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I've been experiencing strange behavior recently. When listening to mp3 or watching movie or whatever that uses sound, I get micro breaks in sound. It's like it hangs or cuts a fragment for about 0.5s. When I start OS, it's ok, but as time passes it gets worse, to the extent that music is unlistenable being interrupted every 2 seconds.

I haven't found any relevance between this behavior and hardware usage, I don't think it's directly related to HDD (or it might be but with significant delay). I have updated soundcard drivers and it didn't help a lot.

My system is Windows 7, computer is simple HP laptop, nx7300-Ru374ES with WD Caviar Scorpio Blue hard drive inside and integrated soundcard on it (I can check the model later if it's important).

Did anybody encounter such problem ? Maybe it's a common thing on Windows 7 or someone knows how to solve it?

Thanks in advance.

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up vote 5 down vote accepted

It may well be a DPC latency issue, which can be caused by a variety of things including, sound cards, network adapters, drivers etc. Unfortunately, tracking down the cause of these problems is no easy task.

There is a utility DPC Latency Checker that can help you check for latency and there is a wealth of documentation on the same site.

If you have installed something new recently, that could be a good place to start.

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Thanks, it seems that DPC latency might be a winner here. I'll check out my laptop with the proposed tool when I get home. – cand May 24 '10 at 9:23
It was DPC latency, indeed. What's strange, it's my firewall that causes such problem, after I turn it off latency gets down from ~20k to ~1k. Thanks for Your help! – cand May 27 '10 at 9:20

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