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Home > Sound Cards > Overview Of Sound Card Functions
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How To Install A Sound Card
 

 

 

   

 


Page Overview:

The installation of a sound card is one of the simplest installations you'll perform in a PC. The tough part will more than likely be in resolving DMA issues. But even by today's operating system standards, the likelihood of a problem arising due to a DMA or other configuration is highly unlikely due to a sound card's universally accepted formats for processing audio information.

This section will provide you with an understanding of how to install a Sound Blaster compatible sound card.  This installation walks you through the entire process of installing, configuring, and playing around with a Sound Blaster Live PCI based sound card.


The following items are required for the installation of an internal sound card.

  • The sound card.
  • Any manuals that accompanied the sound card.
  • A standard Phillips screwdriver.
  • One star-head screw.
  • CD Audio cable.
  • Modem TAD (Telephone Answering Device) Cable (optional).
  • Auxillary Audio Cable for establishing a supplementary connection from the sound card to another multimedia based internal device (optional).
  1. Turn off the computer and unplug the black electrical cable that connects to the PC's PSU (Power Supply Unit).

  2. Find an empty PCI based expansion slot in your computer. These expansion slots are white in color.

  3. If there is a metal bracket covering the free PCI slot you've located, use the Phillips screwdriver to remove the screw, and place it in a safe location such as a toolbox compartment.

  4. Check your sound card manual for any jumpers that have to be set or changed. Newer type of sound cards employ true plug and play technology so jumper settings and dip switches are of no significance, but double check the user manual to be sure.

  5. The next step is to insert the sound card into the free PCI slot you located in step 2.

  6. Grab ahold of the sound card using two hands and line up the card, so it will fit in perfectly align with the chassis. Inserting PCI cards typically do not require a whole lot of force to fit properly so take some time and insert the card gently, ensuring the card lines up properly with the metal hole on the chassis.

  7. Secure the sound card to the metal chassis using the screw you removed in step 3. The card will get extra support when the screw is tightened to the chassis.

  8. Now that the sound card has been installed, you can continue to attach a variety of different audio cables to get extra value out of your hardware. The following table summarizes the most common audio sources that can be used when making cable connections through a sound card.
    INTERNAL CONNECTORS
     
    Input Source
    Description
     
      CD Audio Connector Facilitates the playback of audio CD's and DVD's.
      Telephone Answering Device Connector Facilitates audio connections between voice modems and microphones.
      Aux Connector Facilitates audio connections between the sound card and internal video capture devices including television tuners and MPEG capture cards.
      CD SPDIF Connector Facilitates the audio connection between the sound card and a CD-ROM or DVD-ROM's digital audio output connector.
     
    EXTERNAL CONNECTORS
      Output Source Description  
      Analog / Digital Out Jack Facilitates the audio connection between the sound card and a digital speaker system or compressed AC-3 output system also known as SPDIF.
      Line In Jack Facilitates the audio connection between the sound card and an external device such as VHS and cassette recorders.
      Microphone In Jack Facilitates the audio connection between the sound card and an microphone for direct voice recordings.
      Line Out Jack Facilitates the audio connection between the sound card and a set of externally powered speakers or headphones.
      Rear Out Jack Facilitates the audio connection between the sound card and a set of externally powered speakers or headphones.
      Joystick / Midi Connector Facilitates a data connection between the sound card and a gamepad, joystick, or MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) device.
           


 
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