Getting 5.1 sound With Creative X-FI Souncards RRS feed

  • General discussion

  • you can use the compatibility mode and install the creative drivers,

    1 do not try to set 5.1 or 7.1 in the console

    2 go into your playback devices

    3 click speakers and then config

    4 set to whatever surround you want..

    in my case 5.1

    5 go back to your creative console

    6 set your speakers to what you want, (it has to match what you put in the playback devices)

    7 Creative Player also works in Windows 7

    hope this helps u all..

    World Peace.
    Sunday, January 11, 2009 6:49 AM

All replies

  • Yes we have 5.1 working for DVD's but not for music via media players like WMP or Zune software.

    I have the SB X-Fi ExtremeGamer sound card and after my first install of Win7 beta I am not game to reinstall the Creative console which may give me surround for music.

    The first install I did of Windows 7 beta automatically installed an SB X-Fi driver. But, when I installed the latest Creative drivers and console software it basically screwed up my speaker conifguration and I couldn't get it back. I tried everything including installing in compatibility mode but nothing worked. In the default Win7 install I get 6 speaker setup options under the Speaker Setup dialog:

    5.1 Surround (rear speaker on the side)
    5.1 Surround (rear speakers at the rear)
    7.1 Surround

    However, after I installed the latest Creative drivers I lost the second 5.1 Surround option and all sound came through front speakers including the woofer and I couldn't revert. I tried the latest drivers and console and the two previous versions, to no avail.

    So, I did a fresh install (dual boot with vista) of Win7 beta and this time I did not change the default driver installed by Win7.

    Everything has been working great but I still have no music through my rear speakers when playing music via WMP, Zune or anything else. I only have 5.1 playing DVD's and when testing 5.1 speaker setup. In addition when I try and play Call of Duty World at War my system crashes. It starts OK but then after a minute or so I get a fatal system crash (freezes at that point in game - but no BSOD) and I get a stuttering fast beeping sound. I cannot CTRL-ALT-DEL and I have to manually power down and restart.

    Now, here is the weird thing. The second time it happened I restarted my PC and when restarting I got an install device message which then said failed and I had no sound. I rebooted again and now my SB X-Fi sound card has dissappeared! In it's place I now have "High Definition Audio Device" and even when I Scan Hardware for Changes it doesn't see my SB X-Fi sound card!!!!

    I really want to retry and reinstall the Creative console to try and get music through all 5.1 speakers like I had in Vista but I don't want it to screw up my speaker config again and then have to reinstall Win7. :(

    Sunday, January 11, 2009 10:00 AM
  • I basically had the exact same issue, except I have the X-Fi Extreme Pro (SB 0460)...anyway they use the same driver installation.  Here is what I believe is the issue and some history: 

    My Gigabyte Mobo has onboard Realtek HD 7.1 sound.  The drivers for this setup did not work when Vista was first released.  I read that the X-Fi's did, so I bought one, disabling onboard sound in the BIOS.  I was only able to get 5.1 (sounding) sound by using the provided Creative Sound Console.  All was well.

    Now, I have upgraded to Windows 7 Beta.  Windows 7 has "better" HD Audio and Video support.  I noticed after upgrade that it had installed the drivers for the HD sound (but  had it disabled - so it kept that setting- sort of)....anyway...I then attempted to uninstall the Creative programs and could not.  I went to safe mode and was able to uninstall all but the Audio Console...so, I manually removed all Creative files and physically removed the Creative sound card from my PC.

    Tada! Upon normal boot, I have HD 5.1 surround sound with my onboard Realtek HD.  Sounds great in WMP12, with my TV Tuner and in Games.

    Now, I have a question for Microsoft and/or Creative:

    Who wants to buy the Creative Sound Card?  Someone owes me for this... No..really...I mean it.


    Would you folks stop messing with sound?  You touted the new features in Windows 7, such as entertainment - GENTLEMEN, in my home, that usually includes AUDIO and should NOT be a pain the *** to fix! (even in a Beta, especially in a Beta)

    Rant over.
    • Edited by SwanNH603 Monday, January 12, 2009 5:01 AM
    Monday, January 12, 2009 3:24 AM
  • Thanks for your response. This is weird!

    Now I just tried something similar. I went into BIOS and enabled my "Integrated Peripheral" (my HD sound) and exited BIOS.

    Upon restart it installed HD device drivers automatically. I went into Sound / Speakers / Properties and under Enhancements I ticked the option "Speaker Fill" and low and behold I now have music via all 6 speakers (5.1) through WMP and Zune etc!!!

