Support Knowledgebase - Hardware Issues

Sound (5)

Windows XP Sound Mixer

 

Windows Vista Sound Mixer


Windows Seven (7) Sound Mixer

 

Using a Microphone with Windows XP

After you connected the microphone and the headset/speaker connectors click with your right mouse button on the tiny speaker icon in the tray area (lower right corner of your windows screen, next to the digital clock).
Note: If you do not have this icon in your tray bar, click on either a) Start > Control Panel > Sounds, Speech and Audio Devices >
Sounds and Audio Devices or b) Start > Settings > Control Panel > Sounds and Audio Devices.

Then click on Adjust Audio Properties.


This dialog box should appear. Click on the "Voice" tab and then on the "Test Hardware" button.


Click on NEXT to start the sound hardware check. This will take some time.

If you do not get any error message, your computer sound hardware and installed sound driver software seems to be ok.

Using your microphone, speak into it and check if the volume meter on the screen shows any reaction. If it does, your microphone works fine.
Click on next.
Now test if you can hear what you spoke into the microphone. If that works too, you are done.


If you get an error like this, Windows could not detect ANY sound input from your microphone.
Try the troubleshooting steps discussed here 2.1 Sound Mixer and here 2.2 Sound Card troubleshooting.

 

 


 

 

Using a Microphone with Windows Vista

 

Caution! Very loud noises can damage your hearing permanently!

 

Step 1. Test the sound equipment

 

Testing your speakers/soundcard: If you do not have a headset connected to the computer, just speakers, test them first before testing the headset. Play any sound/music/noise. If you can hear that sound coming from the speakers we established that the soundcard is working fine.


No sound?

  • Are the speakers powered and switched on?

  • Is the volume turned up?

  • is the speaker's audio cable plugged into the correct connector on the computer? (green)

  • If there is still no sound please continue with No Sound on a PC

Testing your headset: Hook up your headset to ANY other known working sound source, e.g. iPod, other MP3 players, TV, radio, etc. Some device you know for sure the sound output works. This helps to determine if your headset is working fine or defective.

No sound?

  • Did you connect the correct connector? It is either color-coded green or has a headset symbol on the connector.
  • If there is a volume control on the headset's cable, did you turn it all the way up?
  • If there is a mute button on the headset's cable, make sure it is not activated.
  • Did you push the jack all the way in?

If your headset still does not work, it it very likely defective.

 

If your speakers work fine on the PC and if you get clear audio from an external device (iPod etc.) on your headphones we have established that the sound output on your card and the headset itself are working fine.

 

Step 2. Making it work


Now hook up the headset connector to the same jack your speakers are connected to. If you do not have any speakers attached, it will be the green connector.


Play some sounds/music while wearing the headset. Be careful! The sound could be VERY loud! If you still have no sound at all continue to the Sound Mixer section.


Now it's time to connect the microphone. Plug this in the red/pink connector on your sound card.


 

 

Move this!

Are there any background applications running that might use the microphone exclusively?


Examples: Skype, other VOIP apps or any audio recording application. If so, shut them down. Very important! Skype does not really shut down when you click on the close button! You still have to right click on the little Skype icon in you tray area (lower right corner of the Windows screen, next to the digital clock) and select QUIT.

 


 


Some headsets have a volume control and mic mute switch. If present, check that the volume control on your headset is turned all the way up and that the mic mute is off = mic is on. Be very careful when testing this, very loud noises can damage your hearing!


All plugged in? Let's test it: Click on START > CONTROL PANEL (you might have to click on Settings first) > SOUNDS AND AUDIO DEVICES > There, click on the tab labeled VOICE > Then, click on the button labeled test hardware to test your setup.

The wizard explains in detail what will happen and what is expected of you. If this fails, please call the manufacturer of your PC.

To test your speaker/headphone setup you need some audio to test them with.

 

If you have no other audio source on your PC/MAC use these test tones.

 

Either click on a link with your left mouse button, this will attempt to play it in your browser, or click on the link with your right mousebutton (Control + Click on a Mac) to save it to your system.


No sound on your PC (Windows XP/Vista/Seven)

Due to the vast diversity of soundcards, chipsets and drivers and the thousands of combinations and ways something can go wrong (driver? hardware? wrong port? Vista?) we can only provide generic help for the most common sound issues. If we determine during troubleshooting, that this is a setup issue on your system, we will refer you to your PC manufacturer's hotline.


