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Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem

Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« on: December 31, 2015, 10:03:54 pm »
Hi!
System specs:
CPU: i5 6600k Skylake OC 4.2 Ghz
Motherboard: Gigabyte Z170 Gaming 7
RAM: G-Skill 16 GB (4x4) DDR4 2400 Mhz
GPU: Gigabyte G1 Gaming GTX 970 Windforce
PSU: EVGA Supernova B2 750W
CPU Cooling: DeepCool Captain 120 Liquid Cooling

Running Windows 10 up to date. All drivers are up to date. BIOS version is up to date v F6.

I have problems with my onboard audio. I use head phones and speakers. The sound sometimes become distorted and super loud (is becoming more and more frequent with every day). When this happens sound level cannot be controlled anymore. No matter how loud or quiet you put the sound stays as it is - loud and distorted.
At first I thought it is my new headsets (Razer Kraken Pro 2015) but it happens also on my speakers. So, clearly it is onboard sound. Also, I tried reinstalling Windows 10 as a fresh copy and nothing changed. Also, I thought it might be because of NVIDIA Shadowplay or my GPU but it happens with other GPU's as well.

Anyone experience similar issues? Any ways to fix this? Or should I RMA motherboard?

Re: Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2016, 02:34:51 am »
Hi,

I have the exact same problem and I have to reboot my computer when it happens.

I think it started when I updated the Thunderbolt firmware to get 3.0, but I also updated the Creative Audio Drivers to version RC2 (2016/01/07) around the same time.

It seems to happen when I play with the device output (speakers to headphones or headphones to speakers).

I would like to try with the old drivers, but they are not available anymore!

Any solution to this problem??

-js
« Last Edit: January 15, 2016, 02:37:58 am by jsimon1080 »

elc00l

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Re: Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« Reply #2 on: January 16, 2016, 03:37:28 pm »
Hi,

I haven't noticed problem you described but I don't use headphones mode regularly.
I can provide you a link for older version of Creative Audio Drivers, it was RC1.11 if I remember correctly: http://1drv.ms/1ZDp6pz
You can test with those.

I have another problem.
I have 5.1 speakers connected and the same set in SB Pro Studio. Immediately after windows start, there's no sound from left and right front speakers (tested on Speakers/Headphones tab), I have to switch between headphones and back to speakers, then there's full sound from all the speakers. Could you check if you have similar?
I hoped that RC2 version will fix it but it haven't.

Lavax

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Re: Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« Reply #3 on: January 20, 2016, 08:36:41 pm »
I have the same problems discribed above. Sometimes the sound is horribly distorted and I have to restart the computer.
And on every startup I have to switch from headphone to speaker mode to have correct 5.1 sound.

Is there any fix? This is getting annoying. I expect some support for a premium mainboard.

My system:
Intel i7 6600
MSI Geforce 970
Windows 10 64bit up2date
Creative Audio driver RC2

« Last Edit: January 20, 2016, 08:39:22 pm by Lavax »

Re: Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2016, 01:35:51 am »
Bump!

Anyone else is experiencing the same issue. It seems that I'm not the only one here with the same problem.
This is really getting annoying for a premium class motherboard.

I chose this motherboard to see if Gigabyte can offer something great for a value. Seems like I will have to sell this motherboard and forget about Gigabyte products.

Anyone from Gigabyte can respond to this? Are there any fixes? Obviously motherboard is not for RMA as this seems to be a common issue.

P.S. I will upload a video once I have the same issue happening again. Happens every 2 to 3 days.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2016, 01:37:34 am by ZedZedski »

Re: Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2016, 01:38:41 am »
Hi,

I haven't noticed problem you described but I don't use headphones mode regularly.
I can provide you a link for older version of Creative Audio Drivers, it was RC1.11 if I remember correctly: http://1drv.ms/1ZDp6pz
You can test with those.

I have another problem.
I have 5.1 speakers connected and the same set in SB Pro Studio. Immediately after windows start, there's no sound from left and right front speakers (tested on Speakers/Headphones tab), I have to switch between headphones and back to speakers, then there's full sound from all the speakers. Could you check if you have similar?
I hoped that RC2 version will fix it but it haven't.
The problem I'm having is happening on Headphones and on Speakers. It really doesn't matter what I use. But to answer your question, no, I did not experience any issues as you described.

Elsie

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Re: Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2016, 07:12:55 pm »
I have the same issue, it doesn't happen often but the only way around is a reboot.

Saruman

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Re: Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« Reply #7 on: March 04, 2016, 11:30:31 pm »
Same!

