Question

HP native sound driver dilemma

I recently bought an HP Pavilion desktop that came with a Realtek soundcard. It also had this Bang & Olufsen (B&O) software called ‘Play’ installed that is used to control the audio options (albeit very few). The problem is that B&O Play seems to have loudness equalisation turned on by default and there is no option to turn it off ( the option has also been removed from the normal windows audio options panel (there is a box saying ‘turn off all effects’, but unchecking it makes no difference).

So I looked online and the consensus seemed to be that rolling back the driver to the substitute audio device driver would give me back the normal enhancement control options (see:https://h30434.www3.hp.com/t5/Gaming-Notebooks/How-to-disable-Bang-amp-Olufsen-horrible-audio-correction/td-p/5294181). After doing so the loudness equalisation box is visible (and off by default), problem solved.

This creates a new problem, however. Now I have the echo back/sync issue when I try to monitor the line in. This is normally fixed by unchecking 'listen to this device' under the line in properties 'listen' tab.
But after the rollback, when you look under the 'levels' tab in speaker properties, it only shows one control for speaker volume and not the usual Realtek audio output volume and line in level controls. Unchecking "listen to this device results in silence.

I'm starting to wonder if this is an unfixable inherent issue with the soundcard/software the PC came with. Therefore the only solution may be to install a new soundcard.

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Clarification Request
Since it looks to be a design defect.

Why not bail out now before you are stuck with it?

If stuck, maybe an external sound card is best.

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Had a feeling this would be the response

By bail do you me return the PC to the shop? I bought it 6 months ago, also they will likely argue that the issue does not constitute a 'major failure' which is what would qualify me for a refund under Australian consumer law.

I tried using my Novation Nio 2/4 external interface to bypass the issue but the second input would only output in mono (despite having a switch marked 'stereo'). So I would still need to fork out cash for a better interface, which would be roughly the same price as a decent replacement internal card.

I have a feeling you are exactly right, it's a irreparable design flaw uncovered by my (marginally) more than bread and butter use of a paltry retail level PC (Go Harvey Norman Go...)

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I ran into such a HP flaw.

My story ended with a dead laptop at month 3 and HP claiming they had done all they can. HP's reputation is so bad that I have no patience for their continued abuse. So my laptop was dead from their factory service at 3 months and 6 months of calls got me to 9 months. That was it. I never told anyone in forums this story until I felt HP had truly walked on the warranty.

You have a defective product. It doesn't matter if it's minor or severe. It's broke.

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I doubt I'll fair any better

In Australia we're expected to see the retailer during the first 12 months after purchase. I'm waiting to hear back from them. This retailer is rarely helpful, the guys from their computer department always look like they would be happier at the gym. They'll bust their backs pretending to understand the issue while trying to argue that its not their problem, and likely say "just buy an external card". I'm ok with that... providing they will refund me the equivalent cost (yeah, in my dreams).

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