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I have a 5.1 speaker system plugged into my Windows 7 machine.

After selecting both options for the 5.1 (rear L&R and side L&R), I still did not have output in either rear speaker when inside applications such as Media Player and Winamp.

The speaker test on both 5.1 options would play the correct sound out of the individual rear speakers, so they are wired up correctly.

I tried to configure Winamp to force 5.1 but did not have any success.

I now have it working; the solution was to check "Speaker Fill" (also see image).

Control Panel > Sound > Playback (tab) > Speakers > Properties >

Enhancements (tab) > check "Speaker Fill"

So my question is why is this apparent override necessary?

Is it an issue of the media (mp3, avi) I was testing not being encoded well (or at all) for 5.1 playback, a limitation of on-board 7.1 sound card?


  • Sound card is on board a Gigabyte EX58-UD5 motherboard.
  • Speakers are Logitech Z-640 5.1

Sound control panel screen shot:

Sound Enhancements - Speaker Fill

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up vote 7 down vote accepted

Yes this is because the audio source (mp3, avi) you used only has stereo (2 channel) audio. It is not a limitation of your sound hardware, speakers or Windows.

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