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Toshiba Satellite speaker sound problem

by wpgwpg / August 30, 2013 12:44 AM PDT

I have a 20 month old Toshiba Satellite L755-S5356 with I5-2430M processor and Connexant sound. I'm having problems where speaker sound plays for 15 to 60 seconds then stops. I have Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit OS and 8 GB RAM. It only happens with the laptop speakers. If I plug in earphones, they don't have the problem. If I pause playing a video, wait 30 seconds or so, then restart it, I get speaker sound again for a short period, but then it goes silent again while the video continues to play. This happens with Youtube downloads, Pandora web site, or audio CDs - it doesn't matter what the source of the sound is, it happens with everything, and is most annoying. Since it happens with music CDs, I've ruled out a buffering/bandwidth bottleneck. I have a 22 Mbps cable connection with wireless-N 5 bars connection FWIW. It happens with Windows Media Player, the latest Adobe (Shockwave) audio and flash player add-ons with IE10, Firefox 22, and Chrome.
In attempts to resolve the problem I've booted to Safe Mode and run Norton Security Suite full scan for virus and Malwarebytes scan, the Control Panel's sound troubleshooter, and the Toshiba PC Diagnostics tool and found nothing. I was going to restore to factory settings using the DVDs I burned when the laptop was new, but got an error, so I formatted the hard drive and reloaded Windows 7 Home Premium from scratch using an install DVD. I used the COA code from the sticker on the bottom of the laptop to activate Windows 7. I saved the TOSAPINS folder with the drivers and used that to reload all drivers, then installed all the hundreds of Windows 7 updates using Windows Update. I've gone to Device Manager and checked for driver updates, but it says I have the best and most current ones already. There're no ? or ! in any Device Manager entries. I even looked through the Windows system event logs but didn't see anything related. I downloaded the most current driver from Toshiba, but it failed to change the symptoms.
In researching this in the Toshiba sound forums, I see people with different Satellite models having the same problem. They all have the Conexant SmartAudio HD sound. I went to Conexant's web site to see if they might have a different driver that could help, but they want you to spend $30 for a product I never heard of that replaces ALL Conexant drivers. I have posted this in the Toshiba Sound forum, but so far all I've gotten was a suggestion to download the latest sound driver which I've tried 3 times with no success.
I also tried booting Ubuntu and Linux Mint, but neither has the driver for this sound chip.
All this but the problem persists. Can any kind soul suggest what I should do next? TIA

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Clarification Request
G'Mornin wpg
by itsdigger / August 30, 2013 1:30 AM PDT

That still sounds like a driver problem. Have you uninstalled the drivers and reinstalling them ? This just sounds too simple

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Mornin' Digger
by wpgwpg / August 30, 2013 1:41 AM PDT
In reply to: G'Mornin wpg

Yes, I've uninstalled & reinstalled those drivers several times. I read in one of the Toshiba forums that there was a conflict between the sound driver and the LAN driver, so I did likewise with that. I contacted Toshiba's tech support before my warranty was out, but they wanted $150 to look into anything software related they said. I do understand support's situation - they can't make money on these things if they have to spend hours chasing these things down when most of the time it's caused by the infamous "operator error". The plight continues. Confused

All Answers

Best Answer chosen by wpgwpg

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Same sound problem w/Linux & Windows 7
by wpgwpg / September 21, 2013 3:31 AM PDT

I just tried it with Linux Mint. I booted it, started Firefox, and went to the Pandora web site. I started some music playing. I got identical results - the internal speakers stopped working after about 30 seconds. I plugged in my external speakers, and they worked just fine. So, since it does exactly the same thing with both Linux and Windows 7, I can only conclude it's a hardware problem. Sad I'll live with speakers at home & earphones when elsewhere until this laptop is 3-4 years old when I'll go for a new one.

This laptop has been used 98% of the time at home, has never been dropped, and is otherwise working just fine. I have to say this really shakes my faith in Toshiba since I called their support before the warranty expired, and they wanted $150 to "fix my software". Anybody know of another brand that might be better? I'm thinking Dell and Asus. I've had several Dell desktops, one of which is 12 years old, and I've never had the first hardware problem with any of them. I have a friend with an Asus laptop who recommends Asus highly. Suggestions anyone?

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At the office we have all those makes.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 21, 2013 3:36 AM PDT

Since we have about 95% Dells, folk see those fail more often that the others and I find it hard for most to figure out it doesn't mean it's any more or less reliable.

So far my only bad names were Sony way back in their bad days. Long story.
Today HP hit my bad list and stays there as they didn't repair or replace a 3 month old laptop broke by their own hands. Yes I did have a social media rep find my comments and check me out. I can't guess what went wrong but consumers would not be happy about losing a laptop at just 3 months.

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So why not use some USB audio thing?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / September 21, 2013 3:42 AM PDT

Or even a Bluetooth speaker setup?

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Hi, Bob - good idea
by wpgwpg / September 21, 2013 3:51 AM PDT

Thanks for the feedback, Bob. That's why I said "I'll live with speakers at home & earphones when elsewhere until this laptop is 3-4 years old when I'll go for a new one." I should've said my external speakers. I paid all of $15 for them, and they work great, sounding much better than the internal ones. They can be powered by USB or a little battery pack they came with. For $15 they make a great circumvention. The local repair shop wanted $70 just to "look at it".

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let's take it apart wpg lol
by itsdigger / September 21, 2013 3:56 AM PDT

look for loose connection , I love takin' stuff apart.. Mischief

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Here's what my laptop looked like
by itsdigger / September 21, 2013 4:11 AM PDT
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external speakers don't help here
by ironwing1 / May 21, 2015 1:13 AM PDT

Unfortunately, I have external speakers and the problem continues with them plugged in. Last time I will buy a Toshiba, I don't care WHAT the problem is.

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Windows 7 Home Premium from scratch
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 30, 2013 12:47 AM PDT

Sorry but I find such to be a minefield of issues and of course no support.

What happens if you load the factory OS? If that fails, it's a hardware issue.

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I hear you about the mine field!
by wpgwpg / August 30, 2013 12:57 AM PDT

I will try reloading from the factory restore DVDs again when time permits (next week), but as I mentioned, I got errors when I tried it earlier. I suspect that was because I had installed Linux Mint with its totally unique file system. Now that I've gotten rid of Linux from my hard drive (I still boot it from DVD & flash drives on occasion), I'll try the factory restore DVDs again. My recovery partition is still intact, so that's another possibility.
Fortunately I can use earphones or one of my desktops when need be in the mean time. I was just hoping somebody might come along, read my post, and say "oh yeah, here's how to fix that". Probably a long shot, but nothing ventured... Happy

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If you had written about the touchpad.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 30, 2013 1:04 AM PDT

I might have a comment about the touchpad app but for audio you not only have the drivers to contend with but Toshiba's TVAP package.

That's the "helper" apps that do many things and your old school Windows users that learned to install Windows and drivers are getting slammed when it comes to this new thing. That is, imagine the user that knows how to install Windows and drivers and today, the world has changed. It's a minefield with the makers failing to write a full install procedure and since I can't write that for each post here I have to go generic and write to ask the maker how to do a clean install.

The makers get very squirrelly at this point and back pedal to the original stock install.

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That's why I used the TOSAPINS folder
by wpgwpg / August 30, 2013 1:33 AM PDT

Toshiba put a folder, TOSAPINS, on my laptop that has every driver, helper app, goodie program, links to their web sites, etc. on the hard drive which I saved. When you run the SETUP program from there, it brings up a program that has a list of about 30 or 40 of these. I went down the line and installed every blessed one of them, then went to their web site and downloaded the latest sound driver just to be sure. I know Murphy loves folks who do this kind of thing, unfortunately. I remember about 8 or 9 months ago getting a warning from Toshiba that one piece of Toshiba's sound related software was incompatible with some MS maintenance, so I downloaded and installed whatever that was, I've forgotten the details. That's when the problem started, so I'm inclined to believe they've got some incompatibility they haven't owned up to, but I'll just have to keep digging. Walking that line between persistence and stubbornness is a challenge, but I'm a long way from giving up at the moment.

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(NT) So does it work in Linux?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 30, 2013 1:36 AM PDT
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I booted both Ubuntu and Mint Linux
by wpgwpg / August 30, 2013 1:45 AM PDT

but neither had drivers for the sound. Linux does amazingly well, but their biggest weakness is drivers. I've run into driver problems with it and the likes of PCIe cards, scanners, and some printers, now my laptop's sound chip.

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From what I've been reading
by itsdigger / August 30, 2013 1:51 AM PDT

the Newest version of Mint addressed some of those issues but I can't say from personal experience as I shy away from Ubuntu and Mint

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That Linux test is my acid test on this.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 30, 2013 1:56 AM PDT
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I just browsed that link, Bob
by wpgwpg / August 30, 2013 2:10 AM PDT

but I didn't see any specifics - just a whole lot of folks complaining about a lack of support from Toshiba for Linux. The version of Mint Linux is one I downloaded in late June, so it's right current. My Ubuntu is 8 mos. old (12.something I think), so when it didn't help, that's why I tried my copy of Mint.
I'm inclined to believe this is a driver problem because the hardware always works initially, and when I pause the video for a while, the speakers work again for 15 to 30 seconds with no distortion. Oh well, after I help a friend install Windows 8 this afternoon, I'll get back to the (Toshiba) mine field. Confused

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by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 30, 2013 2:19 AM PDT

But first, what is this "my copy of Mint"? I used that discussion because it called out a specific version and this many posts and I can't tell which Mint it was.

