Dell Optiplex Sound A Goner

By Scoobie
Apr 15, 2010
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  1. Hello to the community. All being well, someone can solve a problem that has been driving me crazy all week and I won't have to die in a diabetic haze of chocolate (my prefered means of suicide).
    I have a Dell Optiplex 330 which never gave me any problems until recently. I have no sounds whatsoever. O/S is Vista 32bit Business version. The on-board sound was okay for me, but I wanted to get better sound and start producing training videos. I Bought a Hauppauge WinTV Nova-T Freeview TV USB package, and that installed and I could watch TV and sound was fine. I was running a file recovery programme for a day or so, and when I came down the next morning, Microsoft had interrupted it with an update and reset my machine for me. After that, no sound. No TV on my PC either because it needs a sound card to work. I ordered a new ASUS Xonar D1 PCI soundcard and while waiting for it, I downloaded all the new drivers for the Dell and Hauppauge. Even some from Microsoft. Nothing made a difference. I changed a few bits in the BIOS. Still nothing. When the new soundcard turned up, I held my breath and installed the new drivers and rebooted. Still nothing. In System Driver Properties, I have a code 39 - Cannot load the device driver for this hardware. In the Control Panel in the Sound section I am told - No audio devices are installed. Against the three sound items are exclamation marked. My speaker icon is crossed through. I've tried as much as I know, but I can't get off the first base. The chocolate awaits, will I be saved?
  2. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,682   +153

    Try doing a System Restore with the Hauppauge installed, to a time before the problem first happened
  3. LookinAround

    LookinAround TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 8,358   +167

    Darn! Tmagic650 got here first! But let us know how if the system restore works or not... as i like chocolate too! :D
  4. Scoobie

    Scoobie Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    There's been a development. It may be significant. I installed another copy of Windows Vista onto a second hard drive. All sound returned when I boot up with this copy. But, the system reboots itself all the time. This happens for apparently no reason other than moving the mouse and selecting an open file. Any action can trigger it. If I leave it alone, say playing a CD, it will complete without incident. Perhaps I should force chocolate into the machine?
    Remind me, how do I do a system restore?
  5. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,682   +153

    This sound issue is definitely caused by a rogue program/driver or OS update of some sort. Open the Programs list attached to the taskbar and enter System Restore in the "search for files or folders" box to find the System Restore program
  6. LookinAround

    LookinAround TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 8,358   +167

  7. Scoobie

    Scoobie Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    So, recap: The setup on drive C refused to acknowledge any audio. I reinstalled Vista on a second hard drive and sound was acknowledged. But some kind of conflict was making the system reset when I used Media Player. I went on to install all the updates from Dell and Microsoft. It still worked, but it was still resetting. I tried a few other audio players and they seemed better, but eventually, it reset. I then reformated drive C and reinstalled the operating system on it. I went through the entire process of rebuilding the drivers and programs, restored my email files and downloaded all the latest drivers and updates. At the end of it all, I still had a clear speaker icon at the bottom right of my screen. I had sound, but it still reset. I was always taken back to first base. I took out the Asus soundcard. It made no difference, at some point during sound playback, the system would still reset. Meanwhile, Dell had engaged me in a two way conversation, where they asked some pretty dumb questions with obvious answers. Throughout this, I made another observation. When I had no sound, the little piezo on-board speaker was still beeping appropriately. All the time I operated with sound, I lost the on board sound functions. This may make perfect sense to someone. Me? I don't get it. Back at Dell, they summize that my motherboard could do with replacing. I think it's a plot to destroy my sanity. Where's that chocolate cake? Diabetes or not, I can't go on like this. Keeping an open mind is doing my head in.
  8. LookinAround

    LookinAround TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 8,358   +167

    1) When you say the system "resets" do you mean you get a BSOD? (Blue Screen of Death)

    2) fyi... The computer can generate monochromatic tones (i.e. beeps) and play them over internal speakers. But it needs the audio drivers/software to synthesize full sound. fyi to anyone reading the thread.. i've often found the BeepExDemo tool handy to at least verify internal hardware and speakers work even when audio doesn't
  9. Tmagic650

    Tmagic650 TS Ambassador Posts: 20,682   +153

  10. Scoobie

    Scoobie Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    LookinAround asks valid Q's. In answer to Q1: I mean the system suddenly shuts down completely and resets (literally reboots) without warning. I get the feeling, this action must mean something. I will try the BeepExDemo utility, but I can't until I'm out of everything else I'm running, as I expect the PC to reboot itself if it forced to make sound. Dell are changing the motherboard next week, and I'm hoping this will be a permanent fix. If not, I will also try the suggestion from Tmagic650, thank you.
  11. LookinAround

    LookinAround TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 8,358   +167

    OK. So, yea.. your machine is crashing and getting the dreaded "BSOD". There's an option where you can decide if you want XP to autorestart after BSOD (which is what your machine is doing) or not. See here

    And as it sounds like it's still under warranty sending you a new m/b sounds like good work from Dell!

    Hope it helps!
     
  12. Scoobie

    Scoobie Newcomer, in training Topic Starter

    No blue screen. The screen literally goes blank (black) and the the machine shuts down. Then boots up again. Maybe the new motherboard will solve the problem. I'll post an update after Dell have put in a new Mobo.
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