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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-20-2019, 09:18 AM - Thread Starter
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Sound card craziness, what is going wrong??

Ok I'm having some serious bad luck with sound cards lately and want to know if anyone can chime in with any suggestions about what could be going wrong.

I'm building a new pc, got it up and running fine, them decide to add a sound card because onboard audio is still not very good. So I get an Asus strix raid and pop it in but it needs a 6-pin connection. No motherboards today have a single 6-pin cable so I had to use a molex adapter first, which resulted in no power to the card. Then I did some research and it was suggested to use an 8 pin to 6+2 PCIe cable. Tried that, PC came on, had a display, PSU started clicking (850w Corsair) so I powered down, reboot and then had no board lights and no display with a constant reboot loop and the PSU clicking here and there.

The card apparently bricked the board somehow and I believe it was related to the cable used but there is nothing else to use.
Replaced the board, took the sound card back, reloaded windows 10 and everything was fine.
Fast forward a week and I order another sound card (eCLARO), pop it in yesterday, the card (or PSU, but I cant really tell which one) starts makeing a clicking sound again in the newly replaced MSI Mobo) install the drivers, reboot. No more clicks, yay. Now I cant find the SW for the card, drive searches bring up nothing and all I can get to is the windows sound properties but the default sound device is the eCLARO. So ok, at least windows sees the card but I cant use the software options because it won't show up. I had debloated windows the day before so I figure that may have something to do with it so I reinstall Windows. I go to update windows and THERE'S NO LAN CONTROLLER. I cant install the LAN drivers because or update Windows because it cant find any network adapter on the board now. Nothing. So I reboot again. NOW THERE'S NO DISPLAY again, and still no LAN. The LAN lights show just solid orange with no activity. Swapped graphics card and got a display back but still no LAN CONTROLLER. I don't even know if the sound card even works because I cant get any audio out of it. But now it seems that 2 completely different sound cards have borked 2 different boards and if I cant get online I have to take ANOTHER board back and get that one swapped out.

This has been the most unbelievable headache and cannot figure out what the problem is. I've been building PC's since 2002 and have never came across this kind of luck with sound cards. I'm completely stumped as to what the heck is going on and at a complete loss of words.

Anyone have any suggestions?? I'm racking my head as to what the problem is. This is crazy and cant be pure coincidence but that's what it sure looks like.

Build specs:

I7-9700k
MSI gaming edge ac Mobo
RTX 2080
Thermaltake grand PSU 850W

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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-20-2019, 10:29 AM
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Quote: Originally Posted by Dunan View Post
Ok I'm having some serious bad luck with sound cards lately and want to know if anyone can chime in with any suggestions about what could be going wrong.

I'm building a new pc, got it up and running fine, them decide to add a sound card because onboard audio is still not very good. So I get an Asus strix raid and pop it in but it needs a 6-pin connection. No motherboards today have a single 6-pin cable so I had to use a molex adapter first, which resulted in no power to the card. Then I did some research and it was suggested to use an 8 pin to 6+2 PCIe cable. Tried that, PC came on, had a display, PSU started clicking (850w Corsair) so I powered down, reboot and then had no board lights and no display with a constant reboot loop and the PSU clicking here and there.

The card apparently bricked the board somehow and I believe it was related to the cable used but there is nothing else to use.
Replaced the board, took the sound card back, reloaded windows 10 and everything was fine.
Fast forward a week and I order another sound card (eCLARO), pop it in yesterday, the card (or PSU, but I cant really tell which one) starts makeing a clicking sound again in the newly replaced MSI Mobo) install the drivers, reboot. No more clicks, yay. Now I cant find the SW for the card, drive searches bring up nothing and all I can get to is the windows sound properties but the default sound device is the eCLARO. So ok, at least windows sees the card but I cant use the software options because it won't show up. I had debloated windows the day before so I figure that may have something to do with it so I reinstall Windows. I go to update windows and THERE'S NO LAN CONTROLLER. I cant install the LAN drivers because or update Windows because it cant find any network adapter on the board now. Nothing. So I reboot again. NOW THERE'S NO DISPLAY again, and still no LAN. The LAN lights show just solid orange with no activity. Swapped graphics card and got a display back but still no LAN CONTROLLER. I don't even know if the sound card even works because I cant get any audio out of it. But now it seems that 2 completely different sound cards have borked 2 different boards and if I cant get online I have to take ANOTHER board back and get that one swapped out.

