Question about Creative Labs Audio Cards

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Distorted sound after installing software plus GigaPocket issues

I've recently bought myself a set of Logitech Z5500 5.1 surround sound speakers for my PC and also an external USB Sound Blaster X-Fi 5.1 sound card as my PC currently only has a built-in OEM sound card.

I managed to set up the speakers as per normal, and the sound card works great, with a few exceptions.

Firstly, I initially received the expected sound from the speakers when I first wired them up, but as soon as I installed the software, the output was distorted and crackly and I had no idea how to get the levels back down to normal. However, I had just reformatted my PC and was only running XP SP1, so perhaps the problem could be the fact that I did not have SP2 installed...

I had no idea how to correct the distortion, so I reformatted my PC again and started from scratch, but didn't install the software this time, and so far the speakers seem to be working fine, albeit without the benefits that the software has to offer.

I have since reinstalled Service Pack 2 for XP, but i'm reluctant to install the Sound Blaster software in case I experience the same problem again and lose the use of the speakers - As they are currently working fine, I do not really want to take the risk


My second and perhaps more serious problem is that my built in TV card doesn't seem to want to work with this sound card. I have a Sony Vaio RZ504, and the TV card comes built-in as standard, but for some reason it only outputs sound via the built-in sound card.

The Sound Blaster USB sound card seems to be missing a crucial volume setting which the TV card is reliant on - I am not sure if there are any updates available for the Sound Blaster software drivers, but this seems to be a very serious issue as my GigaPocket software doesn't seem to have an option to choose output sources, and as a result I am unable to watch / record TV, or play my consoles through the A/V connections as I have no sound

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  • 4 more comments 
  • G3M-PH0 Mar 03, 2009

    No, I have not disabled my onboard sound card. How would I go about doing so?



    So far the only program that I have found that isn't working with the new sound card is the GigaPocket software which runs everything from the TV card



    My PC remote control also no longer controls the volume at all, and instead I am forced to use the volume control for the Z5500's, but I can live with that



    A list of my hardware specs can be found here:

    http://support.vaio.sony.co.uk/tutorials...

  • G3M-PH0 Mar 03, 2009

    Ok, no, I have never accessed the BIOS in this manner.



    I had already entered the Device Manager though and disabled the onboard sound card (This was my initial thought and the first thing I did), but this has not fixed the problem



    The GigaPocket software seems to play saved recorded data fine, but not direct through either the coaxial or A/V ports. However, if I set the onboard sound card as the default, and reccord something with this software, I can then play it back with sound through my new sound card... But of course, this is not really suitable for watching television or playing a game etc



  • G3M-PH0 Mar 03, 2009

    Correct, it was F2.



    I've disabled the sound card completely, but doesn't seem to have solved the GigaPocket problem, although the USB Sound Blaster is now the only selectable sound card on offer



    The sound is definitely being input, but just isn't being output - At least, not through the desired sound card. It seems that the GigaPocket software will only work with the OEM sound card

  • G3M-PH0 Mar 03, 2009

    Any drivers for the Sound Blaster must have been loaded automatically as I haven't installed anything from the disc for fear that it will corrupt and distort the sound again as it did the first time. I have no idea whether there is anything within the supplied software that overcomes the problem of having no sound with certain programs, but seems a bit strange that there are only three volume control settings for the Sound Blaster compared to at least eight for the onboard sound card...



    Here is a comparison between the two:



    http://img25.imageshack.us/img25/4315/su...



    http://img21.imageshack.us/img21/8347/so...



    As you can see, the Sound Blaster has no master volume, no line in, and no mic input settings, so i'm wondering whether these could be included on the supplied Cd Rom... However, without knowing why I received distorted noise before, I don't really want to take the risk at this time until I know a little more about it



    I do have a digital optical port on both the Sound Blaster and the surround sound commander, as well as one built into my onboard sound card on my PC. Although, I don't have an optical cable long enough to connect any of them together. But I do know what you mean about the lack of a physical line out





    And just to clarify, this is the Sound Blaster I am referring to:



    http://www.soundblaster.com/products/pro...







  • G3M-PH0 Mar 04, 2009

    I recently stumbled across the following webpage which is an update for the Giga Pocket software:



    http://esupport.sony.com/US/perl/swu-dow...



    Although it seems that the site is of American origin and only intended for certain American sold models, as detailed in the following list, of which my model (RZ504) is not included:



    http://esupport.sony.com/US/perl/swu-mat...





    However, one thing did catch my eye - The sentence on the page which states:



    "Enhances compatibility with the Microsoft® Windows® XP operating system Service Pack 2."



