The First Things You Should Know About Sound and Audio Devices
If you have ever heard an error message, listened to music, heard the spoken dialogue in a film, or played a game that had sound effects, then you have a certain level of intimacy already with sound and audio devices. Simply put, a sound or audio device is the hardware inside of your computer that is responsible for taking the sound instructions given to it by a program, and turning it into the sound that you hear.
It is important to note, however, that sound and audio devices are not the speakers or headphones that you have attached to your computer. Rather, they are a physical component that has either been installed on your motherboard or is physically attached to your motherboard. It is these devices that are responsible for the sounds that you hear coming out of your actual headphones or speakers.
Unfortunately, just like all of the other pieces of hardware in your computer, certain things can go wrong and disable or interfere with the ability of the sound and audio devices to function properly. What this means is that you may hear distorted sounds, lower sound effects than you should be, or in a worst-case scenario, not be able to hear any sounds at all. Often, these problems are caused by sound and audio device driver issues. While these problems can be frustrating to deal with regardless of your level of technical prowess, software like Driver Genius can help to ensure that you never have driver issues - with any of your devices.
What Does a Sound and Audio Device Driver Actually Do?
The driver software for your sound and audio devices is just like the device driver software for any of your existing computer hardware: it provides a set of instructions that tell your devices how to operate. In the case of audio and sound drivers, these drivers instruct your sound and audio card in how to translate the digital language that a computer is capable of processing into type of instructions that your speakers or headphones are capable of processing.
What Happens When Your Sound and Audio Drivers are Outdated or Broken?
A number of different things can happen if your sound and audio drivers become outdated, ranging from distorted sound, no sound at all, or even conflicts with other device drivers - which can cripple your system. Generally, though, you'll receive an error message. Below, we have compiled some that users may run into if they are having sound and audio device driver issues:
- "Audio Driver Error: The following driver(s) either do not support the current audio format, or are in use by another application."
- "Error code 2 - returned by the Core Audio Driver."
- "The device is not configured correctly."
- "The driver for this device might be corrupted, or your system may be running low on memory or other resources."
These error codes from from a variety of different audio and sound device driver issues, ranging from a device that allows users to record guitar music on their computers, to the Apple operating system OS X, to even Windows XP, Vista, and 7.
As is probably evident, these codes are confusing and don't really tell you how to fix the problem. Thankfully, Driver Genius software can not only find sound and audio device driver problems before they occur, but can fix them for you automatically at the press of a button - which means you'll never have to Google another error phrase relating to a driver problem again.
Same goes with searching for a very specific driver such as: Microsoft Intel 82801BA/BAM AC97 Audio Controller driver. In this case - rather than trying to find & download the driver from unknown sources, we also recommend using a professional driver update utility to save time and keep you on the safe side. Even though there is no guarantee that this specific driver will be found using a driver update utility – the scan process is very fast and user friendly, and you might as well find other drivers that needs to be updated on your computer to make the most out of it.
What You Can Do To Make Sure Your Drivers Are Running Correctly
The first thing that has to be done to make sure your drivers continue to run correctly is to ensure that they are up to date. This is a fairly complex process, and involves finding the device driver in your Device Manager, determining when the device driver was released, checking the manufacturer's website to see if a new driver has been released, and if so, downloading that driver, installing it, and then rebooting your computer. Finally, you must then examine Device Manager again to ensure that no conflicts have been created because of the new driver.
Alternatively, you can use software like Driver Genius, which will do all of the above automatically for you. Even better, it can detect problems as they are being created, and automatically take all of the steps necessary to fix them, saving you time, frustration, and a potential trip to the computer repair shop.
Drive Genius can also ensure that you never have device driver issues again, whether they are for your video card, sound/audio card, or just about anything else in your computer. If your device is governed by a driver - and pretty much everything in a computer is - then Driver Genius will automatically take care of everything necessary to keep those drivers running up to date and at full capacity.
Why You Should Install Only Official Drivers
For most devices, there are a wide variety of third-party drivers out there. Some of them promise higher-quality sound, faster processing, or any number of a myriad of effects. While some of these may work, more often than not, they are designed to lure in unscrupulous Internet users and can infect their computers with spyware, viruses, and other types of malware.
Further, even if the third-party device driver is benign, it can have unforeseen conflicts with other drivers and devices that are on your computer now. This is because only the original developer has access to all of the data necessary to write an effective driver. Due to all of these reasons, it is critical that you install only official drivers on your computer.
What Can Driver Genius Do For You?
- Driver Genius is fast: Capable of scanning and updating all of your drivers within two minutes, Driver Genius will make sure that all of your drivers are up to date and running exactly as they should without taking up any of your time.
- Driver Genius will save you from future driver trouble: By downloading, updating, and repairing all of your device drivers ahead of time automatically, Driver Genius will make sure that your device drivers, including the drivers that make sure that your Internet connection stays live, never fail. While it cannot guarantee that you won't have any computer problems, it can guarantee that none of them will be a result of a bad driver.
- Driver Genius is award-winning software: Whether you're a professional IT consultant or a grandmother that only uses her computer to check email, Driver Genius is intuitive, easy to use, and highly effective. That's why Driver Genius consistently receives awards and merits from groups throughout the industry, and why it remains a favorite piece of software of IT professionals worldwide.