Usually this is solved with a reinstall (uninstall and install) of the drivers, but sometimes it is necessary for a more deep driver cleaning besides the one done by the UNi Xonar installer.
Driver cleaning guide:
- Uninstall any Xonar drivers (search for Asus Xonar and/or UNi Xonar) and restart after that.
- Download and run (as administrator) driverclean.bat.
- You have to download and install Driver Sweeper or its successor, Driver Fusion. Select ASUS Sound -> press Analyse -> press Clean.
- Install UNi Xonar drivers.
You need to reconfigure the ASIO device output in the preferences of the audio application you are using.
The easiest way is to launch the Asus Xonar Audio Center (Start->All Programs -> Uni Xonar Driver) and change it from there.
Alternatively, you can download the Standalone Apps package listed in the main UNi Xonar Page, and use the applications you want to change the settings. This is recommended so that you don’t get a increase in DPC latency or other system interferences with the launch of Asus Xonar Audio Center.
a. Through the drivers
Check “Re-enable stereo upmix to 4,5.1 and 7.1″ option in the UNi Xonar driver installer. This option works slightly different in Win Vista/7/8 than how it works in Win XP:
- On Windows XP if you set the output to 6 channels you always get the upmix (with stereo upmix option checked).
- On Win Vista/7/8 it works if you set this settings in Asus/Cmedia Audio Panel: set audio channels to 2 and analog output to 5.1 speakers. Caution: it won’t work if you set audio channels to 6 and analog out to 5.1. By selecting this your Windows and other applications will output the sound from 2.0 format to 5.1 speakers and not 5.1 format to 5.1 speakers.
An alternative for enabling stereo upmix is to enable Dolby Pro Logic IIx and this should upmix the the 2 channel signal to all the speakers. Enabling GX in order to have a working stereo upmix in Win Vista/7/8 is not recommend because of the crashes and issues that arise because of GX (see Q&A 11).
b. Through players settings
Possibly a better way to enable stereo upmix is to enable it on a case by case basis through your Audio/Video player settings. Some players need a dedicated plugin in order to do this (like Channel Mixer for foobar2000). In this case the Asus/C-Media Panel settings need to be 6 channels and 5.1 speakers or so, depending on your audio system.
5.1. Finding settings path in the registry
1) Press Start -> Run or Search field and type regedit
2) navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet in the left pane
3) Press CTRL+F and type BassBasedBLevel and click find, this will jump you to xonar registry settings path. This “folder” (0005\Settings or any other number) is where the Xonar settings are stored.
Right click on Settings “folder” and click export. Type a name and click Save.
Before importing, check your current registry path for the Audio card settings, as they might be not stored in “0005”(or any other name) like it was when you saved the registry. If this is different, you need to edit the previously exported reg file (right click->edit) , and replace the old path with the new one (example: …005settings to …011settings). Save the file.
Double click on the saved registry file and press “yes” when prompted. Note that you need to restart your PC or disable and enable your Xonar card in Device Manager in order for settings to apply.
TIP: By exporting and importing the Xonar registry settings, you can save your settings before uninstalling the drivers and installing a newer version. In this case, you have to import it after you’ve installed the driver. In order for them to apply you need to either restart your PC or disable/enable Xonar Card from Device Manager.
HunterZ: Panorama effects usually cause the sound to “wrap” around to the surround speakers, creating a larger and/or more immersive stereo stage. A lot of Dolby ProLogic II Music decoders have a similar effect when decoding in music mode.
You will usually hear a pop when you change to music with different sample rate.
- Navigate to the settings path ( see 5.1. Finding settings path in the registry paragraph)
- You have the following variables for adjusting delay LsRsDelay , CenterDelay , LbRbDelay – for side/rear , center , rear in 7.1 . If you don’t have them you need to create them, Right-click on black space -> New ->Binary value.