    Now this has me thinking that perhaps SP2 is the problem here and not either of the sound cards. After all, everything was done at roughly the same time, so I have no way to distinguish what single factor may have caused the Giga Pocket software to cease functioning normally. As I didn't test it out with SP1, it could well have been the installation of SP2 that broke it... I am also guessing that this is just one such example of Giga Pocket being incompatible with SP2





    The question is, if this update software exists for certain US models, then surely there should also be a similar update for UK spec models, including my own.



    I already know of at least one update which fixes a problem with the timer recording manager and DST, but can't seem to find a full update for the whole software



  • G3M-PH0 Mar 17, 2009

    I contacted Sony via eMail well over a week ago and have yet to receive a reply, which means they're either ignoring me or just don't know how to solve the Giga Pocket problem.



    It's frustrating,a s one of the main reasons I bought this computer was because of the Giga Pocket feature and the ability to watch TV through the computer and attach my consoles to it, but now that's not possible without experiencing a loss of sound due to upgrading my sound card. One would think they would be aware of such issues and upgraded the software, or at least released a newer version which supports other sound cards

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  • 447 Answers

Have you physically disabled the onboard sound in the BIOS? By doing this I think most of your other hardware/software would default to the only audio device (your SB).

Post back if you've already done this and I'll see what else I can dig up on your hardware and possible conflicts.

Posted on Mar 03, 2009

  • 3 more comments 
  • John Elliott
    John Elliott Mar 03, 2009

    Have you ever had to go into the BIOS or setup for your machine?

    Different models have different keys which allow you to enter BIOS - sometimes del or f2 or f12 or even hitting the esc key to access a boot options menu. You may find info on which in the user guide for your machine.

    Once in the BIOS go to the integrated peripherals and find the onboard sound, hopefully there is an option to disable it.

    You may even be able to accomplish this within the device manager in windows by opening the Sound, video and game controllers section and disabling the sigmatel audio device (right click + disable).

  • John Elliott
    John Elliott Mar 03, 2009

    Consult your user manual on how to enter the BIOS for your machine, let's try to physically disable the onboard audio in your unit to be absolutely sure there is no conflict.

  • John Elliott
    John Elliott Mar 03, 2009

    I believe you use the F2 key on boot to access the settings.

    Look for an entry for integrated peripherals (or something similar to that title) and see if you can't disable the onboard audio.


  • John Elliott
    John Elliott Mar 03, 2009

    Now that the onboard audio has been disabled in the BIOS we may want to try to reinstall the SB drivers (not necessarily the added software although you may want to give this a try also).

    I did spend some time going thru the support docs for both pieces of equipment (as I know you have) and as you've pointed out - there's just something missing here. One would hope that Sony would address this problem (as my impression is that it would require an update or patch to deal with the TV card audio).

    I wish there was a better answer for you but without a physical line out (and into the SB) and no way to "redirect" the sound output I'm not sure there's much we can do here...There is however an additional setting in the SB driver for Digital Output Only (detailed on this page (located under advanced settings)), toggling/disabling this and testing might be something you want to try.


  • John Elliott
    John Elliott Mar 17, 2009

    I can definitely feel for you, I've setup a similar media system (albeit an aftermarket add on) with my satellite system. When one has the hardware integrated out of the box one would expect the stuff to work with just about anything external, especially when it's name brand.

    Hopefully Sony will get back to you soon and perhaps release an update for your unit that takes care of that...

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I just installed a used sound blaster audigy 2zs card in my computer that I bought off Ebay. The sound is very distorted. Not to the point of unrecognition but very annoying. There are no conflicts with...


If you turn it down and it's still distorted mute all inputs. If still distorted you need to verify on other speakers. Then try another card

Nov 05, 2009 | Audio Cards

1 Answer

Have in built sound card in D845HV mother board. Experiencing heavy distortion as soon as the mic is connected. It was working well till last month.



Distorted or scratchy sound can be caused by several problems. Improving the sound can be as simple as rearranging your hardware components. The following suggestions may resolve the problem of scratchy sound:
  • Are there any other devices around the speakers or wires for the speakers? Electro-magnetic interference can cause poor audio. Try moving your speakers and wires around and away from other devices.
  • Have you recently added any new cards to your computer? Cards within the computer can also cause electro-magnetic interference. Try moving the card to another location within the computer, if possible.
  • Verify that you are not encountering a hardware issue with the speakers you have by trying another pair of computer speakers.
  • Poor audio quality or low volumes may occur if you are using passive (non-amplified) speakers.
  • Are your speakers too close to your monitor? The speakers can pick up electrical noise from your monitor so move them farther away. Subwoofers should never be placed near the monitor because their powerful magnets can interfere with the picture. They should be on the floor to maximize low-frequency transmission.
  • Are you experiencing sound problems only with particular games or programs? If you notice sound problems such as stuttering voices and static on some games or programs but not others, check with the software vendor for a software patch.
Data courtesy of: http://www.intel.com/support/motherboards/desktop/sb/CS-020642.htm

Also make sure to inspect your microphone, and the cord that connects it to your PC, for physical damage.

