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very confusing problem ('experts' cant figure it out)

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July 13, 2006 2:54:50 AM

I have a dell E510 system with 5650 speakers... Recently, I haven't been getting any sound from the front 2 channels of the speakers. I have a X-Fi Xtrememusic sound card.

OK, first the 'experts' at dell thought i had settings switched around. I HAVE ALL SETTINGS SET FOR 5.1 AND ALL SETTINGS CORRECTLY. this isnt the problem.

2nd, the 'experts' thought my drivers were causing the problem. I HAVE THE LATEST DRIVERS FOR THIS HARDWARE. this is not the problem.

3rd, the 'experts' thought my speakers were blown. They sent me a new set of the same speakers. THE SAME THING HAPPENS WITH THE NEW SPEAKERS. this is not the problem.

4th, the 'experts' thought my sound card was faulty. They shipped me a brand new sound card. EXACTLY THE SAME THING HAPPENS. this is not the problem.

Can ANYONE take a guess as to what the hell is going on here.

I know the X-Fi takes a power connection, the only thing I can think of is that theres something wrong with that little power cable.

Please, can someone besides the 'experts' help me, because the 'dell experts' havent done much for me yet.
July 13, 2006 3:20:36 AM

Well, as for driver, make sure you installed the right ones, and make sure before installing new drivers, Uninstall previous drivers..

disable your onboard sound if you have it, in bios of course..

Now check your speakers, make sure you plugged the Three "green, orange, and black" Cables correctly into your sound card.. double check this..

Second, make sure there is no switch on the subwoofer or Speakers that make it 2.1 ... make sure "matrix" is off for the sound system, or 2 speaker emulation button..

third make sure all speakers are correctly connected together..

double check your settings, Always double check...

Thats all i got right now
July 13, 2006 3:20:40 AM

YOU SAY RECENTLY did you install some sort of multi media software

what did you change? if anything

if your hardware checks out... must be a software change

is system restore on?

what software related to sound is on the computer, get rid of it Windows can handle it.

creative software and windows could be having a tug o war
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July 13, 2006 3:22:32 AM

Hey vishusmartishus,

That's an interesting one. Does it only happen in certain applications or is this the case all the time? I've seen this happen on speakers in media players such as VLC however if this is happening all the time then I doubt that is an issue.

Have you changed your media player recently? I'll have a think about it if that's not the case and see what I can come up with.

Thanks,

Simulacrum.
July 13, 2006 3:37:37 AM

My guess is that its something obvious. The biggest problem with diagnosing something over long distances is that its easy to miss a problem that's staring you in the face. Another point: I'd hardly call anyone at Dell an expert at much of anything. I've only called them a half dozen times or so (last resort when failing to hell some poor Dell user) and all they've done is waste my time. I could go on for days but I won't.

Despite what you (or others) may say, the problem could still potentially be one of the things that you've "eliminated". Has your system always had this issue? If no, when did it start, and had you done anything to your system around that time? Have you tried swapping cables around to see if the surronds work when plugged into the front speakers' jack? You could also just try a set of stereo speakers or headphones in the front channel jack. Have you tried using settings other than 5.1 to get the front channels to work? By trying something other than the "ideal" setup you may find out some useful info, such as what components (if any) are truly broken. Another possibility is that the amplifier for the front channels is shot. This way, the sound card could be perfectly fine, and swapping out the front speakers wouldn't solve it either. I'm not familiar with your speakers since I stay away from sub/sat systems in favor of "real" speakers, but usually the amp for all channels is in the sub. You could test this by hooking the front channel speakers to the surround jacks on the back of the sub and vice versa.

Good luck with that...
-mcg
July 13, 2006 4:12:28 AM

Quote:
I have a dell E510 system with 5650 speakers... Recently, I haven't been getting any sound from the front 2 channels of the speakers. I have a X-Fi Xtrememusic sound card.

OK, first the 'experts' at dell thought i had settings switched around. I HAVE ALL SETTINGS SET FOR 5.1 AND ALL SETTINGS CORRECTLY. this isnt the problem.

2nd, the 'experts' thought my drivers were causing the problem. I HAVE THE LATEST DRIVERS FOR THIS HARDWARE. this is not the problem.

3rd, the 'experts' thought my speakers were blown. They sent me a new set of the same speakers. THE SAME THING HAPPENS WITH THE NEW SPEAKERS. this is not the problem.

4th, the 'experts' thought my sound card was faulty. They shipped me a brand new sound card. EXACTLY THE SAME THING HAPPENS. this is not the problem.

Can ANYONE take a guess as to what the hell is going on here.

I know the X-Fi takes a power connection, the only thing I can think of is that theres something wrong with that little power cable.

Please, can someone besides the 'experts' help me, because the 'dell experts' havent done much for me yet.


Let me start out saying this as someone who has worked with them extensively in the past, there are NO Dell 'Experts'!

That being said, I ran into a similar problem to yours a few years back, and I could not find the solution. After searching on Google for a few evenings, I found it. I beleive the problem was my multimedia filters were conflicting with each other, and preventing the 5.1 sound from functioning properly. I had to download a program that scanned the system and cleaned up the filters that were not needed/causing the problem. I believe the program was called Filmerit 2.1. Try to find it on the interenet and see if that solves your problem. If you can't find it, PM me and I will email it to you.
July 13, 2006 4:40:59 AM

Sorry but can you list your specifications please? Also, I'm not aware of any extra power connector for that card, I thought it ran off the pci bus. I just checked that power connector and it's only used if you have the I/O panel. No harm if you connect it and don't have the panel.

There have been issues with that card and some NForce4 chipsets... sometimes fixed with bios updates...

