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17-04-2009, 22:22   #1
Karsini
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XP generic HD Audio driver?

Are there any generic HD Audio drivers out there for XP? I got a Dell Studio 1737 a few weeks back and while nearly everything is grand, the sound chip is terrible. It's one of those Sigmatel/IDT HD Audio chips.

When using XP some sounds are lower pitched than normal, such as the Windows system sounds. It seems that anything that uses the waveOut API to play audio comes out at a lower pitch. But if an app is started which uses DirectSound, such as an MP3 player, then all sounds play normally for as long as the app is left open. I did come across this on a Dell Dimension 5150 years ago but a driver update fixed it. However I've had no luck with this one, I tried XP drivers from an Inspiron 1545 and Studio 1555, both install fine with no mods but do have this problem. Vista and Windows 7 don't seem to be affected at all (do they even use waveOut anymore?).

So back to my original question, are there any other drivers I could try? Preferably one that has nothing to do with IDT.

EDIT: I can elaborate a bit further. The pitch variation seems to depend on the sample rate. At 48000 or 44100 the pitch is fine. At 22050 and 11025 the pitch is lowered, and at 8000 it's higher pitched.

Last edited by Karsini; 17-04-2009 at 22:37.
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18-04-2009, 11:28   #2
watty
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See if adding ASIO helps

Sounds wierd OK
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18-04-2009, 15:03   #3
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TRY and find a earlier version of the driver,i had bad intermittent sound quality on a dell laptop,celeron 1.oghz, when i reinstalled winxp the sound was perfect,or try a usb sound card .OR TRY a linux livecd ,to see if sound is better thru linux drivers.you can get drivers on driverguide.com.Free to join.
some people reinstall every 2 years ,cos win os, gets cluttered with ramdom files,registry entrys.
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22-04-2009, 00:42   #4
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I'm not entirely sure how to test ASIO, oops.

About the drivers, it's not so easy to find older ones. As it's an IDT chip, the earlier Sigmatel drivers don't work with it, at least not without modifying them. I tried to modify one but just got a Code 10 error in Device Manager.

I implemented a rudimentary workaround in the short term by upsampling all the Windows sounds to 44100, that way I won't notice it as much. However I will notice it when I'm doing audio editing. An ExpressCard or USB sound card will definately work but it's useless if I can't route the sound to the internal speakers - I'd need to use headphones all the time.
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27-04-2009, 14:12   #5
andrewison
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have u tried the lastest chipset drivers, normally the dells are ok. Hmm... i would start, chipset drivers etc..was it working fine when u 1st got it originally.. have u been tweaking with the system etc ...
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27-04-2009, 14:18   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andrewison View Post
have u tried the lastest chipset drivers, normally the dells are ok. Hmm... i would start, chipset drivers etc..was it working fine when u 1st got it originally.. have u been tweaking with the system etc ...
Well it works fine in Vista to the best of my knowledge and that's what the machine shipped with. But I put XP on the thing and that's the issue, it seems the XP drivers are badly made. I might try Windows 2000 tonight just to see if it's the driver or the OS but I still suspect it's the driver.
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28-04-2009, 18:16   #7
oneway
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Search ms.com for UUA or kb888111

There is a universal audio driver for XP called kb888111.exe.

On a few systems now I have installed this to fix stuff.

If you search microsoft.com you should be able to download it

or even try here...
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/888111


have fun
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28-04-2009, 20:15   #8
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The sound doesn't work at all without that hotfix so that's not what I'm looking for. You still need to install a driver after 888111 (though my sound drivers seem to come with the older 835221 instead).

I had to to a clean install on a Dimension 5150 with a new hard disk today. I installed the Sigmatel driver and it did the same thing... I thought they fixed it Obviously not.

Either way, my current driver works fine in Windows 2000 so it must be specific to XP.
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18-05-2009, 21:44   #9
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I've had no luck finding alternative drivers for this thing and I've noticed several other issues related to what appears to be a poor DirectSound implementation. I think my only choice is to go back to Vista.
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