OK, WHAT IS THIS DISTORTION? I thought it just capped out and went silent.

The distortion issue was in another discussion and in the end the member revealed something I could not have guessed about Abobe Flash.

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My copy of Mint Linux I d/l in June
by wpgwpg / August 30, 2013 2:28 AM PDT

I downloaded Mint Linux from the distro site back in late June and burned it to a DVD, so I'm just pointing out that it's not an old distro.
Re distortion, all I said was NO distortion. The speakers are fine (no bass of course on a 15" laptop) when they work. They work just fine initially for 15 to 60 seconds then go quiet. Then if I pause the video for a minute (either from Youtube or Pandora) and start it back, the speakers work just fine again, but only for 15 to 30 seconds, then go quiet again. I can repeat this indefinitely. That's why I think a bit is getting flipped somewhere in a driver. Since this happens with music CDs, I've ruled out download/buffering bottlenecks as well.
Time for me to plunge into the Windows 8 world for a friend this afternoon. Thanks Bob & Digger . I'll get to the bottom of this eventually - just call me Mr. Stubborn! Grin

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Sorry I had hope to read a version number.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 30, 2013 2:30 AM PDT

Let's hear more about distortion.

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Bob - here're your answers
by wpgwpg / August 30, 2013 9:57 AM PDT

1) Distortion - There is NO distortion. The only time I mentioned it was when I said there was NO distortion. OK?
2) Linux Mint - version 15 - Olivia
3) Ubuntu - Version 12.04 LTS
I've posted my OP on the Toshiba sound forum here: . After 2 days there's been 33 views & no replies
And here are 3 other posts I found there with the exact same symptoms:
<div> </div><div>


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I have the same folder wpg
by itsdigger / August 30, 2013 1:37 AM PDT

with my tosh but I did have to uninstall some drivers and let microsoft detect new ones and it worked for me , what's it gonna hurt? Might save you from doing another complete OS reinstall

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(NT) Good advice Digger, I've been there & done that too.
by wpgwpg / August 30, 2013 1:45 AM PDT
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G'Mornin' To you too Bob
by itsdigger / August 30, 2013 1:46 AM PDT
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Continued. Link, comment
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 30, 2013 2:34 AM PDT
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OK so it's a current distro and it just stops.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 30, 2013 10:02 AM PDT

And it's not the old Flash issue. That is, you kicked out Adobe and tried it with Chrome.

That leaves us with the original OS test and then it's off to the repair system.

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it's not software
by Ischan666 / December 2, 2013 5:16 AM PST

Guys. It's absolutely not a software matter.
It's hardware, and Toshiba with this enters my personal HELL list (after Samsung, Hp etc etc)
Got a L755 like yours, obviously guarantee period is ended two months ago...they are masters with this...
Everything started almost 1 month ago, sound vanished with no clear reason.
I thought it was some malware in the beginning, then i suspected some firefox bug togheter with Java or Flash, but i realized i was ok with everything and it could not be that....
Then i re-installed drivers, anything happened, then i started browsing the web, forums etc etc..
and i found a Toshiba OFFICIAL thread saying it was a problem with the Atheros WI-FI adapter driver, and that a new
release was ready to fix it. I downloaded those drivers, in a first moment it was appearing to be ok, but suddenly it happened again 10 minutes later. Then i was completely mad with this.
Then i tried to use audio with WI-FI connection, turning it off. It doesn't work...
You have to disable it, and maybe it works for a while, but not for eternity, and it's not acceptable using audio without WIFI.
Try this out: Atheros on, working, as if it's normal....take a standard earphone jack in your hand and when audio crashes, plug the earphone in the works, when it crashes again, unplug works.
and this demonstrates clearly that all this mess is a ******* problem between the speakers and the WIFI adapter.
Maybe if Toshiba takes this laptop to their LABS, they will change the adapter...and make you pay 300$ or more..
In the next days i will try to change the WIFI adapter with another one. Let's see

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Same thing
by katjari7 / February 21, 2014 6:19 AM PST
In reply to: it's not software

I have the same problem with my toshiba satellite. It started happening maybe a week after my guarantee expired. First I thought there was a problem with my sound drivers but after updating them, nothing changed. I put new windows 7, and its still hapening. Its obviously a hardware problem but what can we do?

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(NT) Use the usual USB Audio solution.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / February 21, 2014 6:25 AM PST
In reply to: Same thing
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