Have you tried any different pci slots? others with problems have gotten them to work by changing the slot.
July 13, 2006 5:03:28 AM

Quote:
I have a dell E510 system with 5650 speakers... Recently, I haven't been getting any sound from the front 2 channels of the speakers. I have a X-Fi Xtrememusic sound card.

OK, first the 'experts' at dell thought i had settings switched around. I HAVE ALL SETTINGS SET FOR 5.1 AND ALL SETTINGS CORRECTLY. this isnt the problem.

2nd, the 'experts' thought my drivers were causing the problem. I HAVE THE LATEST DRIVERS FOR THIS HARDWARE. this is not the problem.

3rd, the 'experts' thought my speakers were blown. They sent me a new set of the same speakers. THE SAME THING HAPPENS WITH THE NEW SPEAKERS. this is not the problem.

4th, the 'experts' thought my sound card was faulty. They shipped me a brand new sound card. EXACTLY THE SAME THING HAPPENS. this is not the problem.

Can ANYONE take a guess as to what the hell is going on here.

I know the X-Fi takes a power connection, the only thing I can think of is that theres something wrong with that little power cable.

Please, can someone besides the 'experts' help me, because the 'dell experts' havent done much for me yet.


You have reinstalled the drivers and replaced the sound card and speakers.

You need a new MB.
Don't get another Dell.
July 13, 2006 6:35:29 PM

I'm pretty sure that I only have 2 media players. That is the Creative Mediasource and WMP. the same thing happens for both.

this sounds so much like it should be a problem with the speakers, but 2 brand new sets doing the same thing....

If that little power connector isnt for anything, then I'm completely lost.

this problem is way out of my league.

i wonder what theyll tell me if i call them again...?
July 13, 2006 7:08:53 PM

i dont mean to sound intimidating and stupid but is your pc not on mute and is it pluged into the audio out not audio in or mic. Also check you pc for spyware and also random codecs can install them selves with programs that much up your sound, has happened to me a few times, bloody anoyin wen it does
July 13, 2006 7:26:59 PM

Also to make sure all bases are covered here, you sure the source you are using to test speaker output is multichannel? Also, you dont have a reciever you push everything through?


If you have uninstalled and reinstalled the drivers (used a driver cleaner?) and the problem still exsists, you might want to back up your computer and reformat. Then you can install things one at a time untill the problem reoccures. Bingo.

:arrow: Other things im thinking about for you to check (and please... double check!).
Sometimes, speaker sets are set with the fader settings jacked up.
Mess around with the control panel's audio settings.
Unplug all speakers from the system except for the front speakers.
Run creative's diagnostic software *in "all programs -> creative"
Use a driver cleaner when reinstalling drivers incase some setting is jacked up in the registry.
Turn off onboard sound in bios.
Place the soundcard in a different PCI slot.
Upgrade to the AGP version of your sound card. That solves most issues as the AGP bus provides more wattage and stability then PCI slots.


(that last suggestion was a joke)
If you have any questions on how to do any of these let me know.
July 13, 2006 8:29:11 PM

I have an X-Fi extreme music card and it doesn't need a power connector, although this is probably not your problem you should try unplugging the power connector. Just in case.
The power connector is only for more expensive X-Fi cards.
What mobo have you got, there are some NF4 problems.

Do all the Creative programs you got with your card work? For example the consoles that you use to control the volumes and CMSS-3D etc. If they don't work it might be a software error, I would reinstall the card's software to make sure. If you reinstall and it still doesnt work - I'm certain it is a mobo problem.

Definitely build your own next time, if you can, it's much better that way. Dell is only ever gonna get on peoples nerves. Don't give 'em the satisfaction.

Try updating your BIOS and/or sound card drivers etc if any new versions come out, and try a different PCI slot. If it is a hardware error its probably a PCI slot or some other mobo problem IMO.
July 13, 2006 10:45:22 PM

Quote:
this problem is way out of my league.

Have you tried any of the things I suggested. I'm pretty sure I did a pretty good job of covering bases you may not have hit yet. If its not clear enough for you I can reiterate if necessary.

Quote:
i wonder what theyll tell me if i call them again...?
They'll probably tell you something stupid and waste more of your time by not addressing the real problem. :roll:

-mcg
July 14, 2006 3:00:46 AM

K, understand that i've already done all the diagnostics. its the front 2 channels. This might be some interesting information:

WHen I use a Y-cable to hook all 3 cables (black, yellow, green) into just the green slot, NONe of them work. This obviously leads me to believe that thers something wrong with that green jack. If the front speakers dont work when their in that jack, and none of them work with the y-cable in that jack.
July 14, 2006 3:50:09 AM

I had a similar problem with my SB Live 24-bit...when I updated to the latest drivers, I wasn't getting any sound from my rear speakers. After an hour of messing around with it, I reverted to the original drivers on the CD, and they were fine again. I don't know if you just updated (didn't scan through all the posts, sorry), but if there is an earlier set of drivers you can try, I would do a rollback.
July 14, 2006 4:00:43 AM

[/quote]
you would uninstall and reinstall for less problems.use your original disc.[/quote]

That's actually what I should have said...thanks. :) 
July 14, 2006 9:29:01 PM

-_-.

all i had to do was turn integrated audio off in the bios.

sorry for being such a dumbass....
July 15, 2006 2:57:37 AM

Quote:
all i had to do was turn integrated audio off in the bios.

sorry for being such a dumbass....



Glad the problem was resolved :D  :D  For future refrence disabling onboard sound is what you jusd did. ;) 

And another point...members of this forum figured that one out. Hell would freeze over before "Dell Experts" would lol.
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