Pops and crackles by SB PCI 128

stringZ

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Dear tom's hardware Community!

I'm experiencing distortion (pops and crackles) problem with my old Sound Blaster PCI 128 sound card in my P4 computer with ASUS P4P800E-Deluxe motherboard. I have the latest BIOS and drivers available from ASUS' related Official Site as I have the latest, official Sound Card Driver available from Creative. There are patches and fixes out there on the 'net, including the PCI Latency Patch for VIA chipsets and Patch for Creative Audigy series which both are created by George E. Breese intended to eliminate the popping/crackling problem at these kinds of cards. Unfortunately none of the two above works for me, because my motherboard has not VIA chipset (P4P800E-Deluxe comes with Intel chipset not VIA), and my sound card is exactly what Mr. Breese enumerates unsupported in the readme.htm of the Patch for Creative Audigy series mentioned earlier, because it's not Audigy series.

The crackling is the most noticable, when the integrated Promise SATA/RAID Controller is running. I have a SATA Hard Drive attached to it, so the controller operates every time using this HDD. Unfortunately, I can't move this HDD to the motherboard's SATA controller because it doesn't work properly.

Tried messing around with PCI Latency settings in BIOS (tried all the options) and also Turbo/Standard performance modes. None of them solved my problem.
I really like SB PCI128, because it has a built-in amplifier and very good sound quality. I want to continue using it and don't want to buy a new because these annoying incompatibility problems.

Thanks for your help
stringZ
 

rexter

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I gather you are using XP with higher than SP1, vista or windows 7.

Try to set you audio properties to 44 khz, otherwise you'll need to go back to XP SP 1.

 

rexter

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I remember my P4P800E-Deluxe audio sounded good but I found my P4S-333 with C-Media chip sounds more natural than intel chip does.

And yes you can use the VIA codec but decreases funtionalty than realtek does, controls like equalizer and other audio enhancements.
 

stringZ

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No I did not meant the integrated audio on my motherboard. Surely it's an AC97 compatible one, but I don't want to use it, because SB PCI 128 sounds more natural. This is a PCI card which - I think - has PCI delay problems. Tried on all samplerates. Tried on WINXPSP1 and SP2 also. Tried adjusting PCI delay values in BIOS manually (tried all possible values). Tried with another (same type) SB PCI 128. None of these solved the problem.

I don't understand why do hardware manufacturers force me to buy a new one with leaving these problems unsolved and not giving a *** about backward-compatiblity (these latency problems often occur when you have PCI 2.0 card in a newer slot.
 

rexter

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I think that old SoundBlaster and is a Windows 98 hardware with Windows XP compatible, I used to own one.

Anyway SB might not updated the driver for that model since hardly anyone uses it anymore. And I think the crackcle is due to netframework coding but don't quote on that; I'm not sure.

You want to try to install the OS again without SP1 but not sure if you want to do that again?

One thing you can try is moving the cards around, check your manuals for shared slots and move it to empty one.
 

stringZ

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Well, I have an older P3, 500MHz computer with the same Windows XP and the same drivers as my P4. My SB PCI works well in this P3 without problems, but since I use music creation softwares that guzzle up all the memory because of additional VSTs, I can't do this on that computer because of the 192MB RAM.
 
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