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If possible to use another pc to go to this site http://www8.hp.com/us/en/support-drivers.html eneter the correct information for the pc and all apllicable drivers for that pc should come up. If using another pc save the drivers to a cd or flash drive then install them to the pc that needs the audio drivers.
Try installing the latest audio driver -
Download the drivers from the Acer WEB site. Make sure youselect the model of your laptop and the XP or Vista version of the drivers youthat require and it matches the Windows version that is installed on yourlaptop. Use this link to get to the Acer support: - http://www.acersupport.com/drivers_download.aspx
If above doesn't work, start the notebook up in safe mode and uninstall any driver that has been installed already. Reboot. Download and install registry cleaners and driver cleanup tools (free ones) and repair the registry and clean it. Then re-try to install the driver above.
You probably need to get the right drivers for XP.Even though XP may seem to have installed all or most of your devices you still should get the correct drivers starting with the chipset driver.Make sure you install the chipset driver first,then all the other drivers put out by the manufacturer.Go to their website and in support and drivers get ALL of the avaliable drivers for XP and update your drivers,especially the chipset.
This seems to be a drivers related problem. I guess you are running Windows XP on this laptop. Actually this notebook is not officially designed to work on Windows XP, however
there are some unofficial drivers available for windows XP, you may try
downloading the sound drivers from: http://sites.google.com/site/sriksang/software/drivers
I'd recommend to install all the drivers from this page. In case the drivers on this site do not work, let me know I shall provide you other links to the drivers.
The problem may be XP SP3. There have been a great deal of problems like this with SP3. Did you make a backup of your system before installing SP3. If so, revert back to it and see if the problem persists.