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sound is garbled in windows

My speakers sound just awful. I have two pair. One set is the default set that came with my 3000, and the other is from my old system. They are Altec Lansing. When I ran the diagnostic on the computer, the computer played both sets as they should be. As soon as Windows boots up, they skip and scratch and sound horrid. Tech support had me running around in circles for about a month until they finally said it's not a hardware issue. I know the computer itself will play sound fine, but Windows is butchering my sound quality. If anyone has any ideas out there, I sure would love to hear them.
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16 Replies
europa303
Diamond

Re: sound is garbled in windows

Please tell us whether you have integrated sound from the motherboard or a separate PCI sound card and if so, which make and model.  If you don't know, navigate to Device Manager, Sounds/Video/Game Controllers and click the plus sign.  What is listed there for sound devices? Are there any yellow exclamation points on any items?  How does an audio CD sound?  How about sounds from a game, if you play games?  If you have a DVD drive, how does sound from the DVD movie sound?  Giving all the info you can will help with a diagnosis.
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RoHe
Diamond

Re: sound is garbled in windows

In addition to info Europa303 requested, tell us what brand hard drive you have (eg, Samsung, Western Digital, Seagate). You can find that info in Device Manager too.

And while in Device Manager, expand the list under IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers and double-click on Primary IDE Channel. Then click Advanced Settings tab. Tell us what it says for Current Transfer Mode for both device 0 and device 1. Do the same thing for Secondary IDE Channel.

Ron

Ron

Forum Member since 2004
I am not a Dell employee

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bob118
Bronze

Re: sound is garbled in windows

I also have been having the same problem on my Dimension 5100 with the audio card, I am using a soundblaster 24 live. I have tried 2 set's of speakers, one old pair of Altec Lansing with a sub, and the cheapo dell's that came with my Dimension. I know the speaker's work as I hooked them in the headphone jack of my boombox, and they sounded great, boy if I could only get that sound quality out of my computer now. I am past my warrenty period so I went out and bought another soundblaster 24 live card and replaced it, the sound came back but I can't turn up the volume without alot of distortion and hissing, All my of diognostic testing say everything is running correctly, HUH. I beg to differ, must be a default message?  I have uninstalled all the driver's and software and updated with the newest driver's from Soundblaster. I did call creative labs but got more Bull. They were useless. Thats a whole nother story. Well I looked up my Primary IDE controllers and I have the following:

Primary  Device 0 ultra DMA mode 2

               Device 1 Ultral DMA Mode 1

and on my other primary controller

              Device 0 Ultra DMA Mode 5

              Device 1  Not Applicable

I am also using a western digital HD 60gig

hope this helps and I do hope to get an answer soon.

         Thanks

             Bob

 

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bob118
Bronze

Re: sound is garbled in windows

I just figured it out!!! after reading a few other posts I figured I take a look at my BIOS the intergreted audio was on so I checked it to off seeing as I was using a soundcard, and wahoo it works just great, boy did I pull my hair out looking for this problem, well just check the bios and make sure there's no intergrated audio when using your soundcards.
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Re: sound is garbled in windows

OK I have no idea what BIOS is. I'm thinking I have to hit F2 or F12 before Windows boots up....Is that right?
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bob118
Bronze

Re: sound is garbled in windows

Hold down the f2 key and look at the audio part of the bios.
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bob118
Bronze

Re: sound is garbled in windows

Just be carefull what you are doing as this is the brain of your computer. You don't want to chang anything else just remember to save the changes when you exit the bios
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Re: sound is garbled in windows

OK,that didn't work. I had no sound at all after that. Here is all of my technical info out of my device manager...
My Sound devices are Audio Codecs, (although tech support told me to disable them and I thought I had done this)Legacy Audio Drivers, Media Control Devices, SoundMAX Intergrated Digital Audio, Unimodem Half- Duplex Audio Device and Video Codecs.
Also, I have a Samsung SPO401N HD.
Hardware tech support told me to get rid of the Audio Codecs and install the SoundMAX. I thought I had, but, it looks like they're still there. The sound didn't change one way or the other, though.
Where to now?
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europa303
Diamond

Re: sound is garbled in windows

Your device manager SoundMax entry indicates you have integrated audio on the motherboard, and not a separate sound card, so disabling the integrated audio in the bios is NOT the answer for you. Here is the driver for the 3000 SoundMax, which you should try downloading and installing again, even if you think you already did this. Before doing this though you should right click the SoundMax entry in device manager and delete it. Then download and install this file:  http://support.dell.com/support/downloads/download.aspx?c=us&cs=19&l=en&s=dhs&releaseid=R94481&Syste...
Also, can you answer the questions about sound quality I asked at the top of this thread?  Also, how much memory do you have in your system?  There are some reports of computers with not enough memory being bogged down with too many processes running which causes a lag in response. For a 300 with XP, I would recommend not less than 512 MB.
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