults in other parts or in the same part, in a relatively short space of time.
If you are unable or unwilling to repair your Quest or Quest 2, then a replacement is ideal.
- Do not buy from a friend unless you are fully aware of how it has been used, and of its current condition
- Do not buy a used or refurbished Quest or Quest 2 from a shop. You do not know what condition it’s in.
12. Contact Oculus
If your Quest or Quest 2 is still under warranty (2 years from time of purchase for all parts and peripherals), you may contact Oculus for a free replacement or get other advice on what to do about the issue of people not hearing you on Oculus.
However, a free replacement is not guaranteed even if your Oculus is still under warranty. They would have to determine whether the cause of the problem is from user action or from factory fault.
To contact Oculus, you may open a support ticket with them.
You can also get help from their official online community.