JanetBiggar
1 Nickel

No audio on Dell D800 Latitude

I have an old Dell Latitude D800 which is about 10 years old but had been functioning fine after wiping and reformatting it originally. I did struggle to get the sound working but managed although I don't know what I did as I didn't know much about reconditioning computers as this was my first in June 2016.

It then picked up a virus after being used by a youth that didn't realize the usb he used was infected so I erased and reloaded the OS (Win XP). I have AVG antivirus on it and ideally would like to get the audio working but have run out of ideas. Mute is not on, volume settings are all fine, the bios does not have audio that can be enabled. Because the sound was working fine previously (as recent as Dec/Jan)  I do not think it is a sound card issue. Unfortunately this laptop is only 725 mb RAM and 40 GB HD which I believe may have been the problem when I tried to put the Dell diagnostics on it..(?).

Might anyone have an idea as to what I can do to get the sound working? I don't get any start up or shut down sounds either.

Thanks in advance for ideas,

Janet

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7 Replies
Jim Coates
6 Gallium

RE: No audio on Dell D800 Latitude

Hello Janet. It might work if you install the Sigmatel audio driver (Sigmatel was the company that manufactured the audio hardware on the motherboard). However, in XP you have to install some other software first, so that the operating system recognizes the hardware. In this order:

a. Dell Notebook System Software.  Download, install and restart.

b. Intel Mobile Chipset software. Download, install and restart.

c. Sigmatel audio driver. Download, install and restart.

40 GB HD which I believe may have been the problem when I tried to put the Dell diagnostics on it..(?).

Installation of the Dell Diagnostics requires that the hard drive have a separate partition on it. If the hard drive has ever been replaced or totally wiped, then it would no longer have the partition. In such a case, you would run the diagnostic from the Utilities cd if you still have it, or you can load the diagnostics onto external media, such as a blank cd, dvd, or usb flash drive, and run it from the media.

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

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JanetBiggar
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RE: No audio on Dell D800 Latitude

Hi Jim,

I appreciate your very quick reply. I do have all three of those items above and did load them in that order when Rick pointed me in the right direction.  I appreciate your explanation for why I was unable to download the diagnostics. I do not have a Utilities CD, however will try downloading it to a USB and run it. I presume I won't have any issue downloading it using my Mac (as I did this with all the drivers) and simply putting it in a USB..?

Here goes,

Janet

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Jim Coates
6 Gallium

RE: No audio on Dell D800 Latitude

did load them in that order when Rick pointed me in the right direction.

Following that clue, I found your thread on the New to the Community board. I agree with the other regulars, except that the other drivers that Philip mentioned are not necessary as far as getting the Sigmatel driver to install.

So the situation as of now is that, if you go into the Device Manager and look under Sound...Controllers, you do see Sigma Tel C major Audio, without a bang next to it, but still no audio?


I presume I won't have any issue downloading it using my Mac (as I did this with all the drivers) and simply putting it in a USB..?

I'm not sure you can do it with the Mac, because you don't simply download it to the thumb drive. The Diagnostics has to be "installed" on the drive.

That is because the Dell 32-bit Diagnostics does not run in Windows. It runs in its own operating system that has to be booted into, so you can't just put it on a drive and then plug it into a Windows computer, and run it like a you would a Windows app.

But even though the actual Diagnostic does not run in Windows, its installer does, so the normal process of installing it to a usb drive is to download the Diagnostics package and run the installer, which has an option to install it onto a usb or cd. Philip has written a set of instructions for doing that, with screen shots.

Philip uses the initials DDDP to refer to the download package. He provides a link to a particular version. I would normally suggest that you use the version for the D800, but I don't know if one that old had the installer for usb, so if you try yours and it doesn't work, try the one Philip linked to. Or vice versa.

I said I don't know if you can do it on the Mac because I don't know whether the installer will run on the Mac, but it should become apparent as soon as you try it.


If you get the Diagnostics installed on the thumb drive or cd, here are my instructions for testing the audio:

1. Re-start the computer and tap the f12 key as soon as it starts to boot up.

2. Select usb or cd/dvd from the boot menu, then press the Enter key. The computer might run the PSA tests  before Dell 32-bit Diagnostics starts. If so, let those tests finish.

3. Dell Diagnostics should open after the PSA tests, or you should see an option to open it.

4. Select 'Custom', then the audio tests. (At this point - after you have opened Dell Diagnostic custom - if you can't find the option to select the audio tests that is a symptom of a failed audio chip.)

5. The tests will run. There are roughly 6 of them for audio. If you only have one or two, that is a symptom of a failed audio chip. Some of the tests will play a piece of instrumental music -- not just simple beeps & tones -- and ask you whether you heard it.

6. If you don't hear the music during the test it definitely means there is a hardware failure somewhere in the system.

7.If you do hear the audio during the test but not when you boot back into Windows, that means the hardware is okay but there is a problem with the audio driver or with Windows.

8. Error codes: If you answer 'no' to any question that the test asks you, the test generates an error code that can tell a technician that you answered 'no' to that question. The test does not usually pinpoit the exact component that has gone bad. Before answering 'no' to a question, make note of the circumstances at that point so you will know in general what the error code means.

