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FAQ about audio quality

Audio quality for Microsoft Lync 2010 communications software depends on the condition and quality of the network and devices you use. Be sure that your audio equipment is connected before you begin using Lync 2010.

In this article

  • Are my devices set up correctly?
  • Is my IP phone connected correctly?
  • Why am I having audio problems?
  • What are some tips for avoiding audio issues?
  • How does TTY work?

    Are my devices set up correctly?

    The Lync setup should detect your phone and any other compatible communications devices you are using, such as an IP phone, headset, webcam, microphone, and speakers. Also, you can add devices after you install Lync.

To ensure that your devices are set up correctly, do either of the following.

  • In the Lync main window, click Show menu, click Tools, and then click Audio Device Settings. Or, from the menu bar, click Tools, and then click Audio Device Settings.
  • In the Lync main window, click Options, and then click Audio Device.

Then, click the appropriate drop-down list(s) to configure or adjust your speaker, microphone, and ringer as well as volume levels. You can select your primary audio device and test the levels of your microphone and speakers.

To switch devices while in a conversation, click the Audio Device menu in the Conversation window, and then click the appropriate device in the menu.

Is my IP phone connected correctly?

When you set up your IP phone, it is important that it is connected correctly.

  • Power Cord Make sure that the power cord is plugged into a power outlet, and the other end of the power cord is securely connected to the phone.

  • Network Cable Connect one end of the network cable to the network jack marked LAN, typically on the back of the phone. Connect the other end of the network cable to a network jack on the wall. To avoid audio quality issues, we recommend that you have a direct connection from the phone to your main network jack.

  • USB Cable When Lync is installed on your computer, you can simplify the IP phone sign-in process and make and receive calls from your IP phone by using a USB cable to connect your phone to your computer. Make sure that you connect the Type A (larger, rectangular) end of the USB port on your computer, and the Type B (smaller, square) end of the USB cable to the back of the phone.

    Why am I having audio problems?

    If there's a problem, a notification is displayed in the conversation window or the Lync main window. You can click the notification to get more details or suggested solutions.

    Why am I not getting any sound?

    If you're not getting sound through your speakerphone, check that:

  • Your speakers are turned on and that you have not muted sound in your Windows operating system.

  • Your telephone handset is on the cradle (if you're getting audio through a phone).

  • The speaker volume is high enough to be audible.

  • The device you're using is selected in the Audio Device Settings in Lync.

    What are some common causes of poor device quality?

    Common causes for poor device quality include the following:

  • Non-optimized devices Devices that are optimized for Lync go through rigorous audio quality testing to ensure that you experience good audio quality. Non-optimized devices may exhibit inferior audio quality caused, for example, by using low-grade audio components.

  • Third-party audio driver or software In some cases, a third-party driver or software may interfere with Lync 2010.

  • Noise-canceling device It is important that a noise-canceling microphone is positioned close to the mouth, approximately 2 centimeters or less than 1 inch away from the mouth. This filters out unwanted background noise, so it is important that you position it correctly to avoid audio issues.

  • Physical damage to the device

  • Headset connected to an IP Phone Most headsets have a button to adjust the volume depending on which audio device the headset is connected to. If you or other callers hear a buzzing noise, make a test call and then adjust the settings on the headset until the buzzing noise is gone.

  • Speakerphone When you are using the speaker on your phone and callers complain about background noise, make sure that the phone is on a flat surface. Also, make sure that there is no obstruction between the phone and your mouth.

Lync handles a wide range of devices while still maintaining high quality audio and video. However, certain devices might cause echo in the call. To reduce echo for a problematic device, Lync triggers a voice switching mode that limits the ability for talkers to speak at the same time.

What can I do to improve device audio quality?

To improve device quality, try the following:

  • Uninstall any third-party, value-added, audio drivers or software.
  • Replace any defective or damaged devices.
  • Use a headset to avoid echo.
  • If using two separate devices for rendering and capturing audio (such as desktop speakers and webcam), try to place them at an appropriate distance from each other to minimize echo.
  • If your microphone device supports Microphone Boost, consider adjusting the boost slider bar to a lower level to avoid echoing or clicking sounds.

    What are some tips for avoiding audio issues?

  • We recommend that you do not make calls over a wireless Internet connection, virtual private network (VPN), or remote access service (RAS) connections.
  • If bandwidth is a problem for you, limit other computer activities while in a call.
  • Use an IP phone:
  • If you are doing CPU-intensive work.
  • If you need uninterrupted phone access. Your USB phone, for example, does not work when your computer is in sleep mode.
  • If you have enough bandwidth. Using an IP phone may reduce the bandwidth available to other programs and services.

    How does TTY work?

    Text telephone (TTY) mode is used for text communication over a telephone line. A TTY device must be connected to the computer to interpret the modified audio; otherwise you might experience poor audio quality during the call. Using TTY mode in a conference call may also cause audio quality issues.

TTY mode is turned off by default. You can turn on TTY mode by clicking Phones in the Lync - Options dialog box. You will then need to sign out of Lync, and then sign back in to use the feature.

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