Speech And Audio Distorted In Ring Recordings And Live View

Ring is practically a household name around the world. Their smart home security is a majorly popular feature in smart homes all over the globe. They offer a wide variety of options for the modern smart home, and have many happy customers! However, as with all tech at some point or another, problems can arise.

Some Ring users have found that the audio on their videos is subpar, even distorted to the point they can’t understand what people are saying. This is definitely a problem if you’re not home and you’re trying to communicate with someone at your door on Live View! What’s going on here? Is Ring to blame, or could there be other factors involved?

Key Points

  • The most common cause of distorted Ring audio is a weak internet connection.
  • You should check both the device’s Wi-Fi, plus your phone’s Wi-Fi.
  • Power cycling your Ring device can help, as can checking for software updates.
  • Finally there are a few app and device settings that you should check.

About Ring Cameras

Ring is the most popular brand of smart home camera, with over 10 million customers worldwide! Their line of cameras and doorbells is always expanding, and they’re always improving on previous models as well.

Ring’s line of cameras includes a variety of cameras for the inside and outside of your home or business. There’s the ever-popular Indoor Cam, that now has an even more advanced second-generation version. This new model comes with a removable Privacy Cover so that you can stop audio and video recordings whenever you want.

Their line of outdoor cameras includes the versatile Stick-Up Cam, as well as Floodlight and Spotlight Cams. Of course, the ever-popular Ring Video Doorbells are part of their line-up for use outdoors.

A few Ring doorbells including battery and wired models
A few Ring doorbells including battery and wired models

Power sources for these cameras depend on the model you’re using. For example, Indoor Cams are plug-in, while the Stick-Up Cam is battery-operated. They also have a version of the Floodlight Cam that can be hardwired into a standard junction box. 

Ring cameras use Wi-Fi to connect to the internet. The only exceptions are the Elite models, which use PoE, or Power over Ethernet, for power and internet. Ring cameras use the internet to connect to the Ring app where you configure all of your cameras’ settings, such as Motion Zones and Motion Sensitivity. 

While most of the time, everything goes well, sometimes recordings don’t always come out as they should. What happens then?

Distorted Audio In Ring Videos – How To Fix It

When reviewing their video recordings, some Ring users have found that the audio is distorted. They can hear people talking – but can’t decipher what’s being said! This can also happen when viewing Live View, or when talking to people over the microphone while in Live View. Obviously, this shouldn’t be the case – so what’s going on?

There may be a few reasons this is happening, along with some rather easy fixes.

Poor Internet Connection – Your Ring Device

The most common culprit of poor audio in your Ring videos is poor internet. The connection between your Ring device and the internet can play a big role in how your audio, and even video comes out.

To check on your Ring device’s connection to the internet, go to your Ring app, then to the camera in question. Tap on the gear icon for Settings. On the next page, tap on Device Health.

Device Health in the Ring App
Device Health in the Ring App

On that screen, look to where you see RSSI. This stands for, Received Signal Strength Indicator, and tells you how strong a signal your device is getting from your router. If the number is in green, you’re all good. If it’s amber or red, your internet connection is weak and you need to take steps to strengthen that connection.

Signal Strength in Ring app
Signal Strength in Ring app

For example, if your router is located in a less-than-ideal place with obstructions, you may consider moving it.

Wi Fi Router placed in the closet
Wi-Fi Router placed in the closet

If that’s not possible, you can try using a Wi-Fi extender so that the signal reaches your Ring devices better. 

TP Link Wifi Extender
TP-Link Wifi Extender

If your internet is typically fine, the router may just be having some issues of its own. Try power cycling the router. 

If you happen to live in an apartment building with many other Wi-Fi networks, the various networks can cause interference. If you can, try changing the router’s channel, as others may have less interference. You can do this by going into your Router’s settings.

Advanced WiFi Router Settings
Advanced WiFi Router Settings

Some ISPs don’t allow you to select specific channels, so you’ll have to select the option that allows your router to select the best possible coverage for your needs.

DFS Wifi Channel Settings
DFS Wifi Channel Settings

Poor Internet Connection – Your Mobile Device

Internet issues may also affect the device you’re using the Ring app on. This is whether it’s your smartphone or tablet. If the connection is poor on your device, even if your Ring camera captured everything perfectly, any video you view on your device might be displayed in poor quality.

Check the internet settings on your specific device to see how strong it is. If you’re using Wi-Fi, and the Wi-Fi is having issues, try using mobile data. Especially if you have 4G LTE or 5G, your connection to the internet may be faster and more reliable than Wi-Fi. 

Mobile Data Strength
Mobile Data Strength

If your internet, whether Wi-Fi or mobile data is usually fine, but now it isn’t, try rebooting your mobile device to see if that helps the issue.

Power Cycle

Sometimes a good old power cycle can help eliminate any errors that are causing your Ring audio to be distorted. Power cycles can take care of a number of temporary glitches. You can power cycle, or reboot your Ring cameras directly from the Ring app.

Go into the Ring app dashboard, then choose the camera you’re looking to reboot. Tap on the gear icon for Settings, then go to Device Health.

On the next screen, scroll down to Reboot This Device at the bottom of the screen.

Where to Reboot Camera in the Ring App
Where to Reboot Camera in the Ring App

Tap on that, then you’ll be taken to a screen with a message indicating you won’t have access to your device during the reboot. Scroll down to the bottom of the screen and tap on Reboot This Device.

Reboot Device in the Ring app
Reboot Device in the Ring app

This should clear up any temporary glitches with your audio.

