One of the most frustrating things that I have encountered on Discord is the inability to talk on discord while watching a broadcast. It prevents me from doing any sort of Co-Op single-player shenanigans, and that really annoys the crap out of me. If I can’t talk on Discord to my friends while watching them broadcast, that forces them to open up a stream on Twitch or something, which they have no interest in really doing.
In the past, I had this issue as well, but disabling the “Echo Cancellation” feature allowed me to work around the issue. This no longer works, and nothing I have tried has had any effect whatsoever. This is a serious flaw, one that should never have happened to begin with.
I think I have narrowed down the list of probable causes though – it likely stems from the fact that I utilize an Audio Interface.
This post is more of a rant at the moment, because I have not quite found something that actually works to resolve this issue yet. When I do, I’ll be sure to update it with an appropriate answer.
Table of Contents
What I Tried to Resolve the Inability to Talk On Discord
One of the first fixes that I came upon as I researched, and solved the inability to talk on Discord in the past, was to disable the Echo Cancelation feature. I have no idea why this would cause the microphone from working properly with Discord, but I wasn’t complaining. I simply had to adjust the microphone gate sensitivity to prevent background spillover to compensate.
This no longer works.
I have tried a ton of other things:
- I changed the codecs
- I enabled and disabled EVERY SINGLE SETTING and its possible combination in Discord
- I tried push-to-talk
- I tried voice activation
- I tried the beta version of Discord
- I tried the browser version of Discord
- I tried updating my USB drivers
- I tried using USB 2.0 Ports
- I tried Using USB 3.0 Ports
- I tried using USB 3.1 ports
- I tried using a PCI-E USB card
- I tried subscribing to Nitro
- I tried restarting my pc
- I tried running Discord in Administration mode
- I tried re-installing discord
- I tried REFORMATTING MY PC
Nothing I tried worked – I was still unable to speak to my friends while watching a broadcast. At the very least, this will save you some time, though you are welcome to try some of these for yourself.
Out of desperation, I tried to use my Dualsense controller‘s microphone, which worked.
The Root Cause to Why We Can’t Talk On Discord
As it turns out, Discord’s software doesn’t much like audio interfaces. I don’t imagine this is intentional, but I lost my only workaround in an update about a month ago. Since Discord updates can’t be rolled back without help from a third-party client, there’s nothing I can do but sit on my hands and wait until they resolve the issue, whatever it is.
I use a Behringer UMC204HD and a cheap Tonor BM 700 microphone as my microphone setup of choice. This allows me to have a much higher quality audio quality than what can be expected out of a headset microphone, and use much better audiophile-grade headphones.
Until one month ago, the echo cancellation workaround had done the job for those of us using a USB audio interface/microphone. Now, we have to resort to secondary microphones if we want the ability to chat while watching somebody stream on Discord. This is a serious hit to user accessibility, and I believe it should become a priority bug for the Discord team to resolve as quickly as possible.
The Only Known Workarounds – Use a Different Device/Software
The only known workarounds to fixing the inability to talk on Discord while watching a stream is to use a different audio device or to stream on different software. USB audio seems to be the main type of device to suffer from this major bug, but I have had zero issues when using the motherboard 3.5mm connections. I hooked up my old G933s to verify this using the 3.5mm cable – yep, no problems can watch and talk no problem. Then I tried the USB Wireless, and lo-and-behold, it worked.
You might be lucky, but if you’re reading this article, chances are you are having issues. We shouldn’t have to buy a secondary piece of hardware just to talk on discord while watching a stream, and this is why I wrote this article. Hopefully, it catches Discord’s attention more than their own bug report forum, which has had no official response from Discord in over a year.
Over. A. Year.
Ridiculous. At least acknowledge the problem exists! Hopefully, a little bit of press stress has some effect on their response to this issue, but knowing how Discord operates, I’m not getting my hopes up.
I’ll Keep an Eye Out for a Real Fix
If at some point Discord resolves this issue, and I have a solution for you guys, I’ll update this article as soon as I learn of it. Until then, perhaps you guys could stream on a no-name Twitch is a popular, gaming-focused live streaming platform. It is one of the most well-known streamer-first platforms out there and has millions of active streamers and viewers. More, Glimesh, YouTube, or Whatever channel and simply chat over discord as a VOIP-only software. This is the only real workaround, even if it inconveniences those who might not want the stream to be available in a public streaming environment.
I’m sorry for having to make this article – I really like discord, but this has been going on for far too long, with no response or acknowledgment that I have been able to find. I’ve been keeping an eye out for some Discord alternatives though. The inability to talk on discord for any reason, given the primary purpose of discord is communication software, is a serious problem.
If you do happen upon a fix that works for you, please let us know about it in the comments section! My Single-player Co-Op of Planet Zoo is falling way behind, and I’m sure many others will find your insight helpful.
Update: a Workaround Found
Turns out, you can get around this issue by routing your audio through VoiceMeeter or other audio software that works like it. The downside is that it does add a little bit of a delay to your audio, but it certainly beats having to have a separate physical microphone.
Incidentally, it also works to allow microphones that aren’t working properly with NVIDIA Broadcast to function properly as well, again, with the added delay and software complexity involved. Still, it is nice to have a working workaround until Discord gets around to releasing an actual fix for it.