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This is really an odd issue. When I close the laptop (I use it on a docking station; it doesn't leave the docking station when this issue occurs) or when I open iTunes, the volume output on the machine drops.

Not the Windows volume bar itself. That stays the same. But the volume output by a program (like Winamp, but its happened with games too, so it's not app specific) drops. Not the volume control on those apps, but the output volume drops.

A quick restart of the quiet app fixes the issue. But it happens every time I close the laptop or open iTunes.

This is very odd, and I'm stumped. Any ideas?

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What all cases does this happen in? when you insert USB devices, close the lid, or open iTunes? – jcrawfordor Apr 10 '11 at 21:04
up vote 105 down vote accepted

Under "Sound" in Control Panel, try the Communications tab. If it's set to change the volume, Do nothing may fix your problem.

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Interesting, didn't know that setting existed. Thanks. It stopped happening on it's own, so I can't confirm this. – Justin Apr 16 '11 at 20:36
I had the same problem, and this solution worked perfectly. Thanks! +1 – pehrs Apr 21 '11 at 9:20
This was exactly it. What a horrible default setting! – danieltalsky Aug 30 '11 at 18:56
thanks, first result in google, quick and easy solution. thank you. – cpbills Sep 30 '12 at 21:13
But what if I like this feature and don't want to completely disable it, just don't want the volume to change on USB connect/disconnect, but still drop on Skype calls, is that possible? – Konstantin Pereyaslov Nov 20 '13 at 15:45

The feature that @Alec suggested to disable might be very useful in some situations. When somebody calls you on Skype, for example. Another way to fix the problem without app restart:

  1. Right click on Volume button (located somewhere in the right bottom corner of your screen).
  2. Click -> Open Volume Mixer.
  3. Manually increase the volume for problematic application.
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