I've isolated the sound problem with my ATI Radeon HD 5450. Any thoughts?

By LookinAround
Jun 4, 2010
  1. I'm posting this as I'm equally interested in any opinions as well as to post my findings for anyone else finding this with a similar problem scenario.

    I recently bought an ATI Radeon HD 5450 graphics card. I installed it using its low profile bracket (so i unplugged and removed the VGA port for my system)

    I first posted when i noticed a problem not hearing most Windows system sounds. I first thought it had something to do with .wav files (which is how system sounds are stored)

    But after lots of testing, i've concluded (with 99% confidence) the issue isn't the wav file itself but rather how long the sound stream is: i.e. I'm not hearing the first second or so of sound. So i'm not hearing things like beeps and alerts simply because they're "short" sounds (timewise). Also this problem only occurs for playback over HDMI with ATI's addon card. All sounds are heard OK when i select to playback using Soundmax drivers with the onboard audio (in which case, it plays OK over both Dell's internal speakers and through the headphone jacks). And, btw, this problem occurs with both Windows XP Pro and Windows 7 Professional x86.

    I suppose i'll just try a new sound card next... Anyone ever seen anything similar? Could it be a power problem? Hardware issue? or maybe just a buggy driver???

    /* edit */
    By the way, to help prove my suspicions i built my own Test.wav file which uses and merges system sounds C:\Windows\media\ding.wav and tata.wav. I've uploaded the file here. If you want to test with it, unzip it and click it to play it. If it plays back correctly, you should hear 4 distinct system sounds: ding->tada->ding->tada.
  2. nismo91

    nismo91 TS Evangelist Posts: 930   +31

    hi lookin around, i want to share my problem too. it's not identical but the fade-in reminds me of it:

    On previous mobo (soundmax / IDT), sounds will be noted up. it's similar like those in karaoke machine when you increase the key pitch by +1. listening to every single sounds getting pitched up is annoying. plus, i have a "1 second fade in" for short tunes just like your system sounds. 2 years after the soundmax is completely dead. another year later mobo is broken.
  3. LookinAround

    LookinAround Ex Tech Spotter Topic Starter Posts: 6,491   +184

    Hi nismo91

    Thanks for that additional info :) Appears i have a different situation (updates below)

    Updated info
    (for anyone finding this thread that might be having a similar issue) I decided to try a clean Win7 reinstall. I also reviewed the Dell site for latest drivers and found Dell released a new BIOS version Jan, 2010 so i installed it too.

    The current XP installation continues to work with the same problem (i.e. the first second or so of a sound stream is missing when played over HDMI)

    Windows 7
    Now, neither the old Radeon HD 5450 installation found on CD nor the latest one (found on the website) will install. They both BSOD

    I also tried installing just the driver only (without the Catalyst Control Center) and it still BSODs so definitely driver related..​

    I guess it's time to try still another graphics card :suspiciou
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