Before we begin, some basics. All PC soundcards have at least the following two sound connectors: (according to PC System Design Guide)

  • Speaker or Headset (amplified) OUT, usually green(ish)  marked with a speaker or headset symbol
    Note: depending of what you connect, the sound chipset present and the operating system in use this might double as Line-Out (= not amplified OUT) if no headset is connected and/or the sound mixer software has been set to Line-Out
  • Microphone IN (amplified), usually red/pink and marked with a microphone symbol

 

Another connector which might be present:

  • Line-IN (not amplified), usually blue(ish), symbol not standardized
    You would connect your HiFi equipment to this connector (PLAY/OUT on a Stereo amplifier)
    Important: Microphones will NOT work.
    Note: depending of the sound chipset present and the operating system in use the blue(ish) connector might double as Line-OUT


PC Sound Card

Laptops usually only have 2 connectors: Mic in and Headset/Speaker out.

Laptop Sound Card

Same standardized color coding here. Red/pink is for microphone in, green/light green is for headphones/speakers out.


Ok, let's get to work.

  • Make sure, your microphone is connected to the proper microphone-in jack on your computer (red/pink).

  • If you have two sets of connectors, one in the front of your computer and one in the back, please use the ones in the back first!
    Reason: The front connector could just be inoperative by a simple cabling issue, the back plane connector always works though.


Click here for Windows XP Microphone Setup

Click here for Windows Vista Microphone Setup

Click here for Windows 7/Seven Microphone Setup

Using a Microphone with Windows XP

After you connected the microphone and the headset/speaker connectors click with your right mouse button on the tiny speaker icon in the tray area (lower right corner of your windows screen, next to the digital clock).
Note: If you do not have this icon in your tray bar, click on either a) Start > Control Panel > Sounds, Speech and Audio Devices >
Sounds and Audio Devices or b) Start > Settings > Control Panel > Sounds and Audio Devices.

Then click on Adjust Audio Properties.


This dialog box should appear. Click on the "Voice" tab and then on the "Test Hardware" button.


Click on NEXT to start the sound hardware check. This will take some time.

If you do not get any error message, your computer sound hardware and installed sound driver software seems to be ok.

Using your microphone, speak into it and check if the volume meter on the screen shows any reaction. If it does, your microphone works fine.
Click on next.
Now test if you can hear what you spoke into the microphone. If that works too, you are done.


If you get an error like this, Windows could not detect ANY sound input from your microphone.
Try the troubleshooting steps discussed here 2.1 Sound Mixer and here 2.2 Sound Card troubleshooting.

 

If there are problems with right clicking, or scrolling on a FVDES computer, please try the following:

 

1) Select the Apple in the top Right, and then System Preferences.

 

 

2) Select Mouse.

 

 

3) Copy the settings to match the ones below. The main 2 to pay attention to are the Secondary Button, and the Scrolling Vertical Only.

 

 

4) Exit out of the window using the red X in the top left.

5) If these changes do not fix the problem, please contact us via our number listed below.

iMac does not boot (start), instead displays GRAY, BLUE or BLACK screen.

If this happens, there has been a severe issue on the MAC's hard drive.

This happens most of the time if there has been a sudden power outage, or the iMac was shut down by pulling the power plug instead of shutting it down properly.

 

Only two things to try in this case:

  1. Unplug the power cord from the back of the iMac.
  2. Press and hold the powerbutton for more than 5 seconds. This will drain the motherboard's capacitors of all energy, resetting all components.
  3. Reconnect the power plug, take a deep breath and push the power button normally to turn on the iMac.

If this solved it, and after max. of 15 minutes the MAC desktop comes up, good.

Why 15 minutes? This is the maximum time it should take the iMac to check the hard drive for errors. It normally does this during startup showing a gray screen with a rotating gear.

 


The second thing you can try if the iMac is stuck at a blue or gray screen only:

 

  1. Make sure the iMac is turned off.
  2. Press and hold the SHIFT key on the keyboard.
  3. Turn the iMac back on, while still holding down the SHIFT key.

This attempts to boot the iMac w/o any plugins or extensions you might have installed or which might have been corrupted due to power-outage, etc.

If this was successful, the Mac OS X Desktop should show up within max. 15 minutes.

If not, sadly, we need the MAC back to further troubleshoot the cause. Please give the tech department a call.

 

Finally, a black screen with some writing on it in several different languages is bad news. Nothing to do or troubleshoot there anymore, we need the computer back. Please call the Tech Department and we will arrange a computer exchange.

 

Please read "Shut down an iMac properly" to avoid this issue happening with your replacement Mac.

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