Since this help file was created, before windows 10.
It is still useful, but ignore what is not.

getting sound working / player problems / organising your audio files

To hear the Diarbe Music, please install - Winamp or the latest Windows media player or maybe Classic Media Player which is good for many more things... A really good player for sound and HD and Blu-Ray is Daum PotPlayer.... (particularly version 1.5.33948)

These players are ideal for listening to the music samples without difficulties. Use the playlist features on those that have them.

Also I urge you to have a decent sound system or you will not experience what is here to hear.

getting sound working

It is not unusual for something to be going wrong in the multimedia department. It is usually something very simple you have done inadvertently.... or something has changed a setting while you were busy doing something else.... So you clicked on a button or link and nothing happened, or something did but nothing was heard....

Well I have prepared this help page for only the reason of getting the sound back and all going well. A basic rule with Windows is to RESTART and it is surprising what "corrects itself". USB drivers will often reinstall and other miracles can occur. LOL

There are a lot of options when it comes to listening to music on a computer so I am sorry if what I cover doesn't help. So be patient and you'll have your audio working without going bonkers trying to do so.

I am running two operating systems that give me what I want. Windows XP with Service Pack 3 and Win7. If you're running any other system then what I say might have to be interpreted with some judgment about what applies and what doesn't. If you want both systems, make sure you install WinXP first, then Win7 on different partitions.

And before we go.... I know there are smarter people out the who now a lot more than me so if you've got negatives about what I say, please feel free to help me out and send me an email with your ideas... I could probably put a lot more into the text I write but I am only trying to help where other help is not immediately available.. My motive?  For someone to listen to my music. LOL  Not to be a great authority on Audio Mechanics etc.

So... Here is the basic journey...

A sound card is installed or there is onboard sound (already part of your motherboard.)...  With Win7 the drivers are installed automatically or are easily updated through the device manager. Because WinXP is more "hands on" than Win7, what I am talking about is probably more applicable to a WinXp system.

So. "It is either working already (you're getting audio) or it is not working.

If the audio card is not installing or is old or may be damaged through over heating or bad handling then just buy another card and save yourself a hassle. If you are pretty sure the card is ok and you have no sound after reseating it and installing drivers you have... maybe by restarting the computer, then try the following.

1)  Check that either the headphones or the speaker cable is plugged into the correct output audio hole. Check that the mute is not on at the volume control icon or that the volume control is correctly set. Check that the headphone volume control on the cord (if there is one) is not turned down or off for some reason. Sometimes the special software that came with the soundcard or "onboard soundcard" places its own icon in the system tray. Using that control you can set up the card as the designers intended. One just hopes that your idea and their idea about what you want matches up.

Make sure the windows volume control icon appears in the system tray... (down on the bottom right of the screen near where the date or calendar and date display is located.. It may be hidden.)

2)  To make the windows volume control icon appear on WinXP :- Open your Control Panel... (start/control panel -view in icons- you will see the icon for your sound card's own software controllers too.) Double click Sound and Audio Devices and you will see the checkbox to place the volume control icon in the taskbar. When you double click the icon (looks like a speaker), the control panel for sound settings opens up. A lighter, single click opens just the volume control slider.

On Win 7 click the volume control icon at bottom right. The popup shows the active device sliders that Win 7 has been able to detect. Sometimes you need to move the popped up box over left to see the whole number of controls you have active.

3)  To make adjusting any of the controls relevant, you should have at least Stereo Speakers connected to the computer; plugged into the soundcard in the OUT hole - usually green...The pink hole is usually the microphone IN (of course). So the blue is there usually for LINE IN.

In WinXp the sound card's software adjustments may be able to make any hole behave in whatever manner you want. You can connect headphones at the same time making two holes as OUT but in win7 assigning holes is automatic and it seems to only work on the default outputs (what you have plugged in) only. You may find you have "a bit of fun" sorting these things out.

Two OUT holes can be used simultaneously with speakers and a set of headphones in WinXP - turning the speakers down to use the headphones in private - such as late at night when others are asleep to enjoy a movie or favourite music without disturbing others. Win 7 does not provide for that "luxury".

4)  The LINE IN hole set up as just that, is where you connect a lead from a music keyboard, a tape player, a TV or something else like that so you can record or just listen through your computer speakers. Check that the leads are in "the right hole".

4)  If you've had sound working before, the jack-plug holes are more than likely to be still set ok... and the sound card drivers were installed but may have been corrupted by something. (a virus, a power surge, etc). If the soundcard has been removed (and reinstalled of course) then drivers usually need to be reinstalled. Sometimes windows automatically updates these and you will see this happening on the screen, particularly with Win7. You may need to 'ok' something in the process.

