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Skype Audio Problems Trouble Shooting

Community Ambassador

If you are using Realtek onboard audio:

 

Try the latest (v2.73 11/2013) generic Realtek "High Definition Audio Codecs" drivers to see if it resolves the problem. I use these drivers on my computers that are compatible and have not run into any major issues. They are available at the link below:

 

http://www.realtek.com.tw/downloads

 

Installing the drivers is generally a two-stage procedure. On it's own it will uninstall your existing drivers, prompt you to reboot, then it will install the latest release after the reboot. You would probably want to reboot one more time afterward. Also be aware that it is recommended to have Mic boost set to zero when using Skype, but the lowest setting where people can still hear you may suffice.

 

If you are using HP IDT onboard audio:

 

I am unable to find an up-to-date direct download link from HP, so I provide an up-to-date link myself.  You can get the latest drivers (11/2013 Win7-8.1 WHQL) here: 

 

http://www.pcdust.com/Downloads/IDT/HP_IDT.zip

 

Once unpacked, if this driver suite does not allow you to update, you will need to uninstall your current IDT Drivers from "Programs and Features" then you should be able to upgrade to this release.

 

Though this has been covered several times in this thread, below is my explanation and current settings on my systems with the latest drivers to resolve feedback or other variable audio issues:

 

There are several settings in your sound drivers, OS settings and other times in the hardware itself  (preamp) that can adjust input/output levels of your audio.  I would suggest you try these changes even if it doesn't seem like it would influence anything in your situation.

 

Sound - "Communications" tab - affects audio level of system audio.

Set to "Do Nothing"

 

 

Speakers/Headphones Properties - "Enhancements" tab (if it exists) - "Disable all sound effects" or try unchecking any/all checked options.  Items like "Loudness Equalization" can create the increasing/decreasing mic feedback issues (with or without mic muted) that don't seem to occur with other audio applications.  With these options disabled especially on both parties' computers with onboard mics, conversation feedback levels can be normalized.

 

 

Microphone Properties - "Enhancements" tab (if it exists) - "Disable all sound effects" or try unchecking any/all checked options.  Items like "DC Offset Cancellation" can inhibit mic audio levels, create distortion or clicking.

 

Message 131 of 219 (31,562 Views)
Casual Adventurer

So I've been having issues with skype calls over the last few days. I updated to the newest version of skype and it still happens. I made sure to update my GPU drivers, made sure I had no more windows updates to install. I did speed and ping test and I have more than enough of a high speed connection, I even contacted my ISP and my bandwidth is fine.

 

I try to call a friend and on the right, the bar says my speed is yellow, slow and sometimes medium even though we're not running any programs that would affect our bandwidth to cripple it like that.

 

His internet connection is just fine as well. Still have the same issue with other people on my contacts list, and including in group skype chats. Also, I try to test my connection and it keeps saying unknown. Even though I try the echo test and it recently said my connection was fast.

Message 132 of 219 (31,421 Views)
Community Ambassador

Hias wrote:

So I've been having issues with skype calls over the last few days. I updated to the newest version of skype and it still happens. I made sure to update my GPU drivers, made sure I had no more windows updates to install. I did speed and ping test and I have more than enough of a high speed connection, I even contacted my ISP and my bandwidth is fine.

 

I try to call a friend and on the right, the bar says my speed is yellow, slow and sometimes medium even though we're not running any programs that would affect our bandwidth to cripple it like that.

 

His internet connection is just fine as well. Still have the same issue with other people on my contacts list, and including in group skype chats. Also, I try to test my connection and it keeps saying unknown. Even though I try the echo test and it recently said my connection was fast.


Do you have real problems with call quality?

 

With the latest 2 Skype versions (6.10 and 6.11) the call quality indication shown on the call tool bar is basically wrong. Also test the connection speed with these latest versions will always result in “unknown speed”. This is a known BUG in these Skype versions.

 

http://community.skype.com/t5/Windows-desktop-client/Test-Connection-Feature-not-working-and-no-supp...

 

Message 133 of 219 (31,407 Views)
Reliable Adventurer

How nice of Skype's developers/management: known bug sits there for two production releases in a row! I applause! It looks like traces of MS's governing hand...

