Low audio in and out after install (+mic buzz)

Hello helpful folks,

I have recently installed Audacity 2.4.2 (on Windows 10), and notice some problems in other programs, mainly discord. After installing audacity, my audio levels are significantly lower with the same master setting. I am using a HyperX Cloud2 headset connected through the front 3.5mm headset socket (also mic in front 3.5mm mic socket). My microphone volume was also suddenly significantly lower in Discord and Voice Recorder. I have since made the mic functional by ramping up the Windows gain to +30dB, but the base signal seems to be very weak as there is significant buzzing. The buzzing also appears when I use the Primary Sound Capture Driver feature, any recorded audio is almost completely masked by noise.

It feels (to my limited experience) like a driver issue, but I have no idea what’s causing it. Things I have tried to recover previous behaviour:

Adjusting the sound quality and toggling setting in Headphones Properties
Doing the same in Microphone Properties (adjusting the gain was the only significant change)
Updating the drivers through the X Properties menus
Changing the port I attach my headphones and mic

Thanks in advance for any help, and apologies if I missed this somewhere else!

Edit: The low output volume was (I’m pretty confident) caused by other programs getting set to a very low value within the Windows volume mixer. Feeling pretty stupid for not finding that sooner, but modern Windows seems to hide the settings in a lot of different places just to confuse dinosaurs like me :laughing:

I know exactly what you mean :smiley: