I'd start by looking for an updated audio driver, and see what that does for your problem.
Though in the end the solution may just be you have to get a PCI sound card. It doesn't bypass the motherboard, since the motherboard is like the central nervous system of a computer, but it does bypass the onboard audio.
You may even want to consider just taking the thing back. You've already gotten a taste of what you can expect from HP tech support, and you're only 11 days into owning the thing. I have to say, that answer that it's an ISP issue has to at least be worthy of nomination for the stupidest answer ever given award. It's clearly an issue with your system. Whether it's software or hardware is what is left to determine. But since HP will clearly be no help in the future, and this early on you're having problems, might be time to cut your losses and look for a different brand computer. HP is hardly known for quality, so there's that as well. So long as it's not an Acer brand (Acer, Gateway, eMachines) or HP's other brand Compaq, you'd probably be hard pressed to do worse.
long/short: new HP running 64bit windows 7. all drivers up to date and no conflicts.
anytime i want to listen to pandora or youtube and do something else in another tab/window, even check gmail, the sound goes from music to some horrible electronic feedbackish type sound that's hard to explain, but image if you took an ax to optimus prime, that's the sound it makes until the task on the other tab finishes, then goes back to music.
HP tech support is clueless and says because it doesn't happen when i'm working in MS office, just browsing it must be an issue with my ISP, which is wrong because the 7 year old dell i replaced didn't do this and it had an integrated sound card too.
although there is no reported conflict, i noticed while searching my "windows experience index" is frigin 3.6 because of a low score on my graphics (Intel(R) G45/G43 Express Chipset) could this be a conflict between the graphics and integrated sound card?
although i'm trying to resolve this issue, if somebody smarter than myself told me that purchasing a new sound card would bypass the motherboard and solve this issue, whatever the F it is, i'd probably just do that. i was planning on upgrading that eventually anyways. just not 11 days into owning this.
thanks for your help.