Anonymous
Not applicable

Re: Studio XPS 13" Audio Popping/Slow-Motion

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Hello, all.

 

I am going to do some investigating on this issue and escalate it to the appropriate groups within Dell. First I would like to attempt to establish a baseline. If you meet the criteria below, please send me a private message with your ship to address, name and service tag. I will get with you offline and do some 'sperimentin'. I will keep the thread updated and post the final resolution, once it becomes available. Thanks for your patience.

 

  • you have a Broadcom WLAN card.
  • you have updated the WLAN drivers from the Dell site- not from Broadcom or anywhere else... for now.
  • you have updated to the latest web posted BIOS version for your system.
  • you have updated to the latest web posted video drivers from Dell or anywhere else- include the driver version if you got it from anywhere but Dell.
  • you either get latency spikes in DPC, AND/OR you get popping or skipping audio.
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Robboman
2 Bronze

Re: Studio XPS 13" Audio Popping/Slow-Motion

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THANKS Bill!  I meet this criteria, I'll PM you when I get home to my 1340, I can't remember my service tag # right now.

FWIW, I never really clarified something as (IMO) it relates to the Broadcom WLAN driver... 

On my machine while running DPCLat.exe and not much else, in addition to that unrelenting DPC spike up around 4000 every 5th bar, I ALSO get, about once every minute or so, a single gigantic red spike that goes past the top of the chart (16000 +).  While playing an ordinary audio stream in Windows Media Player with default settings, I don't hear the audio pop every 5 seconds, but I DO hear a nasty pop-crackle when the gigantic spike happens.  When I disable WLAN, that gigantic spike goes away. 

So I presume that gigantic DPC spike is what the alternate Broadcom WLAN driver fixes, and some users in this thread are content with that. 

But we desperately need to get rid of that consistent spike to 4000 every few seconds too.  It's making "low latency" audio impossible, which is critical to some of us.

Until yesterday, user "trz303" was possibly the only one to see NO red bars on a Studio XPS, he accomplished that by forcing unsupported Windows XP install and then suspending ACPI.sys thread using Proc Explorer (can't be done in Vista).   

Yesterday, "syphic" managed to see NO red bars a different way - he updated video\wlan drivers and BIOS but his machine has ATI RADEON HD 3670.  MY machine has Nvidia GeForce 9400 M G. 

My current theory  - ACPI.sys is polling same IRQ(s) that the video card is using, every 5 seconds the conflict causes DPC latency.  On default Windows generic vid driver, same IRQ(s), same problem.  On ATI video card, latest driver is using different IRQs therefore no more conflict and DPC spikes go away.

????        

     

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mjbrilla
1 Copper

Re: Studio XPS 13" Audio Popping/Slow-Motion

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Recently updated to the new Bios A07 and installed new catalyst drivers as well as new Intel Wifi Drivers that just appeared on the Dell Website as well. Ran DPC latency checker and voila no more red or yellow bars at all!!!

Here is my setup
Studio XPS 16 (1640) Laptop: Intel Core 2 Duo P8600 (3MB cache/2.4GHz/1066Mhz FSB) w/2.0MP Integrated Webcam
Windows Vista Home Premium 64-bit
Intel WiFi Link 5100 802.11a/g/n Draft Mini Card
Dell Wireless 370 Bluetooth Module
90W AC Adapter
125V Power Cord
4 GB DDR3 SDRAM 1066MHz (2 DIMMs)
Blu-ray Disc Combo (DVD+/-RW + BD-ROM)
512MB ATI Mobility RADEON HD 3670
16 inch Edge-to-Edge HD Widescreen WLED LCD (1366x768)
320 GB Free Fall Sensor Hard Drive (7200 RPM)
6 Cell Primary Battery

I'm posting to confirm syphic's findings, updating to BIOS to version A07 solved the DPC latency issue on my laptop. I didn't update the graphics or Wifi drivers.

I have a Studio XPS 16 with identical specs, and I've been using Thesycon DPC Latency Checker for analysis. With BIOS ver. A06 I was getting 4000 microsecond red spikes every 4 seconds. I updated the BIOS to version A07 and all of the red spikes are gone, nothing but green bars. Average latency is now about 90 microseconds and max is about 500.

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Robboman
2 Bronze

Re: Studio XPS 13" Audio Popping/Slow-Motion

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Thanks mjbrilla!  So something did change in the BIOS A07!  As I've said, it didn't fix my red spikes, but I have some different hardware in my 1340.   You have the same Intel 5100 and ATI Radeon HD as syphic?   

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mjbrilla
1 Copper

Re: Studio XPS 13" Audio Popping/Slow-Motion

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Thanks mjbrilla!  So something did change in the BIOS A07!  As I've said, it didn't fix my red spikes, but I have some different hardware in my 1340.   You have the same Intel 5100 and ATI Radeon HD as syphic?   

Yep, identical!

I realize that this may not help you directly, but I'm hoping that the confirmation will help Dell Support to track down the issue and come up with a solution for everyone.

 

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zack183
1 Copper

Re: Studio XPS 13" Audio Popping/Slow-Motion

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I can also confirm that it is not the wirelss card causing the problem.

Suspicion lies increasingly with the Nvidia cards......let's hope for a driver update.

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Robboman
2 Bronze

Re: Studio XPS 13" Audio Popping/Slow-Motion

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I just wanted to update that I've been testing some stuff offline with Bill B from Dell, and he HAS escalated this internally.  Don't know the exact root cause of the DPC latency problem yet, but yeah, we confirmed it's not the Broadcom VS Intel wireless card.  Sounds like this could take a while, but I'm more confident that a real, permanent fix will happen... eventually.  

QUEDRO, have you tried the DPC Latency Checker tool?  If so, do you get the repeating red spikes?  Does your XPS 16 have NVidia graphics, or ATI?  Have you updated all the drivers and the BIOS from the dell website? 

       

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QUEDRO
1 Copper

Re: Studio XPS 13" Audio Popping/Slow-Motion

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I have ATI graphics. Idid not checke DPC Latency Checker tool (I will later) but I can say that updated everything. BIOS A05 to A07, all multimedia drivers, IDT Audio Software. Same prob. One thing what helped a bit, is I removed IDT Software and left only Vista drivers for audi. Now I do no get pauses (IDT doens't manage my audio card) but Music from Winamp for instance foes to external speakers but notification sounds from other application like Google Talk, Skype etc are played by internal speakers. Weird I know...that's how it is. Biggest problem as I can see are drivers and IDT Audio software.

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QUEDRO
1 Copper

Re: Studio XPS 13" Audio Popping/Slow-Motion

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Ok DPC results:

Absolut Maximum latency: ~1300 microseconds

Current latency: playes arround 100-200 microsec.

So, medium is about 400 microsec.

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MarcinM
1 Copper

Re: Studio XPS 13" Audio Popping/Slow-Motion

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hi,

I don't think it's nvidia problem - I have E6500 with Intel GFX and the same problem. WiFi, card reader, balanced power, latest drivers, latest bios etc - nothing works. I have the same issue with internal soundcard as well as with external Novation X-Station. And for me Dell it's useless because of that. I wonder why it took over a year for Dell to take care about something that makes this laptops useless for so many people 😞

I've already told several people NOT to buy Dell because of that (they bought Toshiba and Lenovo - it works just as promised...)

regards,
marcin

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