If you're still experiencing issues, you may need to replace the your microphone.

I hope this helps.

Ben P.


Apr 11, 2009 | Audio Cards

1 Answer

I have a creative audigy Creative Labs Sound Blaster Audigy 2 Sound Card and Creative 7.1 surround sound speakers. When I was using XP all 7 speakers worked perfectly. Now with my newer Vista machine,...


Uninstall all sound drivers for the card. Delete all folder and use search to locate everything related to the sound card. Remove card , turn comp on w/o card. Turn off reinsert card.
Should fix it.
Vista has many,many issues like this.
If you have more types of sound listed in "SOUNDS" delete all but Audigy.
Re-install drivers AFTER you get ALL NEW VISTA UPDATES>
Mastersage

Feb 18, 2009 | Creative Labs Sound Blaster Audigy 2 Sound...

1 Answer

I had bought new creative inspire m4500 but instead of four only


I found the solution to my own problem.

(First install the software that is provided in the form of a CD with your SoundBlaster. I had to buy a 5.1VX Creative Sound Blaster for my Creative Inspire M4500 4.1 speakers.)

Go to the folder ‘Creative’ which you may find in your Program Files.
Then double click on the following one after the other:
Creative
SB5.1VX
Surround Mixer
SurMixer (SurMixer.exe)

Now go to EAX.
Select CMSS 3D.
Check on the box ‘Enable CMSS 3D Surround.’
Select ‘Stereo Surround.’

Hope your problem is solved now:))

Feb 16, 2009 | Creative Labs Sound Blaster Live! 5.1...

1 Answer

Vista sound output problem


actuly i install window vista .but noe my sound card no working

Apr 26, 2008 | Creative Labs Sound Blaster Live! 5.1...

1 Answer

Speaker Problem


There is nothing wrong with the speakers.

There is nothing wrong with the sound card.

Your audio software has to support 5.1 playback. If you're using Winamp for instance, you have to figure out how to get it to play music back in 5.1 surround.

Otherwise, your audio player software will only play back in 2.1.

If you want your music to play back in 5.1, you'll most likely have to install a plugin for it.

Although I myself don't recommend that kind of sound because it seems to ruin the sound quality. Remember that the music is not recorded in 5.1. It's recorded in stereo. It wasn't designed to play in a center speaker. Your player software is doing exactly as it is designed to do.

A digital plugin for your audio player software may convert it into a streaming 5.1 signal, though. I'm sure that there are plenty for Winamp and you'll find them on Winamp's website.

Otherwise, you might find audio DVD's where they've remade the albums in 5.1. However, that'd require a DVD player application that is capable of decoding 5.1.

OR... If you have Logitech Z-5500's or other AWESOME speakers like them, you can switch the speakers themselves to use a Dolby ProLogic mode. My Z-5500's have a mode called "Dolby ProLogic II Music" where it does exactly what you're talking about. It converts the 2.1 stream into 5.1. (This is NOT true surround sound, mind you! It is EMULATED. The ONLY time you have TRUE surround sound is when the source itself is done in 5.1 or better.)

Also, you can use the Soundblaster card's EAX effects to produce a similar sound, but you may not like the results. Environmental Audio isn't meant for music.

I'm not sure... I can't recall, but the newer drivers for the Live! 5.1 may even have CMSS which also uses the center channel. My first-gen Audigy Platinum uses it. You can find out if the Live! 5.1 uses CMSS by finding the "Creative Audio Console" in your Start > All Program > Creative folder.

If you don't see it there, make sure that you have the most recent drivers for the 5.1 card.

But that's not easy, either. Creative Labs has decided that it doesn't like it's customers anymore and has cut ALL support for the Live! series except for the 24-bit Live! card. They no longer list drivers on their website for those cards. Here is what you get when you go to find drivers for the Live! 5.1:

" You have selected Live! 5.1.
To receive support for a different product, click here

Please note that the product you have selected has been classified as "End of Service Life"

The product you have selected has reached the end of its service life. Support for this product is limited to materials available on the Creative Customer Support website before its discontinuation. This may include Knowledge Base solutions, drivers, application updates and product documentation. Search archives now.

Customers are also welcome to participate in our user-to-user discussion forums to obtain further information about discontinued products.

