ChromaSOUND FAQ


Q: How do I hook this thing up?

A: ChromaSOUND uses the sound card in your computer, so you'll need a cable to get from your receiver's headphone or speaker outputs to the LINE or MIC inputs of your soundcard. Most sound cards use 1/8", (3.5mm) stereo (3-conductor) plugs. You'll want to use the tip and barrel of the plug, since this is a monaural (not stereo) application. Please note that you don't want to hear direct audio from the radio speaker while you are using ChromaSound!

If you have speakers attached to your computer, no other connections are required. If not, you'll need to either attach speakers to the card, or route the LINE output of the card to an external audio amplifier, or amplified speakers.


Q: I'm hearing echoes in the audio.. How do I get rid of them?

A: Open the Windows Volume Control, by double-clicking on the small "speaker" icon at the far right of the Windows task bar. Next, make sure the "MUTE" control for the LINE or MIC input (whichever you're using) is selected. Please note that other software may require that control to be not muted, so you may have to change it back for other programs.


Q: There is a delay in the audio. How come?

A: Sound card drivers under 32-bit versions of Windows will always have a delay, unfortunately. Another word for this is latency between the input and output streams. The current version of ChromaSound has a minimum delay of 140ms. We're working on an experimental DirectX version of the DSP kernel will reduce that delay substantially, on computers that have DirectSound-accelerated hardware. We'll publish a list of DirectSound-accelerated cards as soon as we have enough test results from users in the field.


Q: I get "pops" on volume peaks. What can I do?

A: Reduce the volume at the receiver, you're over-driving the sound card input. Another thing to bear in mind is that most ISA-style sound cards use one 16-bit DMA channel, and one 8-bit. What this means is that the playback audio on those cards will only be 8-bit, regardless of the software. ChromaSound is 16-bit internally, but hardware is hardware. Better quality PCI cards will normally use 16-bit DMA channels for both record and playback, giving better results.


Q: I get "breaks" in the audio when I switch to other applications, or when the machine accesses the hard disk.

A: If you're using a bandpass filter of some kind, try a design that uses a fewer number of taps. Also, some video drivers can cause problems with audio drivers. Try reducing the Hardware Accleration setting for your sound card (in the Display properties) to see if this is true in your case. Also, updating both your sound and video drivers to the latest versions will sometimes fix this problem.


Q: I get an error (MM system error #4) when I first start ChromaSOUND. What's going on?

A: That most likely means that you don't have a full-duplex driver installed for your soundcard. The "stock" drivers that are installed with Windows 95 and 98 normally don't support full duplex. Full-duplex drivers are usually available, but you'll need to download and install one for your particular card and operating system.


Q: I have a PCI-128 sound card, and I can't get ChromaSOUND to work correctly. what can I do?

A: You'll need to use the MIC input, instead of the AUX input. The PCI-128 is a great card, but the AUX input will not work with full-duplex applications like ChromaSOUND. We've reported the problem to Creative Labs. Hopefully, they'll fix it in a future release of the Windows drivers for the card.


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