Help! Computer Problem (Again)

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous' started by Gryffindorian, Nov 19, 2012.

  1. Gryffindorian

    Gryffindorian Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2002
    Location:
    Gryffindorian
    To this day, I'm still using a Dell XPS 710 PC that I bought back in early 2007. It's probably approaching its end-of-life stage, but I would like to use it as much as I can before I decide to purchase a new one.

    The specs:

    Intel Core2 Duo Processor, 2.4 GHz
    2 GB RAM
    250 GB (+500 GB) Hard Drive
    1GB NVIDIA GeForce 7950 GX2 Dual-GPU Graphics Card
    Windows Vista Home Premium, SP2
    Ageia PhysX Processor
    X-Fi PCI Sound Card

    I've had problems with the PSU in the past, but now the problem is that there is no audio. I have a BOSE speaker that I plug into the audio output jack (marked by a small headphones symbol). About three weeks ago while I was listening to music, I heard a high-pitched screeching noise. Shortly thereafter, my computer crashed with the Microsoft Blue Screen of Death. I rebooted several times and it kept doing the same thing. Finally, I unplugged the speaker.

    Now every time I log back in and plug in the speaker, there's no sound whatsoever. When I go to the Sound settings, this is what I see:

    Speakers
    High Definition Device Not Plugged In

    Digital Output Device (SPDIF)
    High Definition Audio Device Working

    I've even gone to the sub-settings to try to reinstall or update the driver, but the system says everything is up to date.

    The only thing different I've noticed (that I didn't before) is that the settings under Speakers Properties display four audio jacks in the rear. But as far as I've been using this PC, I've always plugged in the speaker(s) in front with the headphone symbol. Besides, I've tried inserting the speaker cord into any of those jacks in the back of the tower, and still no luck.

    Could the problem be with the audio card? The settings appear to be OK. What say you? Thanks for your input.
     
  2. kolibri

    kolibri Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    Can you get sound using headphones? Did you try manually uninstalling and re-installing with the latest driver from Dell?
     
  3. Gryffindorian

    Gryffindorian Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2002
    Location:
    Gryffindorian
    I tried using headphones, too, but they didn't work. I'm looking for on-line solutions (e.g., drivers or software updates) at the moment.

    What's strange is that the X-Fi/Soundblaster program doesn't show up when I do a search on my PC. There's usually a control panel that pops up when I open it. There's nothing to configure.

    EDIT:

    I ran an Auto Update and got this message:

    Creative AutoUpdate Software was unable to detect any Creative products attached to your computer.

    ETA: One of the components to fail was the graphics card, which I replaced a couple of years ago with the GeForce 400 series. Now perhaps I should replace the PCI sound card.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2012
  4. Captain Ice

    Captain Ice Cookie Constructor Moderator

    Joined:
    Dec 30, 2002
    Location:
    Getting Captain Ice on to the naughty list
    Sounds like your audio card needs to be replaced.
     
  5. kolibri

    kolibri Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2012
    The Asus Xonar DG is a good, cheap card. Runs about $25, and you can always get your next PC without a card and re-use the DG. It has a built-in headphone amp which is nice.
     
  6. Gryffindorian

    Gryffindorian Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2002
    Location:
    Gryffindorian
    Thanks, all. I'll be going to Best Buy later to look for a sound card. They gave me a $25 Reward Zone certificate. ;)