SB live, popping and crakling

I put a computer together for my friend and he gets popping and crackling noises over the speakers.
it is:
1.4 athlon
ECS k7s5a
sb live 1024
cheap psu
win 98se

i know it is not the drivers. it is also not the speakers.

has anyone else had this problem with this soundcard? is there an easy remedy other than replacing the sb live?
44 answers Last reply
More about live popping crakling
  1. I had that problem. What I did was exchange my SB Live 5.1 for a Santa Cruz and everything went away. The Live! pops and cracks all over the place!

    AMD technology + Intel technology = Intel/AMD Pentathlon IV; the <b>ULTIMATE</b> PC processor
  2. I have similiar problem. I am using a Abit BX6 rev2. SB live is the worst sound card ever made.
  3. Yeah, i thought that might be the case. I feel guilty cos i told him i would make him a nice pc, which it is otherwise. I need to replace it with something cheap as it is coming out of my pocket. The problem i had when building it was that he wanted to cut costs everywhere. I have got an old soundblaster 16 pci somewhere which will be good enough for his needs. Are there similar problems with this card.
    BTW, i have a Sblive 5.1 in my system and it works perfectly. I even have installed playcentre without a hitch. (needed for centre speaker on my DTT2200 speakers)
  4. Have you tried running the card in your PC? Maybe the card is faulty?

    Also, what version of Windows 98 are you running? did you install any service packs?
  5. i will try it in my pc. good idea man. i bought it of yahoo auctions which was a dumb thing to do. cant return it..
    it is exactly the same version of windows as i am using, and mine doesnt do it.
  6. You might want to try the older driver. I did not have the crack sound before I upgrade the driver.
  7. can you remember which driver version you were using before the crackling started? and where i could get it? i could try kazaa or windrivers.
  8. monkeyspank, it's a limitation with the SB Live itself. THe SoundBlaster Live is a PCI bus hog that constantly sends data across the PCI bus. THe problem with that is, with high CPU utilization or high PCI bus utilization, the SB Live will start to crack. The problem gets worse with the more PCI cards you add.

    AMD technology + Intel technology = Intel/AMD Pentathlon IV; the <b>ULTIMATE</b> PC processor

    Man!! i'm having the exact same problem as you!!
    i have the ECS K7S5A board with SB Live! Value, and it's giving me popping and crackling sound as well! (I am using win2k)

    Please tell me what I can do...
    I just bought the Altec Lansing ATP3 & SB Live! Value 3 days ago, and I haven't' gotten a good night sleep since then!
  10. AMD_Man, I have a PCI voodoo4, maybe that's conflicting with SB Live!? (they share the same IRQ, 11)

    Just to let you guys know, my roommate is using the SB Live! Value as well, he has an Abit motherboard & Asus AGP Geforece2 vid card.

    I exchanged my soundcard with his, and my system is still giving me the popping & crackling sound, and his system sounds perfect.

    My other friend has a dell system with Rage 128 Pro sharing IRQ 9 with his SoundMax soundcard, and his system sounds fine too!
  11. Does Audigy have the same problem?
  12. Roasted Pea -- Looks like you and me have gotta get new soundcards mate.

    thanks AMD man, i thought this was the case but didnt want to splash out on a new one unnecessarily.
  13. Quote:
    AMD_Man, I have a PCI voodoo4, maybe that's conflicting with SB Live!? (they share the same IRQ, 11)

    Yes, that's a huge problem. Both the Voodoo4 adn the SB Live are PCI bandwidth hogs. THey're fighting for the limited bandwidth of the PCI bus, in simple terms. This can cause popping and cracking. It can also significantly slow down your Voodoo4 in games. I have a Voodoo4 PCI in my one of my PCs too but that PC has integrated sound so I don't have that problem.

