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Apple iPhone SE Audio Problems: Microphone is not working, distorted, no sound [Troubleshooting Guide]

Audio or sound problems in mobile devices are often tied to a faulty hardware like when certain audio component is damaged and fails to function. Among the relevant symptoms would include but not limited to a poor quality sound output, distorted sound, or no sound at all.

Apple iPhone SE microphone replacement

No audio or sound problems are among the widespread issues encountered by many users of Apple devices since the rise of iPhone 4 up to the present iPhone series like the iPhone special edition (SE) variant. Some cases of iPhone SE no sound issues were linked to a faulty hardware while others are due to some software glitches. Fortunately, sound problems that are software related can still be remedied with some workarounds, which means that there is no need to pay for a costly repair.

Highlighted in this post is a rundown of workarounds that are used to fix different types of audio problems transpiring on the iPhone SE handset. So if by any chance you’re hear for the purpose of finding potential solutions to an audio problem affecting your iOS device, then this content might be able to help you out. Read on and feel free to give any of these recommended troubleshooting methods a try before deciding to take your iPhone to a service center for hardware check-up or if necessary, repair.

Now, before we proceed with our troubleshooting, if you have other concerns with your new iPhone SE, drop by our troubleshooting page for we have already published some guides and tutorials. You may also contact us by completing our iPhone issues questionnaire. This is a free consultation servicer we offer and all we need is information about the problem. So please give us that so that we can help you better.

Potential Solutions and Recommended Workaround to deal with sound problems on your iPhone SE

The standard approach in fixing smartphone issues like audio problems on the iPhone SE is by looking back to the time when the first symptom began to show up. This way will help you determine the underlying cause and find the right fix as quickly as possible. If you are certain that the problem isn’t triggered by a defective iPhone sound component, then you may go ahead and troubleshoot using the following procedures.

Be sure to test your iPhone device after completing each step to see if the problem has been fixed. Otherwise, continue troubleshooting with the next method(s) available.

Step 1. Check the Ringer switch on your iPhone SE.

Some cases of an iPhone no sound issue were simply due to the Ring/Silent switch that is set to Silent. This can possibly happen considering the placement of the iPhone Ring/Silent switch, which can be toggled on or off unintentionally. To make sure this is not causing your iPhone to produce no sound, kindly check the Ring/Silent switch on your iPhone and ensure it is not set to silent position. You can see the Ringer switch on the top left edge of your iPhone. If this switch is in red position, it means that your iPhone is currently in silent mode. All you have to do is toggle the switch back to ring mode or the opposite position. You should see the silent/ringer notification shows up shortly on the screen. In case the switch appears to be stuck, you can try to remove the case and ensure the switch is not blocked.

Step 2. Check the volume level on your iPhone.

Sometimes, your iPhone audio is too low due to the volume level that is set to a lower level. To make sure this isn’t causing you trouble hearing sound while on a call, playing games, or video streaming with your iPhone SE, check the volume level by heading over to Settings-> Sounds. Once you get to the Ringer and Alerts slider, drag the slider to turn the volume up.

You can also adjust the volume on your iPhone SE using the Control Center. It’s a quicker way to access other key settings of your iPhone. The control center can be accessed by just a swipe of your finger. To do so, go to any screen then swipe up from the bottom of the screen. You can also change how you access the Control Center on your iPhone SE by going to Settings-> Control Center, and then set your volume preferences.

Once you’re in the Control Center, check the settings for Bluetooth, Do Not Disturb, Mute, and Audio Controls. Your iPhone sound can be affected by any changes made to each of these features. For example, if you cannot hear a sound while playing a song or watching a video on your iPhone, check the Mute icon and make sure it is not enabled. Tap to disable the Mute control, if necessary.

After adjusting the volume level, check your device again to see if it’s already producing better or louder audio output. You can open an app that has sound or audio effects and see if it works fine already.

Step 3. Reboot your iPhone.

If the audio problem started all of a sudden while using your iPhone, then performing a restart might be helpful. It’s possible that a random and minor software glitch is affecting your iPhone’s audio functions. Often times, minor software issues would just require a restart or soft reset in order to get fixed. For starters, this is how a soft reset or restart is done on the iPhone SE:

  • Press and hold the Sleep/Wake button until the red slider appears.
  • Drag the slider to power off your iPhone completely.
  • Wait for 30 seconds.
  • Press and hold the Sleep/Wake button again until you see the Apple logo.

This process is similar to that of power-cycling a computer, wireless router or modem to fix random issues tied to minor software glitches. Doing so will eliminate temporary glitches on the iPhone. After the restart, test your device to see if the sound issue has already been fixed.

Step 4. Disable Bluetooth on your iPhone SE.

You won’t be able to hear your iPhone sound if it is connected and paired to a Bluetooth device, like a Bluetooth speaker or headset. You can configure Bluetooth settings on your iPhone using the Control Center. Just swipe up from the bottom of any home screen to open the Control Center and then locate the Bluetooth icon. If Bluetooth is enabled, you can see a list of devices that the iPhone is paired with or connected to. Toggle the Bluetooth switch to disable or turn the feature OFF. You can also access the Bluetooth settings by going to your iPhone Settings-> Bluetooth, and then turn off the Bluetooth switch.