Error Code 4C00:0619 - Speaker could not be heard
Error Code 1B63:061B - User indicated a failure
Error Code 1B22:061B - Analog Sound Playback - User indicated a failure
Error Code 1B22:111B - Mono Output Sound Playback
Error Code:1B63:181B - User indicated they did not hear the expected result
Error Code : 1B22:071B - User's response indicated a failure (external mic test)
Error Code 1B63:0268 - Codec failed to generate interrupts
Error Code: 1B63:0667 - Codec failed to generate a play interrupt


If the audio hardware passes the tests, check that the Windows Audio Service is on.

Go to Start/Run and type "services.msc" then hit the 'Enter' key (or click 'ok'). The Services window will appear. Scroll down until you find "Windows Audio" towards the bottom of the list. Check that it is enabled, set to automatic, and running. If it isn't, double click on it and change the Startup type to Automatic, then click Start, Apply, and OK.

If the Audio Service is not the problem, I would suggest re-doing the operating system installation, and then install the drivers again in the suggested order.


There was an odd hardware problem that could occur on some old models, where the modem could fail in a way that would cause no audio, sometimes with an error message but more rarely sometimes without one. The test was to remove the modem and see if audio started working. It was a rare issue, but it could happen whether or not the modem was being used.

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

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JanetBiggar
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RE: No audio on Dell D800 Latitude

Thanks Jim, I will try this out. I did have a chance to check out the diagnostics but have to find my saved web page on making an iso cd for the install. I'm a bit under a time crunch as I've promised this computer to a youth...

I really appreciates the help and will update the forum regardless.

J

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JanetBiggar
1 Nickel

RE: No audio on Dell D800 Latitude

I forgot to answer some of your questions Jim:

I did end up wiping and reinstalling the XP OS after I initially did what was suggested as I had added in the XP SP4. When I wiped it I went back to the ISO XP SP 3 disk I had then loaded only the drivers I needed plus the SSD and quickset in the proper order.

Yes, when I check device manager there are no question marks or red "x"s and it does say Sigmatel C-major audio. Interestingly under driver details it says driver date: 11/15/2004 (version 5.10.0.3952) yet at the Dell site where I downloaded it it indicates release date of Jan 22, 2007 and last updated date of Nov 3, 2011 BUT the version is the same (5.10.0.3952,A15) - so I'm thinking since the version is the same all is fine. Device manger indicates all is working properly.

Lastly I saw something in the audio forum about going into diagnostics and choosing NO to the colour bars to see if I got a beep (this was an alternative if I wasn't able to chk audio tests specifically) - I did that and DID NOT get any beeps.

So at this point I m going to see if I can make an ISO disk on a Dell Latitude E6420 of the Dell D800 diagnostics and if I unable then I think I will bale and place it with this youth "sans" audio.

Also I did do the services.msc thing and audio stuff there is enabled and automatic.

J

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Jim Coates
6 Gallium

RE: No audio on Dell D800 Latitude

Janet, the failure of the laptop to produce any sound in either the PSA tests or the Dell 32-bit Diagnostics means there has been hardware failure. It might not be the audio chip, could possibly be just a loose connection, but no way of knowing.

place it with this youth "sans" audio.

You can have working audio through headphones or external speakers, but not through the laptop's internal speakers, by getting a cheap usb audio jack. Amazon has a variety of them.

                                     

Usb audio devices like that contain their own audio chip and do not use the one on the laptop's motherboard. There is no need to install a driver because they use the Windows native usb audio driver.

Similarly, one could get usb speakers or usb headphones, which also contain their own hardware.


While I was working yesterday I reconsidered my answer to you about using the Mac. I became suspicious that I had overthought it -- I was thinking that the installer would have to be run from the Mac, but later decided that didn't make sense. Couldn't the Mac download the Diagnostic package onto a thumb drive, then plug the drive into the D800, then unzip the files into a folder on its hard drive, and run the installer from the D800?

So this morning I tested that. I used my Windows 7 Latitude E5420 to download Philip's suggested Diagnostic package onto a usb thumb drive, then unzipped the files into a folder on an old Dell Inspiron laptop running XP. Then I ran the installer and installed the diagnostic back onto the same thumb drive (had to format the drive first and wipe it clean), then booted up to the usb drive and the Diagnostics ran. So an old dog can learn a new trick, although it does take some time for that to happen. I am sorry that I gave you a bum steer about using the Mac.

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

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JanetBiggar
1 Nickel

RE: No audio on Dell D800 Latitude

Thank s again for your time and quick responses. I will definitely check out the usb audio jacks - not sure I'll find them here in South Africa and might be pricey if I do, hhiwever I will investigate them once I return to Canada early May for future. I have some speakers here but I don't think they are USB, just regular jack...will chk.

I did google how to get to the speakers, but far too much work! The jack sounds like a much better possible solution.

Thanks again.  I will definitely use this forum in future for any questions, it's been very helpful.

J

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