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I'm running Windows 7 using onboard audio. It's been fine for over 2 years but lately there's a problem every time I play audio. I only use WMP since it's the only player I've ever used with this pc.

I hear a small soft burst of static and the volume turns itself down from 50% to 23%. Once at 23%, it plays fine. No related events logged in viewer. No reported problems with the device. Different headphones, same problem. I played around with audio settings for hours but the problem persists.

More information:

Motherboard:

ECS G31T-M LGA775 

System info displays this:

Name    High Definition Audio Device
Manufacturer    Microsoft
Status  OK
PNP Device ID   HDAUDIO\FUNC_01&VEN_1106&DEV_E721&SUBSYS_10192683&REV_1001\4&3D4E739&0&0001
Driver  c: \Windows\system32\drivers\hdaudio.sys (6) 1. 7600. 16385, 297. 00 KB (304, 128 bytes), 14/07/2009 9: 51 AM)

I'll keep adding info as I find it.

The question I want resolved is: Is it faulty hardware? If so, I can buy a sound card. I can't imagine software is responsible since I haven't installed anything new for weeks. Virus scans are clear as well. The static burst is irritating to say the least. Tried 2 different headphones and separate speakers. Same problem.

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What "Playing" software are you getting the problem with? The burst of noise is pure 100% static and not extreme distortion? (as it cleans up does it clean up instantally or as a "distortion" goes away) –  Psycogeek Apr 10 '12 at 4:57
    
Hi Psycogeek. I've been testing with WMP since it's the only player I've ever used with this pc. And it's definately static. The moment it dies off the volume is softer. Drives me nuts. –  Nikki Apr 10 '12 at 5:44
    
go to the manufacture ecs.com.tw/ECSWebSite/Product/… And install the audio driver from there, not from some thing that is in windows updates. Corrupt files can have garbage in them, Try MPC or VLC to verify the files. If it is the sound going through to a HDMI output (tv or hdmi connected monitor) then that is different. It is way more likly to be some software , codec , filter, effect, or even a PCI latency issue, and not likly to be an unfixable hardware issue. Use the green jack, and mute REC items. –  Psycogeek Apr 10 '12 at 6:14
    
@Psycogeek Thanks for your help. I will keep trying. –  Nikki Apr 10 '12 at 6:53

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