Check the sound again after disabling Bluetooth and see if it’s already working fine. If not, try another applicable method.

Step 5. Disable Do Not Disturb (DND) feature on your iPhone SE.

Do Not Disturb or DND is among the key features of an iPhone used for privacy purposes. You may choose to activate this feature if you don’t want to get bothered by any alert sounds or notifications for incoming calls, texts, or email messages. But sometimes, enabling this feature can also cause minor issues to arise including sound problems. To avoid causing issues to your iPhone sound, proper configuration on the DND settings is required. When enabled, Do Not Disturb can silence calls, alerts and notifications that you receive while your iPhone is locked. Otherwise, just turn the feature OFF.

You will know if DND is enabled on your device if you see a crescent or moon-like figure on the top bar of your iPhone. To turn it off, you can just tap on that icon. Or you can go to Settings-> Do Not Disturb-> adjust the settings or disable it.

Step 6. Check the Notification Settings on your iPhone SE.

If you cannot hear any sound alerts for calls, texts, or email notifications from an application, then try to check the notification settings for the specific app. To do so, head over to Settings-> Notifications. On the Notifications screen, you’ll see a list of different apps. Tap on an app to configure its notification settings. Just select the app in which you are having sound troubles with. On the next screen, check and ensure you have allowed notifications from the app by enabling the switch next to Allow Notifications. You can also set the Sounds for the app by tapping on Sounds.

Step 7. Reset All Settings.

Making some changes on the iPhone settings can also be among the possible cause. So if the audio problem started after making changes on your device settings, then more it’s more likely triggering the issue to arise. In this case, you can revert the settings or change them back to its prior configurations. However, if you are not sure which from the settings you’ve configured is causing the problem, then you can just go for a settings reset. To reset all settings on your iPhone SE, go to Settings-> General-> Reset-> Reset All Settings. Media files such as music and some apps will be erased in the process.

Step 8. Restore your iPhone SE.

Your last resort should all else failed is to restore your iPhone on iTunes. This can be the ultimate solution you need especially if the problem is triggered by a major software bug that could not be rectified by a simple reboot or force restart. However, you should backup your iPhone before starting as this process will erase everything from your device and restores it back its factory defaults.

Once everything is backed up, you may proceed with the reset.

To restore your iPhone SE, head over to Settings-> General-> Reset-> Erase All Content and Settings. You may be asked to enter your passcode. If so then enter the correct passcode to proceed. Finally, tap the option to Erase iPhone. Your device will now reset to its factory defaults.

Alternatively, you can restore your iPhone using iTunes. In that case, you will need a Windows or Mac computer with the latest version of iTunes installed, in order to proceed.

Other Helpful Suggestions

Listed below are some helpful tips shared by other iPhone owners who have dealt with various types of sound/audio problems due to minor culprits. It wouldn’t hurt to give any of these a try to fix the problem on your end.

  • Connect a headset to your iPhone. If you can hear sound using the headset, remove it then check your iPhone SE headset port and clear any dust or debris. Re-inserting and removing of the iPhone headset can also help clear out any debris or dust from the iPhone speaker or Lightning connector.
  • To clean your iPhone speaker port and lightning connector, you can use a brush with soft, clean and dry bristles. Gently clear any debris from the Lightning connector and speaker. You can also use rubbing alcohol, acetone or methylated spirits to get all the extra dirt out from the speaker or lightning connector.
  • Try to remove any casing. Sometimes, sound problems can occur from using third-party accessories like iPhone casing. Some cases can block the iPhone speaker. So if you are using one, try to remove it and see what happens afterwards.
  • Update iPhone SE to the latest iOS version. Software updates might be able to fix any audio problems on your device especially if it’s triggered by a bug. Aside from enhanced features, updates also contain bug fixes including those that are affecting audio functions on an iPhone. To check if an update is available for your device, head over to Settings-> General-> Software Update. Be sure to make a backup of your iPhone using iCloud or iTunes before you proceed with the software update installation. After that, you may update your device wirelessly or using iTunes.

Check the iPhone SE Hardware

If none of the recommended workarounds is able to fix the problem and that your iPhone SE still has no sound, or distorted audio, then you might as well consider the possibility of a hardware damage causing it. This is more likely the case with previous instances of dropping or liquid exposure on your device. For example, you might have dropped the iPhone accidentally or got it wet. Even if the problem did not show up soon after the incident, it’s still possible that the iPhone speaker was damaged from that incident, so now it’s no longer working as it should. In this regard, you may take your device to an authorized service center for hardware check-up and/or repair. Otherwise, contact Apple Support or your carrier for other options and recommendations.

Connect with us

Visit our troubleshooting page to view more solutions to other iPhone problems we have addressed in our prior posts. If you wish to reach our iOS support team for further assistance, then you may do so by filling up this form with all the required information. Be sure to provide us with the significant details of the issue that you need help with so we would be able to give you the best possible solutions and recommendations to try on.

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