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Topic Title: USB Audio under Windows 7
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Created On: 08/09/2010 01:31 PM
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 08/09/2010 01:31 PM
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Billaboard
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Can anyone help with this? I have asked all over the place, but the only suggestion from Microsoft diagnostic forums is that it might be a Win 7 versus chipset clash.

I have an Acer 5536G Turion X2 based laptop. I'm retired, but my work still continues with pro and semi-pro audio. I advise and work with broadcasters. I need to find out why things happen so that I can advise other users.

Most pro audio interfaces use asio drivers which bypass most of the Windows sound system. The drivers also provide WDM drivers which are seen by Windows. All drivers referred to here are up to date and the correct driver for the circumstances.

The Acer runs fine with certain standard provisos (** see below) when I use a USB2.0 audio interface. If I use a usb 1.1 interface (eg M-Audio Fast Track usb or Edirol UA-3FX), the audio is unusable with either massive crackles or juddery breakup of the sound. If I introduce a usb2 hub (which changes the usb steering in the machine), the sound becomes good.

Without the hub, if I open Control Panel, Sounds and select the recording tab, the sound becomes good. Switching between the Playback (or any other) and Recording tabs switches playback bad and good. This is totally repeatable.

I have used various diagnostics, and have ended up with xperf and NetMon which confirm that the usb data is consistent and good when the audio is good, but is interrupted by SELECT_INTERFACE and CONTROL_TRANSFER messages when the audio is bad.

This happens on Windows 7 32 and 64-bit. It doesn't happen on a Lenovo Intel-based machine. It also doesn't happen on the Acer when it runs Vista 32-bit.

Can anyone suggest where to go from here?

** The proviso is that DPC Latency seems to be a problem on many current laptops running Win 7, and this causes occasional glitches when wifi is running**
 08/13/2010 04:31 AM
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Billaboard
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Is there a better place to ask this question? How do I try to track what message is being sent to the usb part of the ATI chipset by Windows 7?
 09/13/2010 06:25 AM
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Billaboard
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Can I bump this message up the list, please. In asking on a Microsoft group, I received the following statement from a Microsoft support engineer who has been active in following up usb file transfer problems in Windows 7 ....

"we could confirm that the issue is caused by USB chipset compatibility issue. Similar compatibility issues are not found on computers that have Intel chipset."
 09/14/2010 03:26 PM
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sswilson
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I'd suggest contacting tech support for both your motherboard manufacturer and AMD. Unless somebody here has first hand experience (and I'd have thought they'd chime in by now if they did), chances are the only answers you're going to get would be from them or the manufacturer of the USB audio device you're using.
 09/15/2010 06:55 PM
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Billaboard
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Thanks for the reply. The motherboard manufacturer will be represented by Acer. I will try making contact, but my past experience has not been good.

I didn't think of trying to make contact directly with AMD or ATI, but will look into this. In looking I have come across a lot more documentation, so maybe this will help the quest.

I just feel that it ought to be possible to get a handle on what commands are causing the above problem without having to delve too deeply.

I do appreciate the reply as it does give me a couple of routes to look down.
 09/17/2010 01:47 PM
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sswilson
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More than likely it's a chipset issue of some form, but that's a personal guess.

Not a perfect solution, but if it's a laptop, have you looked into possibly getting an add-in USB card which would have a different chipset for USB?

Something like this http://ncix.com/products/index...UC&manufacture=Buffalo .

I'm not making a personal recommendation as I haven't used that particular card, and don't know what format add-in card your laptop can accept, but it should give you a basic idea of what's out there.
 09/18/2010 04:02 PM
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Billaboard
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Yes, a different USB device would be a test I'd like to make, but sadly this Acer 5536 laptop has no Expresscard or PC Card slot. It was advertised as having a slot (other buyers of laptops beware), but hasn't. As it was a bargain, and I was only buying it to test Windows 7's basic audio functionality on behalf of others, I didn't return it.

The strange thing is that the problem isn't seen at all when running Vista so, if it is a chipset problem, it is being triggered by some change to the Microsoft code.

The perfect (or nearly) solution is to use a usb2.0 hub or a usb2.0 audio interface, but I'd really like to track down where the fault occurs.
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