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Tech: Silent laptop

Penny S. 11 Mar 12 - 05:08 AM
Paul Burke 11 Mar 12 - 05:39 AM
JohnInKansas 11 Mar 12 - 06:51 AM
Penny S. 11 Mar 12 - 09:26 AM
Penny S. 11 Mar 12 - 10:41 AM
artbrooks 11 Mar 12 - 10:51 AM
Penny S. 11 Mar 12 - 11:32 AM
GUEST,Scrumhead 11 Mar 12 - 01:47 PM
Penny S. 12 Mar 12 - 07:39 AM
JohnInKansas 12 Mar 12 - 10:30 AM
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Subject: Tech: Silent laptop
From: Penny S.
Date: 11 Mar 12 - 05:08 AM

I set up to receive a TV programme from IPlayer, and there was no sound.
I checked the external speakers, but the internal ones didn't work either.
I went through the troubleshooting process. Device manager reported the audio was working correctly, that there were no conflicts, that everything was set up properly, but there are no system sounds, let alone anything else.
At the end of the troubleshooting, it directed me to the BIOS, but I don't know how to deal with that.
Any ideas, anyone?

Penny


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Subject: RE: Tech: Silent laptop
From: Paul Burke
Date: 11 Mar 12 - 05:39 AM

Have you got the volume settings right, and not muted?


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Subject: RE: Tech: Silent laptop
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 11 Mar 12 - 06:51 AM

In Windows, the most common cause for no sound is in audio settings.

1. There should be a little "speaker" icon at the bottom right of the screen, and if you click there it flips up a volume control and a button you can use to "mute" the speakers. The "mute" button must be off (i.e. the speakers turned on) and the volume must be set somewhere "above zero."

If you have a fancier sound card installed, sometimes clicking the li'l speaker will open up a more elaborate pop-up window showing multiple channels, or on some systems you may need to "double-click" the speaker icon to get the multi channel setup screen. But note that cheaper computers don't have this display at all.

If you get a multi-channel display, the ipod sound may just be on a different "sound channel" that's normally muted - or turned all the way down.

2. To get sound from some sources you may need a "translator," called a codex, for sound that's in a different format than the most common kinds. If this is the case, Windows nearly always tells you, and asks for permission to search for the proper one, so it's unlikely that's your problem.

3. The main BIOS normally cited for stuff is in the boot-up chip that just tells the computer how to read the drives to get things going. A sound problem should NOT NORMALLY ask you to do anything there. In addition though, there may be a BIOS chip built into your sound system, and the notice you saw more likely refers to this one. (Some other devices, like multipurpose printers, also may have separate BIOS chips.)

If it's the audio system BIOS, you'll need to identify the "sound chip" used in the computer and go to the website of the maker of that chip to see if they have a BIOS update you can download. For the common "built in motherboard sound" you'd likely go to the laptop maker first, and see if you can find advice there. If you have a separate sound card, you'd go to the maker of the card.

Updating a sound card BIOS is not difficult, but you must follow instructions carefully and exactly. The file you download is usually a single "executable" file, and once you click it to run, everything should be pretty much automatic. I've not seen a case where BIOS updates were provided without appropriate instructions, so if/when you download a BIOS update you need to always make sure you look for the instructions and get them at the same time. It's usually recommended that you PRINT the instructions, so that you can refer to them and check off the steps, since you probably won't be able to look at them on screen while the update is running. (A BIOS update is one of those few things for which you really do need to shut down everything else possible and once it starts you can't do anything else until it's finished, although most don't really take all that long.)

John


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Subject: RE: Tech: Silent laptop
From: Penny S.
Date: 11 Mar 12 - 09:26 AM

The speaker icon was the first place I went. No muting anywhere, and all volume sliders on full.
Iplayer is the BBC on line replaying thing, so nothing plugged in.
After posting, I got into the BIOS and there was nothing about audio.
I also used System Restore to get back to Feb 5th or thereabouts, which turns out to be after the last time I used Media Centre to play a film.
The results were not positive, either with regard to the sound, or to anything else. I attempted this post, and all seized up, so I've had to undo that.
I did wonder if the speaker jack plug had somehow turned off the switch it normally turns off while failing to connect itself to the sound card, and then left it turned off when I took it out.
I can't remember when I last heard the system sounds or used it for anything involving sound, as I also use another computer for similar things. It takes such a long time to switch on and off that I generally start the process and go off somewhere else until it has finished, so I could have missed the usual sounds being absent for some time.
I'll try Toshiba.
Penny


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Subject: RE: Tech: Silent laptop
From: Penny S.
Date: 11 Mar 12 - 10:41 AM

Weird. I put in an SD card in a reader (as the built in one has given up the ghost) to save a file to move it between computers, and as I copied the file, I thought I heard a noise. (She thought she heard a noise - Ha Ha! Sorry - the internal playlist ran to the end of the Pirates.) I wasn't sure, so listened carefully as I did the safely remove thing, and Lo, the proper beeps were heard! So I tested it on the Digitrad and a MIDI file. Sounds are back. And it hasn't been off since last post, either.
No explanation at all.
Penny


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Subject: RE: Tech: Silent laptop
From: artbrooks
Date: 11 Mar 12 - 10:51 AM

My laptop has a physical volume control wheel on the edge. Even if all of the software settings are exactly right, if that sucker is turned all the way to the left, nothing plays. It is very easy to hit accidentally.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Silent laptop
From: Penny S.
Date: 11 Mar 12 - 11:32 AM

artbrooks, I wonder if that was what it was. Because mine does have one of those. And I had forgotten it. And it does affect the speaker socket as well.

Penny


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Subject: RE: Tech: Silent laptop
From: GUEST,Scrumhead
Date: 11 Mar 12 - 01:47 PM

Perhaps your laptop just does not like your taste in music and TV.

If it's a new modern laptop, it will probably sulk and become extremely uncooperative
if asked to play anything else apart from Rap, Contemporary R&B, or Glee and X Factor.

It will definitely refuse to play anything remotely Folk.

Suggest replacing it with a working 2nd hand valve radiogram and black and white cathode ray TV.


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Subject: RE: Tech: Silent laptop
From: Penny S.
Date: 12 Mar 12 - 07:39 AM

Hey, you're talking to someone with an original, mono, solid mahogany, Pye Black Box record player.

(I do want to get an extra amplifier in it sometime to get real stereo.)

Penny


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Subject: RE: Tech: Silent laptop
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 12 Mar 12 - 10:30 AM

If it's a new modern laptop, it will probably sulk and become extremely uncooperative if asked to play anything else apart from Rap, Contemporary R&B, or Glee and X Factor.

I think you're giving far too much credit to the "new stuff."

From what I've seen int the "tech news" reports, the new audio systems only accept:

Tweet

Twitter

Tweet

Twitter

Twat

Tweet

Twitter



Horrible monotony.

I tried playing an old speech by Teddy Roosevelt that I saved off of one of grandpa's cyclinder records, that I ran through Dragon to convert to text and then through ABBYY for OCR to assure an accurate conversion, and spell checked in Word to get rid of conversion failures and typos, and back through Dragon and it stopped at 136 characters. Since I know that my not-really-all-that-new desktop computer is supposed to be a good enough one, and even Twitter is supposed to accept 140 characters I KNOW THAT SOMETHING IS TERRIBLY WRONG and I may have to take the whole thing back and demand a refund.

OF COURSE 140 characters is enough for anything most people (with the exception of about 3 here) have to say, but cutting Teddy off at 136 IS INTOLERABLE and UNACCEPTABLE.

Sonething is terribly WRONG with my computer.

Or maybe that's all you can expect now.

John


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