Why no audio on my PC?

A reader has an audio problem:

“I have no sound/audio on my PC, but the device is installed. Any solutions?”

This is a case where I’m going to need a bit more information to troubleshoot.But first, I’m going to offer the most standard troubleshooting advice on the planet. Have you tried turning it off and on?


If you have and that doesn’t help, let’s check a few more things out.

Is there no audio anywhere? No audio when you play a video. No alert sounds in any program? Or is it just one program where you don’t have sound?

If there’s no audio through speakers, do you have audio when you plug in headphones? If you have audio with headphones and not with speakers, it’s possible that the speakers have become unplugged or one of the speaker cables has gone bad. Try making sure everything is plugged in securely. Then I’d check to make sure your PC recognizes the speaker (which you say it does). Consider updating the driver for the speakers.

If you’re using a Bluetooth speaker, you might want to consider plugging in a wired speaker to check to see if it has audio. Another possibility is that the port for wired speakers could have gone bad. If your PC has Bluetooth capability, you might want to try pairing it with Bluetooth headphones or speakers if you happen to have some.

If you have no sound at all, the issue could be the sound card on your PC. Look for driver updates.

The easiest way to check for driver updates is to open Device Manager and look for Sound, video, and game controller. Just type Device Manager in your search box and click on the result.

Right-click on any of the devices displayed and choose Update driver software from the menu that appears.


It’s also possible there could be a physical issue with your sound card. It may have come loose or failed. If that’s the case, you can have it repaired by professional (or do it yourself if you’re technically inclined). You might also try a USB sound card. You can find one for under $20 on Amazon.

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