For additional information regarding Creative's End of Service Life Policy, please review the list of frequently asked questions."

Yeah. Thanks a LOT, Creative Labs. Right?

But if you pal around online for drivers, you might find them somewhere. There are actually also alternate drivers NOT made by Creative Labs. You can find them at the following link...

http://kxproject.lugosoft.com/index.php?skip=1

Sorry for my rant. I'm kind of anti-creative after the way they've treated all of their customers - past and present - over the last few years.

If you need more information, please let me know. I've taken lots of time to help people with Sound Blaster products so that they don't have to deal with all of the frustration I have with that company.

Hope this answers your question. :)

Cyryl

Nov 05, 2007 | Creative Labs Sound Blaster Live! 5.1...

1 Answer

NO SOUND IN CENTRE SPEAKER


I'll make this easy on me... I'll post the same answer to you as I did in another post for someone with the same issue.

There is nothing wrong with the speakers.

There is nothing wrong with the sound card.

Your audio software has to support 5.1 playback. If you're using Winamp for instance, you have to figure out how to get it to play music back in 5.1 surround.

Otherwise, your audio player software will only play back in 2.1.

If you want your music to play back in 5.1, you'll most likely have to install a plugin for it.

Although I myself don't recommend that kind of sound because it seems to ruin the sound quality. Remember that the music is not recorded in 5.1. It's recorded in stereo. It wasn't designed to play in a center speaker. Your player software is doing exactly as it is designed to do.

A digital plugin for your audio player software may convert it into a streaming 5.1 signal, though. I'm sure that there are plenty for Winamp and you'll find them on Winamp's website.

Otherwise, you might find audio DVD's where they've remade the albums in 5.1. However, that'd require a DVD player application that is capable of decoding 5.1.

OR... If you have Logitech Z-5500's or other AWESOME speakers like them, you can switch the speakers themselves to use a Dolby ProLogic mode. My Z-5500's have a mode called "Dolby ProLogic II Music" where it does exactly what you're talking about. It converts the 2.1 stream into 5.1. (This is NOT true surround sound, mind you! It is EMULATED. The ONLY time you have TRUE surround sound is when the source itself is done in 5.1 or better.)

Also, you can use the Soundblaster card's EAX effects to produce a similar sound, but you may not like the results. Environmental Audio isn't meant for music.

I'm not sure... I can't recall, but the newer drivers for the Live! 5.1 may even have CMSS which also uses the center channel. My first-gen Audigy Platinum uses it. You can find out if the Live! 5.1 uses CMSS by finding the "Creative Audio Console" in your Start > All Program > Creative folder.

If you don't see it there, make sure that you have the most recent drivers for the 5.1 card.

But that's not easy, either. Creative Labs has decided that it doesn't like it's customers anymore and has cut ALL support for the Live! series except for the 24-bit Live! card. They no longer list drivers on their website for those cards. Here is what you get when you go to find drivers for the Live! 5.1:

" You have selected Live! 5.1.
To receive support for a different product, click here

Please note that the product you have selected has been classified as "End of Service Life"

The product you have selected has reached the end of its service life. Support for this product is limited to materials available on the Creative Customer Support website before its discontinuation. This may include Knowledge Base solutions, drivers, application updates and product documentation. Search archives now.

Customers are also welcome to participate in our user-to-user discussion forums to obtain further information about discontinued products.

For additional information regarding Creative's End of Service Life Policy, please review the list of frequently asked questions."

Yeah. Thanks a LOT, Creative Labs. Right?

But if you pal around online for drivers, you might find them somewhere. There are actually also alternate drivers NOT made by Creative Labs. You can find them at the following link...

http://kxproject.lugosoft.com/index.php?...

Sorry for my rant. I'm kind of anti-creative after the way they've treated all of their customers - past and present - over the last few years.

If you need more information, please let me know. I've taken lots of time to help people with Sound Blaster products so that they don't have to deal with all of the frustration I have with that company.

Hope this answers your question. :)

Cyryl

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1 Answer

Surround Sound Center Speaker/Sound Card issue


You need to use a digital interface cable between the sound card and the speakers to get all of the 6 channels to work properly.

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How do you set up surround sound for DVD playback in windows xp?


Do you have 5.1 speakers? Becouse you need to plug in all the 5.1 speakers to the differnt ports on your soundcard. If you only have 2 speakers you wont be able to get the 5.1 surrond sound your after and it will default to 2 speakers. If you do have 5.1 speakers then you will need to check the option in the control panel in the M-Audio window. It has an option for 5.1 surround. If your software cannot play 5.1 surround them get some other software that can.

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