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Audio Buzzing Issue & Sound Blaster Z

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  • Audio
Last response: in Audio
January 6, 2016 10:56:26 AM

Slightly annoyed and frustrated at the moment. I bought a new graphics card (GTX Titan X) and since then I have been having issues with my audio when playing graphic intensive games. The issue is that there is a buzzing noise when these games are running and the frequency changes sometimes depending on what I am doing.

After trying everything I could and searching online to no avail. I went to the Nvidia support and spoke to them, one of them instructed me to buy a dedicated audio card, so I bought the Sound Blaster Z. My issues still continued and they only grew with this audio card.

My issue with the audio card in addition to the buzzing is that I have two front speakers (green analog cables) and I cannot for the sake of me find out how to make the rear speaker act as an additional front speaker. With my realtek audio I was able to go into the setting panel and just change the type of speaker it was, but I can't manage to do that.

Things I have tried:
- HMDI cable. Works with no buzzing.
- Headset (digital audio). Works with no buzzing, but I still get buzzing through my main speakers.
- Different audio jacks.
- Cleaning the audio jacks.
- Checking the wires.
- Checking my speakers. Works fine when not in game.
- Trying a dedicated audio card.
- Trying a different game.
- Checking to see if it's coil whine. (It's not)
- Checking for EMI (shouldn't be because I tried a dedicated audio card to no avail).

Someone please help me? :( 

More about : audio buzzing issue sound blaster

January 6, 2016 11:46:30 AM

If the problem arose after buying the Titan, we can narrow it down to the Titan :p  There is a chance that the Nvidia HD Audio drivers are causing the interference you describe. It's certainly a widely known problem with regards to other internal soundcards.

With a dedicated soundblaster, it's also worth disabling the onboard motherboard audio in the BIOS for even less interference, audio/mic wise.

Pretty basic suggestions I know - but I'm not really sure.

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January 6, 2016 11:51:15 AM

Binkles said:
If the problem arose after buying the Titan, we can narrow it down to the Titan :p  There is a chance that the Nvidia HD Audio drivers are causing the interference you describe. It's certainly a widely known problem with regards to other internal soundcards.

With a dedicated soundblaster, it's also worth disabling the onboard motherboard audio in the BIOS for even less interference, audio/mic wise.

Pretty basic suggestions I know - but I'm not really sure.



Thanks for your reply, I really appreciate it.When talking to the NVIDIA support they also suggested this. I tried to disable Nvidia HD Audio Drivers from the device managers program and on restart it was automatically enabled again. I also tried uninstalling it and on restart it was installed again, so I never really did find out if it was down to the interference between the Nvidia HD Audio drivers.

I should add, I tried to disable them and then test it which did not work, and I assumed this was due to the changes not taking affect because I did not restart my PC.How can I permanently disable them and check? Thanks.
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January 6, 2016 12:04:01 PM

Start -> run -> devmgmt.msc

Select the 'Display adapters' arrow, right click the Titan GTX and hit properties. On the 'General' tab, it will state the location of the device, e.g. PCI bus 2.

Note that.

Scroll down the device manager and find 'System devices'. Look for anything that says HD audio or audio controller. Check their general tabs to match which PCI bus they are using. If it matches the GTX Titan, right click, and select disable.

Also, scrolling upwards, in 'Sound, video and game controllers', there should be two Nvidia audio drivers that you can disable.

I'd double check in Run - > services.msc and make sure anything audio related to Nvidia is also disabled. Likewise, if you are aren't using shadowpaly/streaming services and all the other crapware Nvidia insist on giving you, I'd disable that too.

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January 6, 2016 12:15:55 PM

I did as instructed and unfortunately, it didn't work, even after a restart. :( 

Also I checked after the restart, to make sure it was disabled and it was.

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January 6, 2016 12:39:34 PM

That's annoying. Good that they've all been disabled - shame the problem still persists.

I'm not familiar with the Soundblaster, but are there options to disable the ports not being used, for example my Xonar by default keeps the SPDIF port live which actually caused me static problems, until I disabled it.

Similarly, out-of-date wireless drivers can cause, but then again you mentioned it only happened after purchasing the Titan.

I would recommended re-wiring all the power and output cables from your soundcard as far away as possible from your GPU and PSU - and possibly install the cardt above the GPU, so the shielding is more effective.

It's a shame they recommended the Soundblaster, as an external amp/dac always solves these interference problems.

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January 6, 2016 12:59:21 PM

There are no power cables attached to the sound card. I only just got it today and installed it today. It was also like this without it. I think I will try testing my old graphics card again, because this time Nvidia support said it was my motherboard and I highly doubt that. I've no idea what else I can do if the issue persists after that, because I don't have a motherboard to test to make sure it's actually that or any other hardware.

I've pretty much tried everything at this point right?
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January 6, 2016 1:24:36 PM

I would say so, not much else you could try.

Is there enough bandwidth on your motherboard to support the Titan and Soundblaster PCE slots? That might be one reason.
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January 6, 2016 1:27:23 PM

Bandwidth? Not sure what that is, but I am using the GA X79 - UD3 V1.0. I think it should have enough? But like I said before, I just got the sound blaster today and even before I got it, I was experiencing the buzzing issue.

Found here: http://www.gigabyte.com/products/product-page.aspx?pid=...
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October 18, 2016 9:13:17 AM

Hi ...

I had similar problem with Sound blaster Z and MSI R9 270 Gaming. Buzzing noise while 3D gaming and even in windows sometimes. I had to switch over sound blaster to different slot... I used PCI-Ex 4x (long one) and reinstall drivers. Now it works flawlessly.

I had the same problem with different motherboards (GA-P67A-D3-B3, GA-H61M-D2-B3) and soundcards (asus xonar dx, audiotrak prodigy 7.1 and now SB Z) soo some (random) grounding issue between PCI-Ex slots i guess.

Hope this helps ...
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