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Forums -> Multiple monitors -> Anybody using SBLive & PCI video cards? (Static/Pops/Clicks)
shaun   2002-06-05 09:39
Are any of you running a system what has both a PCI SBLive & a PCI video card as a second display? If so, when you play music (like winamp) and something graphics-intensive happens on the *secondary* display (like a winamp plugin or seti@home window), do you get static chirps and clicks in the music? I'm pretty sure my PCI bus has too much activity on it and I've read a few web pages that pretty much confirm that the SBLive is a bus-hog.

I'm interested in hearing from people who have this sort of hardware setup, regardless of whether or not you're having the problem. If you could, please post the following:

motherboard make/model
bios revision
bios settings relating to PCI bus (assigned IRQ's, latency, etc)
processor & ram
power supply wattage & manufacturer
a listing of all AGP/PCI/ISA cards in your system
operating system & (for 2000/XP) are you running in ACPI or Standard PC mode?
driver versions for all video cards & sblive
is liveware installed? if so, which version?
among your display adapters & sblive, do any of them share IRQ's?
are you experiencing any static/pops/clicks sort of noises? under what conditions?

I'll start:
ECS K7S5A w/ onboard LAN
Cheepo BIOS 0429f (see
no assigned IRQ's, latency currently set to 128
Athlon 1.4ghz w/ 256M Crucial 2100 DDR
Matrox Marvel g450 eTV AGP
Matrox Millenium g200 SD PCI
SBLive 5.1 Value
Promise Ultra100 card w/ 3 Deskstars attached
WinXP Pro
using latest WHQL-certified driver for g450 eTV
using latest non-WHQL-certified driver for g200 from Matrox's site
using latest WHQL-certified driver for SBLive
no liveware installed
currently, both matrox cards use the same IRQ, but even when i had the g450 etv, g200, & sblive all on different IRQ's, I still got the chirps/pops/static

I get static/chirps/pops every time when playing music and something graphics-related happens on the secondary PCI g200 display
shaun   2002-06-05 09:40
i forgot to mention my 400W Antec PS.

TIA - shaun
Nite   2002-06-05 18:47
Yup, the same happens/ed here. Both with my old Live! card and now with Audigy. Creative's cards are bus-hoggers indeed, but unfortunately there isn't better cards for gaming. So I'm sticking with them. AND endure the cracking.

\Nite - "can't rain all the time"
Multi-Monitor Gaming Web
shaun   2002-06-06 04:24
I found a ton of posts about this exact same problem over in the ECS forums at Looks like this problem happens a lot on K7S5A's with SBLive's & PCI video cards. The old BIOS 010724 doesn't have this problem though. I reverted to that version and the problem went away. I lost whatever enhancements ECS made to the BIOS since 7/24/01, but my system doesn't seem any slower. But there is an issue with floppy corruption with this BIOS revision.

You can grab this BIOS here

My guess is that this old revision of the BIOS enforces latency standards, regardless of what the PCI/AGP cards & their drivers try to do. ECS probably removed that from their BIOS so that graphics cards can draw faster and get higher benchmark scores, making the K7S5A look better on hardware review sites. Apparently, video card manufacturers started ignoring PCI Latency standards back in 1998 and it's common practice now. Since there usually isn't a way to tell your drivers to adhere to latency standards, the BIOS is really the only place you can enforce them.

For those of you having problems like this, but on a different board, take a look at Tweak BIOS here It can supposedly tweak latency settings and a few other things without rebooting. See if your motherboard's chipset is listed there. If so, maybe post here and let us know what it did.

There is also an alternative SBLive driver here I didn't try it, so I don't know if it works.
Forums -> Multiple monitors -> Anybody using SBLive & PCI video cards? (Static/Pops/Clicks)

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