This has been the most unbelievable headache and cannot figure out what the problem is. I've been building PC's since 2002 and have never came across this kind of luck with sound cards. I'm completely stumped as to what the heck is going on and at a complete loss of words.

Anyone have any suggestions?? I'm racking my head as to what the problem is. This is crazy and cant be pure coincidence but that's what it sure looks like.

Build specs:

I7-9700k
MSI gaming edge ac Mobo
RTX 2080
Thermaltake grand PSU 850W
Why did you use an adapter?
"no motherboards come with a 6 pin?"
There are several motherboards on the market which use an auxiliary PCIE cable.
Anyway the cable you use is the same cable used for video cards. You know, those 6+2 pin PCIE cables?
unless you are using SLI, you should have one with your power supply. Most decent PSU's will have two sets of them (especially 850W and higher). you just use that and hook up the 6 pin (without the 2 extra pins attached to it).

If for some reason you had no spare PCIE cables left, then the cable you use is a +12v (molex) to 6+2 pin PCIE cable.
Are you saying your PSU had an 8 pin PCIE cable but you could not split it into 6+2 pins? I'm honestly surprised your existing PCIE cables were not 6+2 pin.

Something like this?
https://www.moddiy.com/products/Seas...-Green%29.html

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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-20-2019, 10:41 AM
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Are you using speakers or headphones? if you are using headphones buy a USB DAC/AMP instead of a soundcard
By the way what exact PSU is that you got? the old Thermaltake Tough Power Grand is god awful

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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-20-2019, 11:42 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote: Originally Posted by Falkentyne View Post
Quote: Originally Posted by Dunan View Post
Ok I'm having some serious bad luck with sound cards lately and want to know if anyone can chime in with any suggestions about what could be going wrong.

I'm building a new pc, got it up and running fine, them decide to add a sound card because onboard audio is still not very good. So I get an Asus strix raid and pop it in but it needs a 6-pin connection. No motherboards today have a single 6-pin cable so I had to use a molex adapter first, which resulted in no power to the card. Then I did some research and it was suggested to use an 8 pin to 6+2 PCIe cable. Tried that, PC came on, had a display, PSU started clicking (850w Corsair) so I powered down, reboot and then had no board lights and no display with a constant reboot loop and the PSU clicking here and there.

The card apparently bricked the board somehow and I believe it was related to the cable used but there is nothing else to use.
Replaced the board, took the sound card back, reloaded windows 10 and everything was fine.
Fast forward a week and I order another sound card (eCLARO), pop it in yesterday, the card (or PSU, but I cant really tell which one) starts makeing a clicking sound again in the newly replaced MSI Mobo) install the drivers, reboot. No more clicks, yay. Now I cant find the SW for the card, drive searches bring up nothing and all I can get to is the windows sound properties but the default sound device is the eCLARO. So ok, at least windows sees the card but I cant use the software options because it won't show up. I had debloated windows the day before so I figure that may have something to do with it so I reinstall Windows. I go to update windows and THERE'S NO LAN CONTROLLER. I cant install the LAN drivers because or update Windows because it cant find any network adapter on the board now. Nothing. So I reboot again. NOW THERE'S NO DISPLAY again, and still no LAN. The LAN lights show just solid orange with no activity. Swapped graphics card and got a display back but still no LAN CONTROLLER. I don't even know if the sound card even works because I cant get any audio out of it. But now it seems that 2 completely different sound cards have borked 2 different boards and if I cant get online I have to take ANOTHER board back and get that one swapped out.

