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Static electricity can (temporarily) break sound cards

By Benchmark
Jan 6, 2009
  1. Hi all, I originally placed this in someone elses thread by accident a couple of days ago, but really should have opened my own thread, apologies to the other member :):

    Earlier today I had the pleasure of listening to sereen music through a pair of ex71 bud earphones via the audio jack of my back up Inspiron 1100 laptop with SigmaTel sound card. My listening was disturbed by the sudden onset of pins and needles in my left foot.

    I figured stomping my foot on the floor would get rid of the pins and needles :D without necessitating the need to disturb my listening by getting up and walking about.

    To my dismay, whilst plodding my foot away, I managed to get a sharp static electric shock in my ear through my left earphone. But there was double trouble. :( Not only did the shock in my ear kinda hurt, but the music had turned to scratchy and robotic high / mids and completely distorted lows, with a loss of volume. Unbelievable, as only two days before my 6292 had given up the ghost :dead: and was in the service agents.

    I had tried reinstalling all software and reboots for a couple of hours to no avail, and wondered if anyone had any ideas on rectifying before I shot off and got a new cheap external sound card (looking for any recommendations here also?)

    However, having not had the opportunity to look into any further, the next day I then plugged the laptop in at work, only to notice the OS jingle sounded uncannily familiar. Popping the budphones in, loading the media player and hey presto, sereen music available once again.

    I've never had this issue before, and our service agents had never heard of this either, although they did mention it may have had something to do with the trainers I had on at the time.:suspiciou

    Anyway although rectified, I just thought to share this with you, as if it does happen to you, rather than rush out there and buy a new sound card, you might like to give it a day and change the power outlet as the distortion may not necessarily be a permanent thing.:grinthumb

    PS Well done to all you guys who take the time out to moderate and participate in this forum.
     
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