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Getting to the Sound Card

Friday, September 28th, 2007 by | Filed Under: Hardware & Peripherals
 
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Q:
The other day, you mentioned something about checking a computer’s sound card for any audio problems we may be having, but you didn’t say anything about how to locate our sound card to check it out. Can you please give us instructions on how to do that? I appreciate your help!

A:
You’re absolutely right! I did fail to mention that information in the tip I wrote the other day on audio problems. I do apologize for that, but hopefully I will be able to make it up to all of you today! In the article, I said that if you’re having trouble getting proper sound on your computer, you may need to update your sound drivers. Well, all of that goes along with your sound card, so today, I’m going to tell you where you can go to find out what kind of sound card you have, how you can update your drivers and I’ll even give you a little information on how to repair or replace your sound card if that’s what you need to do. Alright, without further ado, here we go!

First of all, here are directions on how to find out what type of sound card you have, along with some other information about it. In Windows XP, go to Start, All Programs, Accessories, System Tools and then click on the option that says System Information. (In older versions of Windows, you’ll need to go to Start, Programs, Accessories and then go straight to System Information). Once you’re there, click on the + (plus sign) next to the choice of Components to expand it. Finally, click on Sound Device.

From that window, you will be able to see quite a bit of information about your sound card. You can see the name of it, who manufactured it, the status of it, the driver information and so on. Keep in mind that you may have to use the scroll bar to see all the information in full. Also, you have to remember that it’s always possible that your Windows operating system came with its own sound card, so the one you see listed here may not be the exact model or the right manufacturer. This is rare, but I wanted you to be aware of it just in case things don’t seem to add up on your end.

Now, the part you’ll want to pay the most attention to is your sound card’s status. If it says “OK” next to it, you’re good to go, but if it lists something else, you may want to contact the manufacturer and see if they have any suggestions. All sound cards are different, so I can’t really run through all of them right now, but the manufacturer will know everything there is to know about your specific card type and they should be able to help you get your sound back up and running correctly. Also, they will be able to help you determine if the sound card you have now is repairable or if you just need to replace it. If you need a replacement, they can help you with that as well. They are definitely the ones you’ll always want to turn to if you’re ever having trouble!

One more thing: If you were unable to locate your sound card information by using the method above, there is one other option you can try. You can, of course, always open up your computer to take a look at the sound card itself. The model and manufacturer name you need will be listed on the actual card if that’s how you would like to go about doing it. Either way you do it, that information will help you get your sound problems resolved much faster. And isn’t that just what we all want out of life? Check it out today!

~ Erin

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