    AMD technology + Intel technology = Intel/AMD Pentathlon IV; the <b>ULTIMATE</b> PC processor
  14. You must have the Soundcard in the 3rd PCI slot and it must have it's own IRQ. In Your BIOS, go to advanced Peripherals and select IRQ reserved for Display device. You may have to eliminate other PCI slot devices from your card so Windows resets the IRQ's. Also, if you are not using any of the serial or USB ports, disabling them will free up more IRQ's. Soundbalster Live's are very selfish and will not be happy if they have to share their IRQ's:) If you still get popping and crackles, let us know, but this has been found to fix 75% of the SB Live problems I have run into.

    If it works for you then don't fix it.
  15. I used to be a fan of SBLive cards, they didn't have much competition in the price bracket when released. Got three running in systems at the moment.

    That was until I bought an Aopen AK33 mobo and Duron 750(@825) cpu. I've tried everything including arsend's advice above, and a BIOS release from Aopen that purported to fix the problem. The cracking & popping won't go away.

    Apparently VIA mobo's suffer more than others. It's a real pisser, especially when you are responsible for someone else's machine.
  16. My sblive have it's own IRQ (IRQ5) but it still makes popping and crakling sound.
  17. I tried the SBLive on Abit BX6R2. The motherboard uses BX chipset. My SBLive have problem with it too.
  18. Hi!

    Play around with the BIOS settings for the PCI bus, stuff like PCI buffers, Concurrency, Latency etc. Disable/Enable one at a time to see if any of it changes anything.

    Tom's Hardware Guide
  19. I checked out creative's website. It does have a document on how to solve the problem.

    Here is the link.
  20. Fredi!! Change the sig of the week please!!

    AMD technology + Intel technology = Intel/AMD Pentathlon IV; the <b>ULTIMATE</b> PC processor
  21. Ditto AMD_Man!

    The bloody thing's been there for months.
  22. Hi guys,

    To see if it was a PCI bandwidth problem, I took out my PCI voodoo4 and inserted my roommate's AGP card (Asus V7100 Geforce2 MX) Everything worked great! No more popping & crackling sound! I'm very happy now :D

    I'm going to go get myself an AGP card tomorrow (AMD_Man, u should know the store, Canada Computers!), Hercules 4500 Prophet w/ Kyro II!!

    Thanks everyone for the input!
  23. Great!!! Glad to help!

    AMD technology + Intel technology = Intel/AMD Pentathlon IV; the <b>ULTIMATE</b> PC processor
  24. Get the Aureal Vortex2 SQ2500 SuperQuad from <A HREF="" target="_new"></A>. Only $14 and it's one of the best soundcards of all time.

    What's the frequency, Kenneth?
  25. I'd be willing to bet that a large number of you who have problems are using mobos w/ VIA chipsets. I do see that one of you has a BX based board. BX is not a VIA chipset, but it may have problems because of overloaded PCI bus bandwidth. The BX is the most stable and well tested chipset ever made, so I would wager that a problem with it would be caused by something different from those who have VIA chipsets. VIA just doesn't take the time to polish their drivers/chips like Intel does. Too bad Asus botched the nForce board launch. Maybe they'll get it right the 2nd time around. Here's hoping...

    SoundBlaster cards and VIA chipsets have a long history of problems. I doubt that it is Creative's fault, although Creative definitely could use some driver polish also!

    If changing to a AGP graphics card fixes the problem for some, great, but that still sounds like the chipset may not be handling the bus traffic protocols right. I still suspect that it's a VIA problem. Putting the bus-intensive graphics card on a different bus can't hurt though!

    :wink: :cool: :wink: :cool: :wink: :cool: :wink: :cool:
    :smile: <b><font color=green> Have a day </font color=green></b> :smile:
  26. Quote:

    SoundBlaster cards and VIA chipsets have a long history of problems. I doubt that it is Creative's fault, although Creative definitely could use some driver polish also!

    Why are people having problems distinguishing between the VIA 686B Data corruption issue and Creative EMU10K1 cards?

    The popping and cracking is Creative's fault because it's a PCI bandwidth hog so under stressed bandwidth conditions it will pop and crack on any motherboard.

    The data corruption issue is only on the VIA 686B southbridge and has been solved by most motherboard manufacturers through wordarounds in the BIOS.

