Help Required Re: Soundcard Problem

Discussion in 'Computer Corner' started by MRSH, Mar 24, 2008.

  1. MRSH

    MRSH Supporting Member


    I just wondered whether there was anyone technically minded enough to help with a problem I have with my sound card.

    First my specs: Windows XP SP2, 2.80GHz Intel Pentium 4, 80Gb Hard Drive, 1Gb Memory

    My sound card is a SoundMAX Integrated Digital Audio

    My problem is this:-

    All of a sudden my sound card disappeared. I found that somehow some .dll files had been deleted so I re-installed them. My sound card re-appeared but I get no system sounds at all and programs like i-Tunes, YouTube, Media Player, Real Player, Quick Time and normal CD playback don’t work.

    Now, if I go to <Control Panel/System/Hardware/Device Manager> there are no conflicts noted between devices. Then I go further in to <Sound, Video and Game Controllers/SoundMAX Digital Audio> it states the device is enabled and working properly.

    However, if I go to <Control Panel/Sound and Audio Devices/Audio Tab> for every sound – playback, recording and MIDI Music playback – it states there is no audio device present!!!!!

    If I go to the Hardware Tab every device and driver listed is stated to be “working properly”.

    I have Sibelius 5.1 installed which uses its own Kontakt Player sounds. Although Sibelius itself used to recognise the resident sound card it doesn’t any more.

    My IT guy at work suggested I re-install Windows but I really would like to avoid the hassle of doing that if I possibly can.

    Does anyone have any suggestions please or may be point something out that I have missed perhaps.

    Thanks very much.

  2. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Have you got System Restore activated?
  3. MRSH

    MRSH Supporting Member

    Yes I have
  4. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    Tried rolling it back?

    Failing that, make sure that the o/b sound hasn't been disabled in BIOS (which can happen if the battery is failing for instance and the CMOS has been reset). Uninstall the drivers, reboot the machine and then reinstall again.

    One of the biggest problems with machines that have integrated peripherals is that sometimes just part of the mobo can fail - it could be the sound, the graphics, the NIC etc.

    Reinstalling windows can be a serious pain - it'd be easier to add a cheap soundcard to the system.
  5. MRSH

    MRSH Supporting Member

    Thanks for your advice.

    System restore fails every time.

    I have checked on several forums for answers to why Restore won't work - the general consensus is that it is a huge waste of time. I'm thinking that too now :mad:

    I checked in BIOS and the sound is enabled.

    Hey-ho - back to the drawing board.

  6. johnmartin

    johnmartin Active Member

    Off the top of my head I seem to remember there being a known problem with some of the DLL's for this card being removed by anti-virus software. I think AVG is the culprit. An update of both AVG and the Soundmax drivers were issued that fixed the problem as far as I know. I had a similar issue and fixed it with an update.
  7. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    That's useful :rolleyes:

    (FWIW I have system restore switched off on all my machines anyway - I wouldn't want to leave myself open to returning to a state of infection when nasty little virii reside in the restore directory :hammer )
  8. MRSH

    MRSH Supporting Member

    Well - I have just uninstalled all my sound drivers and re-installed the one that came with the computer on the 'Drivers and Utilities' disk - and still nothing. Then went to the Dell website for upgrades of sound drivers and nothing available for the card that I have. :mad: Oh well!!!!!

    John - I am sure you were trying to be helpful but you don't actually give me anything to go on. Do you have any further information as to what the cause was and more specifically the fix?
  9. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member


    You could always try uninstalling, running something like CC Cleaner , then reinstalling....although messing with the registry isn't for the feint hearted.

    Just to follow on from John's post - what antivirus software are you using?
  10. MRSH

    MRSH Supporting Member

    I have got a Uni-Blue Suite - SpyEraser, Speed Up My PC and Registry Boost - and am well versed in registry amendment. Although my heart does go 'thump' sometimes.

    McAfee Security Centre.
  11. The Wherryman

    The Wherryman Active Member

    You mentioned looking on the Dell website for an upgrade, so I presume you have a Dell computer. Have you spoken to their tech support? I have found them to be very helpful.
  12. johnmartin

    johnmartin Active Member

    A quick google of "Soundmax McAfee" finds plenty of hits concerning a compatibility issue with this combination. I would try disabling the McAfee scan service and the re-install the soundcard drivers. If that works then that sort of points the finger at the virus scanner as being the problem. Its not just a problem with McAfee either. The bad guys know the names of the files that encapsulate your sound drivers so they'll quite happily use them to try to gain an inroad into a computer. The virus scanner is just doing its job and reacting to a positive alert. Can you check back on your virus scan logs or in the system event log.

    As an aside I wouldn't use McAfee anyway as its not the best. The free AVG product from Grisoft is actually better and you don't have to pay for updates every 12 months.
  13. Cornet Nev.

    Cornet Nev. Member

    The other way is to physically remove the card itself from the machine, then re boot with it missing, shut down again then re-install the card and reboot, Windows should then find it and sort the drivers out for you. If this doesn't work it may be the card itself has gone dead.
  14. KMJ Recordings

    KMJ Recordings Supporting Member

    It's an integrated soundcard I think - so part of the motherboard ;)
  15. brassneck

    brassneck Active Member

    You can try this ... Start / Control Panel / Administrative Tools / Component Services / a separate window will open – in left pane click Services(Local) / Scroll down to Windows Audio service / if the service is Disabled or Manual right click > select Properties > under Startup Type change to Automatic > click Apply > click Start > Reboot.
  16. MRSH

    MRSH Supporting Member

    Yes it is ;)

    Thanks - tried all this - when I click to start the service I get the message:

    "Could not start the Windows Audio Service on Local Computer. Error 2: The system cannot find the file specified"

    Hey-ho - onwards. Thanks anyway.
  17. johnmartin

    johnmartin Active Member

    Did you disable the virus scanner?

    It looks to me like McAfee has identified one of the driver files as a potential threat and has probably moved it to the vault. There should be a log of this and if you're lucky the necessary files may still be in the vault.

    Alternatively re-install the soundcard driver and then immediately run a virus scan and check the results.
  18. MRSH

    MRSH Supporting Member


    I did this and no virus was detected. I looked in the log and couldn't see anything connected with my problem.
  19. Cornet Nev.

    Cornet Nev. Member

    Considering it now turns out to be integral to the mother board the correct description should really be the chipset, usually Intel and with the description AC97, but not always.
    However do you have a spare PCI slot on the mother board? if so could you borrow a "sound card" and try it with its own drivers? a pity you aren't local to me as I have a spare.

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