1 Copper

Dell 5548 speaker volume fluctuates, Headphone Jack tight and no webcam response

Hello Jimco,

I have a Dell 5548 with a 1080p touch screen, Core i5 &12GB of Ram. After updating to windows 10 I have had a number of issues with this laptop.

1)The most annoying of all is that the speaker volume fluctuates from high to low at any given setting which is extremely frustrating. One time its loud then all of a sudden it reduces then a few seconds later its up again. Is this a hardware issue or a software issue as this didn't happen on windows 8.1?

2)The Headphone Jack is too tight. If I try too insert any earphones or headphones it will go in to a certain degree then i have to apply force but it still wont go in. If i try to apply more force it seems that it will break as there is a creaking sound. sound from the speakers isn't fine and i cant even use earphones Smiley Sad

3) My laptop has a real sense camera and it just stops using its infrared sensors or depth sensors when setting up windows hello. It tells me to place my face in the centre of the screen and then no response even though i can see what the webcam is showing me. 

I hope you can answer my questions as it would be much appreciated.


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Jim Coates
6 Gallium

RE: Dell 5548 speaker volume fluctuates, Headphone Jack tight and no webcam response

Hello. Sorry for the delay but have been busy with work.

Is this a hardware issue or a software issue as this didn't happen on windows 8.1?

The only way to know for sure is to revert to Win8.1 and if the issue goes away then it is a software issue. All I can tell you is to update the BIOS to latest version, and download and install the latest Realtek driver. You can find all available drivers on the Inspiron 5548 htm page.

Then, test by switching to the Windows native audio driver and see what happens.

If you have the fluctuation with only one of the drivers, then it is at fault. If you have it with both drivers then there is some other reason for the issue. Here are a couple of methods for switching drivers.

1. Open the Device Manager (find it in the Control Panel, or type devmgmt.msc into the search box).
2. Expand the "Sound, video & game controllers" and right click on "Realtek High Definition Audio".
3. Select to "Update Driver Software".
4. Click on "Browse my computer for driver software".
5. Click "Let me pick from a list of drivers on my computer".
6. Put a check in the box "Show compatible hardware" if not already checked.
7. In the list of devices, click "High Definition Audio" (the native driver).
8. Click "Next".
9. On the Update Driver Warning box, click "Yes" (install the driver).
10. Restart the laptop if prompted. If not prompted, you might not need to restart anyway.
[To get back to the Realtek driver, do it again but reverse the names in steps 2 and 7.]

The above method does not always work with Win10. The other way to switch to the native audio driver is to remove all of the Realtek driver files.

1. Open the Device Manager
2. Expand the Sound, Video & Game Controllers section.
3. Right click on the Realtek and select to uninstall.
4. Put a check mark in the option to delete the driver software, and then ok.
5. Restart the laptop and go back to the Device Manager and check again for a Realtek driver. Keep uninstalling & restarting until Realtek no longer appears under Sound...Controllers and "High Definition Audio Device" appears in its place. "High Definition Audio Device" is the name of the native driver.

[The reason you might have to go through the process more than once is because the driver files for more than one Realtek driver could be on the hard drive. When a Realtek driver is removed, the next one gets installed if Windows can locate the files. Windows installs its generic driver only after all Realtek files have been removed.]

2)The Headphone Jack is too tight.

Someone reported a problem like that last year, but I don't remember which model.  Check the opening for an obstruction. You could take the laptop to a jeweler's repair shop and have them check it. If you think that the jack is defective, report it to tech support to have it corrected under the warranty.

3) My laptop has a real sense camera

Sorry but that is out of my area. Perhaps someone on the Laptop Video board would know the answer.

Windows 10 seems to still have bugs to work out.

Jim Coates -- 15 years on the Dell Laptop Audio boards -- since 2/6/04 

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