Message 134 of 219 (31,397 Views)
Casual Adventurer

Yes, during calls, sentences get cut off, voices sometimes become choppy and robotic. It's extremly annoying. And again, my Internet connection should not be the issue, nor should be the problem of the friend I'm in a call with.

 

Skype is saying I have a slow or medium connection and it's treating it as such. This is ridiculous.

Message 135 of 219 (31,395 Views)
Reliable Adventurer

Fully agree with you: this is not connection issue. You're able to watch TV alive and at the same time Skype folks stating that there's bad connection? I would spit in theit faces.

Message 136 of 219 (31,386 Views)
Routine Adventurer

I am so glad to know I'm not the only one having this problem!  My other half and I use Skype every day to keep in touch (long distance relationship), and basically ever since Microsoft came out with Xbox One, we've had nothing but problems with Skype on PC.  The speed on it always says it's medium or low, when it goes red (for no reason) it cuts us off without warning...we don't even have to be running any other programs or anything like that for it to do this.  When he talks it spaces out at times...it's ridiculous!  We're in talks about switching to something else.

Message 137 of 219 (31,369 Views)
Community Ambassador

I haven't had any major audio/video issues with Skype,  I have never relied upon the connection status information.  I have always used the call technical details to troubleshoot issues since it's been far more reliable.  Ideally you want the connection between both contacts to be UDP, no relays and no BW_LOW and BW_CRITICAL error messages.  You will generally recieve a MIC_Overload error when you or your contact uses an onoard/wireless mic, but can be minimized by adjusting/disabling audio enhancements or Mic boost.  There are things you can control and there are things to you can't.

 

 If you use Skype To Go to dial a phone number (no PC involved) and there are audio quality issues then there are definitely things you can't do to repair problems with that access number.  When you are dialing from PC to PC and are getting errors/low quality then you can do things to optimize your "Skype" connection irregardless of your actual Internet bandwidth.  

 

To minimize the issue being caused locally I always suggest going wired, disabling the use of ports 80/443 in Skype, disabling uPnP, and designating an incoming port.  In your hardware/software firewall/router you can either DMZ your IP or port range forward TCP/UDP ports 1024-65535.  Ideally if this is done on both ends, you have the ability to obtain the highest quality "Skype" connection.  I've only really had bad quality Skype calls when I had a defective router on my network (causing BW low errors even though my Internet in general was fine),  ISP issues,  I'd saturated my Internet with too many simultaneous downloads or when I'm forced to call contacts with poor quality/restricted Internet (thus forced through 4 relays).  If another person's audio is getting cut off on your end, it generally could be an issue with audio/mic settings on either end or their upload speed is poor for whatever reason causing the latency.

 

Other things that can affect audio is USB or USB hub latency/power/sharing.  If either side is using a USB headset device you can always try switching to 3.5mm jack analog audio headsets to see if the problem is minimized due to less overhead.

 

I personally use wireless and wired all over my house and a USB converter for my analog headset.  So their is nothing wrong with going that route.  Once I resolved my own networking problems, I no longer had bandwidth related errors.  I haven't had to make any new changes since.  When other USB devices are connected to my USB hub, I do get audio artifacts or it acts up/cuts out/disconnects.  When I have it by itself it seems to work fine.  It also functions correctly when directly connected to onboard USB ports.  Erratic USB behavior can vary from machine to machine, hub to hub. or device to device.

 

 

Message 138 of 219 (31,354 Views)
Casual Adventurer

Thanks much for the detailed info

Message 139 of 219 (31,335 Views)
Reliable Adventurer

Pretty good explanations with tech details of why we're experiencing problems with Skype but there's one thing that's been left untouched: poor design. What was good on erlier 90s is not nowadays. Why internet connections still good for everything but Skype? What's missing over there in design that I have to manually tune it up? How torrents and other peer-to-peer connection survive whereas Skype needs a specifically (and manually?) opened a dedicated UDP port range? These are questions not for techfreak though: I am really thankful to him for his insight. These are for Skype (now Microsoft) folks.

...VF

 

Message 140 of 219 (31,321 Views)