    So, does this mean I don't need an SB X-Fi sound card anymore? lol
    Monday, January 12, 2009 4:44 AM
  • "So, does this mean I don't need an SB X-Fi sound card anymore?"

    I do not.

    What you have done is enabled "some features" of your onboard sound (that reside in your chipset on your motherboard, most likely)...I assume you have the speakers attached to your sound card (not the onboard sound)...

    I would try this:

    Shut down, remove power, remove the sound card, plug the speakers into your onboard sound (check for proper connections), and after logging back in, review if you now have "Speakers- Hd Audio device"... BTW, if you combine HD Audio with a Widescreen HD capable LCD, your enjoyment will go up several notches (So I do understand where MS is going with this, but they should be more forthcoming and clear, I say)...

    Glad your on your way to resolving this issue.  Let me know how it goes.
    Monday, January 12, 2009 4:58 AM
  • Actually I spoke too soon! lol

    It wasn't the HD Audio Integrated Peripheral on my Dell XPS 630i which enable the 5.1 surround in music.

    The first time my system crashed - it happened trying to play Call of Duty World at War - the game froze and it emitted a fast beeping sound and the only way I could recover was to manually power down as CTRL-ALT-DEL didn't work - when I rebooted, Win7 tried to install a device driver and eventually said it failed. I had no sound. I rebooted again but this time I did have sound. When I went to the Sound configuration my SB X-Fi sound card was missing and in its place was "High Definition Audio" device.

    I tried to uninstall it and scanned for new hardware and rebooted a few times but my SB X-Fi sound card is nowhere to be seen! It still works under Vista though. I went back into the Sound / Properties / Enhancements and checked the Speaker Fill option and now I have surround sound for music via 5.1.

    No matter what I have tried I cannot get Windows 7 to see my X-Fi sound card again. It was there when I first installed Win7 but now it is gone. I do have sound and I also now have 5.1 for music but Call of Duty World at War keeps crashing whenever I try to play it . I am not game to install the latest creative drivers or audio console as when I tried with my last Win7 install it stuffed up my speaker config so I could only get sound including 5.1 DVD through my front speakers. I tried three different driver versions and also tried in Vista compatibility and could not get sound back to default install.

    I have no idea why the first system crash in CODWaW caused Win7 to no longer recognize my X-Fi sound card???? Very weird. I have to go into Vista to continue playing CODWaW and I do everything else in Win7.
    • Edited by SevenRules Monday, January 12, 2009 11:09 AM spelling
    Monday, January 12, 2009 10:39 AM
  • My X-Fi Fatal1ty Pro works great with the 2.18.0008 drivers released last month. I had to install them in Vista compatibility mode to get them to install, but they work a treat. I use an OpenAL plugin for Winamp and my game of choice, at the moment, is Warhammer Online. Neither of those have made my system crash, nor caused the system to "forget" about the soundcard.

    I will say, though, that it is possible. I get random hiccups with my Linksys WMP300N wireless card, where it won't be detected as a WMP300N, but rather a random wireless card, and the drivers won't install for it. My way to "fix" that is to power off the system, turn off the power supply, to completely drain the system of power, then turn it back on, and the hiccup is gone.

    just plain crazy...
    Monday, January 12, 2009 1:11 PM
  • SevenRules,
    Your Motherboard likely "reset" itself to default when the system locked up.  This would automatically change the BIOS setting for your onboard audio device from disabled to enabled.  A BIOS update may be available (but from Dell, I doubt it).

    The beeps are usually a form of diagnosis of the error, an audible check or alarm.  Check the manual.

    You are assuming that one event is associated with the other.  I would do some computer hardware maintenance before I decided what the real issue is, then I would check the event log for hardware errors.  If you are running the 64 bit version I would review which drivers are not digitally signed (such as the Creative ones, which is likely why they were disabled) and find signed drivers.  You will have to check the BIOS settings again if you choose to keep the Creative Sound card as your default sound, as you will have many issues (especially in game play) if you have multiple hardware sound sources enabled.

    If you have trouble with a game or program, try uninstalling it, rebooting, then installing it using the compatibility settings.  System restore may help also.

    If any of these likely hardware related issues are not clear, you should check the manual, with Dell or consult a computer PC shop, but they likely will not be able to support your chosen OS, a beta, as they don't have enough familiarity with it.

    It's important to help resolve your issue to also answer the question about which device you have the speakers plugged into, the Creative sound card or your onboard sound...it's quite important.  If you have onboard integrated HD audio, I would use that with Windows 7 beta, removing the Creative sound card as I noted above.

