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Old 11-02-2010, 09:27 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Windows 7 issue with sound or sound card

I purchased a computer via CraigsList and all is fine with it bar one thing Ė I havenít been able to get the sound working on it. I donít think itís an issue of being sold a faulty unit Ė the guy selling it was the father of the owner, who has been overseas for a year and the dad simply wanted to clear it out to make some room.

Initially I thought it was a sound card issue, and swapped cards around and did virtually everything I could think of to make it work. Nothing. Then I went backwards and forwards trying to find if there was any program ob board that was muting the sound. Nothing. I looked at the device manager, which said that all was okay. I downloaded the latest drivers. I reinstalled Windows. I tried using the headphone jack, another set of speakers. I did everything to try and isolate and locate the issue. ! I still could not get it to work. With all of this I still had not even figured out whether it was a software or hardware issue. Needless to say, itís been a very frustrating time. The only saving grace was that I finally managed to coax some sound out of the motherboardís RCA jack, so at least I can hear something when Iím using the computer Ė just not from the soundcard itself.

A couple of days ago I finally made some headway Ė purely by accident. I was working my way through each of the jacks again on the sound card, testing out some idea or other with the speakers disconnected from the onboard audio, when I realized that the volume was too low on the PC and clicked on the slider to move it up so I could hear it clearly if I had any success. As soon as I did that I heard the tell-tale Ďdingí of the Windows sound. So the card is working Ėwithin very severe limits. It just wonít play anything else, music, CD or DVD sound, internet, etc. It just makes a sound if I click on the the two sliders (on the Windows sound mixer) associated with the speakers.

So Iím guessing that somewhere within Windows 7 thereís something that needs to be switched over Ė Iím just not seeing it. It may be something really simply, it may be down to the fact that Iím still pretty new to Windows 7 as against XP.

Why I should have inherited the problem though is one of the things that has both puzzled me and helped contribute to the confusion. The former owner has been in touch with me through his father, and said that all was okay before he left to go overseas. The one odd thing was that when I picked it up the father had the case open to show the interior of the computer, and said that at one stage he noticed that the sound card was loose and he had to reseat it. Maybe turning the unit off and on with the card loose threw off some settings? Thatís why I reinstalled Windows and the drivers, but it made no difference.

If someone could shed some light on this Iíd really appreciate it, as the whole issue has been driving me nuts trying to solve it. I've had the computer now for two weeks and just keep going round and round trying to solve it.

Thanks in advance

Motherboard Ė ASUS M2N-SLI Deluxe
CPU - AMD Athlon 64 X2 6000+
Graphics - NVIDIA GeForce 8800 GTS
Sound - Soundblaster Audigy2 ZS
RAM - Corsair XMS2 4GB (2 x 2GB)
HD - Western Digital Caviar Black 640GB
Power - Cooler Master Real Power Pro RS-750-ACAA-A1 750W
OS Ė Windows 7 Ultimate (64)

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Old 11-02-2010, 10:41 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Windows 7 issue with sound or sound card

If it is using a pci sound card, you will need to disable your onboard sound. Does anything show up in device manager for it? installed or not?

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Old 11-02-2010, 11:21 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Windows 7 issue with sound or sound card

If it's Windows 7, right click the speaker icon and select Playback Devices. You should have your onboard sound outputs as well as your sound card (if you have a second sound card). Select the one you want to use and make it default. You should not have to disable onboard sound to use the sound card (both cards can be used independently, you can set the onboard sound for communication [voice chat, etc] and still use your main card for the rest).

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Old 11-03-2010, 07:09 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Windows 7 issue with sound or sound card

Hi there,
You're right. I went into the audio section of the control panel, selected the sound card, and everything worked fine.

I'm sure though that I went in there earlier in the piece and the Sound Card wasn't showing up for me to select, though device manager acknowledged that a sound card was in place and 'working properly'. That's what was making things so confusing. What I didn't do though was go back there after I had reinstalled Windows and the drivers.

My best guess is that the sound card coming loose at the former owner's house, and with the dad switching the unit on and off while demonstrating it to other potential buyers, threw the settings off and set the on-board audio back as default. Presumably it also screwed up other associated bits and pieces, because when I reseated it other problems occurred that only got resolved when I reinstalled either Windows and/or the drivers.

Only puzzle that remains is why the associated slider for the sound card mentioned earlier was pinging every time I clicked on it, if the on-board audio had reverted to default. The fact that it seemed to be partially 'on' , in very limited fashion, really threw me.

Thanks for your help.
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Old 11-03-2010, 07:47 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Windows 7 issue with sound or sound card

Sometimes multiple sliders will show up (one for each in-use sound card) so you probably had both cards showing a slider, and adjusted the one for the sound card even though it wasn't default. Also, many cards have jack detection and will automatically be grayed out and disabled if you unplug the speakers.

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