Software Updates

Updating your Ring app software is one way to make sure everything stays working as it should. These updates contain fixes for glitches, and can even contain patches for audio issues.

To make sure your Ring app is up to date, go to your appropriate app store and search for Ring. Android users would go to the Play Store, and iOS users would go to the App Store.

When you view the app, check to see if there is an Update icon next to the app.

Ring App Needed to be Updated in App Store
Ring App Needed to be Updated in App Store

If so, update your app to see if this helps matters.

Audio Privacy Settings

If you’re experiencing no volume or audio at all, this may be linked to a setting within the Ring app. This setting disables audio recordings to allow for privacy for yourself or others. It’s possible this may have been changed by mistake, causing you to lose audio.

To check on this, go to the camera in question in the Ring app, then to their Settings. From there, go to Device Settings. On the next page, go to Privacy Settings.

Privacy Settings in the Ring app
Privacy Settings in the Ring app

On the next screen, you’ll see a toggle for Audio Streaming and Recording. When toggled on, audio will be recorded along with your videos.

Audio Streaming and Recording Privacy in the Ring app
Audio Streaming and Recording Privacy in the Ring app

If it’s off for whatever reason, you won’t get any. If needed, change it to what you’d like.

Bluetooth Connections

Sometimes the mobile device you’re using may be connected to Bluetooth. This can cause some issues with interference and thereby cause problems with audio. This is especially the case if the Bluetooth device has its own microphone. During Ring recordings, your device may be using the audio from the Bluetooth device’s microphone instead of your Ring camera.

Go into your mobile device’s Settings to see what Bluetooth devices, if any, are connected.

Bluetooth Devices
Bluetooth Devices

Remove any that aren’t necessary, or that use audio, and see if that improves your Ring audio. 

Sound Feedback

If your sound issues come from video recorded in Live View, especially when you’re talking to someone via the microphone, this tip may help. When speaking, or Live View is recording, try muting the speaker

Muted on Live View on Echo Show
Muted on Live View on Echo Show

It could very well be that the feedback from background noise where you are is causing distortion or feedback when the video is recorded. Muting your device helps prevent this feedback, giving you clearer audio recordings.

Factory Reset

It may be that, despite all of your best efforts, your device refuses to have clear audio. Before giving up, try a factory reset. Over time different settings and glitches may have caused several issues that nothing except a full-on factory reset will help. 

To do this, go into your Ring app, then to the camera you want to reset. From its Settings, go to Device Settings. On the next screen, tap on General Settings. On that next screen, select Remove Device.

Where to Remove Device in the Ring App
Where to Remove Device in the Ring App

After the device is removed, you can then go through the steps to set it up again as if it were brand new, and see if this has solved the audio issue.

Faulty Device

Another cause, though not as common, is a faulty device. Perhaps the camera you’re using has an issue with the microphone. 

Testing out this theory involves having other Ring cameras that you can compare it against. Try viewing video from the other cameras and seeing if the same audio issue presents itself. If it’s isolated to just one camera, it’s a good chance that your device itself is faulty.

Reach out to Ring, or the retailer you purchased it from for further assistance and to see if you’re eligible for a free replacement.

Alternative Ways To View Ring Footage

So let’s say you’re annoyed with the Ring app, or you just want to explore other ways to view your recorded videos or Live View. There are a couple of options you can explore.

Using A Smart Home Hub

So let’s say you’re having the worst time viewing Live View on your Ring app, but don’t want to give up entirely on your Ring cameras. You can try using a smart home hub like the Echo Show or Google Nest Hub.

Live View on Echo Show 10
Live View on Echo Show 10

Once you connect your Ring cameras to their respective apps, you can then do Live View from the screen. Some users have decided to go this route, and found that sound quality improved.

It may, however, be a hassle to go through that extra step. And of course, this won’t work if you’re trying to view recorded videos in the Ring app. Still, it’s an option if you’re looking for an alternative to viewing Live View.

View Recorded Footage On Your Computer

Another option is using a desktop or laptop to view your recorded videos. Some users have discovered that audio and video are better when they view them this way, as opposed to the Ring app.  To do this, go to ring.com and login to your account – where you can view your devices and their recordings:

Computer screenshot from the Ring.com dashboard after logging into your account.
Ring.com browser-based dashboard after logging in.

Does this mean that the app is faulty? Not necessarily. It may be having a temporary glitch and using a computer can get you around these temporary issues. Or, if you’re using a computer with a wired internet connection, the connection may simply be more stable than a wireless one.

Sound Check

Getting the audio clearly on your Ring videos is crucial to your home’s security. So when it doesn’t work, it’s definitely not ideal! Fortunately, there are a few fixes to get things working properly again. Making sure you have a strong Wi-Fi connection, updating your software, as well as disconnecting Bluetooth are all solutions.

Alternatively, viewing video on your smart home hub can also yield good results in your efforts to achieve clear sound quality.

About Yvette Griffith

Yvette is a freelance writer who also happens to be a smart home enthusiast! She owns several smart home gadgets like strip lights, smart bulbs, cameras, and more! With a knack for troubleshooting device issues, she’s been the go-to for family and friends for all kinds of tech-related issues - dating back to VCR’s!

Here on Smart Home Point, she shares her knowledge with the world in hopes it’ll help you create and maintain your smart home.

If you have any questions, feedback or suggestions about this article, please leave a comment below. Please note that all comments go into a moderation queue (to prevent blog spam). Your comment will be manually reviewed and approved by Tristan in less than a week. Thanks!

Leave a Comment