Since you mentioned static, if it's external, I'd suspect a back jack. If internal, it might be that mic has just died. Again, if internal and you have an external mic jack, try using that.
I have a new Toshiba satellite M305-S4848 laptop (Vista 64-bit) with a built-in webcam and mic. My mic worked perfectly about two weeks ago and then recently started to have a lot of static. To fix the problem, I went to the driver download site and downloaded the new Conexant Audio Driver for Windows Vista. Following the instructions, I uninstalled the previous Conexant from my Programs and installed the new one. However, the new installation failed and now my mic won't work at all! How do I fix this problem??? Any and all help would be MUCH appreciated!