This has been the most unbelievable headache and cannot figure out what the problem is. I've been building PC's since 2002 and have never came across this kind of luck with sound cards. I'm completely stumped as to what the heck is going on and at a complete loss of words.

Anyone have any suggestions?? I'm racking my head as to what the problem is. This is crazy and cant be pure coincidence but that's what it sure looks like.

Build specs:

I7-9700k
MSI gaming edge ac Mobo
RTX 2080
Thermaltake grand PSU 850W
Why did you use an adapter?
"no motherboards come with a 6 pin?"
There are several motherboards on the market which use an auxiliary PCIE cable.
Anyway the cable you use is the same cable used for video cards. You know, those 6+2 pin PCIE cables?
unless you are using SLI, you should have one with your power supply. Most decent PSU's will have two sets of them (especially 850W and higher). you just use that and hook up the 6 pin (without the 2 extra pins attached to it).

If for some reason you had no spare PCIE cables left, then the cable you use is a +12v (molex) to 6+2 pin PCIE cable.
Are you saying your PSU had an 8 pin PCIE cable but you could not split it into 6+2 pins? I'm honestly surprised your existing PCIE cables were not 6+2 pin.

Something like this?
https://www.moddiy.com/products/Seas...-Green%29.html
The 6+2 PCIe is what I used after the molex to 6pin adapter and that's when the PSU started clicking and upon reboot went into a reboot loop. After that the motherboard was shot.

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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-20-2019, 11:53 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote: Originally Posted by shilka View Post
Are you using speakers or headphones? if you are using headphones buy a USB DAC/AMP instead of a soundcard
By the way what exact PSU is that you got? the old Thermaltake Tough Power Grand is god awful
Actually I'm using both speakers and headphones but it's more like 90% to 10% speaker to headphone usage. The thermaltake was a replacement for the first Corsair 850w that was clicking like crazy after I plugged the Asus into the 6+2 pin so that was returned, I didn't trust it and because of the clicking I thought I blew the 12v on it because research pointed that as a possibility. I only got the thermaltake as it was the best PSU Fry's had believe it or not. It's the newer RGB one (dont care about the RGB stuff) I just needed to know it wasn't the PSU.
It's the thermaltake toughpower grand 80 plus gold.

I already have an external headphone amp that I use with another system that has an auzentech prelude in it but I'd pick one up for sure if it can power external speakers but I don't think it does.

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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-25-2019, 11:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Well I received the eCLARO and popped it in. I got the same clicking sound from either the PSU or sound card, I'm not sure which. I didn't have the reboot issue but I did suddenly lose internet access and when I went to reinstall the drivers win 10 said there were no network adapters present so I couldn't get online. I was online just fine right before the install. Now I'm REALLY stumped. I still have the card and am contemplating taking it to a tech and have them install it to see if they get the same issue.
I cant imagine motherboards being so finicky in 2019 that even a simple sound card install can knock out other components. 2 different sound cards with 2 different motherboards and 2 different PSU's with the same clicking issue with one bricking a Mobo and the other bricking the network adapter just doesn't make any sense.

It's an 850w PSU, and it does this upon boot so it's not like the PSU is stressed and cant handle the load. The first thing that comes to mind is that it's a voltage issue on the PSU but it's just too coincidental to happen each time with a completely set of components.

Suggestions?? I'm all out of ideas at this point.

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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-25-2019, 01:56 PM
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If its a short quick click, that is coming from the sound card, thats normal. Its basically a switch firing off.

I had the same issue with an asus essence stx I had years and years ago. Someone sent me an article on it, but I can't seem to find it for you.

Now in your case it almost sounds like it could be a circuit protection switch that is firing off.

--------------

In any case you seem to be having issues outside of the sound card. I would make sure the motherboard has all of its stand offs installed, the EMI shield is installed, and so on. It almost sounds like something is being shorted. The other thing is your PSU I see is thermal take. I have been out of the PC game for so long that I am not sure what is a good PSU and what isn't, but the thermal take brand has never given me any warm fuzzy feelings. So you might want to look into that too.

