A Few Simple Tricks to Update Sound Drivers
If you want your computer or laptop to play sound, it's absolutely imperative to keep your sound drivers updated. Outdated, missing, or corrupt sound drivers will completely interfere with your system's ability to produce sound. That's because drivers are important components that transmit information between your sound card and your peripherals.
However, many people are unaware that there are a few simple steps you can take to update sound drivers. Let's go over these.
Sound Drivers: How Do You Keep Them Up-to-Date?
First of all, it's worthwhile to note that sound drivers can become outdated for a number of reasons. Installing a new operating system or implementing a new sound card can both result in outdated drivers. Malware and viruses can also affect driver output. You should be able to distinguish between hardware problems and driver issues. Fortunately, it's fairly simple to do this.
You can utilize Windows Device Manager to diagnose any driver problems you might have. Here's an example of what my Device Manager looks like. Depending on your system, yours should be similar.
You can look it up in search if you are having trouble finding it.
Windows Device Manager is a useful tool that essentially displays all of the components associated with your processing and peripherals. You can open Device Manager by opening the "Control Panel" and then clicking on "Hardware and Sound" and then locating the Device Manager under this subcategory.
Utilizing Device Manager to Locate Driver Issues
Once you have opened Device Manager, you will see a long list of, well, devices! Click on the arrow next to one of these devices and the arrow will display controllers and additional devices. Now, if you see a yellow exclamation mark or triangle next to the device, it’s very likely that you’re dealing with outdated drivers.
You can actually right-click on the device and then select “Update Driver Software” to attempt a driver update.
Windows will then search a database of drivers to locate the driver that you need. However, since many consumers don't use the factory-installed devices, this process might not work properly.
Downloading Drivers from the Manufacturer
Another option you can use is to simply visit the manufacturer’s website and download drivers directly from the manufacturer. You’ll need to identify exactly which company manufactured your sound card. You will also need to make sure you know the make and model of your sound card as well as your operating system specifications.
In our example, we would go to either the ATI or Realtek website for drivers. Normally, manufacturers will have drivers available under a “Downloads” or “Support” link that is easily accessible from their homepage.
Manually downloading and installing drivers does take a bit of know-how. It can also be somewhat stressful because you often have to perform a complete UN-installation of the previous driver before you can install the new one. If the uninstall is partial or incomplete, your new driver won’t work.
A Quick Method: Use Driver Update Software
The easiest way to update drivers is to locate and utilize good driver update software. Driver update software is built to scan your system for drivers that are out-of-date, and then replace those drivers with new, functioning drivers. There’s really no point in going through a big hassle when you can get effective software that will accomplish the same task in less time. Go with strong driver update software when you need to update sound drivers.
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