“Discover the Secrets of the MacBook Pro: Unveiling the Microphone’s Hidden Location”

Where is the Microphone on MacBook Pro?

The MacBook Pro is a popular line of developed by Apple, known for its sleek design, top-of-the-line hardware specifications, and seamless integration with Apple's ecosystem of products and . One essential feature of the MacBook Pro is its built-in microphone, which enables input for tasks such as voice calls, conferences, and audio recording. Knowing the location of the microphone on your MacBook Pro is essential for ensuring optimal audio quality. In this article, we will discuss the microphone location on various MacBook Pro models, tips for optimizing microphone performance, issues, and much more.

Different models of MacBook Pro

Identifying your MacBook Pro model

To determine the location of the microphone on your MacBook Pro, you must first identify which model you have. You can find this information by checking the “About This ” option under the Apple menu on your MacBook Pro. The Model Identifier will indicate the year of release, for example, “MacBook Pro (Retina, 15-inch, 2015).”

Release years and common features

The MacBook Pro has undergone several iterations since its initial introduction in 2006. Throughout these years, MacBook Pro models have shared characteristics like a unibody aluminum design, Retina display, multi-touch trackpad, and various built-in sensors. As for the built-in microphones, each generation has brought improvements to enhance audio quality and performance.

Microphone location on MacBook Pro 2012 – 2015

Dual microphones

MacBook Pro models released between 2012 and 2015 feature dual built-in microphones. These microphones work together to reduce background noises and boost audio clarity, leading to improved audio quality during voice and video calls.

Located on the side edge

For MacBook Pro models during this period, the dual microphones are located on the left side edge of the laptop, near the headphone jack. Knowing the location of the microphone on your MacBook Pro from this era is crucial, as it can be easily obstructed by placing the device on uneven surfaces or resting a hand over the microphone.

Microphone use during video calls and voice recordings

During video calls, these dual microphones eliminate the need for an external microphone, allowing you to capture clear audio without hassle. Additionally, the microphones are useful for voice recordings, podcasting, or other forms of content creation where clear audio input is necessary.

Microphone location on MacBook Pro 2016 – 2019

Three microphones for enhanced audio input

For MacBook Pro models released between 2016 and 2019, Apple upgraded the microphone system to include three built-in microphones, further improving audio quality and performance.

Location near the keyboard and speaker grilles

The microphone location on MacBook Pro models from the 2016-2019 era shifts from the side edge to the top case area near the keyboard and speaker grilles. This change in location minimizes the possibility of accidentally covering the microphones during use.

Benefits of the upgraded microphone system

With three microphones, MacBook Pro models from this era are capable of capturing even better audio quality than their predecessors. The additional microphone helps reduce background noises and enhance voice clarity during video calls, voice recordings, or other applications where accurate audio input is required.

Microphone location on MacBook Pro 2020 – Present

The studio-quality microphone array

Starting from 2020, Apple further advanced the microphone technology in MacBook Pro models by introducing a studio-quality three-microphone array. This new microphone system provides exceptional audio quality, rivaling professional-grade microphones.

Location above the function keys

The modern MacBook Pro models have their microphones located just above the function keys or the Touch Bar, depending on the specific model. This location ensures ample space around the microphone array, allowing the system to capture high-quality audio without obstruction.

Improvements in audio input for video conferencing and voice recordings

The studio-quality microphone array in the latest MacBook Pro models elevates the overall user experience during video conferences, voice recordings, or content creation. The improvement in audio quality means that users may not need to invest in an external microphone for many applications.

Tips for optimizing microphone performance on MacBook Pro

Proper positioning during usage

Ensure that your MacBook Pro's microphone is not obstructed during use. For example, place the MacBook Pro on a flat surface during video calls or voice recordings. It's also essential to refrain from covering the microphone grilles with your hands, as this can negatively impact audio quality.

Adjusting input settings

To fine-tune microphone performance, you can adjust input settings via the System Preferences menu. Open the Sound preferences pane and click on the Input tab to access the microphone settings. Here, you can select the built-in microphone as the input device and adjust the input volume to optimize audio performance.

Using external microphones and headsets

In some cases, using an external microphone or headset can improve audio quality. External microphones may feature more advanced noise-canceling technology, while headsets can prevent audio feedback during video calls by keeping the microphone closer to your mouth.

Troubleshooting microphone issues

Checking software and privacy settings

If you are experiencing issues with your MacBook Pro's microphone, ensure that your software is up to date and that the necessary permissions are granted to applications using the microphone. Verify that the correct input device is selected in the Sound preferences pane and adjust input levels as needed.

Cleaning the microphone grille

Dust and debris buildup in the microphone grilles can influence audio quality. Gently clean the grilles with a soft, dry cloth or an electronics brush to remove any blockage.

Resetting PRAM and SMC

If the issue persists, reset the Parameter RAM (PRAM) and System Management Controller (SMC) on your MacBook Pro. These resets can fix hardware-related issues that may be affecting your microphone's performance.


Understanding the location of the microphone on your MacBook Pro can significantly enhance your overall experience with the Apple laptop. Recognizing the shifts in the microphone's location in various models over time, from the dual microphones on the side edge of the 2012-2015 models, the top case microphones of the 2016-2019 models, and the studio-quality microphone array above the function keys in the 2020-present models is essential to achieving optimal audio quality. As we've explored the evolution of the MacBook Pro's microphone, we can anticipate continued improvements in audio input technology for MacBook Pro models in the future.


What can I use the built-in microphone on MacBook Pro for?

The built-in microphone on MacBook Pro can be used for various purposes, such as video calls, voice recordings, podcasting, content creation, and more.

How do I find out what MacBook Pro model I have?

To find your MacBook Pro model, click on the Apple menu at the top left corner of your desktop screen and select “About This Mac.”

Do all MacBook Pro models have a built-in microphone?

Yes, all MacBook Pro models have built-in microphones. However, the number, location, and quality of the microphones may vary depending on the model.

How can I improve the audio quality of my MacBook Pro's microphone?

To improve audio quality, ensure that the microphone is not obstructed, adjust input settings via System Preferences, and consider using an external microphone or headset.

Can I disable the built-in microphone on MacBook Pro?

Yes, you can disable the built-in microphone by selecting a different input device in the Sound preferences or adjusting the input volume to the lowest setting.

How do I clean the microphone grille on my MacBook Pro?

Gently clean the microphone grilles with a soft, dry cloth or an electronics brush to remove any dust or debris that may be affecting audio quality.

Why is my MacBook Pro microphone not working?

If your microphone is not working, check for software and privacy settings, clean the microphone grille, or try resetting PRAM and SMC. If the issue persists, consider contacting Apple Support for further assistance.

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Tracy C.
Tracy C.

Hi! I'm Tracy and I am the owner of this little website. I build it as a resource center to troubleshoot common tech, hardware and software issues.

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