How To Access Sound Settings in Win 10

From The RadioReference Wiki

Windows 10, particularly after the April 2018 updates, made numerous changes to how a user accesses sound devices. The old and familiar soundcard menus are gone (as often are the standard mic and line in jacks that were so useful on older laptops and PCs). So we must adjust to a new method of figuring out how to make sure we can send audio to our PCs.

If you are using a SDR or an online radio (such as those found on the Kiwi network), you will need an application to intercept the audio and send it to the application of choice. Normally for SDRs, applications like VB Cable and Virtual Audio Cable are the ways to go, but there may be another possibility. The Stereo Mix application may be able to do this, but it's not installed on every PC by the manufacturer. If you don't have it, or can't enable it, you may need to create a virtual soundcard using an app found on the Virtual Audio Devices section of the HF Appendix article.

These instructions were written using a Windows 10 Home laptop with the latest updates. It's not possible to try to write a guide for every installation; different PC distributors put different apps, or make other options available. Use this page as a general guide only.

Access Sound Device Properties in Windows 10

  1. First find the speaker icon in the system tray. If you don't see it, click on the upward pointing arrowhead and it will appear in a menu of other applications (figure 1)
  2. Right Click on the speaker. Click on Sounds (figure 2).
  3. This brings up the Sound Device properties (figure 3)
  4. Click on Recording. In this case, this PC has both a microphone and the Stereo Mix app, which is disabled
  5. If you can't see the Stereo Mix application, make sure both Show Disabled Devices and Show Disconnected Devices are both checked. Right click on it to bring up the properties box.
  6. Click on Enable. (figure 4)
  7. Another way to access the sound settings is to use the following as a shortcut
  C:\Windows\System32\control.exe mmsys.cpl sounds

How Do I Change The Levels?

  • Click on Open Sound Settings when you right click on your speaker in the System Tray (figure 2)
  • In the search box, enter Sounds. Select Sound Control Panel (Figure 5)
  • Look at the bottom left for the Windows icon. Click on it, then search for Settings (figure 6)
    • The Windows Settings Menu appears. Select System from the top left (figure 7)
    • Select Sound from the left menu. This is where you can set your levels. Make sure that all your inputs are shown in the pulldown (figure 8)
    • Another way to get to the properties of the Stereo Mix is to select it from the menu, then click the Device Properties link.

Stereo Mix Levels

Stereo Mix Levels

Another way to set your level is to double click the Stereo Mix selection in the properties box, then select Recording

Additional Information on Stereo Mix

Windows Updates

  • Be careful when applying Windows updates. They may reset settings on your sound card and/or any virtual audio devices, such as Virtual Audio Cable, back to default settings. Once you have settings the way you like, a screen shot of your configuration or other backup is highly recommended so you can restore them if needed.