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SOLVED: Can’t get bass and subwoofer sound with Conexant SmartAudio HD and Windows 8.1 / 10

January 17, 2015

I have an Asus laptop with Windows 8.1 (and this problem also exists I Windows 10). Curiously, my expensive headphones sounded tinny when plugged into the laptop, despite sounding great when using my iPhone.

Researching, I discovered various complaints that Windows 8.1 has messed up the audio, meaning that a lot of sound cards no longer give low bass or subwoofer sounds to the speakers or headphones.

The solution always given is ‘wait for your sound card manufacturer – in this case Conexant Smartaudio HD – to update their drivers’.

I tried updating my drivers but Windows said there were no updates. Grr.

But then I discovered these drivers, released January 10, 2015: “ASUS Notebook Conexant Audio Driver for Windows 8.1 64-bit

And they work! Bass is restored!


UPDATE: The problem is back with Asus’s latest update… here’s how to fix it AGAIN…

OK, so recently I upgraded to Windows 10 and updated my drivers and found that the tinny sound was back. Asus’s new drivers are 8.66, and they don’t work properly.  The only driver that actually works is for Windows 8.1 64-bit (I don’t know if there’s a version for 32-bit computers).

But here’s your problem – if you try to replace the new driver with the older and better one, Windows will get angry and tell you No, the newer one must be better because it’s new. Sigh.

Here’s what you have to do:

  1. Download the drivers from the link provided above.
  2. Extract the files using extraction software.
  3. Go to Device Manager on your computer
  4. Double-click “Sound, video and game controllers”
  5. Double-click “Conexant SmartAudio HD”
  6. Click the “Driver” tab
  7. Click “update driver”
  8. Click “Browse my computer for driver software”
  9. Click “Let me pick from a list…”
  10. Select one of the “models” listed; I’m not sure if it matters which.
  11. Click ‘Have Disk’
  12. Click ‘Browse’
  13. Navigate to the driver files that you extracted, open the folder ‘W8-64’ and select the file “X40Plmwa.inf”.
  14. Click ‘Open’, OK, and ‘Next’, and the old drivers should now install. When they’ve finished, check in Device Manager again to ensure that the driver is now Restart the computer and your bass should be restored.

Just make sure you never update your sound drivers ever again.


From → Laptops, Sound

One Comment
  1. Nicolaj Brøchner permalink

    It worked! Thanks 🙂

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