Graphics Cards Interferes With Soundcard

When resizing windows, having graphics displayed or going to full screen mode in Renoise will produce a constant sound in the background. It is if I can hear the refresh rate of the graphics card. The sound gets louder when opening Renoise.

Specs of the machine:

Motherboard chipset Intel 865G chipset
Graphics card Intel Extreme Graphics 2
Sound card Integrated AC97 sound chipset

Windows 2000 pro, with all service packs and DirectX 9

Ok, obviously the onboard soundchip needs to be replaced with a more pro-sound card in due time, but still. I have a laptop with an embedded soundcard and it does not have this problem.

Any ideas?


the chips on graphic-cards and similar send electromagnetic waves, which can be audible on your soundcard (its like a small version of radio-stations or something)

For years now I pack my soundcard into one of those “anti-static” bags inside of the PC-case.

they are these blueish-grey bags which come with every hardware (its some sort of metal on plastic), you just cut one long side of it, pull it over the soundcard and tape it there. this way you will get less noise on your soundcard (because those interference waves cant get through). since you have only onboard sound you can only try to wrap your graphics-card that way, maybe this helps.

Darn, the graphics card is also an onboard one… :unsure: Guess I’ll have to buy that soundcard soon …

Plastic, heat, melting… I don’t like the sound of that…

With a regular sound card you could have tried to move it to a slot
further away from the gfxcard, but that’s obviously not an option.

Are you sure it’s from the speakers and not for example the
monitor that creates this sound?

You say you hear the sound constantly, not only when using Renoise… Try to use the headphone socket if it is a problem with the external cabling, although that seems unlikely. Also try removing the audio cable between your sound card (motherboard) and CD drive if you have one… also unlikely to cause the error but you never know. Finally disable all the sound card inputs by clicking the little speaker in the tool tray if it’s a line in or mic input that records the noise somehow.

Anyhow it seems strange to me that this can occur. I doubt they produced a motherboard with an unusable integrated sound card! So it could be a hardware error…

nah, there is no problem with heat, really.
those bags done start shriveling or something, they are those thick-massive ones which are used to wrap hardware up (as I wrote before), and there is no problem with the normal temperatures in a PC-Case.

Heat can be a problem even if something won’t melt… Maybe not the sound card but wrapping in the gfx card might push up the temperature of the gfx circuits making it unstable or shortening the life span…

well … you are right there. the gfx chip can overheat, I did not think about that. However, a soundcard should not get this warm. As I said, I do this for over 6 years now, never had any problem.

I have tried muting channels (mic/line/cd etc…) no luck there… I did disconnect the monitor and switched it off also no luck.

I just shutdown the machine, started it again and the sound is not there until I start Renoise. I can hear a little ‘white noise’ then the noise starts again when it initializes.

Switching to different screenresolutions within renoise is not helping either.

Very odd.

Have you tried windowed mode? (not that it should be any difference…)

In windowed mode the sound changes only to a lower frequency :huh:

The sound disappears when I quit Renoise…

I’ve tried Sonar 3 to play samples and it sounds crystal clear… Also the Windows sound themes play without the noise… I give up :unsure:

Tried other DirectX applications? Games, videoplayers, etc?

Windows Media player does make some whitenoise sound but it is hardly noticeable. I have set all volume way up. I’ve selected within Sonar the WDM drivers and it plays fine. It looks like Renoise is amplifying something?

I’ll try to get DirectX 8.0 installed tomorrow instead of 9.0 to see if it makes a difference.

Installed version 8.1 of DirectX and problem is still there, unfortunately…

Try these three things

  1. Update your Intel Chipset drivers from intel.…infinst_enu.exe

  1. Check in your BIOS the PCI Latency and make it 64
  2. Make sure you have the latest drivers for your card’s both sound and graphics. DON’T Use Windows XP default Drivers.


Sigh I’ve updated the drivers and none of the drivers are the windows native ones. Problem is still there. The BIOS does not allow me to change the PCI latency because well, it is not there… I’ve talked to other people and they also experience the short white noise at initialization but do not have the constant buzz in the background so something happens after that… :(

p.s. If this turns out to be a very stupid little thingy that I overlooked, I’ll promise I won’t show my face here ever again :D

Finally the noise is gone so I can create my own! I have put in a soundblaster card. Further inspection into the machine learned that the jacks for the headphones on the motherboard where a bit loose. So it was all hardware related. Still a mystery why all the other sound apps worked ok… Maybe they had a different ‘aura’ :P

Thanks all for your replies and time…


and now pack that card into one of those bags … or leave it if you dont want to ;)