Nothing is more frustrating than dealing with a computer that has suddenly developed an issue with the sound output, but it may not always mean that an expensive replacement is going to be required. In fact, the majority of sound failures are fairly easy to diagnose if an individual will follow several simple best practices. A consumer should not automatically seek professional assistance due to the fact that the problem is most likely minor in nature. Many individuals are also too quick to purchase new speakers, and the simple fact of the matter is that the problem may not actually have anything to do with the audio hardware itself. The following tips will help a user narrow down their issue, and will make it a little less frustrating when sound stops working.
Although it may sound ridiculous, an individual needs to first make sure that the volume settings have not been tampered with on either the speakers or the computer. Many laptops have a key on the keyboard that will immediately mute the sound output, and it can be very easy to accidentally push this button. Whether a person is using internal or external speakers, pressing the mute will obviously stop any sound from being generated. In addition to the volume settings on the actual computer, it is also necessary to ensure that a mute button was not toggled on a particular website or media player.
If the volume settings are all appearing to be normal, a user next needs to determine if their speakers are defective. The majority of external speakers come in pairs, and it is important to realize that both units are unlikely to suddenly stop working at the same time. A blown speaker may harm the sound quality, but the other unit will normally still be operational. With internal speakers in a laptop, however, there may only be one unit that is actually providing all of the sound. Listen closely to the laptop and try to hear a buzzing or distant noise. These issues would indicate that all of the software is working correctly, but the speaker needs to be replaced. External speakers can easily be plugged into another computer or device to determine where the issue lies.
Sound that suddenly stops working is usually not going to be a software or driver issue, but it could be if changes were recently made to a computer. If the problems began after a new download or program installation, the most likely circumstance is a corrupted driver. A user should attempt to reinstall the proper sound driver that was included with their computer at the time of purchase, and this could potentially solve the problem. Some computers also have restore points set that will enable an individual to go back to previous settings before any changes were made. A user could try to revert back to the original settings and see if this fixes the sound issue.