OS: Windows 10 x64

Drivers: I tried the RC1 and RC2. Both have the problem. Now I'm trying the oldest drivers (the ones before RC1, they should be revision 1041 if I'm not wrong).

I had the problem on day 1, since I bought the system, on RC2 drivers. After reverting to RC1 drivers, I had no problem for two weeks, then yesterday it showed again all of a sudden. Reboot fixes but after a few minutes the problem happens again. I tried to disable C1E state, but that didn't solve anything. Now I moved to the oldest driver and I've been testing it since a few minutes ago. Newegg is really *full* of this crap, and Gigabyte does nothing. They should update drivers or BIOS or recognise a faulty audio chipset maybe and recall the boards.

I can't RMA, alas, because I cannot deprive of the motherboard and have to work with this PC. Think I'll buy a cheap PCIe soundcard and use it instead of this crappy onboard audio.

And guess what? This audio chipset isn't new to this ****: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cb34Vamv9kw

UPDATE: oldest driver didn't solve the issue. I uninstalled all Creative software, reverted to RC2 and disabled audio enhancements in Windows control panel. Last chance I give to this thing. Really disappointed with Gigabyte. I regret I didn't buy Asus as I always did in the past. Shame on my bad idea and first and last time in all my life with Gigabyte. Really poor, poor support if all they're able to effectively do is damn and plain nothing.
« Last Edit: March 05, 2016, 01:25:52 am by Saruman »

DC42

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Re: Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2016, 12:37:25 pm »
Hello...

I lose the on-board audio upon a reboot. Happens every time. Uninstalling the Creative drivers, reboot, install the latest drivers from the GB site (tried the disc' as well) but this has not resolved the issue. Pretty vanilla set up (more music orientated than games these days), web surfing, basic tasks etc..

Lost faith in Creative some time ago but never like Realtek audio so gave this a shot. If there are no immediate fixes will have to get a sound card.

F6 bios 12/16/2015. Any thoughts? Quality of audio once back up and rolling is good. Have some Klipsch 2.1's with sub so it sounds pretty sweet.

DC42

GIGABYTE G1 Gaming GA-Z170X-Gaming 7 (rev. 1.0) LGA 1151 Intel Z170 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.1 USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

Intel Core i5-6600K 6M Skylake Quad-Core 3.5 GHz LGA 1151 91W BX80662I56600K Desktop Processor Intel HD Graphics 530

EVGA GeForce GTX 960 04G-P4-3967-KR 4GB SSC GAMING w/ACX 2.0+

Rosewill Capstone-G750, Capstone G Series 750W Modular Power Supply, 80 PLUS Gold Certified, Single +12V Rail, SLI & Crossfire

G.SKILL Ripjaws V Series 32GB (2 x 16GB) 288-Pin DDR4 SDRAM DDR4 2666 (PC4 21300)

SAMSUNG 850 PRO 2.5" 256GB SATA III 3-D Vertical Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) MZ-7KE256BW

ASUS DRW-24B1ST/BLK/B/AS Black SATA 24X DVD Burner

Microsoft Windows 10 Pro 64-bit - OEM

Saruman

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Re: Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2016, 03:26:51 pm »
UPDATE: please, try to change constantly from 5.1 to 2.1 in your SoundBlaster Pro Studio while for example listening to music and being connected to a Teamspeak server and you'll see the problem happen (it already shows if you run Teamspeak while onboard audio is being playing something else, too). The problem can be reproduced in this way on my machine and, when reproduced, can also stopped without rebooting, by only constantly changing from those two options until the sound comes back normal and not distorted. This means that the damn thing is software (without the SoundBlaster Pro Studio and with Microsoft drivers I have no problem, but I can't use the microphone on the headphones from the front panel audio, with the Microsoft drivers)! Gygabyte, wake up!

P.S.: I bought a Xonar. On its way from Amazon, anyway
« Last Edit: March 05, 2016, 07:03:16 pm by Saruman »

Saruman

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Re: Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« Reply #10 on: March 06, 2016, 01:32:48 am »
I'll develop my previous post.

Yesterday I got the issue six times. Today three times. I made an interesting discovery, though, that is that you haven't to reboot to make the sound go back to normal: it's sufficient to open the SoundBlaster program in the systray and switch a few times between 2.1 Stereo and 5.1 until magically all comes back normal. On the other hand, it's pretty odd that, apart from the issue, once you select headphones in that same program, next time you switch to stereo you can listen to all the sounds continuing to come from headphones too (and the audio system appears much more stable in this way: perhaps is it so because, while in 2.1 or 5.1, it does not use the OP-AMP that it instead uses while in headphone mode?).