- Double click on the variable you want to edit, and instead of 000000 type 050000.This should add a delay of 5 seconds to the channel you are editing. The settings are in hexadecimal form. Some examples: 9 ms is “09 00 00 00″, 10 ms is “0a 00 00 00″ , 11 ms is “0b 00 00 00″, 15 ms is “0f 00 00 00″ , 20 ms is “14 00 00 00″
- For new settings to apply you either need to restart, or disable and re-enable the Xonar card from Device Manager
In Asus/C-media Control Panels :
- Keep Sample Rate at 44.1 kHz , this is generally valid for most media (games, movies, music), while video DVDs use 48 kHz. Increasing Sample Rate without having a source thats encoded at a higher sample rate won’t improve sound quality and in fact it might degrade it.
- Select Audio Channel/System input (present only in Win Vista/7/8) and Analog Out/System Output settings based on the number of speakers that you have. For a 5.1 audio system select Audio Channel to 6 and Analog Out to 5.1. For a 2.1 audio system, select Audio Channel to 2 and Analog Out to 2. By default, selecting more channels than the number of speakers you have connected won’t enable you to hear more sounds or hear the footsteps and positioning of enemies better in games.
- If you wish to emulate 8 channels surround on a 2 channel headphones you need to enable “Dolby Headphones” and “7.1 virtual speaker shifter” after setting the number of channels to 8 and analog output to “Headphones”.
- Keep GX (Xear 3D in C-media Panel) disabled. GX is responsible with enabling EAX effects in some games, but its know to cause crashes and audio loops in games and other applications while this is enabled.
- Be careful with what you enable. The effects will increase the DPC latency which in turn could cause other problems like audio/video desynchronization or slow network/internet speed, and they also change the sound not always in a good way, you might like it for your music but it might harm the audio positioning in games.
- (Windows Vista/7/8 only) : Setting the Windows audio playback to 24 bit might improve audio quality. Right click on volume icon in tray, select Playback devices, double click on (Speakers) Xonar card , go to Advanced tab and in the Default format entry select 24 bit 44100 Hz (studio quality) as shown in this picture. While you can change this to 32 bit, this probably isn’t needed. Many Xonar cards only support up to 24 bit and even if this wouldn’t be the case, setting Windows audio playback to 32 bit won’t usually have a improvement in quality compared to 24 bit. You can find detailed information on audio bit-depth here.
- Don’t increase the Windows Audio Volume to 100%, and instead set it to 80-90% max. Issue regarding setting volume to 100% is described here.
In audio/video applications:
- Enable the audio output/playback to 24 bit instead of 16 bit , as this might improve audio quality. This setting is application specific so you will have to search for it in application preferences/options. For example, in Winamp the setting is located in Preferences->Playback->Allow 24bit . If you have Windows Vista,7 or 8 then you have to enable 24 bit output in Windows as well.
- If you use ASIO as playback output, recommended settings would be Bit-Depth:24-bit and Latency: 10 ms or above.
- In game Options -> Sound Quality set Medium or High depending on the importance of sound quality in that particular game. Setting this to High might cause to much strain on your CPU and this in turn will affect the FPS of that particular game.
- In-game options: make sure you have properly detected or set the number of speakers you currently have connected.
There was a fix made by someone but it might not work with newer flash versions and it does not work on Win 8 . You can find the fix here. Follow the instructions in the readme.txt file.
If you are mostly viewing clips on youtube.com, a possible workaround would be to watch the videos in HTML5 video player instead of Flash player. To do so, go to youtube html5 page and turn “HTML5 Video” on.
In most of the cases it doesn’t even work and the worse part is that while having GX enabled any audio application that you use is prone to crashes or make your whole system crash (BSODS).
Asus/C-media emulation of EAX capabilities is disastrous and should have never been released in this state and marketed as a feature. Want a reason to sue Asus? This is it.
Most likely it is a false positive. Possible causes are the packaging of the drivers or the presence of driver cleaner in the UNI Xonar installer which deletes (driver) files from Windows folder.
While it’s highly unlikely that any UNi Xonar driver packages would contain actual viruses, if you really want to be sure then you can submit the driver package for analysis to www.virustotal.com for a wider analysis.