Solved

Creative SoundBlaster Audigy 2 ZS Problems - PC crashes/freezes when playing audio in Windows XP.

Posted on 2004-10-18
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1,169 Views
Last Modified: 2013-11-09
System Spec:

Pentium 4 2.6Ghz
1024MB RAM
ATI Radeon 9600XT 128MB
Creative SoundBlaster Audigy 2 ZS
Creative Inspire T7900
Windows XP Professional SP2

When I try to play an MP3 or a video with sound or a game or sometimes immediatly after startup the computer freezes and I can't do anything and the speakers make an annoying whine.

Windows sounds such as the starup and shutdown sounds and msn messenger play and also the 192 sample dvd audio from creative plays fine (at least so far), which seems a little odd to me.

It all seemed to start when last week my PC kept rebooting on startup. I located the problem to my internal PCI USB Hub. I restarted in safe mode, disabled it and Windows did load however it started crashing as described above. I removed USB card completly and still the problems so I can only assume the cause is the soundcard.

I've tried reinstalling the latest drivers. Tried the audigy in different slots. Done a "cleansweep" as described by Creative but still the problems remain. I'm running out of ideas now so any help anyone can give me is much appreciated.

Thanks.
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Question by:fozi999
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Expert Comment

by:Hammadian2
ID: 12340784
1st install this driver:

http://files.americas.creative.com/manualdn/Drivers/Others/8060/0x159CCD4A/EAX4DRV_AUDIGY2_1_84_50.exe

if it doesnt work well
they update the motherboard's BIOS and drivers

just give me the motherboard model number and i'll tell u from where to get the stuff
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Author Comment

by:fozi999
ID: 12341863
I've tried instaling that driver as an update however I haven't done it from a clean install.

I'll uninstall and give it a try then if that fails i'll report back with my motherboard details.

Thanks.
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Expert Comment

by:ChrisEddy
ID: 12342352
What are the conditions when this sound+lockup symptom happens, and how often?

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Author Comment

by:fozi999
ID: 12342449
Every time I play an MP3 or video with sound or play a game the pc crashes.  Everything stops working with the screen showing what I was doing immediatly before.  It may crash 5 seconds into playing sometimes 20 but it crashes every time with the longest it's taken so far being about 30 seconds.

I'm simply disabling the soundcard and not using any sounds when trying to find a solution to the problem.

I have a Dell Dimension 8100 computer and I have no idea about motherboards tbh.  However the system chip set is an Intel 850 which I think is maybe similar or related???
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Author Comment

by:fozi999
ID: 12342821
I've found a couple of downloads at http://downloadfinder.intel.com/scripts-df/filter_results.asp?strOSs=44&strTypes=DRV%2CARC%2CUTL&ProductID=572&OSFullName=Windows*+XP+Professional&submit=Go%21

INF Update Utility
and
Intel Application Accelerator

Should I download and instal these then try again?

I think the chipset has probably been modified customised by Dell so i'm not sure if these will work.
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Accepted Solution

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ChrisEddy earned 250 total points
ID: 12343371
When I'm working with a Dell in almost any capacity, I generally DL all of the updates that apply to the machine.  I've retrieved a list of updates that apply to your computer at Dell:
http://support.dell.com/support/downloads/devices.aspx?c=us&cs=04&l=en&s=bsd&SystemID=DIM_PNT_P4_8100&category=0&os=WW1&osl=EN

A hanging symptom like you are describing is definitely suggestive of a non-user space code failure, and a driver problem will cause that.

Sugg: since you've already done a good job isolating the problem to probably be within the Audio section, here's a list of things I'd like you to try based on good results I've had with them:

1) uninstall the audio device from the device manager.  This will cause the OS to rediscover the device.  Just to get it working, choosing a generic device is not a bad thing.  Retest and see if you've varied the problem.  If you've already done this, skip to the next.

2) If not, do the reboot thing, DL and install the latest audio driver from Dell (record the numeric directory name where the driver was unzipped into), uninstall the audio device in the device manager, allow the OS to rediscover w/o rebooting, retest and see if you've varied the problem.  Sometimes the act of uninstalling and reinstalling the driver is a silver bullet that makes problems go away.

3) Presuming the SB device is a card, power down the computer, remove the sound card, boot up the machine (to allow it to discover the absence of the card), shutdown.  Reinstall SB card into a different PCI slot (giving the device a different PCI address), boot up the machine, see that the "new" device is discovered, retest and report findings.  

On the general topic of shining light on a problem, because this tends to make the solution self evident, here's a tool from the gnomes at SysInternals:
http://www.sysinternals.com/ntw2k/freeware/debugview.shtml  
http://www.sysinternals.com/ntw2k/freeware/pmon.shtml
http://www.sysinternals.com/ntw2k/freeware/bluescreensaver.shtml
I haven't used it, but the description sounds somewhat relevant, and the people there are bright.  With a little luck, they will display something leading up to the hanging symptom, before the computer actually becomes well hung.  The last one is just a cool BSOD screen saver.  (levity is sometimes a necessary lubricant when the troubleshooting wheels are turning)


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Author Comment

by:fozi999
ID: 12351006
Problem solved.  I had looked at the Dell site before but I had overlooked a BIOS revision for user of Audigy and Audigy 2 soundcards which seems to have done the trick.

Thanks for all the help. :)
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