Fix sound problems in Windows 10 and get it working

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Having problems with audio in Windows 10? Sometimes a strange problem occurs when audio is playing in desktop programs but there is no sound in apps from Windows Store. What can you do?

This is a strange problem and if you use a browser to watch YouTube videos, for example, the movies play fine and the sound is loud and clear. Other desktop applications also play sounds without any problems. Surely this must mean that the audio hardware and audio drivers are working properly.

But when running apps from the Windows Store, they don’t play the sound. In my case, I got buzz and clicks and nothing else from apps. In fact, it was so bad that it affected games and videos with sound. Videos would not play because the audio stuttered so much, and games would also stutter and stop playing music and sound effects. The only apps that worked were those that didn’t produce sound.

What is the solution? Many other people who have had this problem have tried all sorts of solutions, only a few of which have been successful. The problem just wouldn’t go away.

I eventually fixed it, but there were some scary moments along the way. Here are the steps I took to fix the problem.

1 Use Windows Update

This is the first thing you should do, and even if Windows Update is set to automatic, it’s worth doing manually. Press Windows+I to open Settings app, click Updates & Securityand then windows update on the left. press the Check for updates Button.

windows update

2 Use Device Manager

The next task is to update the hardware drivers on the computer, especially those used for audio. There are several ways to do this and you do not need any special software. Click in the search box on the taskbar and type device manager. Click on it in the search results (it should be the first) and Device Manager will open on the desktop.

There are two sections Audio inputs and outputsand Sound, video and game controllers. Expand each section, right click and select each item Update driver software.

Update the drivers in Device Manager

You would think that Windows Update would update the drivers, but even though Windows Update said there were no updates, checking for new drivers resulted in some updates.

Since I’m having trouble playing videos, I’ve expanded that as well display adapter section and updated the drivers for the graphics cards (yes, plural – onboard Intel and one Nvidia card). Then restart the computer.

3 Use manufacturer’s tools

The computer manufacturer may have software installed on the computer that can diagnose problems or update the drivers and is worth running. I have an HP Support Assistant utility and there is an update and tune-ups tool.

HP Support Assistant

In my case it didn’t help, but try anyway.

4 Check the playback devices

Right-click the speaker icon on the right side of the taskbar and select playback devices. Select the speakers and click Configure Button. This allows you to test the speakers. Then select the speakers and click properties. Device usage should be below Use this device (activate).

audio properties

Choose Progressive Tab. Set the default format to 16 bit, 44100 Hz (CD quality). There are two checkboxes in the Exclusive Mode section. Try with both enabled and both empty, restarting Windows in between. It made no difference on my PC, so I reset it to default with both ticks. It’s worth a try.

5 Use driver update tools

There are utilities that can check all the drivers in the computer and update them for you, such as: B. IObit Driver Booster. (Uncheck the box Yes, install Advanced System Care upon installation, unless you want it of course.)

Running driver update tools often results in a long list of outdated drivers. Don’t select and update them all at once. If there is a problem, you don’t know which driver is the cause. Update drivers one at a time and after each one check if the computer is working properly.

Don’t use driver update software unless you have a full backup of the drive and know how to restore it. You probably won’t need it, but it’s best to have it anyway.

IObit Driver Booster

When I updated the drivers I got to the last three and Driver Booster stopped at 98% installing a driver. It’s always best to wait when a program freezes because you never know, it might just be busy. After 20 minutes of doing nothing at 98% complete, the update could be completed.

Unfortunately, Windows is almost completely frozen. It barely worked and wouldn’t shut down, run programs, or do anything at all. Press and hold the power button for five seconds to turn off the device. After turning it back on and restarting, Windows still didn’t work. I left it for a while and then turned it off again with the power button. It was one of those nightmare moments where nothing worked.

When it was turned back on, it worked perfectly. I retried these last three driver updates but got the same result – a non-working PC that took a few forced reboots to start working again.

These last three driver updates have been abandoned. They may be outdated, but the PC grows sulky and refuses to work when Driver Booster tries to update them. I didn’t need a backup, but it was close. Attention, driver update tools can cause problems!

Reset 6 improvements

Some computers have audio enhancements such as e.g. Beats Audio. Go to the right side of the taskbar, click the up arrow to reveal the icon panel and see if Beats Audio or something similar is there. Left or right click on it to bring up a menu and open the window.

Beats Audio Control Panel

On the advanced settings Beats Audio tab under Default Settings is a Reset to default Button. click it It might help.

A result

Windows 10 sounds are now working again, both in desktop programs and apps. Videos and game apps also run normally. Whether it was one driver or a combination of drivers that fixed the problem is not clear. It’s okay now though.

Since then I’ve stumbled upon a Microsoft Audio Troubleshooter. Download it and then double-click the file in the download folder. I don’t know if it fixes the problem but it’s worth a try.

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