How to fix a breaking, stuttering, cracking or popping audio on a Windows PC


How to fix a breaking, stuttering, cracking or popping audio on a Windows PC

I love to play rock music while I work or my PC but imagine playing music you love and its accompanied by cracking sounds or its audio keeps breaking at regular intervals; that is so not soothing!

What could cause breaking, stuttering, cracking or popping audio on a Windows PC

Some causes of this issue include:

  • Corrupted / outdated Audio drivers: The Audio drivers might be corrupted or outdated
  • Outdated BIOS: The PC might need a BIOS update
  • Power management applications / settings: Setting an aggressive power saving profile on the PC could influence the performance of the PC negatively
  • Temporary OS glitch: The PC might have run low on system resources or a rogue application is causing issues
  • Audio settings: Wrong audio settings could result in clashes
  • Peripheral / External devices: External devices like keyboards, flash drives etc could be the source of the problem
  • Audiodg.exe overload: Audiodg.exe is Windows sound engine. If its over-worked, it could cause audible errors

How do I fix a breaking, stuttering, cracking or popping audio on a Windows PC?

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  • Restart the PC: This helps clear the memory of the PC and temporary errors
  • Disable Exclusive Mode: In the Advanced tab of the  audio properties (right-click the speaker icon at the bottom right corner ),  disable the Line-In and the Playback device,
  • Change to High performance or Balance: Try changing the power profile to High performance or Balanced to grant the PC access to more resources
  • Re-install / update audio drivers: Consider doing a Windows update or downloading and installing the audio drivers for the exact PC model
  • Uninstall Power managers: Uninstall HP power manager or any other power management application then test the audio. re-install if no effect
  • Disable Digital Audio In/Line In: If your computer has a line in or digital audio in port, you may want to disable it if you are no longer using it. If you enabled it for some reason, such as for recording audio from a TV or some other device, and you forgot to disable it, it could cause the static while playing audio.You can disable it by right-clicking on the volume icon in the taskbar, choosing Recording Devices and then disabling the S/PDIF In or any other Line In port
  • Disable ATI HDMI Audio: If you have it in Device Manager, it is probably the cause. Go to Device Manager and then expand Sound, Video and Game Controllers. Here, look for something called ATI HDMI Audio and disable that
  • Disconnect external devices: If you have a keyboard, mouse, flash drive etc connected to the PC then you might want to temporarily disconnect it.
  • Disable sound effects: Disable sound effects on playback devices by right-clicking on the speaker icon at the bottom right > Selecting playback devices > Clicking Properties > Disable all sound effects > Save
  • Lower sound quality: The sound card might not be able to handle what is being thrown at it so click on the speaker icon at the bottom right > Click the speaker image > Advanced > Lower the output quality
  • System maintenance: Consider running a system check to resolve OS issues that might be affecting the audio (see https://journal.hovatek.com/how-to-fix-a-slow-hanging-or-crashing-pc/ )

I often hear a loud sound / echo whenever I shutdown my PC, how do i fix this?

This is your external speaker at work. What you need to do is to change your preferred speaker from external to internal (right-click on the speaker icon then click Volume Control Options)

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