    Good luck.  Keep posting.
    Monday, January 12, 2009 1:38 PM
  • I've managed to install the 64-bit drivers for X-fi Extreme Audio but I have no real functionality when it comes to the Audio Console and Creative Console Launcher. Neither are showing any options for applications such as the graphic equaliser, Crystalilizer, EAX, 3D, etc..  All are missing.  The only 2 options I have in the Console Launcher are:

    1.  Headphone detection
    2.  Mixer

    I've installed all drivers in Vista compatibility mode, running it as Admin. Is it normal for the X-fi Extreme Audio 64-bit consoles to have such little functionality? 

    Sunday, January 18, 2009 11:41 PM
  • HP Deskjet said:

    I've managed to install the 64-bit drivers for X-fi Extreme Audio but I have no real functionality when it comes to the Audio Console and Creative Console Launcher. Neither are showing any options for applications such as the graphic equaliser, Crystalilizer, EAX, 3D, etc..  All are missing.  The only 2 options I have in the Console Launcher are:

    1.  Headphone detection
    2.  Mixer

    I've installed all drivers in Vista compatibility mode, running it as Admin. Is it normal for the X-fi Extreme Audio 64-bit consoles to have such little functionality? 


    Go and take a look at this thread http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/w7itprohardware/thread/2024a42f-43bf-4b65-957a-aead96999328

    World Peace.
    Monday, January 19, 2009 1:42 PM
  • I've had a look at the alternative unofficial drivers posted on the Creative site, but by the looks of things they offer me no more functionality than I currently have with the official Creative X-fi Extreme Audio 64-bit drivers for Vista I have installed and running.  As I'm using Windows 7 with a 2.1 speaker set up, I can live with 24 bit, 96000 hertz quality they offer.  It's still astounding to see that Creative has lost none of its arrogance on reading their E-mailed reply to one of the posters on the other thread.  As I mentioned earlier, I expect the same fiasco Creative users experienced with the introduction of Vista when Windows 7 comes out.  Undoubtedly Creative will try the old 'end-of-life' support for several X-fi/Soundblaster cards when W7 final comes on the market.  If that's the case with the Extreme Audio card, I for one will not be buying Creative again.  Seeing as I've been using their cards for years the lack of support around the introduction of Vista has left a very bitter taste in my mouth when comes to Creative.
    Sunday, January 25, 2009 8:51 AM
  • I notice on the Creative forums that the following is stated, "None of the Xtreme Audio Vista drivers currently available (even XP ones) will work on Windows 7 and will crash your system instantly when loaded.".  This has not been my experience.  I installed the Vista 64-bit drivers, which I downloaded directly from the Creative site, installed them under Vista compatibility & 'run as admin' mode.  Quick reboot after install & I got sound immediately [24-bit, 96000 hertz] on a 2.1 speaker set up and they have not had any detrimental effect on Win7 stability.  The statement that they will instantly crash your system on reboot is simply untrue.
    Sunday, January 25, 2009 9:11 AM
  • I setup a dual boot on my existing XP PC and tried the 32bit version of Win7.  I had the same problem with an immediate BSOD whilst installing any Creative driver whatsoever.

    I wiped the Win7 32bit partition, and installed a dual boot Win7 64bit on the same system.  This time, the same drivers had no problem at all and worked first time.  (Yes I was installing as an administrator in compatability mode etc on both versions)

    Very strange!!


    Sunday, January 25, 2009 11:15 AM
  • Where did you get your drivers from?  I have a X-fi audioextreme and the 64bit vista drivers are not working.  I will try the vista compatibility.  Thanks

    Sunday, January 25, 2009 4:37 PM
  • @itsmebryan

    Use the drivers supplied with the card rather than any newer ones (I think I used the XFXA_PCDRV_LB_1_04_0077 driver). 

    Alternatively, try the drivers linked to above at http://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/w7itprohardware/thread/2024a42f-43bf-4b65-957a-aead96999328.


    Sunday, January 25, 2009 7:50 PM
  • I see in this thread that you tried the current release for drivers. Have you tried the beta drivers? I used them and everything works perfect. One thing was odd when I installed though. After I installed the driver the software connected to the internet and downloaded other peices of the software. Kinda weird... but im new to creative so that must be normal. I have the Creative Fatality XFI Titanium through 6 Channel direct. Are you set through optical?

    Monday, May 11, 2009 7:01 PM