I agree that you should look into getting an external amp/dac. A cheap external solution is usually better than a sound card. You mention that you have an issue with driving external speakers....Do you have surround sound speakers? If so, what brand and model are they?
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-26-2019, 09:14 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote: Originally Posted by Tjj226 Angel View Post
If its a short quick click, that is coming from the sound card, thats normal. Its basically a switch firing off.

I had the same issue with an asus essence stx I had years and years ago. Someone sent me an article on it, but I can't seem to find it for you.

Now in your case it almost sounds like it could be a circuit protection switch that is firing off.

--------------

In any case you seem to be having issues outside of the sound card. I would make sure the motherboard has all of its stand offs installed, the EMI shield is installed, and so on. It almost sounds like something is being shorted. The other thing is your PSU I see is thermal take. I have been out of the PC game for so long that I am not sure what is a good PSU and what isn't, but the thermal take brand has never given me any warm fuzzy feelings. So you might want to look into that too.

I agree that you should look into getting an external amp/dac. A cheap external solution is usually better than a sound card. You mention that you have an issue with driving external speakers....Do you have surround sound speakers? If so, what brand and model are they?
I did notice it was a short click and I didn't get the reboot loop as I did with the Asus. So the sound card does click on the eCLARO? That makes more sense now, I didn't know that. I may take it to a tech and see if I can get the eCLARO installed still. I'm not finding anything comparable externally unless you guys have any ideas?

The speakers I have are old Klipsch promedia 4.1's that I'm not ready to give up on yet as they still work fine. The connectors are 3.5mm inputs from the promedia's to the sound card for the front and rears.

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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-26-2019, 10:16 AM
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Quote: Originally Posted by Dunan View Post
I did notice it was a short click and I didn't get the reboot loop as I did with the Asus. So the sound card does click on the eCLARO? That makes more sense now, I didn't know that. I may take it to a tech and see if I can get the eCLARO installed still. I'm not finding anything comparable externally unless you guys have any ideas?

The speakers I have are old Klipsch promedia 4.1's that I'm not ready to give up on yet as they still work fine. The connectors are 3.5mm inputs from the promedia's to the sound card for the front and rears.
The click is from the relay that is protecting the audio circuitry. It basically prevents any power surges from frying your stuff if the headphone amp fails, and it also mutes the audible "thump"-noise during power up and down.
Same stuff can be found from receivers and external DAC/amp solutions. Even my FX-Audio DAC-X6 has a relay that clicks when I turn the DAC on.

Quote from nwAvGuy:
Output Relay – The FiiO E9 has an output relay with delayed turn on and immediate disconnect on power off. Given the QRV09’s audible “thumps” on power up and down I understand why FiiO went to the added expense. An output relay can also be used as DC protection to help save expensive headphones if the amplifier fails.

There aren't many external (or internal...) 5.1/7.1 "soundcards". The old Creative SB Omni and Asus Xonar U7 are pretty much the only ones. Especially the 7.1 soundcards are a dying breed.
Of course there are some over-the-top solutions too. For example Creative X7, AV-receivers and pre-amplifiers (that usually cost more than the full-blown AV-receivers).

Ppl should learn to add more info to their posts when they ask for help...
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 02-26-2019, 05:56 PM - Thread Starter
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Well I said screw it and installed the card and it works. I'm not sure what was happening before but I'm stoked. Everything working as expected so far. It seems to have more clarity than the auzentech but is not as strong in the bass output. My only question is can I use the headphone jack out of the eCLARO card to my headphone amp or use the front output to the speakers to the headphone amp? I would think the amp just amps the output from the jack. They are Sennheiser HD650's so I don't think the card will have enough power to drive them. I'll experiment more.

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Last edited by Dunan; 02-26-2019 at 06:01 PM.
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