How to Talk in Counter-Strike

By Seth Amery

Updated September 22, 2017

To talk to your team in "Counter-Strike: Global Offensive," you'll need a microphone. Once you have that, you must configure your voice chat settings in the Steam client, such as setting which key -- if any -- to press to activate the microphone. Alternatively, you can set the microphone to always be active.

Modifying In-Game Controls

Launch "Global Offensive" to the main menu. While you can access the menu during a match, there's no point risking your life for a few spoken words.

Select "Help & Options" from the main menu, followed by "Keyboard/Mouse." Scrolling down, you can find the default key bindings for certain actions. With a microphone plugged in, you can press the "K" key to activate voice chat.

Click the "K" to swap it with another key. When prompted, type the key you'd like to use; the very next key you press will be used for voice chat when you click "Back" to return to the menu. You can press this key during a match to transmit voice chat to your teammates in-game.

Modifying Steam Controls

Log in to your Steam client and click "Steam" in the menu bar. From the drop-down menu that appears, select "Settings" to open a dialog box.

Switch over to the Voice tab. If you haven't ever used your microphone before, you might need to select it under "Recording (audio input) device." Be sure the device is plugged in while you're setting this configuration.

Click "Use a push-to-talk key to transmit voice." There is no default setting to this, and the very next key you press will be bound as push-to-talk.

Click the key binding and type another key to change this value. Selecting "OK" saves your changes. You can press this key in any game that uses the Steam overlay and transmit voice to the person you're chatting with in a Steam conversation.


Try using headphones when possible; this will prevent echoes of your game from passing through the microphone.

If Steam doesn't automatically see your microphone, click "Detect Audio Devices" to refresh the list of devices it finds. It's possible that it checked for devices before you plugged in the microphone.

Instead of push-to-talk, you can have Steam transmit voice whenever it detects you speaking. This could be problematic in loud rooms, however.


Avoid using an open microphone in loud rooms; nobody appreciates the background noise while they're trying to play.

Consider setting the Steam shortcut to a different key than you use in the game; otherwise, you'll attempt to transmit voice to two different locations at once.