    AMD technology + Intel technology = Intel/AMD Pentathlon IV; the <b>ULTIMATE</b> PC processor
  27. I agree. I think it is Creative's fault.
  28. I even blame country music on Creative Labs' sound card division.

    <font color=orange>Quarter</font color=orange> <font color=blue>Pounder</font color=blue> <font color=orange>Inside</font color=orange>
  29. I'm using a VIA chipset with an SBlive and I don't have any trouble with it. Never had to fiddle with it either. The playcenter is crap though.

    Wabbit season! Duck season! AMD season! INTEL season!
  30. SBLive works fine if you do not have other PCI card that need bandwidth.
  31. Crashman: Dude, how come I've never seen that before??? I could've used that when I built my system a couple months before! Maybe I wouldn't have to worry about the SB Live problem that's present. (Not like I can hear cracking or popping, but $14 sounds cool, especially if it performs great.) Perhaps I'll get this, if I start hearing any cracking... :smile:

    Problem solved. Please check out <A HREF="" target="_new">My Website</A>.
  32. These are $100 soundcards originally (OEM price, $150 retail). But the company got sued out of business by Creative simply for the offense of making a better card. They won the lawsuites by never recovered legal fees, and went backrupt. The Vortex2 is the standard real hardware freeks compare new soundcards to.

    What's the frequency, Kenneth?
  33. Does Vortex2 card have Win XP support?
  34. Really? WTF!?! I think that's lame...

    Anyways, I'm thinking of getting a few of these, since they are 14 bucks. I was wondering as well if they support Windows XP.

    I'm reading the driver site provided from the Computer Geeks site, and I saw the word "beta" mentioned about the Win2K drivers. I'm hesitant, but still leaning towards it.

    What would this card be better than the Santa Cruz, Audigy, SB Live Value, Seismic Edge 5.1, etc. ?

    Problem solved. Please check out <A HREF="" target="_new">My Website</A>.
  35. Well theoretically it's better than all of them, but it doesn't have complete EAX support and A3D support in future games is questionable.

    AMD technology + Intel technology = Intel/AMD Pentathlon IV; the <b>ULTIMATE</b> PC processor
  36. Microsoft has their OWN licence to produce the drivers. Nobody else has one. Creative cut licence support, so that only those who were already licenced could do anything. MS actually did us a favor and produced their own XP drivers for this card! And it works!
    I just got some in yesterday, and they even included the maligned Win2k driver. The best 98SE driver was version 2048, which can still be downloaded from several sites (the card comes with 2041).

    What's the frequency, Kenneth?
  37. Instead of Aureal's drivers supporting WinXP, XP's drivers support the card. See my above post.

    What's the frequency, Kenneth?
  38. Version 2048 drivers have EAX support, I don't know how well XP's driver supports EAX, but MS does have a licence to use it.
    A3D 2.0 should be around for another year or so in most new games, because of the large installed userbase. EAX 1.0 should carry on longer since it's supported by so many other cards. You can tell the difference between EAX and A3D imediately, A3D 2.0 offers positional audio that would be hard to beet, and it even works on 2 speakers by modifying the sound to imitate changes sounds make as they encounter the surface of the ear. But I have mine set up as 4.1.
    Getting past theory, I've owned the Live Platinum and my SQ2500 sounds far more realistic, live recordings sound like they're live, instead of recorded!

    What's the frequency, Kenneth?
  39. Does the Win XP supports 4 spearker? WIn XP has driver for SBLive too but it only support 2 speaker.
  40. Yes, all four of my speakers played using the default XP driver.

    What's the frequency, Kenneth?
  41. That is great. Thanks for the information.
  42. Crashman...I'm stoked. I'm thinking of selling my SB Live Value and buying one of those. Thanks for that recommendation! :smile:

    Problem solved. Please check out <A HREF="" target="_new">My Website</A>.
  43. It's so inexpensive that if you don't like it you can resell it at a profit!

    What's the frequency, Kenneth?
  44. Yes, I can't agree more!!! You can't lose!!

    AMD technology + Intel technology = Intel/AMD Pentathlon IV; the <b>ULTIMATE</b> PC processor
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