Question Echo during conference call

Apr 13, 2021
Hi everyone,

I have the following situation. A coworker and I share the same office and we have had a conference call with several other participants (all others were in other locations). Both of us used our respective laptops. However, I used earphones (just the ordinary ones, with no mic) but my coworker did not. Both of us used our laptops' built in microphones.

At one point the coworker speaks with no technical issues. After her, I start to speak and echo (feedback loop) appears. After a few seconds, my coworker reduces her speaker's volume to zero and echo stops so I continue normally. My coworker says her microphone was muted at the moment when I started speaking.

Before the meeting, the coworker claimed that we would prevent echo by just one of us wearing earphones, but it did appear. How is it possible?

Coworker insists that I must have plugged in the earphones improperly or that I missed some earphone/speaker settings, and she claims that therefore I was not listening to the meeting through my earphones. That is absolutely not true. And besides, before the meeting, we tested my audio and microphone together and everything was fine (all was heard just through my earphones and nothing through my speaker). That proves my earphones were definitely plugged in properly at the beginning. But she claims maybe they got unplugged and I plugged them in again, which is not true.

I guess the solution for future calls would boil down to both of us wearing earphones, but I would just really, really like to hear any theories you might have on what happened here. If it means anything, we sit around 2 meters apart and I have a wall behind me.

[Moderator note: moving post from Components to Home Audio - more applicable.]
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