5)  To re-install drivers it is best, initially, to use the disk that came with the soundcard or motherboard. Onboard drivers WILL be on the motherboard disk. You can update drivers then of course and you CAN do it through the device manager which gets them from Microsoft. But it is better to go to the soundcard hardware manufacturer for them as it takes time for some drivers to filter down through to Microsoft. Download the drivers to a place you will remember such as a Drivers folder as part of your "Installations Collection", or sometimes you can install directly from the net.

6)  If you hear any sound during any of the steps so far - your OK. If not, before we continue, restart your computer as Windows has a mind of its own and needs to have a reboot sometimes.

7)  I like to fiddle with the most obvious things first. Go to the Control Panel and open Sound in Win 7 and Sound and Audio Devices in WinXP.  In WinXP, select the Sound tab and make sure the Mute is unchecked and the check box placing the volume icon in the taskbar is selected.

While you're there... If you don't want windows sounds like clicking and beeping etc every time you do something like open and close things... or record things,  then select the sounds tab and adjust the drop down menu called Sound Scheme to No Sounds. This helps to not have windows sounds like keyboard typing noises included in anything you might be recording from a tape deck or the Internet.

Next while you're there... Click the audio tab and with the dropdown menu, make sure the Sound Playback Default device is in fact your Sound Card - OR - Onboard Sound. This can be adjusted even while something is playing though you can't hear it... It can suddenly work!! So watch where you have set the volume slider or you might blast your ears off. Usually these settings are sort of self evident as you're doing this. (giggle)

Select the Voice tab and do the same with voice playback and voice recording... if you are going to be wanting to use a microphone... The playback is usually set the same as the Audio setting on the previous tab.

8)   After clicking 'ok' to close the Sound and Audio Devices interface, close Control Panel and select and open the audio software icon relating to your soundcard and find the Audio In and Audio Out tab.

Usually it is called  Audio I/O. In modern card software panels what you are looking for is something like a picture of a chair and speakers etc.  With the right speaker-setting showing over or under the chair, such as 2CH (two channels) that means stereo.. if you only have two speakers.. test the sound on the right then the left. If you can hear sound coming from the correct side you have things plugged in and setup correctly. If you have more than two speakers, fiddle around as you probably know what you are doing at this point.

 9)  Now through-out this carry-on, if you've expected to hear something, then "something" has got to have been set to play, like a piece of music through a player or a movie or video running. As I have said... Make sure the volume control sliders are turned up to an audible level on the speakers, or the windows sound icon in the taskbar or the player volume control "opened up" or turned down enough. If you have sound then you're OK. If not we continue.

10)  At this point after doing several things, it is good to restart the computer. As I have eluded to - sometimes a short nap has the computer "waking up with a fresh perspective".

If it doesn't work now then the sound card is stuffed or not seated in the slot correctly or the holder is dirty with dust etc. But try a different headphones or speakers or audio lead before going that way.... Buy a can of liquid air spray for around $10 from a computer shop and clean up a bit. The high speed air clears old dust and grime from all parts and blows it right out of the computer box. While there, clean off the cooling-fans and heat-sinks on various parts. Apply it to the sound card slot and the sound card if needed, reinstall the card and the drivers and reboot.

If no joy, then buy another sound card and install it or get it installed... Or the on-board is stuffed or the sound is turned off on the motherboard, take the computer to a computer shop for a new soundcard etc.... or a computer nerd you happen to know. Or the speakers are blown.... or your power is not on. Or the computer is a lemon. Chuck it out the bloody window.

Player Problems...

My favourite player for music is Winamp. Especially while online. It is so well designed for this. Download it, install it and if the sound card and channels are right it will play music as expected. Experiment with it as it is very adjustable for the user.

For video and even DVDs, Windows Media Player Classic is unbeatable - though it might be hard to argue that with VLC player nerds... However to play a DVD or high definition DVD in the ROM then I also recommend Power DVD v8.. Version 8 is made to give very clear "high definition" and terrific sound production and will play Blu Ray. If you don't want to use the simpler Windows Media Player Classic, this is the one, with one more alternative and that is PotPlayer.... freeware.... Perfect for Blu Ray. I have them all installed and chose whatever takes my fancy at the time or for the purpose.

You may have to explore your browser options menu to get Winamp to play the music files online, or the Windows Media Player Classic to play the movies or videos from an online source by default. Pot player will do it of course. Some sites are using a Flash player that works through your browser and may give you the option of using your own stand-alone if you prefer.

More later.... (if you can stand it)


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