Windows 7: Audio / Video playback issue solution


Are you experiencing what seems like thrashing or pauses / breaks in audio or video playback? Audio pausing for a second and then resuming somewhat randomly?

I may have the solution.

I run quite a bit of new technology on my computer, so I have strange applications and drivers installed, and even strange IP routing configuration and a hosts file that helps me when developing websites.

I’m what most would call a “power user”

Not too long ago I started experiencing audio issues with both my on-board and external Native Instruments audio2dj.

The fact that it occurred when using either meant it was either software or hardware related and not specific to the audio output.

First I reset the BIOS, changed the HPET, and set the USB 3.0 transport to xHCI. This seemed to help a bit, but I still had some issues.

I loaded up dpclat.exe and sure enough, I was getting large spikes every few seconds.

I did some additional searching and found that there was an issue with the BIOS version I was running on my GIGABYTE GA-X58A-UD3R. Using @BIOS, I updated to the “latest” BIOS version from the USA server (which seems to have gotten much much more reliable by the way)

This helped some, but I was still getting issues. I closed out the Gigabyte EasyTune application and my spikes all but disappeared.

I was still getting spikes, but now it was less than two or three an hour… I tried RATT3, which doesn’t seem to report anything in Windows 7 64bit (my reports were all empty)… and then, somehow, I found this little golden nugget:

Resplendence Software’s LatencyMon

LatencyMon allows you to see max execution time and DPC count per driver.

Using all of the above tools, I was able to eliminate / update drivers (see: nVidia, Himachi) and services that were causing DPC latency spikes.

I can finally listen to music and watch flash videos without annoying pauses!

Hope this helps someone out there.