My discovery brings me to think that the problem could reside in software or driver but, on the other hand, makes me despair that Gigabyte will ever provide a concrete and real solution, because on Internet you can find, in a wide arc of time, a lot of reports about Gigabyte's SoundCore 3di-based motherboards affected by the same problem and never - I repeat: never - fixed.

Should I be wrong and should the problem be hardware-related, perhaps with a precise set of producted mainboards, I think that it's not the SoundCore chipset to be blamed though, but the (faulty) OP-AMP on the motherboard. I suspect this because I read also that a couple of guys solved our same problem by replacing the OP-AMP.

Now, a new OP-AMP for this motherboard, on Amazon, costs about 30 € though, at least from my country (Italy). For about the same amount of money, honestly I ordered today a dedicated Asus Xonar, that will be shipped to me on next Wednesday. That should bring an end to this absurd problem, I guess, and anyway more audio quality, to be honest, since with this SoundCore 3di I could listen some high-pitch noise in headphones, when the volume was maxed up (so shielding is not that great too, on our Gaming 7, despite Gigabyte's promises). I simply haven't the time to rule this problem out by multiple and blind tries, because this PC is highly needed for urgent and continuous job (it's built with gaming components because I like to dedicate some spare time to videogames, but that doesn't exclude that the rig is mainly used for work).

For your further reference, today evening I updated my BIOS from F7j to F7r (yes, I was using beta because of the notorious Skylake bug with complex calculations; and I simply upgraded tonight to latest beta). Since then, I had no problem, but I suspect it would be only a matter of time. After experiencing the issue once the very first day I built the system, in fact, I never experienced it in the following three weeks, until yesterday. So time is really random on this problem.

Or could it be that the issue showed again yesterday because only a few minutes earlier my Windows 10 x64 updated itself to latest public stable build? That would confirm that the problem happens at software or driver level, and another confirmation of this would be also that still yesterday, while I was repeatedly having the problem reboot after reboot, I could stop it by reverting to Microsoft drivers and uninstalling the SoundBlaster utility. But, in this way, I lost the possibility to use the microphone from the front-panel of my case (Corsair Carbide 500R)... So, wherever you look at this situation, it's a great mess.

One thing is sure: I spent a lot of money on Gaming 7 instead of buying Gaming 5/6 or Asus Maximus VIII (Hero) because I was convinced by the well-advertised (by Gigabyte) SoundCore 3di chipset. I'm now very disappointed I was substantially forced to buy a dedicated soundcard: sure, thanks to the shipping Asus Xonar I'll solve the problem (at least I hope!) and I'll have a better experience with the sound compartment from now on, but a part of money I spent on Gaming 7 will be obviously trashed. And I don't like trashing money, so, Gigabyte, be sure that you'll never - never - see my wallet again. And I'll advise against you any other people asking me for a good suggestion about hardware. Yes, it's a drop of money in the ocean you're swimming into, so I know you can't care more about this. But revolts start always from tiny gestures.
« Last Edit: March 06, 2016, 01:56:07 am by Saruman »

elc00l

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Re: Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« Reply #11 on: March 07, 2016, 06:15:48 pm »
Hi guys,

Maybe it's hardware issue on your motherboard. I have my Gaming 7 for some time already and never experienced distortion you describe and I listen to the music quite a lot. The only issues I have is with 5.1 surround after system startup and audio latency problems (pops/hiss) but this is because of onboard intel NIC (also very annoying).

Re: Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« Reply #12 on: March 08, 2016, 07:40:45 am »
Z170 gaming 7 here. I've had it for a few months now.
My Xonar Essence STX appeared to have mic issues, so i switched to the onboard audio.

It only took about 4 days for this issues to occur.Was playing a game, spamming the 1 key, and all of a sudden i had MAX volume for entire system. Painful on the ears. either no volume at all, or max volume (system showed 2/100 volume, sounds extremely loud).

This problem really needs to be fixed. Gigabyte is ripe for a lawsuit based on peoples hearing being damaged with the extreme sound put out when this occurs.

Re: Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« Reply #13 on: March 08, 2016, 02:18:03 pm »
Have you guys looked at the Windows sound setting for Communications? Try setting it to 'Do nothing' and see if it makes a difference to your issue.


Saruman

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Re: Z170Z Gaming 7 Audio Problem
« Reply #14 on: March 09, 2016, 03:32:04 pm »
It didn't make any difference for me

 

anything